Five Facts from a Guy {about Girls}

My dear friend Megan once told me that men are waffles and women are pancakes. When you pour syrup on waffles, it stays in each square; when you pour syrup on pancakes, it goes everywhere. In the same way, men compartmentalize their thoughts, feelings and emotions, which allows them a great ability to turn on and off life influences. On the other hand, for women, everything is connected and there is very limited compartmentalization.

The analogy made me feel like I instantly understood men better. So they can just switch squares? Just like that? Amazing.

It got me thinking about understanding men. I sometimes post things like 10 Things for Single Girls and 10 Things I Can Tell You About Your Husband, which are typically based on insight from Chris and my brothers. So, I thought, why not go straight to the source?

how to understand men

This week, I'm introducing Five Facts from a Guy Friday. I thought it would give all ye ladies the chance to get a little insight into the minds of men. Will their rules be hard and fast? Maybe not. But, I've said it once and I'll surely say it again: men aren't that complicated. They just seem confusing to us because we're living in a pancake world.

Kick-starting this is my kind, wonderful boyfriend, Chris. Here's what he has to say about girls. {Note: I didn't give him parameters or guide him. This is straight from the horse's mouth.}

1. Guys are meant to pursue – and we love it.  Men were made to be chasers, pursuers and hunters when it comes to relationships.  If you want to know if a guy is interested, be patient, be yourself and see if he opens up the pursuit.  You will find out through his actions if he’s interested.  I know a lot of guys who are thrown off when a girl pursues them first – it can be scary to have a girl trying to fill that role.

what men want - a list

2. Wet hair and pajamas is the way to go.  I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve seen guys taken aback by a girl wearing too much makeup, but I’ve probably never heard “Man – if only she would wear makeup, she would be so much prettier.” We can feel a girl trying to be noticed and to be pursued.  Dress comfortably and confidently– let the guy see you as you are. We love it when girls have the confidence to dress for themselves, not for others. Ultimately, that’s the version of you your husband will see the most anyway.

3. Keep embracing your own interests. If you don’t like sports, don’t fake it to watch the game with the guy.  It’s usually a well-intended gesture, but if the guy knows you, he knows you aren’t interested and likely not enjoying yourself.  If he wants to watch a game and you don’t, use that time to pursue your own interests.  It’s OK to have separate interests – you each need your own space to pursue these. (But don’t be afraid to ask how our sports teams are doing….especially fantasy ones. We love that.)

how to get a guy to like you

4. Own your independence. One of the things I love about Whitney is how deeply she has invested herself in her faith, family, friends, health, blog, career and personal development to ultimately fulfill her. I don’t feel like she is depending on me to “complete” her.  Rather, she wants me alongside as she pursues those passions.  One my best friends once said he didn’t want to be any girl's “vessel to marriage”.  When a girl is just looking for a guy to bring her the marriage/children/house that will then fulfill her, guys sense that, get overwhelmed and question the reason a girl loves them.

5. Challenge us to understand our emotions and feelings.  From what I know (not much), girls are typically more in touch with their emotions than guys are.  I think we, as males, often get uncomfortable becoming in touch with our emotions because we don’t understand them.  We need some pushing here.  When you get to a point in the relationship where it’s appropriate, ask the “why?” questions about his emotions. Recently, Whitney has done an unbelievable job of challenging me explore root causes on my feelings and emotions.  It’s been fascinating to explore this and better understand myself in the process, and has enriched the way we are able to connect.