Relationship Enrichment Seminar
Dr. John Gray author of the best seller “Men are from Mars, women are from Venus”
Dr. Gray mentioned as a preamble to his talk that when his book ‘Men are from Mars, Women from Venus’ had come out he was questioned whether one can make generalizations in terms of the behaviour of men and women. The only response he gave was whether they resonated with what was written in the book and 100% of the time they replied ‘Yes’.
1. The differences between Men and Women are universal. Women all over the world complain that “He doesn’t understand”. “He doesn’t listen”. “Only time he touches me is when he wants sex”. And men all over the world complain that “She doesn’t want to have enough of sex.” (Unless the woman is around 37 years. At this magical age women want more of sex than ever before.)
2. Women like affection from men much more than sex. They want to be hugged. John learnt to hug his wife.
3. Men like to be logical. Women like to share and talk even if there is no point in their sharing and talking. Men need to have an objective. They need to see the point in doing something. They can’t share for the sake of sharing.
4. Men tend to do one thing at a time. Women do many things at a time. Men have a tunnel vision. 95% of their attention is focused on just one thing and 5% on checking of the environment. Women are just the opposite. They are continuously taking in everything that there is in the environment whether it is useful or not.
5. John narrated the incident of his wife asking him to get some milk while coming home from work. He forgets. She considerately puts it down to his thinking of work. She asks him again. Again he forgets. She takes it personally. It’s not that the milk was forgotten but that she was forgotten. Women behave in this manner.
6. Men have their own caves on which the sign states “Please do not disturb.” Men like to retreat into their own world where they feel they are in control. Women also have caves but the sign on their caves is “I need to talk”. When a man asks a woman what’s wrong and she says “Nothing” it really means “Nothing, unless you care to listen and give me an opportunity to talk.”
7. 90% of women go into therapy because they want to be listened to. They want to be asked questions. They want to feel special. Men hate to be questioned. If men want to talk they’ll talk. If they don’t want to talk they won’t. When a man is locked in his cave, the woman thinks that something is wrong with him and goes in and asks questions. This is a wrong move for the woman to make. Men hate to be interrogated.
8. When a woman touches a man she may want to be cuddled. But for a man anywhere he is touched leads to Rome and he thinks therefore that it has to lead to sex.
9. Men want to forget the problems of the day. Women want to remember. A man will say “Forget it, it’s no big deal.” For a woman she will not rest till the problem is talked about. Her response to the man, who wants to just forget about it and not make a big deal out of it, will be “How can you be so insensitive.”
10. Men should never tell a woman how she should feel. In fact if she is unhappy, the man needs to be unhappy with her for a while instead of offering advice.
11. If the man is at a loss for saying anything when the woman is feeling bad then instead of offering advice he could build her up a bit by saying “I know how much you work during the day to make the kids and myself feel happy. It must be very exhausting.” Her unconscious response would be “He understands.” The woman craves for understanding.
12. Women make noises to get attention. Men make noises to signal “Please leave me alone.”
13. To cope with stress, sometimes, women while speaking tend to speak in long sentences and then pause. Men think that the pause is a signal for saying something. Wrong. For the woman the pause is just a semi-colon. Men need to restrain themselves in giving advice.
14. When a woman is upset and a man tries to give a solution 99% of the time her response will be “Yes….but”. When she is relaxed then give the solution. After she has been given the opportunity to talk about it.
15. If a man tries to walk in a woman’s shoes, she will be more willing to understand his point of view. Men tend to expect women to agree with their point of view because they feel it is obviously the best point of view.
16. Men are efficiency oriented. Must do it the easiest and fastest way. Women on the other hand feel that taking the shortest path between 2 points is boring. Women like variation. This is especially true in the bedroom. Men go by the same formula every time while women want variation. Men like uniforms and the same uniform. Men look good in a tuxedo or a suit and that’s it. Every time the same tuxedo or suit. Women like to change their dress; sometimes thrice or even more times in a day.
17. When John’s book ‘Men are from Mars, Women from Venus’ was on the bestseller list for 6 years in a row, John realized how narrowly focused in life he had become. He only gloated about his book being no. 1 on the bestseller list. John was missing the little things of life where his wife and children were concerned. Women are able to see the little things in life and be happy.
18. The more narrow the focus of a man the more stressed he is bound to get. He can’t notice anything else other than what he is focusing on at that moment. Women deal with lots of problems at the same time and the way they cope is to talk about them.
19. Men use their brain sequentially viz. one part at a time. Where women are concerned it is usually the whole brain at once.
20. Women lower stress through talking and sharing. The collectiveness and togetherness which they share is part of their feminity. Men lower their stress by being alone. Women’s attitude is that if we can’t do anything about it then let’s talk about it and suffer together. Men’s focus is on solving the problem. And if they can’t solve the problem then they make the problem disappear by forgetting about it.
21. Men always want to be right.
22. Women, unknowingly sabotage their success. They put themselves down because they want support. Women bond by putting themselves down. For example if one is late for a particular function in the office, the woman will say what an imbecile she is by not catching the right train or missing the connection because of some stupid mistake she made and so on. And other women who are also late will do the same.
23. Or if a woman is having a problem with the computer, she will call the so called expert from the computer department and tell him that she doesn’t know anything about computers and that she is very happy that he has come to her rescue and thereby push the guy way up there. But when he suggests a solution which she tends to disagree with, she doesn’t know how to tell him because if she does it, it makes him come crashing down and he reacts by saying that she has wasted his time. In this case one needs to resort to face saving devices like ‘whatever you have suggested will I am sure help me to figure it out (even if you see no utility in the suggestion).
24. As women more and more enter into the workplace their need to being listened to and understood is not being met. The workplace is efficiency oriented. They are becoming more and more isolated. They have to raise their children alone. Unseen and unheard. And this is causing them to go more and more into depression. The man focusses on work no matter what the problems are that are being experienced at home.
25. Man is efficiency oriented. He needs to feel needed. He needs problems to be solved. If there are no job opportunities or there is no effort called for to do something then the man feels depressed.
26. When women feel nurtured they feel happy. They are happy with the small things of life. Man likes to measure himself against the goal he has set for himself. Men behave like squirrels. They focus on one thing, dash towards it and once they reach there then they turn their focus on another thing and make a dash there and so on and so forth.
27. Men see the news on TV especially after coming home, because the problems they hear about and see make their problems seem that much smaller.
28. John’s soul sings when he teaches. Need to find one’s path and go along it. The fact that one feels fear is because it is one’s path. If it was not one’s path then one would not be so worried about whether one made an impact or not.
29. The truth is I deserve to be the way I am. I need not be bothered to be perfect in order to be loved. Once one lives in an atmosphere of perfect trust the more authentic one becomes, and the more authentic one becomes the more irresistible one becomes. The closer we are to who we truly are the more people will love us. There will always be people who do not love us.
30. Forgiveness is the key. If someone hurts then one needn’t hurt back. As Gandhi said, An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind.
31. Women give more. Men want to get more.
32. Women want flowers to be purchased by men. And they should be cut- flowers. So that the flowers die and therefore the men have to go out and purchase them again and again. They do not want the romance to go out of the relationship. Men on the other hand feel that if they have done it once there is no necessity to do it again and again. But women want things and messages to be repeated again and again.
33. Women sometimes give hints viz. On Sunday they will mention that they are getting their hair cut on Thursday. This is to be taken as a warning signal. The hair cut must be noticed. If a woman has to ask how she looks after she has had a hair cut then there is no value placed on the man’s comment. It has to be noticed without being asked. Women put in much more effort in looking good. Men put in more effort in their work.
34. Man wants to be appreciated. Woman wants to be listened to and noticed. Men stress more on what they do while women stress more on their being.
35. Men think that by being flexible they are Mr. Agreeable and that is appreciated by women. Really speaking women want men to take charge and suggest something which they agree on. Mr. Agreeable is boring. The ideal metaphor is to have a man with a plan and a woman with a smile.
36. Sometimes the woman feels that she does everything according to what the man wants. At this point it is necessary for the woman to say “I’ll do it this time your way but next time we’ll do what I want.”
37. Women are always keeping score in a relationship viz. When a woman does anything for a man she always gives herself a point. Men keep score in business. Men need to keep score in a relationship too. They need to do something for the woman so that they too score points from the woman’s point of view.
38. At work the man’s perspective is not to unnecessarily interfere. A man feels that if he doesn’t ask then he is giving total freedom to the woman. But a woman who is a subordinate wants to be asked about her work because silence is taken to mean ‘non-involvement’.
39. Women like the small stuff. Chit-Chat. Occasionally ask some personal questions. The magic words are ‘What else?’
40. To free a man a woman needs to say ‘You don’t need to say or do anything and you don’t need to feel bad.’
41. Listening creates healing.
42. Women by nature give. But when they find that they are not getting anything in return they need to give to themselves. Men have no problem in giving to themselves. Men don’t give enough to others.
43. Men prefer women managers while they learn the job. After learning the job they prefer a male manager.
44. Men sprint faster. Women win the long distance.
45. In men testosterone lowers stress. In women oxytocin lowers stress. Affection, considerateness, being noticed is what produces the oxytocin in women. Therefore men need to learn new skills to produce oxytocin in women. Foreplay is more important for a woman than a man. A woman needs 20-30 minutes of stimulation. A man needs just 2-3 minutes.
46. Women want sensitive men but the danger is that if men become too sensitive then women don’t like it. They want men to be considerate but not to be too sensitive just like them.
47. Don’t try to fix or change your partner.
48. When husband and wife are business partners then there needs to be clear rules. There needs to be a clear demarcated time when no business is talked about.
49. Duty is important but being authentic is more important.
50. Women can be compared metaphorically to the moon. When the moon is full, women crave for sex. When it is half-full, a woman can have it not have it, it does not matter, and when it is a new moon she couldn’t care less.
51. There are different types of sex viz. Healthy, home cooked sex, Ferrari, junk food sex, and Gourmet sex. Once a month one could have Gourmet sex which means bringing in the romance by going out for a dinner and coming home to an atmosphere which slowly climaxes. Whenever he wants sex, and it is a quickie then give it to him. Provided on other occasions there is good, regular homemade sex. In order to arrive at a meaningful understanding one could have 3 candles signifying the 3 types of sex. Either partner finds it very difficult to know the real mood of the other. Depending on which candle is lit and by whom one can behave accordingly. The candle becomes the sign of the mood.