Do you Intimidate Men… Or is something else going on?
“I intimidate men”
If you feel that the core issue with your dating life is that men are intimidated by you, this blog is for you.
As a dating coach I have a problem with most “catch all” explanations for your dating life. Whether it’s “all the good guys are taken,” “dating apps have ruined dating,” or “I intimidate men”, they’re all too much of an easy scapegoat for what might be a more complicated issue.
If you allow, “I intimidate men,” to become the narrative for your dating life, then you might be turning a blind eye to the real issues at hand.
Saying, “I intimidate men,” can feel good too…
Because by believing this statement you helpfully get to externalise the problem: It’s not that you need to do anything differently, it’s that the system is broken, and his inability to “man up” is to blame.
By saying guys are intimidated by you, what you really mean is that he needs to feel superior to you in some way to approach you, or that you don’t want to “play dumb” to attract a man.
Or perhaps you feel like you’ve become so accomplished that it’s hard to find guys who are “on your level.”
Now I’m being harsh here (and in the past I’ve probably had similar thoughts myself) but it’s purposeful, as my goal is to unstick you from this rigid interpretation of your dating life, and help you to actually meet the men you want.
If this is you, here’s how I would unpin this belief and solve the problem:
Step 1: Recognise that “intimidating” women form happy relationships everyday.
If it really was the case that women who intimidate men have bad dating lives then surely Serena Williams, Amal Clooney and hey, even Liz Truss (the former UK Prime Minister) wouldn’t be married now.
If they can meet someone, so can you. I know it absolutely sucks to feel rejected, but don’t let that feeling of rejection become narcissistic to protect your ego, “I intimidated him, he couldn’t handle someone as smart as me.”
So everytime you notice yourself (or others, because your friends love a good explanation of why you’re single) choose this as the ‘reason’ mentally challenge this assumption. At best, it doesn’t give the full story.
Step 2: There’s a grain of truth here, but it’s not the whole story.
“I intimidate men” – whilst there may be a grain of truth in this, this isn’t the absolute truth. In fact, it’s kind of unfair on men to think that they all want some insipid damsel in distress.
However here’s some things that are true:
- Men prefer younger women. (To be fair, at a younger age, women also prefer older men.)
- Men have a preference for qualities like openness and kindness.
- Men may be attracted to women being smart “on paper” but this isn’t necessarily the reason they’d chose someone as a partner.
Now before we throw the book at them, think about it, isn’t it really the same for you? Yes, on paper, it would be great to meet an intelligent man, but when it comes down to it, day to day how you relate towards one another and how he makes you feel is more important.
It’s not so different for guys. They may have nothing against women who are CEOs, or went to Ivy League universities; but they may find other qualities more attractive, particularly when it comes to choosing a longer term partner. The quality they may find most attractive is that the person they’re with helps them to feel good about themselves. Again, is it really that different for anyone? Or do we all like to be with partners who help to make us feel good, happy and secure?
Step 3: Understand that you can have the best of both worlds.
There’s something very depressing about the idea that you need to change who you are, or water down all that you’ve achieved, to be attractive to a man. However, this idea that you have to minimise who you are (and under no circumstances intimidate him!) so he can feel more masculine isn’t quite accurate.
You can be strikingly beautiful, yet approachable.
You can be sharp as a tack, but deploy emotional intelligence.
You can have your whole life organised, but still have space for him in it.
Relationships aren’t a competition.
So you don’t have to turn into a damsel in distress to make a guy like you; but you should recognise that women who appear approachable will get approached more, and of course it’s nice for him to feel like he can bring some value to your life… but that’s just RELATIONSHIPS it’s not him needing to be superior to you.
So how can you implement these shifts to improve your dating life?
My coaching is all about what you can practically do to create change.
So now we’ve pulled apart the too simple, catch all of “I intimidate men” it’s time to work on how you can change how you interact with men to get better results.
- I’ve used the word “approachability” a few times in this blog so far. To me, this means mastering your body language cues so that you can more quickly tell which guys are interested in talking to you, and how to signal to the men you want to approach you.
- FYI I LOVE teaching women how to become more approachable and meet men in real life so much I designed a live workshop around it called Secret Place.
- Instead of falling into “man bashing” (as tempting as it is when you’ve had a bad dating experience) remember most men aren’t raging misogynists. Most of them are just human beings trying to do their best to connect, albeit sometimes in a way that you might not immediately recognise. By making a concerted effort to understand him better (trust me, he’s also trying to understand you) you will be able to connect with him more easily.
- Tell him what you like about what he’s doing, and how he’s interacting with you. Some positive encouragement goes a long way.
- Take time out to date and connect with people. Getting to know someone takes a long time.
- Unapologetically create space in your life for him. Provided you feel safe and comfortable with him, if he wants to buy you dinner, or help you move some boxes into your new apartment, or make a spreadsheet for you, let him do it. And for the record, that doesn’t mean you can’t do it yourself, or that you owe him a relationship. It just means there’s some space for him to start the process of getting to know you better.
- Tell him what you like, and what your preferences are. He will often listen.
- Tell him things that you want to work on, or do better. That doesn’t mean you couldn’t get to the same end result without him helping you out on a project; but it means you value collaboration.
So think collaboratively, not competitively, about relationships; and don’t fall into the trap of believing that your dating life (or lack thereof) is down to the fact you intimidate men.
If you want to work on this you can book your first coaching call with me here.