Friday, May 30, 2008

10 Male Traits We Could All Use in Life

I read what follows in my CarePages e-newsletter and it struck a chord with me. At times, I'm accused by my loving fiancé to be a "man basher" and since I just wrote a sort of "girl powerish" post, I figured it's time to give some credit to the men out there.

There's a lot of truth here!
Some people accuse men of being lazy for sitting on the sofa, but men argue that they’re merely using the time to regenerate and take care of themselves. Summarizing classic male traits may seem like shameless generalization, but we could all learn a thing or two from male-specific behaviors. Here are 10 to get you started.

Keep emotions in check
Certain situations require emotional detachment, especially at work. Sometimes, a poker face can help prevent others from getting overly-stressed out or overwhelmed. If you stay calm, everyone else will stay calm, and you’ll be able to focus on the task at hand.

Ask questions and challenge
Men like to ask questions and play devil’s advocate sometimes—not to antagonize or to argue—but to explore different points of view. It can help to get a new perspective on things.

Be confident
From an early age, boys may feel more comfortable than girls in speaking out without the fear of mistakes to hold them back. Later in life, some see this as men being more aggressive than women. But we could all learn from a little more self-confidence. Everyone has worthy contributions to make in daily life. A little bit of cockiness every once in a while doesn’t hurt.

Focus on solutions
Women often communicate to vent or share, while men look at communication as a means to an end to provide a solution. While venting certainly has its place, it can help to focus on a game plan when you’re really trying to make an important decision. Break it down into smaller, more manageable chunks and keep your eyes on the prize.

Make eye contact
The next time you’re faced with an uncomfortable situation, don’t avert your eyes. Instead, face things squarely. Staring down a situation for what it is can help you get through it with grace and positive energy.

Be the strong, silent type
We’ve all been there: feeling uncomfortable with silent pauses. Men don’t feel the need to talk just for the sake of talking. Standing back and being quiet sometimes means that you’re just taking it all in. Don’t feel the need to fill up the air with words. But when you do have something to say, by all means, say it!

Be a team player
Men might understand the spirit of teamwork faster than women. Many played organized sports while they were kids and have learned how to set common goals and work together. Not a bad skill to have.

Express anger sometimes
It’s okay to express a little anger to blow off steam. Women can sometimes bottle up their anger, only letting it pop long after they've built up a reservoir of resentment. Don’t worry so much about the other person. It’s okay to show you’re not happy. Then you can be done with it and move on.

Be a straight-shooter
Women are sometimes accused of expecting men to be mind readers. They hint and used veiled metaphors—then get hurt when men don’t figure things out. In reality, men are literal creatures who ask for things directly and specifically, so they expect others to do the same. What a refreshing concept.

Accept a compliment
You seldom hear a man replying to a compliment with a “Oh this old thing?” retort. Men love compliments and even fish in the conversation to get a few. Women have a tougher time accepting compliments without shooting back a qualifier. We all should own it. Smile and say thank you.

1 comment:

Erin Kelly said...

Great post Lo, I'm so glad you shared this. It is so true! We don't routinely give men enough credit, but unfortunately men don't give women enough credit either! I think everyone should read one of books by Allan and Barbara Pease: "Why Men Don't Listen and Women Can't Read Maps: How We're Different and What to do About it" or "Why Men Don't Have a Clue and Women Always Need More Shoes: The Ultimate Guide to the Opposite Sex." These two books actually help you to understand yourself and the opposite sex! But who am I to even begin to think I understand either....