If you've ever been seeing a man - and very carefully not been demanding or had a "talk" about where the "relationship is going," not pressured him or asked for any kind of commitment, - and then he says,
"I need space..."
As if you HAD been pressuring him, I know exactly how frustrating that can be.
You want to scream "I didn't ask you for a commitment!"
And that's where the problem is.
No matter what we do and say, our "vibe" is what our man hears.
He may not know how, but he knows what you "really" want even if you're hiding it not only from him, but from YOURSELF.
How does that work?
And how can we solve this so that we don't lose a man for EITHER reason - either because we don't make it clear what we really want and so we somehow seem like we're "withholding" or pretending" to be one way when we really feel another way - or by flat-out pushing and pressuring him?
It's all so easy if you're not in love with him.
I mean - if you feel like he's a friend, and you don't have the "tingles" when you're with him and you don't care if he calls or if you see him - it's easy.
In that situation, there isn't ANY part of you that wants MORE.
You're probably looking for the man you REALLY want to show up, and are just "making do" with the guy in front of you now.
But what if you DO care for a man?
What if you DO feel the "tingles" and you DO want MORE with him?
And what if you tell him you DON'T want more, and try to be casual?
What if you never mention your dreams for your own future?
What if you "play it" casual?
Well - what happens when we try to take the pressure off of a man by steering clear of our REAL desires for a REAL relationship is that we make him feel UNSAFE.
That's right. And I know it sounds wrong, because you'd think it would do the opposite.
You'd think he'd feel SAFE.
Because this is what he "gets" from being with us:
He "senses" on a deep level, because of the "vibe" we put out, and because we can't help feeling what we feel on some level we might not even be aware of (we may think we're so good at "playing" it casual we don't realize that he can pick up on our "seriousness" anyway) that we WANT him, and WANT a relationship with him - but that, for some reason, we're holding back on letting him see how we really feel.
And the moment he picks up that you're holding back - he feels unsafe.
He figures, on some deep level he's not even aware of, that if you can't handle YOUR feelings - you certainly won't be able to handle HIS feelings.
Men are a mass of jumbled emotions just as much as we are - and their biggest dream for love is to be totally ACCEPTED for who they are - ALL parts of them.
That's what makes them feel safe.
And if you don't love and accept yourself completely - even the parts of yourself you think are weak, ugly and yucky - then he'll have difficulty feeling safe with you.
Even your boundaries in what you will and will not tolerate from a man make him feel safe.
He feels that if you can take care of yourself emotionally, his emotions - and his secrets - will be safe with you!
To really learn how to do this - how to make a man feel safe and draw him in close to you, and how to keep that balance of WANTING a real, close, intimate relationship, and letting him SEE that, without pushing him away by asking HIM to provide it for you, you'll want to sign up for my free e-letters and take a look at my new program "The Modern Siren":
I know this balance of inner strength and outer softness seems very subtle - but you can do it so easily.
It's a very "organic" process, from the inside out - and it's FUN!
Here's a letter from Laurie, who's struggling with this issue - she' hasn't "demanded" anything from her man - so she's upset that he suddenly needs "space":
"Dear Rori, I recently downloaded your e-book on "Have the Relationship You Want" because I know I have a problem.
However, it wasn't my own mind that made me act upon downloading it - it was a 5 month dating 'relationship' that started my search.
I meet this quirky guy on St. Patrick's day just this year. In the beginning I didn't jump on the dates right away. I waited a few weeks before deciding to go out.
We started dating once a week. He called me, he asked me out by Tuesday for the weekend. Things were wonderful for the first 2 1/2 months. He was open about being recently divorced and he knew I was very concerned about that but he assured me he was okay.
Then my 15 year-old niece came to visit - he was excited to entertain the both of us, and all 3 of us did something every weekend.
Then something dramatically changed - my niece had been calling him my "boyfriend," and right after she left he stated he was not ready to be in a relationship and he needed his freedom. He said that having to see his ex-wife a lot recently made him realize he wasn't ready for a 'relationship'.
I was upset with him. I never 'asked' for a relationship. I never put any restrictions on him. I wanted to get to know him and learn who 'he' was - without me 'controlling' any aspect of his actions.
We tried to continue for another month but the tension was too high. I'd already received rejection and I became a 'different' person. Always unsure of what was happening. Also questioning the situation because I was hurt. I have NEVER been in a relationship where I can take it slow and try not to guide or manipulate the course. I should NOT be this upset because it has only been 5 months.
I want 'it' and I want 'it' right away and if it is not happening on my time frame I make the other person miserable. By actions of emotional overload because I can't stop 'talking' about this issues at hand.
He said he wants to "slow down," and I don't know if I can handle slowing down - but I should be able to.
This is where EVERY relationship ends the same way - at the first sign of 'uncertainty' I freak out and start wondering and asking questions that are pushing men away.
My friends say I just have to meet someone who can handle me - but deep down I know I need to change.
I guess I am scared to use this existing situation to try putting your exercises and advice into practice - it will hurt so bad if I know he is 'dating' but I should be dating and not worrying about what he is doing.
Can you give me any words of advice?
I am EXTREMELY frightened to try to start fixing myself now because I keep worrying about what he is doing and not living my life.
Fear is a bummer.
It stops us from getting what we want, when all fear was ever designed to do is protect us from harm.
So - how can we use fear the way it's meant to be used - to be a red flag and a warning - and NOT let it run us and get in the way of our true happiness?
This is an issue therapists and authors have been dealing with for centuries. And although I can't solve it for you in one eLetter, I can help you with a baby-step that will put you on the right path, and show you how to keep moving down that right path in an easy, fun way.
Fear is NEVER going to go away.
The Nasty Voice inside your head that's telling you to "Be Afraid" is never going to go away.
The horror movie business would disappear if fear weren't the overwhelming emotion for nearly everyone.
So - the trick is to LIVE with it.
In fact, to use the ENERGY of fear to GET what you want!
Okay, so let's get specific for Laurie's situation. I truly want to say "Bravo" to Laurie for saying that even though her friends say she needs a man who can "handle" her - she knows, deep down that the way to go is to make changes in herself, first.
There are whole sets of Tools in all of my products that deal with getting past fear, and let's look at a tiny baby-step you can do now.
It moves around your body, it moves from one idea to another, from one image to another, from one situation to another.
If you are afraid of moths and then overcome that fear, it doesn't mean you are through with FEAR for life - there will always be fear.
But also... FEAR GROWS.
And it GETS SMALLER, too.
You can work to make fear smaller, or you can work to make fear bigger.
This is where you have a choice.
Right now, it's easier and less scary for Laurie to focus on what's going on with her man than to focus on herself and her fears about getting a passionate, thrilling, satisfying life whether or not her man is in it. (I know it sounds worse, but our minds are fiercely weird sometimes.)
This fear is about the Unknown - about what MIGHT happen.
Since we have no way to truly know what WILL happen, we're always reacting with our fear of what MIGHT happen. That fear stops us in our tracks, and pretty much pushes our men away.
So - I want you to CHOOSE to make fear smaller.
And how do you do that?
That means you take a baby-step toward what you're most afraid of. And when you discover you've not only lived through that but feel actually STRONGER because of the step you took - you'll feel excited to take ANOTHER baby-step.
And with every baby-step, some old fears get smaller - and maybe some new ones get bigger.
That's why SUCCESS is usually so much scarier than failure!
At least we KNOW what failure is all about - but success seems almost unknowable.
But guess what - even while fears are moving around and getting smaller and growing bigger and then getting smaller again - YOU'VE MOVED!!
Yep - YOU'RE closer to SUCCESS!
So for Laurie...
A great baby-step would be to start doing something for herself.
Not just the normal things - going out with girlfriends or getting a massage - but TRYING something NEW.
Perhaps volunteering to help others through an organization.
Perhaps signing up on a dating site or trying speed dating.
Perhaps starting a new business.
Let me know about every baby-step you take, I'm thrilled to hear how fear moves around you, in you - and how it gets smaller and smaller until you get exactly what you want!
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About Rori Raye:
Rori is a relationship coach who helps women create more loving relationships through the techniques she teaches in her live seminars, online relationship advice products and one-on-one coaching sessions with clients.
She turned her own miserable and painful love life around to the glorious, happy marriage she’s enjoyed with her husband of 25+ years, and now she shares her secrets with a million women who actively engage with her in her newsletters.
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