A Controversial Recipe for a Kick-Ass Marriage (the Hero Theory)

by | Aug 9, 2012 | Create Coaching Products | 12 comments

Warning: possible side-effects include improved sexy-time.  😉

 

With 40-50% of all marriages in most western countries ending in divorce, you may be wondering if your relationship will pass the test of time? If you are reading this, you probably know that sharing your life with another person is an amazing gift to give someone and there is nothing quite like being in love. You probably also know that when the honeymoon period wears off it can be tough to continue to work as a team and keep the romance fresh. This is because most of us have no training in how to be a good partner. We just do the best that we can with the resources currently available to us and make up the rest as we go (kind of like becoming a parent). No wonder the divorce rates are so high!

 

So, Why Am I Talking About Marriage and Divorce?

Today, I’d like to teach you one of my all-time favorite coaching concepts called, The Hero Theory. When I first learned this theory, it not only generated a serious light bulb moment for me, it also improved my marriage – which was already very good!

Now, when I teach the Hero Theory to my life-coaching clients, it’s an ‘ah-ha’ moment every time. The Hero Theory is basically the foundation material you need to know in order to keep your loved one happy and to have eyes for only you.

Before I get into it, I should warn you that you might find the thoughts in this article a little controversial. These ideas go against what modern – especially Western – society has influenced most of us to think about the roles of the man and woman in a relationship. Warnings aside, I can assure you that if you and your partner are willing to try out this new set of rules for even a day you will be amazed at what you learn about yourself, your partner and the strength of your relationship.

 

Imagine You Are a Caveman or Cavewoman

yin and yang symbolThe Hero Theory takes its roots from the good ol’ pre-historic days, allowing for some artistic license in, perhaps, romanticizing a little. Back then; men were men and women where women because that’s the way it had to be to keep the family, not to mention the species, alive.

Together, couples created a synergy of yin and yang. The division of labor was clear and balanced. A man protected the family from dangerous hazards (like saber-toothed tigers) and a woman selected and learned how to retain a man that kept her and her family safe.

The man understood that the woman was vulnerable and he took care of her. The woman appreciated her man for keeping her safe.

Read those last two sentences again. Twice.

And that, dear reader, is actually all there is to it. But let me explain.

 

The Fundamental Difference Between a Man and Woman

A woman and a man want different things from their partner – its biological.

  • Women want to be understood.
  • Men want to be appreciated.

As simple as this rule sounds, it’s being broken by countless couples everyday. This is partly because we tend to ‘do unto others as we want done to us’. So, women are trying to understand their husbands (by having a meaningful conversation) and men are trying to show appreciation for their wives (with their natural talent for saying the wrong thing at the wrong time). And no one is really happy.

 

It Gets Worse Before It Gets Better

This mismatch has been compounded with the modern, western perception of the roles for man and woman. Today, mostly thanks to the woman’s liberation movement, modern women are pressured to be fiercely independent and strong, and the knock-on effect has been that men are supposed to be super-sensitive and attentive. These are both fine characteristics to have, provided they are complimented with other characteristics as well.

The sensitive male must also be his woman’s hero and the independent woman must allow her man to take care of her – and appreciate him for it. If this does not happen you end up with women wearing the pants and doing all the work in an unbalanced relationship.

Worst of all, and unbeknownst to the woman, her need to prove herself essentially castrates her partner, who can then never be her hero. At the same time, it strips her of what it is to be a woman – that amazing mix of strength and vulnerability.

 

The Solution

If you can see even hints of what I’m taking about in your own relationship then you will be happy to know that there is an actionable way out of this situation. The solution is different if you are a man or if you are a woman and I’m afraid to say that the men get the hard job.

 

For Men: Understanding Women

Men, there are two main things you need to know about your woman to keep her happy:

  1. For your woman to know that you love her she must feel understood by you. Always.
  2. Your woman will always test you. Get used to it and make sure you pass her tests. This will help her trust you, enable her to let go of her need to control everything and, ultimately, be more ‘woman’ (this last part will be great for your sex life).

 

Why Do Women Test Their Men?

A woman constantly tests her man. It’s biological. She tests him to make sure that he is always alert and ready to protect her and her children from any unexpected danger.

With very little around that is dangerous, the modern woman creates her own danger, most likely in the form of stress, and throws it at her man to see if he can handle it. If he handles it and remains by her side she feels confident that he will stay with her and keep her safe – he passes. If he deserts her she feels vulnerable and rejected – he fails.

A woman’s man must be her hero. To do this, her man must pass her tests (no matter how harebrained they may be!).

 

Your Woman’s Favorite Time to Test You

You can probably guess this one. The best time to test is when you are calm and relaxed.

When she knows that you can go instantly from relaxed mode to hero mode she knows for certain that you will be able to protect her from danger anytime: a true hero.

Imagine this. You’ve just settled into the sofa with a snack, a cold drink and an anticipated sporting event to watch on television. You are thinking, “Ahh! Life is good.”

Then all of the sudden, out of nowhere, your partner picks a fight with you about some seemingly random thing. You say to yourself, “Where the hell did that come from?!@#!”

She is testing you.

Another good time to test is when you are driving together. It’s the same test. Out of nowhere, she criticizes something you do.

Bon voyage. 😉

 

Tests Your Woman Uses and How to Pass Them

Test How to pass
She asks you to take out the garbage. Take out the garbage when she says to.
She asks you to pick up after yourself. Pick up after yourself as she’s asked you to.
She asks you to do any chore or task. Just do it! It’s a test. The requests will die down when she trusts you enough.
She argues with you. Hold her.
She buries her head in the pillow. Uncover her and hold her.
She pushes you away. Hold her tighter.
She leaves the room. Follow her and hold her.
She leaves the house. Run after her and catch her. Hold her.
She drives away. Drive after her and catch her. Hold her.
She turns into a total bitch monster against you. Hold her. Tell her that you are here for her no matter what. Hold her face with both hands and gaze into her eyes. Keep holding her until she falls into your arms.

 

I hope that you are starting to get the idea here?

Your woman will go to extreme means to make sure that you are here for her no matter what. Warning: the first time you try this she is very likely to throw everything she’s got at you until she realizes that you are indeed the hero she has been waiting for.

As all communication goes, your timing with each response will be crucial. Remember it’s OK to have a few goes and even get it totally wrong a few times while you learn to master your timing. Your persistence will be worth it.

When you are tested, as hard as it may sound, you need to tell her that you are here for her, no matter what. Reassure her that it’s all going to be OK. Hold her and pet her hair.

Be patient. Be strong. Be there for her.

 

Common Mistakes Men Make

Mistake Result
She says, “But you were suppose to xyz” He says, “How was I suppose to know?” You either don’t understand her or you didn’t pay attention to something she has said. You fail. You are not her hero.
He says, “I just don’t understand you.” Huge mistake! What your woman wants most is to feel that her man understands her. You fail. You are not her hero.
She says, “Just leave me alone.”He does what she says. She is consciously or unconsciously lying to test you at another level. Deep down she instinctively fears being abandoned and vulnerable to be eaten by a saber-tooth tiger. You fail. You are not her hero.
A couple argues and it results in the woman reassuring the man about his insecurities. This argument is not about your insecurities, it’s about hers! Step up. Be her hero!

 

What Men Need to Think At All Times: Your New Mantra

Men, if there is an overriding thought that will help you to become the golden hero your woman is looking for, it is this:

“Give me all you’ve got woman. I’m still here.”

 

Being the Hero Has Many Benefits

When a man continually passes his tests the tests slow down and can even disappear. This is because the woman finally has the evidence she needs to trust her man and she is able to let go of being the man. In this situation the woman is freed to be something she is, probably unknowingly, longing for, to be vulnerable and also strong. The partnership becomes complete – yin and yang.

The added bonus is that when she trusts her man, intimacy improves. This means a better sex life.

 

A Final Tip for the Advanced Heroes Out There

Watch out!

Once she let’s go and starts trusting you, she starts to lie about what she wants (its just a more subtle test, just to be sure!).

If you suspect this is happening, just say, “ That can’t be all of it – what else is on your mind?” You may need to ask up to 30 times before you will get the truth.

Be patient. Be strong. Be there for her.

Remember you are helping her overcome inherited, primal insecurities – a deep seeded fear of being alone and vulnerable.

 

For Women: Understanding Men

As you can see, and thanks to you, your man has a hard job ahead of him! What you need to know most about your man is that he does not need to be understood. He just wants you to appreciate him.

Give your man the opportunity to be your hero. When he does something that pleases you tell him how much you appreciate him.

If your man regularly goes into his ‘man cave’ it can be a symptom of him being fearful that he is not the man that you need. See if you can help draw him out by giving him the chance to be the leader and your hero.

 

In Conclusion

Remember those two sentences I told you to re-read twice? Here, read them again:

“The man understood that the woman was vulnerable and he took care of her. The woman appreciated her man for keeping her safe.”

Now, imagine that, as a couple, you both adopt this mindset and the rules that go with it. During your first week you may giggle and tease each other because it feels new and funny. Later, you may experience a few hiccups. You could even have a huge argument where you both vent and are able let go of some deep emotions you’ve been repressing all these years together. Eventually, together, you master the Hero Theory. You become closer than you ever thought was possible. Intimacy is amazing and your sex life reaches new heights. Together you have become yin and yang – all Woman, all Hero.

 

12 Comments

  1. Coach Debbie

    Benay, more men and women must learn how to love each other. Many are so selfish. Not that they mean to be-they just know no other way–self. Your articles is a fresh way to consider. Your article made me think of how I when I test my husband he always comes out the hero in my heart! Love On!

    Reply
  2. Gill Parkin

    Hi Benay, I loved this article – it really resonanted with me. It does highlight how men and women fundmentally see things from a different perspective!!!!

    Reply
  3. Penny Booth-Smith

    Love the article – but what about vice versa, I was waiting to get to the bit which gave me advice on what my caveman would do and how I’d manage it!!! I was still left with the problem – what if I want to vent around something (probably at work) that’s irritating me? My hero (love him!) will then assume a Wise Pose and Graciously Tell Me What He Would Do In My Position That Would Make All Rosy. Cue gnashing teeth from me…

    Reply
    • Benay

      Hey Penny. Thank you for the feedback AND the scenario. Sounds like your venting could be a test and your man is not passing the test! If his typical response is making you gnash your teeth…does he truly understand you?

      I’m curious, if he did truly understand you, what would you want him to do instead?

      Reply
  4. Mo Perkins

    I really enjoyed that article Benay. I totally agree that modern society is working against our fundamental nature. In recent years women have tended to hide their vulnerability and not leave much room for a man in their life. I often say to my clients that however successful they are, deep down they still want to be ‘looked after’ by a man. Additionally, as you have pointed out, we often give the other person what we want to receive rather than the gift they want! I guess it’s one of the reasons that men who have attractive, intelligent, professional partners so frequently ‘go off’ with women who seem a little pale in comparison. This is because the lady they have ‘gone off’ with generally seems more vulnerable and appreciative of them! It’s not necessarily true . . . it’s just how it seems. Thanks again for a great article that made me chuckle and nod in agreement. It’s a keeper as they say.

    Reply
  5. Kim Warner

    Benay,

    Thank you for inviting me to read this article. I think it’s a breath of fresh air simply because the world functions on “let’s get married and if it doesn’t work we can divorce”. Love in it’s purest form is eternal, it also begins with and individual knowing who they are and loving themself. If the individual hasn’t discover who they are and that genuine love they have what better way than to find it through the good and the bad times. Again I thankful for you sending the email contain the link for the article, continue to write on this area giving knowledge to familie that the children will grow with more understanding and success.

    Kim

    Reply
  6. Benay

    Just wanted to give a big thanks to all you amazing coaches – your feedback and encouragement is warmly appreciated (even though I know you all just want to be understood!). 😉

    Reply
  7. inapsin

    This is a silly article. It does list what a man and a woman is suppose to do in a marriage. The problem is that the author writes a laundry list of tests and mistakes for and about men. Most men would not jump thru so many hoops. The # 1 reason for divorce in America is infidelity. If you believe that a man would do all those things on a list, you’re sadly mistaken. All it does is lead him faster to another woman. I believe in marriage, but the ideas listed here will not save a marriage

    Reply
  8. eve

    wow, every word, every situation is so true. i thought i was mean witch who always makes a storm in a glass of water. what is important i understood myself and why i do it, why after my tests, my husband always leaves me and every time we are talking about divorce. he has never passed even the smallest test. gosh, i smell a divorce in the air 🙁

    thank you for opening my eyes and letting to understand myself better and my man’s behavior.

    Reply
  9. Linda

    Excellent! Reminds me of what my grandma would always tell me, ‘Make him your king and you will be his queen.’

    Reply
  10. Grant

    Definitely the dumbest thing I have ever read, ever. If your so insecure that you have to test your partner all the time, stay single and work out your issues.

    Reply
  11. Marianne Foscarini

    Oh my goodness! As I look back upon my own marriage I see those scenarios played out exactly as described. Fortunately, my spouse has always been The Hero … with a few slammed doors here and there, especially in the early years.

    Penny Booth-Smith wanted the same table examples in the reverse situation.

    And so did I. (Partly because you’ve got such a great sense of humor.)

    But thinking about it … how better can we respond than to appreciate our dear husband?

    And can I add one more point for Grant? It is dumb. It’s embarrassing to be so insecure. Most often we don’t even realize it’s happening. But, as the Bible says, Love covers a multitude of sins. (1Peter 4:8)

    Reply

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