The Truth About 'Not Ready Yet" (And What To Do About It!)
You’ve met the perfect man.
He’s handsome, successful, hardworking, kind, and funny. Maybe he’s a single dad and takes good care of his kid(s), even co-parenting well with mom. He’s really everything you’ve wanted, right down to great in bed!
He says he’s not looking for anything serious because he doesn’t have time and that his main focus right now is work and his little one, but you think deep down he’s just scared because his last relationship was a disaster.
Can you seal the deal and turn this around, taking it from casual to committed?
Well, I’ve got some good news and some bad news.
The good? You’ve discovered one of the gems out there, a real diamond in the rough.
The bad? He’s telling you exactly what he wants in life, and unfortunately, that doesn’t include taking it to the next level with you right now. Which sucks when you’ve found someone amazing.
It’d be nice if you could win his heart over before yours gets hurt. And it’s not like there’s no hope, but winning over a man who isn’t “looking” is much harder because what you’re trying to do is get him to switch his mindset from Guy mode (selfish, short term thinking) to Man mode (generous, long term thinking).
The difference? Guys (and Girls!) just wanna have fun, while Men are actively looking for a relationship.
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So first, I’m going to explain why these mindsets are so important, and then I’m going to tell you what it takes to nab one of these great catches. But if you have to walk away and start over again, I’m also going to round this out with some tips that help you end up with someone in Man mode much, much faster.
Guy versus Man
See, here’s the thing – Guy mode is essentially the sandbox, somewhere to play with no strings attached. We can choose that same mode for ourselves by the way, and I’ve happily enjoyed Girl mode during my younger, single years. It’s a fun place to be when you just want to relax your brain between relationships, but don’t want to stop seeing people.
But as women, it’s too easy for us to inadvertently fall into a relationship even when we start out in Girl mode because the chemicals produced during sexuality affects us more deeply than (typically) men. And part of that has to do with the amount of heartwarming Oxytocin that’s triggered inside us during sex. Oxytocin is the same chemical our bodies produce when a baby goes through the birth canal, helping us bond with our child and forget how much it just hurt to give birth to them. So it’s no wonder sex will ultimately make US bond faster than men.
This works out for us if the person we’re playing with happens to be looking for something more serious. But we can do our hearts a disservice when we take on a playmate who’s really just in it for the play, and let ourselves fall for them.
Men are much better at separating sex from intimacy.
Their sexuality is not as clearly attached to their emotional tides because biologically speaking for them sex is about planting a seed, while for us sex is about growing the seed.
Since their fertility literally has no cycle (unlike women) their sex drive and emotional attachment to sex is hugely different. They literally choose which mode they’re in even before sex takes place – play or committing – and ultimately that can be hard to shake up after the fact.
So what I’m saying is, you have to believe the words coming out of his mouth.
If he’s saying he’s not looking for a relationship, hoping for one can be your downfall. Your desire for the amount of commitment and attention a relationship requires will turn him off, and he’ll say “sorry, but I told you from the beginning this was just casual, and you’re getting too attached and demanding more than I’m willing to put in. So I’m going to have to end this now.”
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What sucks is that his honesty will often have a twofold negative consequence when women want more. One, feelings of rejection and hurt. And two, a lingering bad taste that all men are jerks. Which isn’t fair to the good ones being honest about their intent from the very start.
Oprah once said one of her biggest life lessons came from the late, great Maya Angelou. “When people show you who they are, believe them.”
Listen carefully to what they say, and believe it despite what you want to believe. This will keep you from getting caught up with someone who isn’t looking for the same thing you are. Absorb the truth, and make decisions based on knowledge rather than emotion.
That being said, can you win this man over and ultimately have a relationship? Maybe. But that depends on whether or not he’d consider you girlfriend material once his brain is ready to commit.
What is he looking for in a long term partner once he’s there? Study him, and you’ll learn his values. And if you’re two peas in a pod it’s possible, but you’ll be playing the long game, and you can’t ask for monogamy in the meantime.
Men in this phase are often making their financial success and the raising of their children their number one commitments, and that likely won’t change until 1) their kids become more independent and 2) their career is firmly settled.
Can you accept just being there to take care of his manly needs for the next few years, while he builds his career and raises his child? Can you patiently take what he offers and not demand more? Then maybe he’ll turn to you when life slows down and he wants a partner.
But there’s a catch.
You need to listen to his words before you think about going down that route.
If he’s saying this is nothing more than temporary, that you should expect nothing even if you try to play the long game, then in his mind he already knows he’s not going to choose you when that time comes.
Listen carefully, and move on if that’s the case.
But if he says, “maybe one day”, there’s a possibility.
But again, you have to be patient and demand nothing. Is that what you’re looking for? Or do you want a man who’s ready right now to find a woman and commit?
One thing for certain though, now is not the time to commit your heart and soul to this man. He’s just not ready for it.
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So what can you do? Let me lay out some steps for you.
First, let him know exactly where you’re at. You like him, but you’re ready to find your Mr. Forever.
Let me give you the script for this conversation:
“You know, this has been really great for me, but I’m starting to get feelings and I’m thinking I want more. I understand that you may not be ready, which is why it’s probably time for me to cut this short and move on. I’m not telling you what to do, you’re completely free to do what you want, I’m just letting you know that I’m feeling like it’s time for me to find a committed relationship now.”
Then, lean back and see what he says. If he likes you too much to lose you, he’ll decide that now is a good time to secure a relationship, before someone else steals your heart.
But if he agrees, then do move on. He’s, in essence, saying that committing to you isn’t on his agenda at all. Take that knowledge and run with your heart still intact while you can.