Over at Advice from a Single Dating Expert, Evan responds to a few readers who want to know why men don’t like strong, successful women. The standout part of this great article was when he discussed the flip side of your characteristics.

“I’m intelligent, I’m direct, I’m successful, yet I can’t seem to find a quality guy who appreciates me.

Men like smart women. I do. My male coaching clients do as well. So how is it that all these successful men are not connecting with all these successful women?

Because there’s much more going on than merely a meeting of the minds.

What never occurs to some women is that:

They’re being evaluated on far more than their most ‘impressive’ traits.

These traits sometimes come with a significant downside that is painful to acknowledge.

Take me, for example. I’m a reasonably bright guy. I make a fair living. I can write a decent joke. These are my good traits. But right behind my good traits are a series of bad traits. Anyone reading this blog can see that:

The flip side of being bright is being opinionated.

The flip side of being analytical is being difficult.

The flip side of being funny is being sarcastic.

The flip side of having moral clarity is being arrogant.

The flip side of being entrepreneurial is being a workaholic.

The flip side of being charismatic is being self-centered.

Again, not EVERY person who is bright is opinionated, and not EVERY person who is funny is sarcastic. But there’s enough anecdotal evidence to suggest a strong correlation. And I’m just talking about MYSELF here. And if my good qualities come with bad qualities, have you considered that yours might as well?”

Aside from the core subject of these women’s perceived hardships at meeting men that appreciate their qualities, it’s Evan’s breakdown of what certain characteristics can translate into relationship wise that make this article so interesting. Ultimately what we think is great, what we’re putting out there, and how people actually see us are very different things. Do you know who you really are?

A couple of years ago I believed that I was unlucky in love with a penchant for attracting assclowns and emotionally unavailable men. I often described myself as ambitious, a go-getter, outgoing, attractive, intelligent and bemoaned the fact that men were attracted to those qualities but didn’t want me to keep them. Whilst there is no escaping that I did go out with emotionally unavailable assclowns, it was a bit of a shocker to discover that on deeper, honest, reflection, I was commitment-phobic, aloof, picky, had sh*te taste in men, sarcastic, and often difficult where I thought I was having fun and being ‘entertaining’.

It is very easy to focus on the surface qualities that we believe are our selling points and totally ignore more important characteristics and behaviours that may be impacting on our ability to have relationships. It doesn’t matter how intelligent and ambitious you are if you’re afraid of commitment and subconsciously sabotaging anything that may lead to it. There is no point in being beautiful if you don’t act beautiful, or harbor beliefs about your own abilities that impact on your self-esteem. We also have to accept that if we can find faults and flaws with others…that people will find those with us too.

It’s not about taking the onus off the men that don’t appreciate us for who we are but it is about taking responsibility for who you are and recognising that not everything about you is that wonderful. I used to be able to list countless faults with the men I met and dated, but rarely asked myself what I could be doing differently. But who I thought I was and who I really was had to reconcile and in that, I was able to forge far better relationships from an honest level.

So next time you bemoan your relationship luck and list your surface qualities, view yourself from another persons perspective and even play back recent dates and scenes from previous relationships in your mind.  Could you be doing something differently?

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