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Are You Paying Attention to the Warning Signs?

Episode #85

Most men have the belief that to provide for his family is to provide “financially”. So as a result, he hustles and grinds every day to earn money but eventually loses himself in the process and doesn’t have anything more to give when he gets home.

He’s physically there but emotionally absent. Women tend to notice immediately if their partner is not doing well in the relationship but men, most of the time, will only figure it out later.

Men typically figure out there is an issue in the relationship AFTER he has already pushed his partner far away, has made many broken promises and the trust is gone.

In this episode, we talk about how men should be proactive and pay attention to the warning signs so they can do something and make a change while it’s not too late.

Be aware of what’s going on around you. If you are being tested by your partners and they are giving you the warning signs, be grateful because you now have the opportunity to make amends. Once you recognize the warning signs, take ownership of what you do as a man and take massive action.

If you ignore the warning signs, you will pay the price and will have an even tougher journey later on because you failed to make things right when you had the chance.

In this episode you will learn:

  1. Recognizing the Warning Signs
  2. The Importance of Providing Emotionally
  3. The Importance of Being Proactive and Taking Ownership as a Man.


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Episode Script

Doug Holt 0:00  

And the third guy listening to this, Tim, is the guy going crap. I wish I would have gotten the warning signs because he is in a state right now where his partner and kids have already left them. He didn’t make the change, and he didn’t recognize those warning signs in time. And now he’s living a life of regrets. Hello everyone, and welcome to another episode of The Powerful Man show. I am your host, Doug Holt, with my co-host Tim, “The Powerful Man” Matthew. Tim, what’s going on, brother?

Tim Matthews 0:34  

Yeah, I’m doing well. I’m doing very well indeed. Nice day; team meetings working with the guys will come. The marketing has been living in a cool place of the inspired flow of lit, so yeah, life is good.

Doug Holt 0:49  

No, that’s awesome. I was thinking about that. When we got on our call, I woke up at 4:40; this morning alarm felt good. I had a cup of coffee, kind of had some thinking time. And then rolled right into our team meeting with the coaches, which was always uplifting. It’s fun to have that banter at that level and then roll right into a 90-minute call with the man in The Brotherhood, which is always soul-filling. And in between these calls with our lifestyle, I’m down there playing with my son, no wrestling, but playing with him in the games. And you get to hear Daddy constantly; it always is amazing. I just did that right before you, and I jumped on this phone call. It’s a video call. But you and I get to record such an amazing start of the day and here on my end on the west coast of the United States. It’s not even 10 am.

Tim Matthews 1:44

Boom, he’s going to be a pro wrestler. By the time you finish with him.

Doug Holt 1:46  

I hope that’s what I’m working on, man. It’s funny as before because he knows he has a bedtime and like a lot of kids. He doesn’t want to go to bed per se, although he’s good about it. But usually, we know, about an hour before his bedtime, he looks at me and says, dad, wrestle? Like that. And of course, I get year to year I will be when I run upstairs to the carpet, we have this huge carpeted area. And that’s kind of our wrestling match. And it’s his version of wrestling, which usually means jumping on dad. I would change it for the world, man.

Tim Matthews 2:22  

Yeah, that sounds amazing. 

Doug Holt 2:24  

It is.

Doug Holt 2:26  

Well, Tim, one of the things that I thought was interesting was talking to one of the guys who just made it through The Activation Method and graduated out of The Alpha Reset with us. And he’s continued to The Brotherhood. And one of the things that we were talking about that came up, as he mentioned something that his wife said to him early on before he joined The Activation Method, his life has taken a 180 all for the better. And what he told me was, he said, Look, my wife turned to me one day and said, Look, you’re going to lose me, you’re going to lose the kids, you’re going to lose our family because you were like a man possessed—just working on focusing on business and business only. You’re not even present anymore. And when you are, you’re here physically present, you’re not emotionally present, not emotionally available, and you’re kind of a jerk. So she, I think that’s such an amazing gift that she gave him, right? Because so many men listening to this, probably you’re there, guys, you’re in one of two camps, well, maybe one of three. One is, you’re working like a madman, right? You’re doing the things necessary. Or maybe you’re just working a lot. 

And you’re not present at home. And when you are, you might be having a couple of cocktails, and you’re a jerk, right? And no one says anything to you. Right? And that’s just the way it is. Now, two, you can be in another camp where you’re also working just like this. And you maybe you were like this guy where you have someone who cares about you that is giving you the warning signs, right? They’re giving you as like, hey, look, and I’m the canary in the coal mine. There is a problem here. And if this problem doesn’t get addressed, these are the consequences as I see them, right. In his case, I’m going to leave you. I’m taking the kids with me, and you’re going to lose everything that you want. And probably the reason for this guy, the reason he was working so hard was to take care of his family, right? Some identity and some other things are going on that, as you and I know. But that’s it. And the third guy listening to this, Tim, is the guy going crap. I wish I had gotten the warning signs. Because he is in the state right now where his partner and kids, in this case, wife and kids, have already left him, he didn’t make the change. He didn’t recognize those warning signs in time. And now he’s living a life of regrets.

Tim Matthews 4:46  

So true. And I can think of you speak and think of many men who fall into all three of those camps with the men who have been through The Activation Method in The Alpha Reset. It was funny he said he’s alpha reset. What it’s like the guys always have a huge epiphany right about where they are not stepping off the line and how really the rule of the law of the problems is them and their drive and what’s been causing them to sacrifice everything, to make money. And one of the guys, a different guy, in fact, to this guy, actually had the realization that it was all down to him. And he was going through marriage counseling but not giving it his all. And we then said, Look, you’re going to stop the marriage counseling. And then after one of the coaches said, well, Timmy depends on who instigated the counseling. And then his head dropped further and said, Well, it was me. I was the one that said there were all these problems, and I was the one turning around and saying that it was my wife’s fault. And that she didn’t appreciate me and didn’t understand that I had to work hard for us. And then, all the stories that the men tend to tell themselves, and then in the marriage counseling, because his wife could see easier from the outside looking in, right? 

When you’re in it, and you’re the guy you need growing the business, and you’re juggling all these balls granted, perspective can be a little bit lost. So hearing things like this, listen, if you don’t change, we will leave invaluable. And it’s all down. So whether or not you pay attention to those warning signs, because she’s only going to say that so many times, right? Shall I say maybe one or two times? And it’s when she stopped saying it. And when the woman starts to withdraw and becomes quite distant, and I think the best way to describe it is that when she starts to withdraw emotionally, you’ve got a real problem, because usually what women then do, is they will then look at all the options, not immediately. Still, over time, they will then look at the options and look at where they stand. And if there were to split up, who would be likely to get the kids and who would keep the house, and where would the husband live? And how would it work with the school in, and on what days would they have the kids and women figure it out, whereas men just dive in and figure it out later? So pay attention to the warning signs because we have had it when those guys haven’t paid attention. And he’s come home from work. And there’s been a note on the table with his wife’s handwriting on, addressed to him, opens the note and it’s divorce papers, and the wife has gone with his daughter. And he’s then left to figure it all out, and then all you were, he’s then playing catch up, then trying to get the woman back. But by that point, you’ve pushed us so far away, you’ve made so many broken promises, that it’s just, she doesn’t believe it, that the trust is gone.

Doug Holt 7:51  

Yeah, when the trust is gone, it’s a really hard bridge to repair. And we talked about those three camps, Tim, something that I’ve come to learn in my journey, and my quest here is to be proactive on those ideas. They say I’ve just pulled up the status, and you were talking. It’s over 70%. That’s a huge number, right? So set over more than seven out of 10 women, if you got ten women married women in a room, or they’re divorced, right? that took separation, seven of them, at least started it right, seven of the women initiated the divorce procedure, that’s a huge number. That’s not even close to 50-50, or even 60-40, 70-30 or above is gigantic. And one of the things guys you can do as a man listening to this, if you find yourself in the camp, one of those camps is proactive, right? Don’t wait to get marriage counseling when things are bad. Do it ahead of time, work on yourself, get counseling, work on yourself, recognize those warning signs, and pay attention. We talked about also the psychology of the genders, right? Men and women are different. Right? Women have what’s called diffused awareness, right? They’re constantly being aware of everything around them all the time. They talked about this, Tim, through archeological research or anthropological research. When we look at the differences in the sexes is we think about caveman times or prehistoric times. Women always had to look out for everything, right? They would go to forage in the land, and we’ll use the berry patch as the analogy here. But while they were at the berry patch, they always had to be aware of what was going on around them. While they picked the berries, they had to watch the kid where the kids were getting the berries, and again the right berries are these the poisoned berries, there are the real berries, where Susie because Susie has to keep talking that way we can scare with the animals, we all know what’s going on, etc. So it’s diffused awareness, always having your awareness diffused across a wide spectrum. Whereas men, we are very directionally focused, right. 

We usually focus on one thing, so back to prehistoric times hunting. And when we hunt, we don’t talk, right? You have to be quiet, and you have to stalk your prey; you have to be very focused on what you’re doing. And at senses, those senses get honed to a level that allows us to compete. Now fast forward, Tim to modern-day times, women still have this diffused awareness, but now it’s around their relationships. And since they’re not in these communities like they used to be, they’re learning more and more about the traditional family unit. And men, we’re not hunting; we are hunting or hunting in business typically. Now some guys have broken free of that and are doing different things. But again, we’re talking about a bell-shaped curve with the masses of people being in here. That’s traditionally the way it is. So guys, as you’re listening to this, you can bet that your partner’s wife or not your partner is very aware and conscious of what’s happening. They’re very aware of what’s happening around them. At the same time, this guy’s traditional. We kind of become oblivious to it. And it’s not a bad thing, right? It’s just it’s the way it is movies, make jokes about it, etc. The guy who is completely unaware, and you always hear this about guys, when you we hear it more, probably Tim and you guys listening to this, you might have heard it from a buddy that you met at the pub or a bar, and he’s saying, geez, she left me I had no idea. Or she had an affair, and I had no idea. Right? They didn’t see the warning signs because they were so focused on one thing, they stopped focusing on what mattered. They weren’t paying attention to the warning signs and being proactive, and saying, hey, look, I need to be proactive in the areas of my wealth, my relationships, my health, my business, and myself.

Tim Matthews 11:45  

I love, and I think one of the things you can, the guys listening, can do this, which is easy. And I did, and I did this on Sunday. And honestly, it’s something we’d like to make much more of a regular habit with something we used to do weekly. That’s like just a weekly check-in and how the relationship takes a few minutes, but the point was to give us both a space in which we can feel seen and heard and be understood. And in that I was I asked Amelia, and how was the relationship for you this week? What were your highlights? What can I improve upon? What would you rate out of five? And No, she then reversed in and asked me the same question. And it was just great. I think I lasted 10 minutes, which is a good thing, right? Because if she’s going on for an hour, you’ve probably got more things to improve than highlights. But yeah, just giving yourself that segment of time to check in. And maybe this is that moment where you can heed the warning signs and make a change and pivot. It’s very important that if you do that, then of course, whatever comes up in they get a half to pay attention to it. So that you don’t risk, again, missing even more warning signs and you came in changes to doing it daily is something Amelia and I used to do was doing a daily check-in so, at the end of the day, we would again be asked, did anything come up for you today? How was the relationship-focused around the relationship and checking with each other outside of that too, but just getting into some routine is so key just to give that space to connect and hear one another?

Doug Holt 13:38  

Hey, sorry to interrupt the show. But I wanted to ask you a question. Do you ever feel like something’s just missing, like there’s something more out there, and you just can’t put your finger on it? I get it. Go over right now to ThePowerfulMan.com/Freedom to discover the system that other business people just like you are using. We’ve included 10 case studies, ten men just like you who have found the solution and found their way on their path. But we want to share that with you. Go over to ThePowerfulMan.com/Freedom right away. Now let’s get back to the show. 

Doug Holt 14:17

Oh, it is. It’s so great. And I got that from you a couple of years ago; you and I had a conversation about the weekly check. And it reminds me I haven’t done that in that way in quite a while—the way my wife and I traditionally do, we do it two ways. I’ll just share it with the guys in case they get something out of this. One is I asked what your love tank is? Right? 1 to 10, 1 to 5 we do 1 to 10 now with that, and ten being full, right? My love tank, whatever that means, right? Because mine’s acts of service. My wife’s love language is quality time. What is your love tank 1 to 10, and then how can I get it? How can we take it from an 8 to a 9, for example? So she says eight? What would it be? What would the nine look like for you, and then she told me, and that kind of gives me the canary in the coal mine? An interesting story is Tim, and I’ll share the second one with you. There was a time in our marriage early on when I asked that question to my wife, and her number was consistently very low. And that was the warning signs, right? I had the skills and the tools, but I wasn’t doing it. Her love tank was low, and mine was as well. And that’s when I looked at hiring a coach. I’m like, Alright, I need another coach, or I need some, I’m not doing the right thing. So I need optics, above and beyond what I have, right? Do the same thing over and over again, and you’re getting the same results. So early on in our marriage, I got someone to work with individuals, to help me pick up my side of the street. I wanted to blame her, trust me, for my love tank not being full. I wanted out of a laundry list of all the things that she was doing wrong. I know you can’t relate to this because Amelia in your perfect

Tim Matthews 16:00  

Let me get that little volume down to make sure that she doesn’t hear about it.

Doug Holt 16:05  

I wasn’t, and I looked on the outside. Everything looked amazing. But I operated from the time because I’ve been doing the work for over 20 years, that you got to clean up your side of the street first set another way you got to take Extreme Ownership, which is a popular term now. But even back then, it was very similar, although we didn’t call it that take Extreme Ownership for what your results are, what you do, and who you are. As a man, and I got optics around that, I hired a coach through a program. And the coach was more of a mentor at that stage. And I learned a lot about myself, and the coach exposed those things to me where I was like, Oh, crap, it’s not her. It’s me. I knew that a cognitive basis, Tim, but actually, how it is when someone shows it to you. And you figure it out yourself to show it to you. You kind of figured it out yourself as they’re showing it to you. And you get that sense of clarity. So my wife gave me that warning sign. And I think the difference between me and why we have such an amazing marriage now is as soon as I recognized the warning sign, I took massive action. I mean, massive action, I pulled the trigger way above and beyond what I could afford, the time I had had three businesses I just didn’t have no the story was at no time, all my money was invested in the capital in the businesses. But I went all in and fast forward to today’s beautiful marriage wrestling with my son baby on the way, but had I not done that not recognize those warning signs. I know for a fact, if I didn’t take action, I didn’t work, I would be in a very different position right now.

Tim Matthews 17:47  

You’re then in a position of playing catch up, right? Because if you don’t pay attention to the warning signs, let’s say the worst happens. You end up getting divorced, and then you’re always in that position of almost like damage repair damage limitation because you want him to limit the effect it has on the kids. You want him to manage the relationship with your wife on an ongoing basis, even though you both probably will want to end up in a relationship with somebody else at some point. So you’re always in this position of playing catch up. And like you were saying, I didn’t have enough time. So the cost to you there may, in your mind, may have been the time it may have been an opportunity, it may have been growing the business further. But in reality, the actual cost that was beneath the surface that you hadn’t yet seen would have been a financial cost of costs, which I don’t know what it’s like in the US, but I think the average device in the UK costs about 200,000 once they split all the assets and all the rest of it as well. It’s a significant expense. But then more important to that expenses emotional expense under stress and the toll it takes as well to then go through that process you either pay attention to the warning signs and do the work now or ignore the warning signs, pay the price and have an even tougher journey after that. Because the journey after that will be way more disruptive and expensive, and stressful than if you would just change right now at this moment. I mean, if you listen to this guy’s and listen, the reality is if you’re listening to this. You even have a shit shred of doubt as to how well your relationship is, how connected you guys are, how much love there is an intimacy, and so forth, then that’s enough to tell you that there’s something amiss. There is. And I had; obviously, I’m the one that speaks to the men when they come into the program and enrollment conversations. 

I’ve had conversations with men that have been having just come out of marriage counseling, and we get to the end of the conversation and realize that sometimes what is causing a lot of the drift in the relationship is that the man just isn’t there. He has been taught to believe that the way to provide is financial. So why does he go out when he hustles and forces and grinds and makes money but loses himself in the process? And as a result, he doesn’t even have anything left to give when he gets home, either physically or emotionally, he’s there, but he’s not there. And as a result, in that position, women feel very vulnerable. Going back to your analogy of defusing the tension, they used to do that to increase the chance of survival as well, didn’t they? spread the word around. And when a woman doesn’t have that strong masculine, when I say strong, I mean emotionally present, when she doesn’t have that emotionally present masculine container, if you will, in which to have the diffused attention within. Then she feels vulnerable to attack, at which point, she’ll do one of two things: the rise and become the alpha, which isn’t the natural position, or she’ll fall and become anxious or depressed, or seek salvation in the arms of another man. Now, when I speak to the man, and they realized this, that do something that often has a profound effect, they go home, and they take complete ownership of how they have been showing up, saying something along the lines of hey, Amelia, I know that lately, I’ve just have not been present. I’ve been really busy in the business, and I understand that when I’m doing that. 

Now, I’m not here for you, when what I’m not here for you, you feel like x, y, z, whatever it is. And I won’t go into the full version of it because it’s a little bit longer. But the point being is, once it takes ownership rather than does to the woman, they breathe a sigh of relief because the guy is seeing where he isn’t stepping into the line. And he’s seen it out of his own accord. And then when he chooses to do something to change it, that’s when she starts to trust again, bit by bit. Because we also see with this particular guy that came out of The Alpha Reset that we opened the show with. He’s been tested by his wife, numerous occasions, and we’ve seen this time and time again. And they get tested by the wives because the wives, the women, want to prod and poke and make sure that this is real, the change that’s going on is real, and it’s coming from the right place. And it’s not just coming to get laid or to have more sex, and it’s coming because this is what the guy knows he must do and why he wants to do. And in the instance of these guys wanting to come clean, and they implement some of the changes you spoke about, Doug or even the check-ins that you are going to be tested. But the beauty of this is that if you are being tested, be grateful. Because you could be that guy in that position, who left it to lead, didn’t get this opportunity to be tested. He didn’t get the opportunity to make amends to change things and turn them around. And you do not want to be in that position. We’ve seen guys in that position is not a nice position to be in. It’s a very painful position.

Doug Holt 23:25  

Oh, yeah. It’s one term that people don’t talk about that much. Right? It’s kind of like, how are things going? It’s a little rough. That’s all I’ll say. But you and I have the opportunity of seeing the guys the true colors of really comes out when this happens, and going through it. And it’s, it’s just to me, it is the lack of opportunity and optics of getting that clarity, ignoring the warning signs, and again, not being proactive. We’re in such a reactive society nowadays. We are so reactive, and the idea of what a powerful man, what a man is supposed to be doing, should be could be doing, etc. And most of those visions that you see online or in movies are all-around money. Sometimes it’s around physical power, too. But what brings a man to his knees more often than not isn’t the lack of money. It’s the relationships. It’s the regrets that they have. It’s chasing somebody else’s dream and ignoring the warning signs that have been put forth to them and ignoring them altogether, and not being proactive and not doing the work they should be doing. Like me, that’s the story I shared of not stepping into a program to help, and I’m doing the necessary things. Do it now before you need it. If you need it, do it right away. But even before you think you need it, so to speak, do it. Take action. Make yourself Better shot, as Steven Covey says, sharpen the saw. Right? Do those things today.

Tim Matthews 25:06  

Yeah, totally; I think the thing that I want to emphasize here is the undercurrent of there is often threatened, there’s always a belief system operating that you must get to the root of in change for you to shift your relationship. Because otherwise, if you don’t look there and go there, you can do all these great things and use the tools like do the weekly review, or do the check-in or whatever else, but you’re going to be relying on willpower, and it’s something going to last so long. Whereas if you get to the underlying beliefs as you did, that’s where you get a big shift happened, right? You understood. Hey, it’s me, it’s not her, it’s me. And this is why it’s me. And this is what I’ve got to do to change the having those kinds of optics gives you the leverage to make the change so much easier. Whereas if you just realize there’s a problem in your relationship, and you’d go and fix it by just focusing on it, then Einstein said it best, you cannot solve a problem at the same level of thinking that created it. So although you’ll be going into your relationship and doing certain things, you’ll still be operating from the same place that created it. So you’ve got to get to that rule and then understand what’s been driving you to become so out of balance, ignore the warning signs, and end up in his position and then change it, get rid of it. And he can do it you can do it, we see men do it. Time and time again, I have every confidence that you’d be able to do it too.

Doug Holt 26:45  

I love it. So in Tim and wrapping up, let’s give these guys two or three take-home points that they can take and take action today. Right in this moment of discovery, guys, we say you want to take massive action in the moment of insight. I don’t care if you’re at the gym if you’re driving. Or if you’re out for a run or doing housework, whatever it is you’re doing where you’re listening to this podcast. If anything that Tim Ries said resonated with you, this is time to take massive action, be proactive and move the ball forward. Tim, what are a couple of things that you have for the men?

Tim Matthews 27:19  

I think it’s very important. The first thing is for you to come clean and take ownership with the woman in your life and let her know what you are seeing, how you will fall in short, and why you fall in a shop. Maybe she’s heard that before. If she has heard that before, I would recommend asking her some questions to get optics, whether it is what she loved tank? How’s the relationship working for you right now? What are your highlights? What are you? How can I improve? What would you give out of five? And if you’ve been doing that as well, then you’ve just got to get some help and support because, if you’re doing that and it’s not working for you, then you’re running the risk of just repeating the same old cycle and then that trust dissolving even further. And they assume that you don’t want that. I assume if you’ve listened this far, then you want to be in your marriage, and you want to have your family be together. And if you do, then get some support and, in my opinion, get support from men, a group of people that have been there and done that. And obviously, I’m going to say those for obvious reasons. So head over to ThePowerfulMan.com/Freedom. And just check out some of the case studies on there of men that have been in this position and have managed to turn it around before it’s been too late. Just don’t leave it, just please do not leave it, do not ignore this message. All the warning signs, you’ve got to shift this. Otherwise, a change will be forced upon you, and that’s what will be out of your hands, and you’ll be get handed the divorce papers, and you do not want to be in that position.

Doug Holt 29:05  

100%, and I agree. So, gentlemen, it’s time for you to take a stand for yourself, your family, and your community. That’s it for us, Tim. It’s another wrap of The Powerful Man show, guys. We will see you next time.