What to Realistically Expect From Your Wife

Episode #611

Do you know what happens when you show up as an Alpha in your relationship?

This is exactly what we teach in The Activation Method because it changed everything. 

If you want to find the Alpha within you, then start standing up for yourself and be a leader who wants the best for your family.

In this episode, you will learn why you shouldn’t expect anything from your wife and how to set clear boundaries with your partner.

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Head over to our BONUS page for special access to some of the deeper tactics and techniques we’ve developed at The Powerful Man. 

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Doug: Welcome, guys, to another episode of the TPM show. Tim, how are you doing, brother?

Tim: Doing very well. Just got off a great call with the inner circle guys, which I always love. Fills my cup.

Doug:  Talk about an amazing group of men. For those that don’t know, the inner circle is one of our high-end one-year mastermind groups. A lot of the guys keep going on after that one year, but they commit to 12 months of just diving deep. And it’s definitely a place where iron sharpens iron. These guys are soaring so high. They’re communicating daily, it’s just absolutely amazing to see these business leaders really, really go after it.

So, in order to get into the inner circle, not everybody gets in, you have to meet certain requirements. You also have to go through the Activation Method, which is our flagship program, to start with. So I always like letting people know, Tim, because oftentimes, we throw around names of the programs because we know them so well, and some of the guys listening to this- and ladies, we get some responses from the ladies that are listening to this.

They are just not sure exactly what we’re speaking about. So yeah, I’m sure you’re on an absolute high talking to those guys, they’re are absolutely amazing. Whether you have Animal, Ironman, Chief, or any of the others that are in there. So, I know that what you wanted to do today, and it sounds fun, is answer some questions from our free Facebook community. So, if you don’t know, guys, we do have a free Facebook community. If you just go to Facebook, and you search for TPM, you’ll find the access to that group. It is for business owners only, currently. And the reason is – because we get a lot of questions on why we work with business owners – specifically because these guys are talking about their business problems as well as their marital problems.

Typically, what we found over the years, we have programs for guys that aren’t business owners, but specifically, we look for those guys from the C suite. Because, you know, when five o’clock rolls around, they’re not done working, right? The business is always on their mind. That can be payroll, taxes, and all these other things. So, the guys come together and also huddle around business and the trials and tribulations that being a business owner can also affect your relationship in your marriage.

Tim: Definitely a unique journey.

Doug: So Tim, what’s the question you have for us today?

Tim: Yeah, so, I’m just reading through the comments here. So anyway, the question is, so much of The Activation Method, from what I understand is a mixture of helping ourselves to be able to be better men, and really taking charge of it. And he gets it and he thinks that it’s brilliant. And at the same time, his question is, at what point is our spouse or wife simply being mean, unkind, or unfair? And is there ever a call-out here? And at what point is there just a character flaw or just poor judgment on their side, versus natural friction that perhaps we are overreacting to? So, what I’m understanding from that is some boundaries which we’ll talk about as well. As I scroll down and look through the comments, a lot of guys are feeling the same, have wondered the same thing. And one comment in particular that stood out to me said, I struggle with this question myself. To me it comes down to a question about what we should reasonably expect from our partners or wives. I’ve heard it mentioned in the podcast, but not in a definitive way. I guess the reason doesn’t get a lot of focus here is because the program is for men. So I think we can just dive into this, Doug.

Doug:  Yeah, let’s do it. I know I posted a very lengthy response to that question. I had a little bit of time, was waiting on a call, so I just responded to that. But let’s talk about it here. So there’s a lot of reasons. When I look at this from my marriage, my wife and I- nothing’s perfect. There is no perfect marriage. I was talking to one of the head trainers at the Gottman Institute. The Gottman Institute does a lot of research on relationships, in fact, the most research on relationships.

And what that guy said to me is, we’ve studied literally 1000s upon 1000s of couples, they really watch them and study them in a laboratory-type setting, and they give them cameras to go home, and other people are watching and reviewing. They said, Look, even me, you know- and this guy is in his 70s, you know, no, marriage is perfect, none, zero. So, get that out of your head, that idea that you’re going to have the perfect marriage.

Now, there are differences in marriages and relationships. And when we look at this, one of the things that we need to consider is, you know, you can only control the things internal to you, not external. And what I mean by that is that we can only control things that are within us. And that’s why during the AM and the programs that we run, most of the focus is actually going to be on the man, and how the man can improve himself, and what he can do to improve himself. Because we can’t affect another person. So Tim, as an example, I cannot make you do something, I can’t, I just can’t make Tim feel a way or, or make him do something.

Now I can have expectations, and the way that I show up in this world can affect the way that you show up. So, if I’m a jerk, as an example, odds are you’re not going to be very receptive to what I have to say, you’re not gonna be very receptive to what’s going on, you might be a jerk to me or push me away. However, if I show up in our relationship, as friends and as business partners, if I show up, and I’m concerned for you, I’m caring, I’m listening deeply to what’s going on in your world, and your partner Amelia, and her world, and I show up and you know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I’m here for you, you’re going to probably respond differently.

So, that’s when our actions can affect the actions of others. That’s when we can actually have something that really takes off. And what I mean by takes off is, I can always watch the way my wife responds to me. And when men come into the program, often what happens is, when we teach them the ARS, the AD, the Triad of Connection, these are all things that the men learn right away, their behaviors start to change. They show up as the WOLF, wise, open, loving and fierce in their marriage in their relationship. And when they show up in that manner, their wife starts to change. Their wife starts to go, holy cow, look at him. This is the man I’ve always wanted. look the way he’s being. And then the wife, generally speaking, starts to change. Now, it doesn’t always happen. Right?

Typically, as men go through our program, one of three things happens. One, they go through the program, the men rise up and the wives rise up to meet them, and they all roll off happily ever after. And that’s the ideal. That’s what we want them to be. The other thing that happens is, men rise up and their women don’t, which sounds like what is happening for this guy currently. And the men can choose to leave. Some guys say, hey, look, I’m not putting up with this. And they will choose to leave. And the third thing that can happen is, the men rise up, and the women do not rise up, and then the woman feels left out and attacks the man. And eventually, the woman will rise up. Guys will lift their hands as a leader, and she’ll start to seek, you know, getting help for herself and her shortcomings. But what often happens as well, as the men that go through our program change, either their wives- almost immediately. Some guys, this happens week one, right?

Divorce is on the table, you know, the wife is talking to the family lawyer, and within week one, she sees these dramatic changes the guy’s making. And it’s not really the changes he’s making. What we do out there is, we help you find the real man inside of you. That’s it. Right? We help you find that guy that you know, when you’re looking in the mirror, you know, he’s there, you’re just like, where the heck have you been? Come on. You’re searching for him. That’s what we hope you find. And then, when that guy shows up, that’s when things dramatically change, and the wife oftentimes will react. Now, what also can happen is the man changes, the wife loves the changes the man is making, but she’s scared, right? She’s been hurt. She’s had this hope and this dream that you were gonna be this man for such a long time.

When you said ‘I do’ at the altar, when you were married, when you committed to yourself, for those guys that aren’t officially married and have a partner, a long-term relationship.  She saw the man that you are and the man that she believed you could be. And that didn’t happen, didn’t pan out for him. This is her story. I’m not saying that you did anything wrong. But most men become nice guys, right? They go into what we call DEER mode where they defend, excuse, explain and react. And when they’re in DEER mode, the wife feels let down. And this goes over years. And finally, she closes her heart, because she feels you’re not meeting her expectations, she doesn’t trust you anymore. It’s a very common thing that the women will say to men, I don’t trust you. What they’re saying is, I don’t trust you with my emotions, with my heart. You’ve let me down, you’ve hurt me. And when the man changes, the wife loves the idea of the changes, but she’s scared of opening her heart again. And when she’s scared of opening her heart again, she needs a test to see if these changes are real. Are they going to last? Are these changes just going to be just for a week, just for a month?

And her worry, her concern is that she’s going to open her heart again to you, because she wants to, but she needs to know that this is real. This time, it’s going to be real. And that’s important. That’s incredibly important, for her to know that this is a stable environment for her. She needs to know that this is going to last. And the thing is, it does. And that’s why a lot of men continue on to our one-year mastermind group, the Brotherhood, because the changes do last, and they want to keep going. The journey just begins.

Almost all the guys describe it as like they’re being unplugged from the Matrix. You all have seen The Matrix movie, it’s the most common thing we hear from men that go through our program. Many men have been through other programs and etc., but when they come through TPM, they’re like, Wow, I can see things differently. AR is a perfect example. You know, now I see things as they really are. And these men go off, they become the leaders, the lighthouse in their families, and their communities, and their businesses. And other men start to follow them. Their wives, love them and adore them again. Their kids start looking up to them. They start fostering amazing relationships. In fact, a guy that I’m working with got a Christmas card from his teenage daughter, and what it said just brought me to tears. His teenage daughter was saying how much she looks up to him, how thankful she is for all the work that he has done for her, and the role model that he has provided. And this is a complete one 180 from their relationship.

This is a teenage girl. And she wrote this full-page card about how she looks up to her father now. And it’s because of the changes he made. And the changes that he made through the AM – and he’s doing one-on-one coaching with me right now, the changes that he’s made are dramatic. And really, what he did is just tap into who he is as a man, who he has always been, and we just help them uncover it. And I kind of think of the AM as, we go in and we strip away the bullshit, right? We strip away the bullshit that you haven’t seen, for some reason.

Society’s put it on you, the media has put it on you. So, when it comes to this question on what you should expect from your wife, really, you got to figure out what to expect from yourself. Are you showing up for yourself, first and foremost, because that’s the only thing you can change. But when you look at your relationship with your wife, you do want to set clear boundaries. Right? When my wife crosses my boundaries, I let her know. And I don’t let her know in this kind of meek manner. I’m not a jerk about it. But I’m very definitive about what I say. So, if I’m out at the grocery store, and a guy pushes my two-year-old daughter, I’m not going to be like, oh, excuse me, please don’t do that, sir. No. He’s going to see another side of me, he’ll know that that’s not acceptable in any way, shape, or form, and everybody else in that store will figure it out really fast, you know. it’s just not going to happen. The same thing is – again, I’m using it as a dramatic representation – the same thing happens when I’m looking at this with my wife.

My wife crosses a boundary, I let her know in no uncertain terms, that that is not acceptable. I will not be in a relationship. And an easier way to doing that, guys, if you’re just starting out, is to look at it like this. There’s three entities in your relationship. There’s you, there’s your wife, and there’s the third entity, which is the sanctity of your marriage. So, what I would do- when I first started out, I learned this. I took this I think from David Deida, reading his book. And it’s a good book, I recommend it, The Way of the Superior Man. But in David Deida’s book, he talks about this philosophy of like, Hey, I love me too much, I love you too much to allow this to happen.

So therefore, because I am strong, and my love is strong, I will walk away if this continues. And that’s the way we want to look at this. You know, your wife does have to do the work, And she may not, and you get to love her for who she is. That’s your choice. But you want to set clear boundaries. If you haven’t established extremely clear boundaries that have been communicated and agreed upon – they must be communicated and agreed upon for this to work for you. So, you need to set these clear boundaries. And then, if she crosses the boundaries, you bring it up just like you would do it at work. So if you had an employee who you had a clear boundary-  Hey, you may not call a customer- say it’s a salesperson. you may not call customers past 2pm. I’m making this up on the fly. And then, you find out that Susie’s been calling customers at 3, 4, 5pm. You sit Susie down and say,  look, we had an agreement, you understood the rules, is that correct? She says, yes. Why did you violate them? I want to know why. This cannot happen. You get one warning. This isn’t baseball, it’s not three strikes, you’re out. You get one warning. That’s what I’ll give you. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. And after that, it’s going to be a problem.

So, that’s the way I would approach this. My wife does the work. She’s constantly working on herself, constantly working on herself for herself, for our marriage, and to be a better mother, right? It’s really important to her and her identity. And because of that, we grow. But we also, you know, hit each other at some times- I mean, not hit each other, but energetically collide, is a better way of saying that. She has bad days, I have bad days. But when she crosses a line or a barrier, that’s a problem. So, what I would do, just to break this down to nuts and bolts – and guys, Tim’s internet cut out, so that’s why he’s not jumping in, if you guys are listening to this podcast.

So, what I would do in this situation is, I would sit down, I would write out clear boundaries or rules of engagement in your relationship and your marriage. And once you’ve done that, then I would get agreement from my wife. What are these clear boundaries that you want to put in place? And get agreement. So if it’s, hey, we will not we will not fight in front of children. We will not be mean to each other. Okay, great. You got to define what mean is. And you’re gonna be mean to each other, guys, it’s a relationship. But figure out what those are. So, if it happens, first of all, I get my wife’s agreement. Do you agree? Yes. Okay, great. So these are my boundaries, too. Right? I will not put up with anybody demeaning me. Just won’t, won’t happen. I will do one of two things, I will walk away from the conversation, or I will just leave, actually leave the relationship. I just won’t be in a relationship where someone is demeaning to me. Purposely mean. I don’t want to be around toxic people. So, I get agreement on that.

And once I’ve gotten agreement from her, if it happens, I bring it up and say, hey, we had an agreement that we would not be demeaning to each other, didn’t we? That she’s gonna say yes or no. That’s what’s happening. I won’t put up with it. I love me too much, I love you too much, and I want our marriage to work out. And we cannot have a thriving marriage if this is going to happen. Are you willing to do the work? Has the agreement changed for you? And if she says no, just remind her gently but firmly- and do this in a loving way, guys.

You cannot be in DEER mode. DEER, again, is defend, excuse, explain, react. React is the big one coming out here. You can’t react. I’m very firm and calm, just like I am with my kids. Hey, you cannot do that. I’ll just say that all the time. And so, I’ve got these clear boundaries. Now, if my wife crosses them, or if she says she’s not willing to work on the marriage, there’s nothing you can do. You can just continue to be the best version of yourself. But no matter what, you have to love yourself or respect yourself enough to stand up for yourself. That’s the key, you have to respect yourself, to stand up for yourself. And that’s the key each and every time. Y

ou’ve got to make that happen. So, again, go back, write down your boundaries, write down what’s happening. Write down if your wife’s triggering you or making you upset, write that down and say, where’s my boundary around this? What is it that I actually really want? If you’re in the AM, talk to your coach about it, right? You have a coach, lean on him. There’s also a community of men, of amazing men who are either in the program or been through the program, who will also help you with this, because they’ve gone through the process. I’m in there, Tim’s in there, we have a bunch of coaches. I think we have six or seven coaches in there who are willing to help you. Ask them about the boundaries, then get confirmation. just like you would in a business situation. Do we have agreement here? Are we on the same page? Yes, no. You’re getting buy-in. Once you’ve got buy-in in an agreement, that person violates it, that’s a big issue.

Then you get to figure out, did something change for them, or are they just simply violating the agreement? If something changed, you can have a conversation about it, see if it works for you. If nothing changed, and they violated the agreement, that’s when you set that firm boundary, and you make sure that nobody crosses it again. You gotta respect yourself, guys. You got to stand up for yourself as well. But you can’t be a dick when you do it. Right. You love yourself, and you do it from a place of love and security, that’s the key. So I’d ask Tim what he would say, but I did see a notification on my screen that his screen had stopped. So, gentlemen, I encourage you to look at this. Do the work. Go back. We’ll get Tim back on for the next podcast here, because I know he’s dying to share his wisdom on that subject. But we’ll get him on the next one. Gentlemen, as we always say, in the moment of insight, take massive action. Remember, we’ll be in your corner.