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When You Stop Caring, Results Start To Come

Episode #794

Are you feeling disconnected from your partner, struggling to reignite the passion in your relationship?

Do you find yourself constantly seeking validation and approval, only to feel like you’re pushing your partner further away?

In this thought-provoking episode of the TPM show, Doug Holt delves into the concept of engaged indifference, offering insights on how to cultivate a sense of self-worth and independence within your relationship dynamic.

In this episode, you’ll learn practical strategies for maintaining a strong sense of self while fostering deeper connection and attraction in your relationship.

Doug draws on analogies like the lighthouse and the wolf to illustrate the importance of being grounded and unwavering in one’s sense of self, even amidst relationship challenges.

He emphasizes the need to shift away from a mentality of neediness and defensiveness, urging listeners to embrace a mindset of strength, openness, and love in their interactions with their partners.

Through the practice of engaged indifference, Doug suggests that individuals can create a safe and attractive space within their relationships, fostering deeper connection and mutual respect.

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Doug Holt  00:01

I’m not saying you shouldn’t care, because that’s not the right attitude to have. You love this woman, so you should care. But what I’m gonna propose to you is something different, something that’s not talked about very often. I want to propose to you engaged indifference. What the heck is engaged indifference? Well, essentially, engaged indifference is quite simply being engaged. So I’m gonna be engaged in this conversation with you, but I’m gonna be indifferent on your reaction. I’m going to be indifferent on the outcome of the conversation.

Hey, guys. Welcome back to another episode of the TPM show. Once again, I’m rolling solo here in the studio, and what I want to talk about today is something that came up on a coaching call I had earlier. And I see this a lot. I see this a lot with the men coming in the program. It’s when you stop caring, RESULTS start to come. Now, this may seem counterintuitive, and I totally get it, is what happens here is when you stop caring about your wife’s reactions, the RESULTS you’re seeing, or her attractiveness to you starts to come.

Now, how does this work? Because I know this sounds counterintuitive, and to some of you, you go, hey, look, I get this, but how do I do it? Now, one of the things that we teach is a concept called engaged indifference. Now, I’m going to talk about that in a little bit, but let me set the scene for you. What typically happens in most marriages as they start to crumble or as they start to lose the passion, when you start to lose that love and feeling, if you will, and you start to feel like your wife feels more like a roommate with a ring than actually the lover that you wanted in your life? What tends to occur is men start to try to make their wives happy, right? You start to bring that passion back.

And as a guy, we start to do more things. We start to become the, quote, nice guy that Dr. Glover talks about in his book, no more Mr. Nice Guy. Great book. It’s going to tell you what your symptoms are, right? So you can identify which is good. What I want to do is give you a way out, a way to change things. So when you start to try to make your wife happy, there’s nothing wrong with wanting your wife to be happy. But what a lot of us do is we start trying to get her attention. We try to win her back. What happens is that creates what’s called a needy energy.

And what I mean by that is you become needy. You need her energy. You need her approval. You need her reaction. You’re constantly watching the way that she reacts to the way that you act so you can get the result you want. Maybe that result is sex. Maybe it’s more connection. Most likely it’s both. You probably want your wife to look at you with that love and respect, like she used to look at you. Like she looked at you when you said, I do, right? That look in her eyes.

The problem is we as men have been taught that in order to get that back, we need to make our wives happy. She’s not happy right now, so, oh, shoot, what can I do? Consciously or unconsciously, we start thinking of ways to make her happy. Now, that could be helping out with the chores, take the burden off of her. Maybe she typically cooks dinner, so you’re going to cook more. Maybe you start taking out the trash more and you’re looking for her to say thank you, or I really appreciate it, but she doesn’t.

So you start doing a little bit more. Maybe you start buying her some gifts. You buy her another ring, you buy her a necklace. Or maybe you plan that perfect dream vacation or that getaway you guys have always wanted to go. And for a while, for days or maybe a couple of weeks, things start to seem good and then they go back to normal. They go back to a place where you’re disconnected.

So you start looking for that validation, making sure that you’re doing good, pointing out the fact that you took out the trash, pointing out the fact that you were able to make the birthday party or that you baked the cake, or that you gave her the gift and you’re providing for her. You are such a great provider, but yet she still pushes away.

The problem is you’re going towards her with such needy energy, right? You need her. What happens is instead of seeking the value within yourself, you start looking for that externally, right? And when we start looking for our value or our appreciation or other things external of ourselves, we effectively hand our power over to that person. Now, we all do this to some level, so don’t get me twisted here, we all do this to some level.

 The problem is, and I see this with literally tens of thousands of men, is we do this with our wives because that’s a very important relationship and we want to make sure we’re a good guy, we’re a good boy, so to speak, so we get that reward. Now, we’re not thinking that consciously, but subconsciously that does play out. And so what guys do is they’ll follow their wife around, they’ll showcase how great. They are in the hopes that she will see how amazing they are. You know, you’re amazing at work. You know your friends think you’re awesome, but why doesn’t she, right? Why doesn’t she see your greatness?

And so then you chase her more, and when you chase her more, it repels her. So I have this theory, right? So it’s like a cat. Have you ever been to someone’s house who has a cat? Well, if a cat’s sitting on a couch, and you walk over and sit next to it and try to start petting it right away, or walk up to it, if it’s on walking around, try to pet it, the cat runs away. The cat runs away. If you chase that cat, it runs away and hides under the bed, and it wants nothing to do with you because you have that needy energy for the cat.

But here’s something else I can tell you. You walk into that same room and you ignore the cat. You act like the cat doesn’t exist. Within about five minutes, roughly, right? In about five minutes, that cat’s going to end up on your lap, purring, rubbing its head against you, trying to get you to pet same cat, different energy, right? Your wife, in this example, is kind of like the cat, but you’re chasing that cat, and a cat’s running and hiding because that needy energy is repelling it, and you’re repelling your wife.

And the problem is, when you stop caring, she starts coming back. This happens for a lot of men. They give up. They’re like, you know what? This marriage is done. Screw it, I’m out of here. And then they have that for a few days, maybe weeks. And all of a sudden, their wife starts coming back. She starts being nicer, she starts noticing him. Maybe she starts making advances and trying to seduce him. They have sex. It’s intimate, it’s connected. They laugh, they’re fun. And then next thing you know, she drifts away again because he starts pursuing her again, the needy energy.

So I’m not saying you shouldn’t care, because that’s not the right attitude to have. You love this woman, so you should care. But what I’m going to propose to you is something different, something that’s not talked about very often. I want to propose to you engaged indifference. So, Doug, what the heck is engaged indifference? Well, essentially engaged indifference is quite simply being engaged.

So I’m going to be engaged in this conversation with you, but I’m going to be indifferent on your reaction. I’m going to be indifferent on the outcome of the conversation. When I can be engaged and indifferent, I am showing you that I’m strong within myself and the outside world, aka you or your wife. You aren’t going to change me. You are not going to make me react. Your reaction to me isn’t going to make me volatile because you don’t have that power over me, right? You just don’t.

So when you’re doing with your wife, she’s going to have a lot of emotional power triggers. And you’ve been doing this probably for so long, you probably did this with your mom, right? That’s probably where you learn this behavior. And with women that you’ve dated, you probably look back from your history, be like, you know what, Doug, you’re right.

When I stop pursuing women, the women I stop pursuing seem to really try to get me. They want me more, and that’s because of this needy energy. When you don’t seem needy, you seem like you are fulfilled within, inside. You become safe, you become desirable. Because if I know which is what your wife is saying, she’s like, if my man can have everything he needs energetically within side himself, he can therefore create a safe space for me. And if he can create a safe space for me, that is safety. That is interesting. There’s intrigue there because he is the master of his own domain, the master of his own world. He is grounded, he is solid.

And guys, you’ve met other men that are like this, they’re grounded and they’re solid. Maybe it’s in sports, maybe it’s in business, maybe it’s your friends of yours, maybe it’s a mentor of yours. You’ve met these men who are grounded, and when you meet them, they seem very cool and you want to get to know them better, right? Because they don’t need you. They might be interested in you and have great dialogue, but you can tell they don’t need your friendship, they don’t need you, which makes it more of a mutual friendship, right? Because when someone needs you, then it’s a transaction. Because they need you to give them something in order to get something back.

And you don’t want to be in that needy energy. Your wife definitely doesn’t want you in that energy. She wants you to practice, engaged, indifferent. She wants you to be engaged, she wants you to be present. She wants you to be in her world, but indifferent of the storm that she may bring. Indifferent of her reactions. Think of yourself again, we use this analogy a lot in the powerful man of the lighthouse, the lighthouse stays strong. Lighthouse doesn’t move. It’s not the tugboat. A tugboat goes out and rescues ships. They goes out to the storm, but not when it’s too stormy. A lighthouse. A lighthouse guides a ship to safe harbor regardless of the weather. It weathers the storm. Its lights always stay on.

You, my friend, are a lighthouse. Act like the lighthouse. Be there, be present, be engaged, but be indifferent. And you stop chasing your wife and you start being with your wife. You’re going to find her coming back to you. She’s going to be really interested, like kind of like the cat, like, hey, why isn’t this guy chasing me all of a sudden? What gives? What’s going on? I can’t rattle his cage. Remember, your wife is going to do shit tests or safety tests. She’s going to make sure that she’s safe. And if you react, you failed. You failed. She won. She doesn’t want to win, right? That’s the crazy thing about this. She doesn’t want to win this game. But if she does win, it shows her that you’re needy and who wants to be around somebody that’s needy. Let’s just be honest, guys. Nobody does. And so this is where engaged indifference comes in.

So again, engaged indifference is being engaged in the conversation, present in the moment, but indifferent of the other people’s reaction. So my wife, I’ll use my wife as an example. She can do a safety test or shit test with me, and if I laugh it off or I don’t react, chances are she’s going to flow with that energy. She’s going to know she’s safe and we’re going to have a good time.

Conversely, if I do react, I get upset, I get volatile, I get hurt. Whatever it is, I’m showing her that whatever she said has power over me, power over my emotions, she can trigger that emotional response within me. It’s not contained within me, so therefore she has the power. And if she has the power over me, how the heck can I protect her from somebody else? Right?

Here’s my wife, 110 pounds or whatever. She can control me. How can I help her with anybody else? I can’t. It’s impossible. She knows that. However, if she can’t control me, then that’s a safe place to allow for her to land, and then she could be seen, heard, and desired, which all women want. Part of this engaged indifference is embracing the power of the WOLF, not the DEER. If you’re new to this podcast, you probably might have heard those before, so let me define what those are for.

A DEER is an acronym. It means defend, excuse, explain, and react. This is what most men do in a situation where their wife triggers them. They defend themselves, they get upset, they explain over, explain why they did what they did. Right? They excuse, they make excuses for what they’re doing, and they react. They react instantly. We get upset, we get triggered. A DEER is a weak animal. We don’t want to be the DEER, guys. We want to be the WOLF. Wise, open, loving, and fierce.

Now, fierce doesn’t have to be mean, right? Fierce is I’m fierce as I’m strong, but I’m open. If I’m open, I’m receptive. Doesn’t mean I have to let you react to you, because I’m also wise and loving. So WOLF is wise, open, loving, and fierce. Remember that. Remember that as you go into your conversations and bring engaged indifference. This way you don’t have to fully pull away from your woman or your family because you want to be present. You want to be a good husband as well, right? We all do. And we want to take care of ourselves.

So practice engaged indifference and watch your wife become more attracted to you like a magnet. The magnetism here is the push pull. It’s going to be like the cat, and she’s going to sit on your lap and purr. All right, gentlemen, as we always say in the moment of insight, take massive action. We’ll see you next time on the TPM show.

All right, guys, that’s a wrap for this episode. But as I always say in the moment of insight, take massive action. You see, there are two types of men that listen to a podcast like this, those that go on from one podcast or show to another just hoping things are going to change and realizing that they’re going to be in the same place month after month, year after year.

You see, I was this guy so I completely get it. You may just not be ready. But there’s also a second man, a second man that listens to a show just like this. And this is a guy who takes massive action so they can shorten the learning curve, compress time, and get RESULTS to be the WOLF. See, WOLF is an acronym for Wise, Open, Loving, and Fierce.

Now ask yourself, which one am I? And just be honest with yourself there. And there’s no judgment on my end. But if you’re ready to move from deactivated DEER mode, which is Defend, Excuse, Explain, and React to activated WOLF, Wise, Open, Loving and Fierce, then go over to thepowerfulman.com/grow. And go there now. In fact, I’ll make it super easy for you. I will even put the link right in the description here so you can just click it and go over there now to learn more. Guys, in the moment of insight, take massive action. Go from deactivated to activated, because like I said, life is too short for average and I’ll see you on the next episode!