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I conquer with science. The answer is respect.

Sheiße, I already gave it away…please keep reading.

Christian Ostmo smokes a cigar at sunset in Latacunga Ecuador

Raise a cigar if you’re guilty!

Lack of respect in relationships is a man-problem. Most of us think we’re good feminists, but we slowly slip into accidental misogyny when we’re frustrated with things, or emotions, we don’t understand (you are almost certainly not an exception and neither am I).

Even when a man recovers, he has already degraded the relationship, his partner has already responded in turn, and the two of them have set a precedent for the future.

Men hate being disrespected. It’s a trigger that makes most of us go ape-shit, and it’s a crazy downward spiral. Men, it’s our responsibility to avoid starting that spiral.

How to Show Your Partner Respect

Praise Her Achievements

For some reason, us guys have this God complex where we have a hard time allowing someone to bask in their accomplishments without sizing them up. Maybe this was beneficial to our development (protecting territory?) X,000 years ago, but it has no place in modern relationships.

If she does something that’s a big deal to her, make a big deal out of it, and don’t hesitate either. If we’re being real here, this takes a lot of practice.

Show her your excitement, and tell her that her achievements are yours too. Praise her to your friends and colleagues. Look for ways to celebrate together.

Always Give the Benefit of the Doubt

People don’t always express everything they’re thinking or feeling. It’s not that we don’t want to. Most of the time, we don’t really know how.

Leave statements like, “you’re overreacting” and “that shouldn’t bother you” at the door. Guaranteed that you don’t have enough information to make that judgement, and it’s not really your place anyway. Not to mention it’s demeaning and will come back to haunt you.

If it’s a big deal to her, make it a big deal to you too.

Practice Gratitude Daily

This is as good for you as it is for your partner.

Expressing gratitude, even if you’re not actually feeling grateful, helps to identify things in your life you take for granted. Expressing gratitude for the things your partner does makes her feel better about herself, and gives her the permission to be even better. No thing or action is too small for you to express your gratitude!

Put Her Needs First

This is more kindness than it is “respect,” but it will result in more respect thrown the other way. She’ll definitely notice what you’re doing, even if she doesn’t say anything. It will make her feel good about herself, and make her feel better about the relationship.

I also believe this is just part of being a real man.

A few more important ones that are without need for commentary:

1) Take responsibility when you hurt your partner.

2) Keep secrets, secret.

3) Tell your partner when you’re proud of her.

Why Respect In Relationships Is More Important Than Love

This header is a bit deceiving. Here’s why:

Love (what we feel) is an intense attraction or emotion. But that’s just it–that “falling in love” sensation is nothing more than chemicals in your brain, an intense (the most intense) attraction that a person can experience. Over the course of your relationship, love will fluctuate up and’ll fluctuate a lot.

But, Love (true love) is a verb. It’s an action. It’s a daily choice.

Showing her off at your work party is love. Taking out the trash is love. Choosing every morning to be with her is love.

The words you use, the choices you make, the respect you pay is love.

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