What Stops People From Creating A Soul Mate Relationship?
When I first wrote Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus, the major challenge in most relationships was learning how to accept and understand our common gender differences in order to improve communication and restore the romance.
While readers found these insights were incredibly helpful then and still will today, now the bigger challenge is to balance the expression of our male and female sides to lower our stress and create a relationship that is passionate and lasts a lifetime – a Soul Mate relationship.
Balancing Masculine And Feminine
As women become decision makers and leaders, they express more masculine qualities like problem solving, detachment, and independence. This freedom to express their male side is valuable and important, but without the support they need to return to their female side for balance, their stress levels rise, along with feelings of dissatisfaction about their partner, their relationship, and their life in general.
In a similar way, as men express more of their female side both at work and at home, their stress levels rise. At work, many men are expressing more female qualities like cooperation, nurturing, and interdependence. Likewise, workplaces over the past fifty years have dramatically integrated a wide range of feminine qualities: team building, better communication skills, improved working conditions and more flexible working hours, as well as greater inclusiveness, respect, and appreciation for women’s contributions.
The more men express their female side at work, the better the workplace becomes for all of us, but without the insight and support to return to his male side, his stress levels will rise and he will have less to give to his relationship at home. Unable to find balance, he begins to feel more dissatisfaction with his partner, his relationships, and his life in general.
Men are further tapping into their female side at home, by attempting to provide more love and support for their partners than their fathers did. Even more significant are the increasing numbers of fathers who are more involved in parenting at home. His extra support, particularly with so many women working outside the home, helps to reduce the pressure and feeling of being overwhelmed so many women feel when they return home. But while this nurturing time is valuable and important to a man, his wife, and their children, it also lowers his testosterone levels.
With this greater expression of their female sides, men also have a greater need to find balance. Without this balance, their energy levels drop and feelings of dissatisfaction and stress gradually increase.
In traditional Role Mate relationships, to recover from a stressful day at work, most men would take some time to lower their stress by reading the newspaper or watching TV. They would relax, have a drink, and forget the problems of their day.
But in our complex modern world, if both men and women are to find balance, his taking this time to relax is not enough. New communication skills are required that support his male side, while simultaneously helping his partner return to her female side.
When a woman returns home from work, she needs a new kind of support to reconnect with her female side to lower her stress levels and be happy. Likewise, a man also needs a new kind of support to reconnect with his male side to lower his stress and be happy. In my book, Beyond Mars and Venus, I explore and explain how both their needs can be fulfilled.
Balancing Testosterone And Estrogen
One of the easiest ways to understand and discuss the differences between men and women, as well as learn how to balance our male and female sides, is to understand how our reactions to stress are hormonally different.
Every couple of years, it is big news in the media when some study reveals that men and women are not that different, with headlines like “The Myth of Mars and Venus” or “Men Are Not from Mars.” These studies are quite misleading because they merely point out that men can develop female characteristics and vice versa. Such reports support the notion that every man and woman has a male and female side, but they also ignore the fact that our hormones are dramatically different and directly affect our moods, behaviors, and health in countless ways.
When a man’s testosterone levels significantly drop or his female hormones go too high, or when a woman’s estrogen and other female hormone levels are too low or high, stress levels go up. A man requires at least ten times more testosterone than a healthy woman to experience health and well-being. On the other hand, a woman requires at least ten times more estrogen than a healthy man to experience health and well-being. This striking difference is universal for all men and women.
Throughout Beyond Mars and Venus I return to this basic hormonal difference again and again. It helps to remind us that our differences are very real despite how similar we may sometimes appear. In fact, understanding this difference gives us the needed insight to make conscious behavior and attitude changes to support our hormonal balance. Balancing our hormones through specific changes grants us new power to lower our stress levels and increase our capacity to express our full potential and create a Soul Mate relationship.