This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "The Way Of The Superior Man" by David Deida. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.
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Do you struggle with understanding women? Do you want to know what your woman means, even when she doesn’t always say it?
David Deida, the author of The Way of the Superior Man, knows that understanding women can be difficult, but it is necessary to maintain a healthy relationship. That’s why he gives advice in his book on how to react to her challenges, how to read her feelings, and how to respond with love.
Here is Deida’s advice from The Way of the Superior Man.
How to Understand Women
According to Deida’s book, the more familiar you become with your woman and your world, the more your desire and interest in them wane; the excitement of discovery fades, and they become lifeless and unattractive.
A mediocre man would move on, to a new job and a new mistress, rejuvenating his life with fresh energy, excitement, and polarization. But, eventually, the novelty wears off and he finds himself once again inhabiting a lifeless, unattractive world.
Your loss of interest is not the fault of your career, nor is it the fault of your woman. It stems from your lack of whole-hearted engagement; how can you expect to be excited and delighted by something you don’t fully embrace? Your familiarity has led you to stop ravishing them, depolarizing your relationship.
A Superior man takes responsibility for his mindset and rises to the challenge, understanding his woman and his world can only look as bright as he’s willing to see them. He knows it’s up to him to revitalize his woman and his world by reclaiming the excitement and attraction that was once born of novelty.
What to Do:
Your woman is more sensitive to sexual energy than you are. The instant your attraction and excitement begin to wane, she feels that she is loved and desired less, and begins to wilt. To recapture excitement and passion, you must repolarize the relationship.
If you wish your woman to be radiant and delicious, return to treating her—fully and openly—in a way that makes her feel radiant and delicious. When your interest in the world wanes, change your mindset, reclaim your excitement, and let the world you see adjust itself accordingly.
Understand What She’s Getting At
The Superior Man is open to the undercurrent of his woman’s words; he sees the truth she’s aiming for and responds with love. In this section, you’ll learn to understand what your woman means when she confuses you most.
Realize That Your Woman Lives in the Now
The masculine respects a history of success and good behavior, but when you let your woman down it doesn’t matter to her that you’ve been perfect every other time. Being an asshole for 30 seconds will hurt her no less if you’ve been perfect for 30 years than it would if you’d been an asshole forever.
What matters most to her is how she feels in the current moment.
The Superior Man does his best in every moment, understanding that women live and love here and now.
What to Do:
Don’t get angry when she’s upset about one little mistake. Instead, shift the energy of the moment. Lift her heart with your love; surprise her with your humor. Instead of justifying your mistake, restore love and humor to her current moment, and your mistake will become history.
Respond to Her Challenges With Love
Your woman tests you because she wants to see that your love is unshakable, that you’re confident in who you are, and that you can be happy without her validation. It’s your stability and strength that pleases and excites her most, so she’ll test you in your moments of greatest success—she knows you become vulnerable in the wake of your fulfillment.
A good, strong woman wants a good, strong man. She knows that at your core you are free and powerful, and she won’t settle for anything less than your best self in every moment. She values your ability to maintain your confidence, your joy, and your love for her even when she prods you in your weak spot.
Her role in the polarity of intimacy is to surrender openly and fully to you and to do that she needs to trust you entirely. She needs to know that you’ll love her without compromise no matter what she does or says because that’s what enables her to be totally vulnerable to you, body and soul.
The Superior Man accepts his woman’s challenges as opportunities for introspection and growth, allowing her to drive him toward his greatest potential. Don’t ask her to demand less of you; she deserves everything you’ve got.
What to Do:
Meet your woman’s challenges, criticisms, doubts, and complaints with humor and love. Show her your openness, integrity, and strength. Remember that what she wants is to know that you’ll love her wholeheartedly no matter the circumstances and that you won’t stop loving her. Embrace her, make her feel loved, and appreciate her for pushing you to remain who you are.
Attend to What She Feels, Not Just What She Says
The masculine style of communication is to say exactly what we mean, according to a well-considered stance based on our experience and the events at hand. The feminine style is to communicate the textural feeling of the moment, not the literal details of the situation. Emotions and moods are solid, real things, but they pass quickly and change often.
Her words take into account her feeling about your relationship and both the seen and unseen nuances of the situation. There’s often wisdom there that’s unavailable to your way of perceiving the world.
When you don’t clean the garage even though you said you would, that means more to her than you see. She may complain to you that the garage is a mess, but what she means is that she can’t trust your word. She’s attempting to highlight a current instance of an ongoing issue with the way you’re living your life. The solution she seeks is deeper and broader than the content of her complaint.
Similarly, she may express disinterest or ambivalence when you ask her if she’d like to see a movie with you, but change her mind after you pick her up, spin her around, and kiss her. Her initial disinterest had nothing to do with the movie. Her feeling of being loved refreshed her excitement about spending time with you, so her interest in the movie changed.
What to Do:
Understand that her inability to trust that you’ll do what you say is a huge problem. If you claim responsibility for the livelihood of your woman, you demand a lot of trust from her. When you act in ways that diminish that trust, she feels that her life with you is in jeopardy. She can’t trust your masculine direction, or your commitment to your purpose. Your integrity is critical; to trust you with her life, she needs to trust you with yours.
Show her that you’re doing everything you can in service of your masculine mission, so she doesn’t have to embody her own masculine energy to manage that for you. When you force her to keep track of things you let slip by—when you watch TV instead of paying the bills—she has to compensate for your lack, and can’t relax into her feminine essence. The relationship becomes depolarized, and you jeopardize your intimacy and passion.
Establish intimacy in the moment, so that your woman feels loved enough that she may speak openly. Try to differentiate between her sensitive wisdom and her shifting moods. Be responsible for your own decisions, so that you won’t blame her when her mood changes.
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Here's what you'll find in our full The Way Of The Superior Man summary:
- How to reclaim the passion in your relationship and enjoy true intimacy
- Why authenticity is the first key in becoming a superior man
- Why you should embrace your sexual polarity