If You Want to Date A Confident Leader, You Have to Let Him Lead


As a dating coach for smart, strong, successful women, I spend a LOT of time talking to women on the phone about their love lives.

In fact, I’ve participated in so much girl talk, I’m like an honorary girlfriend at this point.

And the one thing that I consistently hear from women is this:

I want a man who is a leader.

I want a man who makes decisions.

I want a man who has a plan.

I want a man who can take control — start his own company, book his own vacation, and yes, even be dominant in the bedroom.

(My female clients tell me EVERYTHING!)

It’s really easy to see why this kind of guy is attractive.

Confident men inspire confidence in women.

Confident men inspire confidence in women.

And as much as we’ve evolved as a society in terms of gender equality, there’s still a primal urge where many women long for a taste of a traditional marriage.

ALL of my clients have careers, yet the majority still want to feel protected, preferably by a tall, broad, successful man who can bring home the bacon, wipe away the tears and beat up the bad guys, if necessary.

What’s not to like about that?

Who doesn’t want a man who is an equal?

After all… You’re a go-getter.

You’re as smart as most of the men you meet.

You work hard and make a comparable income.

You have close relationships with friends and family.

You have strong opinions and aren’t afraid to voice them.

And yet you often meet men who don’t mesh with you.

The attractive alpha males are egocentric commitment-phobes.

The nice guys are bland and wishy-washy and don’t turn you on.

You figured out what you really want – an alpha male who is nice! Or maybe a nice guy with balls! Someone to make you feel excited and safe simultaneously.

What nice guys don’t realize is that you’re not looking for a man to cater to your whims

Unfortunately, these men are very, very, rare. You’ve probably noticed.

So if it’s so hard to find one of these mythical beasts, what are you to do?

I’ve got a few ideas.

In fact, as one of those men, I’ve got a lot of ideas on that very subject, but before we get to those I have to give you credit for knowing one big thing: you can’t change guys.

Which is why most adult women have largely grown out of their bad-boy phase.

Except, of course, when you haven’t.

So instead of dating the rebellious teenage rocker, you date the 44-year-old guy who’s never been married. He’s not on the road 40 weeks a year, but he works 60 hours a week.

Both men claim to want to find love, but aren’t willing to sacrifice for it.

These guys are a waste of your time.

It’s not that they’re bad people, it’s that they don’t have much to give to the relationship.

Thus, you have two choices — get out of the relationship, or accept that you’ll always come in second to his work or freedom. You know what that’s like.

To be waiting on a guy, to have the strongest feelings for him… only to learn that he’s not willing to put forth the effort or commitment necessary to make you feel safe.

It happens all the time, and it’s a crushing feeling.

Then there are the nice guys. Oh, I know how you feel about nice guys…

Here’s the thing about nice guys:

They really want to please you.

Really. Really. Want to please you.

It’s the most important thing in the world for them.

Which is why they’re always asking you how to do it.

“Where do you want to go tonight?”
“Was there something that I did wrong?”
“What can I do to make you happy?”

What nice guys don’t realize is that you’re not looking for a man to cater to your whims.

You’re looking for a man to lead, to make sound decisions, to drive the car while you ride shotgun.

Yet the guys who do that — the leaders – are often the most arrogant, most difficult, most combustible ones around. Right?

How do you find a guy who puts you first, but ALSO can take the lead?

If the nice guy wants to please you, why should he even bother to make any decision that you’re just going to overrule anyway?

Well, if it’s not by trying to change the alpha male, what do you have left? The nice guy.

But there’s a problem. And, believe it or not, you may be at the root of it.

You want the nice guy to lead, but you refuse to let him do it.

Before you get angry, think about it for a second.

He suggests a bar. You tell him you’d prefer one in a different part of town.
He suggests a movie. You tell him that you weren’t crazy about the reviews.
He suggests a weekend trip. You tell him you had another destination in mind.
He suggests a new position in the bedroom. You say you don’t do that.

Your intentions are pure — you want what you want — but the message that you’re sending to him is unmistakable:

You can be a leader and make decisions, as long as I have final approval.

And if the nice guy wants to please you, why should he even bother to make any decision that you’re just going to overrule anyway? He might as well ask you that awful question:

“What do YOU want to do?”

Hey, at least he knows you’re not going to shoot down your own idea.

I remember the first time I brought this concept up to a private dating coaching client.

She’s mid-40s, attractive, vice president of a big company. Definitely an alpha female — a woman who can intimidate men but really wants a man who is stronger than she is.

She was explaining to me how annoyed she was with this new man she was dating.

“It was bad enough when he took me to a dive bar with live music. But then, when he sensed that I wasn’t happy, he asked me where I wanted to go instead! And I’m thinking, ‘Buddy, just make a decision and tell me what we’re doing. I don’t want to have to come up with everything.’

I told her that I understood why she didn’t like his choice of bars. I told her that I understood how she wanted him to make his own decision.

And then I told her what I really felt.

“It’s like you want him to be the President, yet you want to have veto power.”

She laughed, and then got very silent. I continued:

You can’t have two leaders. If you want him to lead, you have to be willing to follow. You can’t overrule him.

Strong-willed men — the kind that inspire confidence — are less likely to be “pleasers”.

However, if you, as a woman, want to be a leader, understand these two things:

1) You’re not going to attract an alpha male. Male leaders don’t partner with women who tell them what to do.

2) You’re going to attract less assertive men, and you can’t get upset at them for asking how to please you.

Hey, I don’t make these rules! I just observe them.

But it makes perfect sense, doesn’t it?

Strong-willed men — the kind that inspire confidence — are less likely to be “pleasers”.

They’re going to march to the beat of their own drums and hope that you follow along.

The more you fight with them and try to rein them in, the weaker your relationship. You’ve probably seen this before in your own life. This is why strong men often marry easy-going women. It’s easier because there’s no argument about who’s going to lead.

Nice guys — the kind that you don’t respect as much — want only to please you, and will bend over backwards to do so.

They’ve learned that you’re going to assert your will no matter what they say, and they find it easier to ask directly how to make you happy.

And what’s the point of making a decision that’s likely to be vetoed anyway?

I can almost hear you steaming right now.

“I don’t tell men what to do. I don’t want to be boss. I just want an equal relationship!”
I hear you. And you’re right.

There IS a middle ground. All relationships are about compromise.

I’m not suggesting you let an alpha male make all the decisions while you keep quiet.

I’m not suggesting you make all the decisions for the nice guy either.

I’m just observing these important concepts in understanding men:

The alpha male is less likely to compromise. If you can’t handle that he’s got a strong ego and doesn’t want to do things your way, don’t date him.

The nice guy is more willing to compromise, so don’t hold it against him. It’s necessarily not a sign of weakness; it may be a sign of wisdom.

Nice guys just want to get along, which can be a good thing when you’re a strong-willed woman. After all, you’re going to have less conflict with a man who puts your needs above his.

Your other choice is to date the selfish and arrogant alpha male, who usually puts his needs first, as you can tell from years of trying to tame the charismatic types.

Want to find a man who can pull off the balance between nice and arrogant? Sorry. I’m already taken. 😉

But I know for a fact there are plenty more of us out there.

Just don’t keep on doing the same thing — chasing alpha males and waiting for them to change. Because, as you’ve seen, that can be a really frustrating — and futile – process.

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  1. 61

    I enjoyed this article, since I am a gender studying nut for many years.

    It seems very reasonable to me that any woman would want her man to be able to read her, and be able to make decisions that she wouldn’t want to veto.             It is important to understand though that most cultures don’t have an education system that teaches males and females how to understand each other, and so we don’t start to learn how to hear women until we actually start dating.

    So ladies, while your desire for such understanding is reasonable, it is unrealistic to expect such high end communication skills from the outset.    Let your man know that you want him to lead more as he gets to know you, and that in the mean time he will get more feedback from you as this allows him to get to know you well enough to lead considerately.

    This lets us know that you are willing to be submissive (which we love)   while at the same time demonstrates a high degree of patience and considerateness on your part as opposed to your expecting the perfect relationship on a silver platter.

  2. 62

    This is a business. EMK caters to Alpha Women w. cash to spend. These women have difficulties getting Alpha Men in their life to enter or commit to LTR. So the answer is take it down a notch with a guy that is a bit more mellow. I’ll show you how for $x amount. And he’s right: if you want an alpha you either submit or he’ll next you. He is not interested in your alpha traits. Case closed.

  3. 63

    Let men take the lead…?

    First we need to be able to trust them, then they can “lead”.

  4. 64

    False, false, false. If you want a confident leader, learn to follow him. If you dont know the difference you are headed to trouble. “Letting” someone lead is the initiation of leading them….

    following is keeping quiet when there are no consequences in the specific lead, giving respectful opinion in quietness when the lead will do harm.

  5. 65

    This article does ring true. I have always been a very independent and strong alpha woman. I was married for many years to the nice guy who did whatever I wanted, but resented it. I have since been dating a very alpha male and the way I respond to him has been simply amazing. Anyone who knows me would never believe I would let a man tell me what to do. I absolutely love being able to be the woman when we are together.   I have learned how not to take control and let him take the lead. I find great peace in being able to trust him to make decisions for the both of us. It has been quite the learning experience but so worth it!

  6. 66

    Alpha males are the best at sex so its worth it to be submissive and try to let him lead.   (not all the time though, you have to show you have character too)

    1. 66.1
      pagie smith

      wow. what deep thinking. be submissive for good sex. amazing. i’m thinking that’s not working so well in the world– look at the domination, violence, and outright indulgent narcissism and spiritual/emotional immaturity of these dominating men. when women do not insist on collaboratively co-leading and treating each other as true friends (in what friendship does anyone get assigned an outright “i’ll submit to your whims and ideas and you lead”? that isn’t friendship, but bondage. and BOTH people pay the price in growth and love. there is no intimacy in submitting to a dictator. there is just ugly oppression and superficial ‘peace’.

      1. 66.1.1
        Yet Another Guy

        @pagie smith

        That is the beauty of choice. A woman can date a more beta man if she does not want to put up with this behavior.   However, for those women who like being with an alpha male, being submissive is the price of admission.   Guys have to accept the same trade off when dealing with hot women.   The price of admission to date a hot woman is significantly higher than that of a lessor hot woman.   Hot women are usually high maintenance from emotional and financial points of view.

    2. 66.2

      I would not say alpha males are the best at sex not by a long shot and I have been with my share. I would say that alpha males are more confident in bed, and it shows.   They don’t sit there and ask if they can do something, they just do it.     It’s confidence.   But this type of thing can lead to bad in bed because they also don’t listen.   So they try and do what worked with their exes and when you tell them no I don’t like that they get offended and won’t change their tactic.   Beta men ask what you like and then they do it.

  7. 67

    I am engaged to a guy who is pretty beta, and that’s okay.   I am a strong alpha woman and after years of trying to date alpha men I realized that was never going to work for me, it was a constant power struggle.      I think for us though we both take the lead on certain matters and if one of us feels strongly while the other does not on a subject then the other person wins so to speak.      I thought it was working out well, until the other night.   We were watching a reality show with a nuclear family and the daughter wanted to have a boy come over for dinner (she’s 17).   The Mother was on board with this but the Father put his foot down and said no.   My fiance stated “well of course he is the man of the house and he should get the final say.”   I very slowly took a breath and said excuse me, what did you say again?   I never in the three years that I have known this man thought he would say such a thing. I repeated that it was an equal relationship and the parents together decided with each getting an equal say. I repeatedly asked him to explain what he met, but he clammed up and refused to discuss it. Now I am very concerned that deep down he feels one way and acts another.   Are all men truly like this but many pretend?

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