Apr 9, 2009

Steve Harvey: Act like a Lady, Think like a Man

Steve Harvey is giving women great advice on how to date smart. Since his appearance on the Oprah show you can see him everywhere.

In Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, Harvey reveals what men really think about love, relationships and commitment -- and how women can tell if they have a man with whom they can make plans, or a man who is just playing with them.

eHarmony: What are the biggest mistakes women make when dating?

Steve Harvey: One of the biggest mistakes women make is they expect their love to be returned the exact same way they give it out. That is one of the biggest mistakes because our love is a little bit different. It is still love, but it is not as encompassing as a woman's love. There are women who have great men, but they don't recognize it because they don't get a couple of things.

For example, a woman's love covers a number of things: It is communication skills, it is caring, and it is a nurturing skill. Women are great nurturers, great communicators. If a man gets sick, a woman nurtures him back to health just like it is in her DNA to nurture a child. She sits with you, she puts your head in her lap, she rocks with you, she checks on you constantly, she will even lay down with you and she stays with you until you are okay.

Guys' nurturing is different. We fill the prescription for you, we will heat up a can of soup, and then we go in and watch ESPN and, if you need us, call us. We love you, but how we demonstrate that love is what I call the three Ps of love: We profess, we provide and we protect.

That is how a man -- if he loves you -- this is how you can tell he loves you: He provides for you. Whatever his economic structure is, he provides for you and he will give you whatever he can. He will profess. If you have been dating a guy for six months, he has a title for you. If after six months, he is still calling you a friend, he has no plans for you. It doesn't take us six months to figure out if you are the one. We are just not that difficult. We are simple people.

The last P is protect. He will let nothing happen to you within his means. A man loves in threes, if he tells you he loves you, but he doesn't protect or provide for you, he is just telling you what you want to hear to get what he wants. He doesn't really love you.

eHarmony: When a couple is dating, what are the top red flags that can turn a man off to a woman?

Steve Harvey: Smokers throw a lot of guys off. I know guys who don't like dating women who smoke. Every guy I talk to doesn't really care for women who are not striving in their life to have something of their own. We love confidence, we love independence. [We don't like it] if a woman is too needy. There is a difference between needing and wanting. You can go into a relationship wanting it to work -- wanting a husband, wanting a family -- but you can't be too needy. Neediness throws us off.

Another red flag, a really simple thing for men is if you don't take care of your house or your person, especially your feet and your hands. Men don't talk about it [to women], but we talk about it among ourselves. Your feet and your hands are critical. I don't want to pull the sheets back and your foot looks like my foot.

eHarmony: I guess it goes without saying then that women need to keep their legs shaved?

Steve Harvey: Grooming is critical, just like it is critical for a woman. Women want a well-groomed man. Women think we don't look at stuff, but we are a very simple people, we like shiny things. We are attracted to the shine and the glitz.

eHarmony: What do you think are the keys to a successful relationship?

Steve Harvey: Trust and honesty is the cliché answer, but I can tell women that from a male standpoint, the key to a successful relationship is that the woman comes into the relationship with standards and requirements. That is the key to a guy: a woman who has standards and requirements and, in the book, I talk about this extensively. It is one my biggest chapters. Women have to establish their standards and requirements because the guy will only give you as much respect as you command. It is critical that a woman says up front what she wants out of a relationship -- and don't worry about running a guy off. A guy who is serious about you won't run off, but you do want to run off the guys who are just coming to play. A woman wants a guy who is planning with her; not playing with her.

Don't go on a date saying stuff like, "We will see how it goes." Don't do that. Women have got to stop saying, "We will see how it goes." If not, I tell you what is going to happen: It is going to go just like the guy wants it to go. If you don't have any standards and requirements, any parameters set up in your initial dating experience, then a guy just starts exacting his will and you end up not getting what you want. A woman should never be afraid to say what she wants, what she is looking for, and if a guy doesn't want to do [what she lays out], let him go about his business, because we are going to be doing one of two things with you: We are going to be playing with you, or we are going to be planning with you. There is no in the middle with us. We are dudes.

Check out the whole article on eHarmony

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