Can men reverse a bad impression that they have made with a potential love interest or current partner? YES! Below you will find 5 steps upon which to use to help increase the chances for redemption. This is not a guarantee as there are many variables at play, although, the odds increase tremendously in your favor by implementing these steps.
First, acknowledge to yourself what you did that left the bad impression. Then, analyze how you make sense of this behavior in terms of the role you played, the choices you made, not blaming another nor “something.” Next, determine whether you believe this behavior is inconsistent with who you think you are. Finally, consider how your behavior has affected this other person.
First, apologize for your behavior directly to the person and take full ownership of your behavior rather than pointing your finger at the other person. Do not be defensive about your actions. Next, share that this is not the man you believe yourself to be. Then, state your desire to continue to grow as an individual to be the best man you can be sharing that we are all in a process of growth. Finally, state your desire to continue to grow on your life journey to be the best partner you can be, for you, for her, and for the enhancement in the now and future of the relationship.
First, ask her if she is interested in offering you a second chance, the opportunity to display who you believe you are. Clearly state in a warm way that this is truly her choice, you are hopeful she does not feel you are pressuring her. Explain it is not that you deserve another chance nor are you entitled, rather, you are hopeful. Furthermore, verbalize you believe in yourself that you will meet and exceed your own desires and her hopes of what she genuinely deserves to have in a man and in a relationship. Finally, be sure to clearly state your understanding that it will take time before she trusts that the behavior that left a bad impression is not the norm.
Take action to display a different behavior that is in direct contrast to the behavioral complaint. Taking action is not a one time behavior change, rather, it is about consistently displaying the desired behavior over time, and time and time again. Remain mindful of your thoughts, feelings, needs, and actions in order to continue to be successful. Remain mindful of how what you do and say impacts yourself and the woman you wish to continue to be with. Consistent actions that are in direct contrast to the problem behavior and rather the behavior desired that is displayed over time will indeed outweigh the original impression and thus reverse the bad impression.
Check in with yourself throughout your life journey to see if you believe you are consistently being the man you wish to be and believe you are. Check in now and again with your partner to see how she is feeling about the relationship. Certainly do not check in – in a needy suffocating non confident way, nor in a pressure inducing way, nor in a “see I told you I can be awesome” cocky sort of way. Rather, check in with her in a caring way about whether her needs are being met.
Dr. Karen Ruskin, PsyD, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist
‘Ask Dr. Karen’ FOX News Boston & National Media Guest Expert
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