The Leadership Moment Quota

Captain and First OfficerSomething I’m seeing a whole lot of these days is what I’m calling the Leadership Moment Quota. Which means, the wife needs to experience some minimum weekly amount of moments of leadership from her husband, for her to act right feel happy about the relationship.

If she gets these Leadership Moments, everything goes pretty smoothly. She likes her husband. She’s agreeable. Sweet. Doting. Charming. Horizontal.

If she doesn’t get enough Leadership Moments… she has to create them by Fitness Testing her husband to try and force them out of him. This annoys her somewhat even if you pass the Fitness Test and really annoys her if you don’t.

So, what’s a Leadership Moment?

It’s any time you (1) create a default choice for something to do, (2) make a decision for her, or (3) ask her to do something for you. Let’s walk through them.

Create a default choice for something to do.

“Let’s get Chinese food and watch Battlestar Galactica on Netflix.”

“Let’s go to the beach on Saturday.”

“I’ll come grocery shopping with you, but we should hit Panera for lunch first.”

“I’ll get the wine, you get the lingerie.”

This works because rather than being some hardass command from above, it creates a default course of action. If she wants to suggest something else to do, she can, but it’s going to require a lot more mental effort coming up with something else to do and justifying why it’s better than your idea. Most times, she’ll just take the path of least resistance and say, “okay”. Which nets you a +1 for a leadership moment. She doesn’t care what happens, she just wants you to create some basic direction she can go along with.

Make a decision for her.

Jennifer: “The red or the blue?”

Athol: “Blue.”

Jennifer: “Peach or cherry?”

Athol: “Well I’ve had your cherry… so peach.”

Jennifer: “We can have leftover chicken and make soup, or I could go get fish and do it on the grill.”

Athol: “Do the fish. Whatever looks good at the store is fine.”

That all seem stupidly easy, because honestly it kind of is stupidly easy. Unfortunately most husbands just see these questions as pointless and annoying. We don’t care if it’s red or blue, we don’t care if it’s peach or cherry, we don’t care if it’s soup or fish. She probably doesn’t care either, that’s why she’s asking. All she’s looking for is for you to make a pointless, trivial, token decision because it makes her feel attracted to you when you make decisions like a boss. Just pick one.

Ask her to do something for you.

This is one mildly harder than the others, but still fairly simple. You just ask her to do something for you.

“Hey can you roast a chicken for dinner? We haven’t had that for a while.”

“I need new shirts, can you shop and find me a couple please. Something like the purple one I have, and anything else that you like is fine.”

“In case we lose power, can you please check on batteries, food and water. I’ll do the propane tank refilling.”

“Can you take this to the post office please.”

As long as the task is easy enough to do, and there’s no reason not to do it, she’ll very likely just go do it and enjoy it as you creating a Leadership Moment. The key is that these are reasonable requests in a reasonable tone of voice. You’re just asking her to do them because you can use her assistance… which frames her as your assistant… which makes her see you as the leader.  Thus generating more attraction to you.

The point is that these are all dominance moves, but they are essentially an understated dominance. There’s no threat behind them or harsh tones. It’s simply setting a direction, asking for what you want, asking for her assistance. You’re just assuming her submissive instinct is going to kick in and she’s going to enjoy the direction. Because after all, female submission doesn’t need to be forced, simply evoked.


  1. type_plus says

    Very insightful post, Athol, thanks. I’m wondering if this should be adjusted to her cycle. So making more moments of leadership when she’s ovulating and less when she’s PMSing? Mind to elaborate?

  2. mplsrs says

    Great post and something that I was fortunate to learn very early in my MAP when I started 18 months ago. On the first point it ended the years long battle of “what do you want to do” on Friday nights. On the second point, I call this “Always have an opinion”. Now that I’ve learned this, she almost always walks away with a smile on her face because I made a decision, even though in most cases like you said neither of us cares which option it is.

    And on your final point, I’m finally starting to feel more comfortable asking her to do things for me. The funny thing is, that the more I lead and the more she’s attracted to me, the more she actually volunteers to help me.

    I might even suggest a fourth point, which maybe is just related to the third point. When she asks if she can help, if at all possible find something for her to do. Even if it is something as simple as can you get me something out of the fridge when I’m cooking. Or hand me that tool for the project I’m working on. In both of these examples I can easily do it myself, but when I give her something to do to help she feels more attracted to me and part of whatever it is I’m doing.

  3. TheatreMommy says

    Yes. So yes.
    As long as you have the baseline level of attraction and no moments of neglect eating at her, many times YES!

  4. Lamont Cranston says

    You are so totally not kidding. My life changed a LOT when I set a couple of simple defaults.

    Where to go for dinner was a constant battle. I was TRYING to be NICE and include her in the decision process and it always went like this:
    “So, where do you want to go?”
    “I dunno.”
    “How about italian?”

    We always went round and round, both of us getting frustrated.

    Now it’s, “We’re going for Italian.”

    If she really wants something else, she’ll let me know, but almost all the time, literally 99% of the time, she’s glad I took the lead.

    The other, and this was a DUMB thing to allow to become a stressor, was pizza toppings. Yes, we went round and round over pizza toppings. She wouldn’t state a preference because she didn’t want to seem “bossy.” (She didn’t want to be in charge.) Now I say “pepperoni and mushrooms” every single time, and while occasionally I get guff for “being boring,” we don’t have the constant back-and-forth that would frustrate us both.

  5. Peregrine John says

    This is a realization I came to only recently. Not the need for making a decision even, or especially, when pointless (got that bit), but the need for a certain minimum frequency. Still ramping up.

  6. ZLX1 says

    re: adjusting to cycle.

    I wouldn’t say so. You’re a man 24/7. End of story.

    I wouldn’t personally do anything even remotely enabling PMS behavior or tolerance for bitchiness, if that’s what you’re asking about.. Put it to you like this, when a guy was dating his future wife, there were plenty of times he was with her and she had PMS, on her period, whatever. Point being, I bet she didn’t act like a huge bitch to him before he put a ring on it. (If she did, he’s an idiot for marrying her.) So, what now? Now that they’re married she suddenly has a PMS get out of jail free card to act wrong. Nope.


    Solid gold friend. Especially that last paragraph. If she is coming to you seeking to be your assistant. By golly, give that girl something to do. Make it fun.

    @Lamont Cranston

    You bring up a good point. If the woman is not making choices and tells a guy flat out that she doesn’t do so because she doesn’t want to seem “bossy”, she’s begging him to be in charge.

  7. John Quest says

    Yeppers..This made a big difference in my houshold. I started acting like the captain and things went so much smoother. Thakns for sharing

  8. Joe Commenter says

    Wow, I just had this realization last month. I used to get annoyed at her “stupid questions”, thinking, just make a decision, who the hell cares. Then I realized that her “stupid” questions were actually her way of framing me as the leader. Now I feel stupid for having missed all of those opportunities to be the boss.

    I have long known that she loves doing favors for me tho. Without knowing it I had been doing the right thing w/ asking her to do stuff for me.

  9. jklm says

    It is so ridiculous how enthusiastic I get reading about you telling husbands to suggest watching Battlestar Galactica on Netflix or just *pick blue or red, for crying out loud*. Seriously men. It sounds dumb but it totally works. I’m forwarding this to my husband right now.

  10. says

    Well said. Shared with the hubbie. We are working hard on our Dominant and submissive roles, and life and marriage has never been better. Two years ago we were headed for “splitsville” and now it’s awesome. My blog details it all! You are among those I have to thank for good words of wisdom. I’m sharing this over at my blog (don’t know how other than to copy and attribute to you!)

  11. Sally Mander says

    Such good stuff — especially the tone/intention. It’s not ordering someone else around or being patronizing — it’s being confident and in control. Love it. I am convinced that when I hear women complain about their husbands not doing enough, this is really what they mean and what they’re missing.

    Gets me all twitterpated just reading about it!

  12. says

    Thanks for this post. As a woman, I’m going to have to agree wholeheartedly. It’s not about indecisiveness, it’s not about anti-feminism either. It’s just convenience. If you’ve ever had that discussion about where to eat, and you both propose different options in an attempt to make the other person happy but can’t get consensus, you’ll agree that the relationship lacks leadership.

    Most of the time, I don’t care what we do, I just want to get something done. If it’s a movie, then go see any movie. If it’s dinner, then go have dinner practically anywhere. Personally, I’m not lying when I say that it’s not about what we do, it’s who we do it with.

    If I have something I really want to do, I’ll be adamant about it. Otherwise, I’ll go with the flow. Leadership moments are a relief when being in a relationship. Quite frankly, a decisive person is overall more attractive than an indecisive one. It’s a very positive trait to have and it must be celebrated.

  13. Craig says

    I to, never realized these small questions to me were a silent request for decisiveness. Such a simple thing to build attraction, but we miss it! From now on all her small questions will have a definite answer!

  14. jen says

    I totally get the first 2 but when my husband asks me to mail something or asks “do you have any cash?” I just think…geez, I’m your wife not your secretary! Just bugs me, makes me feel resentful.


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