What are Your Three Monkeys?

Ages ago my dad told me a story of one of the other executives in his office, who had a peculiar method of dealing with the problems of his department. Outside his office door was a small shelf and on that shelf were Three Monkeys. The traditional hear-no-evil, see-no-evil and speak-no-evil trio. I believe they were plush toys of some description.

When an underling was reporting a problem to the executive, they had to pick up one of the monkeys and take it into the office with them while they presented the problem. If the executive accepted the problem as something he was going to work on… he kept the monkey on his desk.

Which left just two monkeys sitting on the shelf outside his office. When he accepted a second problem, there would be just one monkey. After a third problem was accepted, the shelf would be empty of monkeys.

No monkeys meant underlings weren’t to bother him as he was already busy and a fourth problem would reduce his problem solving effectiveness. So in all likelihood, bringing a fourth problem to him would simply result in the fourth problem taking longer to solve. The rationale being simple – people can only work effectively on changing about three things at once.

As a problem was solved, the associated monkey would return to the shelf outside his office. This was the signal for the availability for a new problem.

I tell this story because it’s one of the first concepts I tell my 12-Week Guided MAP coaching clients. Part of that process is identifying twenty-four different things to work on and improve over the 12-week period. The twenty-four things to do come from four things in each of the six spheres from the new book: Physical, Money, Displays of High Value, Relationship Comfort, Personality and Sexuality. I rank them all in a priority list. I could explain how I prioritize the list, but it’s rather arcane and the description resembles a recitation of Vogon poetry.

So far everyone’s eyes bug out at the mother of all to-do lists I create. Except each week, we’re just going to work on three things starting at the top of the priority list. As something gets mastered / completed, we cross it off the list and add a new monkey.

This overwhelming sense of “there’s too much to do in my MAP” is I think very common. If you’re in a sucky place in your life, with multiple large problems, it’s easy to just give up and not try fixing any of them. But if you can narrow it down to just three things you need to get done it’s more manageable. You can even forgive yourself some failures on things that haven’t made the Three Monkeys status yet. Sure you’re going to clean the spare room out and get to a dental appointment, the kids are still running wild… but this week your Three Monkeys are joining a gym, creating a budget and getting a plumber to come fix that mysterious water problem. So don’t freak out about how bad things are, or how crappy you feel. Just trust the process that fixing anything is better than doing nothing. It’s going to get better.

So leave a comment…

If you only have to do just three things to make your life a little better this week…

What are your Three Monkeys?

Coaching Finally Available

One of the purposes of The Mindful Attraction Plan book was to widen the scope of what I write about to a whole life perspective. Which then is a platform to allow me to advise from a whole life perspective…

…which is a way to say we’re finally in the position to do coaching services.

There’s still some odds and ends to add to the website, but for now I’d like to get started. The website is http://mindfulattractionplan.com/

The intent is that the MMSL blog and forum continue to roll on into the future as they have been. By adding the coaching as a separate website it helps keep it distinct as a service.

Behind the scenes, it’s also been a very interesting time for us. The publication of The Mindful Attraction Plan has been extremely clarifying for me as a writer about what works and doesn’t. It’s also been a major income bump… though it’s hard to know exactly where sales will go, but all in all it’s doing moderately better than the Primer and the Primer hasn’t dropped in sales. So assuming it holds, I just doubled my income. Which is both awesome and mildly freaky.

Added onto that, we’re starting the coaching practice. Yes I said we. It’s an LLC and Jennifer and I partners. She’s far more business connected than I am and has been invaluable. Assuming the life coaching takes off and can expand to multiple coaches, she’s the first on the list for the job. In all seriousness she deserves it and would be good at it. What she’s doing for work now (it’s a small field, but she’s endlessly #1 in Connecticut for her job) isn’t that dissimilar.

So…

MMSL = Athol as an author.

MAP Coaching = Athol + Jennifer LLC

So anyway, what it sums out to is that I just signed another legally binding agreement with my wife. It’s the first one I’ve signed since turning on to the Red Pill et al. It’s a different experience. I expected some sort of “moment” doing it, but in all honesty it was anti-climatic and rather peaceful.

I think it’s called trust.

I trust my wife.

That’s a precious thing.

Anyway… go buy some coaching!  http://www.mindfulattractionplan.com

Relationship Power vs Give and Take

@ernestern:  From my interpretations of the MAP, it is basically an exercise to put you in a situation where you are giving less to a relationship and taking more out of it.  In a perfect MAP, it would balance out to a point you are putting in as much as you are taking out, leaving both parties happy.

Athol:  Close, but not quite right. There’s two elements here you’re merging into a single thought. Let me separate them so you see the process better.

(1) Power. The MAP is about putting yourself in a situation where you no longer need your partner. So you aren’t weak toward them.

For example, I could if I liked, dump Jennifer and basically walk right now. I’d find someone new relatively quickly and my life would continue on. She could try the same thing… and it’s not going to go quite as well for her as it would for me. I don’t mean that to sound full of myself, it’s just how the Sexual Marketplace is slanted in women’s favor for the young and men’s favor for the older.

The takeaway is that in relationship terms, I have power over her and thus control the relationship.

(2) Give and Take. The MAP is about finding ways to balance out the give and take so both people in the relationship are getting what they want and need from it.

So for Jennifer and myself, we do have a fairly balanced relationship in terms of what we do for each other day-to-day. We both love and care for each other. I make more money than she does, but she also helps me with elements of that. The books are mine, but I share the income. I’m on her medical insurance. We’re really rather enmeshed in give and take.

So in a sense it’s like I’m the United States and Jennifer is Canada. I’m bigger and more powerful, but it’s not like I’m coming across the border with tanks, or even threatening to. Though I guess Canadians might see that arrangement differently.

Anyway…

So my demand, as the person in power, is that we have a good relationship and fairly and reasonably give and take with each other.

So from Jennifer’s perspective, that’s a good deal. Her main concern is that I’m not going to suddenly end the deal on her. It’s really not like I have to run some horrible dread game on her either, MMSL has been an education and she sees what’s out there. I also display loyalty and she’s involved increasingly behind the scenes with MMSL.

That being said…

When your partner is the person in power and being exploitive, your mission is to balance out the power, or take active control by trumping their power. Part of that process may very well involve refusal to give what they want in order to establish you are capable of such things, but it’s part of the process toward an end goal of a fairly balanced relationship.

Unfortunately, sometimes your partner is simply uninterested in any relationship with you unless they can endlessly siphon your time, money, effort and energy. Whereupon, you have to either leave or remain being their victim.

 If you’re the weaker partner in a relationship, you don’t have to worry about gaining power as long as the stronger partner is treating you fairly. I personally don’t want Jennifer feeling endless rolling stomach churning dread that I *might* leave her for example. That just gets me a freaked out wife for no gain to me.

That being said, if you’re the weaker partner… you are advised to not fall *that* far behind your partner.

If you want to read a whole lot more along those lines, The Mindful Attraction Plan book is the place to start.

Women Wear Money as a Display of High Value

@Angela:  What does everyone think about a woman letting her hair go gray at 50? I am toying with the idea. Can this be sexy, or am I completely ruining my Sex Rank? Can’t get any opinion from my husband, I don’t know whether he doesn’t care, or what.

Athol:  Whatever it is you chose, just make it look like money was involved in it’s production.
<insert many pics of doggystyle approved older chicks with gray hair>
@Maria:  One shouldn’t forget though, that grey hair as shown in the pics above, is NOT natural. Only very few women are so lucky to have shiny, all over grey hair; most of the time it’s mottled. So all that glamorous grey hair comes out of a bottle, too. It’s actually the most high-maintenance hair color after platinum blonde.

Athol: There’s obviously things like cut and design et al for hair and clothes, but the Display of High Value for women is to be effectively “wearing money”.

@Angela:  Thanks for all the input. I went to the hair salon this morning, the long, grey roots are gone, my hair is a nice rich auburn and I feel 15 years younger. I didn’t realize how much I was hating the gray experiment till it was over.

@x1134x:  Grey hair is not near the DLV that SHORT HAIR is.  At any age. Whatever you do, don’t cut it short.
Dye as long as you can do it and it still looks natural.  If you have wrinkled face skin from age, and a young, youthful head of hair, it looks off.

@Geekengineer:  Agree x eleventy bazillion.

A couple ladies at my office recently went from “actual upper-40s with long hair” to “actual upper-40s looking like a sad 60 year old grandma with no style” overnight by chopping it off to the poofball look. One had very grey hair that ended up getting colored black (looks terrible), the other had 1/2 grey that she colored dog-poop brown (looks… well, you know).

Athol:  So there you go. Keep your hair long. Keep it looking intentional. Keep it looking like some guy shells out cash in your direction.

That’s your Display of High Value for today.

Does The End Justify The Means?

I’m often criticized by Christians as being either “too quick” to suggest divorce, or even “pro-divorce”.  Usually it’s not a complete slamming of me/MMSL, more of an element that makes it’s way into my final grade so to speak. MMSL is amazing and wonderful and deserves an A, but the whole willingness to divorce thing drops me to a B.

I get it. I totally understand that point of view. If you have a Christian world view, that makes sense to me that you think that way. The trouble is though, sometimes a completely genuine divorce threat works like nothing else does to unstick a stagnant marriage.

So the difficulty is that it can work, but is wrong to use. Awkward.

So let’s get real about this shall we.

There’s not too much question in my mind that a genuine divorce threat is a non-sanctioned Christian tool. I agree that you’re coming over to the dark side to try this tactic. That being said, I *very* rarely jump to an instant divorce suggestion and those cases where I do are truly horrible. The entire Phases of the MAP is designed to actually slow down the rush to judgment and get everything as good as they can be, before ever getting to a true divorce ultimatum. It’s a true last resort. Even then, it’s a true ultimatum – a choice – with a positive option for the other spouse to choose. All they have to do is act right.

It’s not simply a random nuke tossed out. It’s something that offers a clear and positive resolution if your spouse is willing to take it. So honestly I get a little ticked at being framed as “pro-divorce” or slap happy on recommending it.

So does the end justify the means?

Yes. Yes it does. If that means you’re in a happy marriage as a result, absolutely it does.

It all just needs to be controlled, managed and staged as best it can for minimal risk and maximum possible gain. If it all works out for the best, I think you’ll be able to live with it. But I do get that it’s stressful and stomach churning to think about.

You know what the REAL risk is though? One day something in your marriage is just going to get so bad, you’re going to snap anyway.

I’d rather see you get help before that happens. If you’ve tried everything else and it hasn’t worked, come see me.

MMSL is the Manosphere Root Beer Part Two

Comment on Why Relationship Momentum Matters. As you read, watch everything play out exactly as you would expect… assuming the genders were reversed.

Audrey:  I recently ‘guarded’ my husband from a friend in the midst of going through a divorce. I’ve known her for years because our kids are friends. My husband casually mentioned that he was sending her some research on an item she was buying. I asked why, and he said that she’d emailed to ask him for help making a selection.

Pardon me? She approached HIM and not ME? Me, I’d have nicely told her to research it herself (lots of online info, library has Consumers Report, etc.). My life is busy enough. I don’t do homework for those who should be able to help themselves. I had to point out to him that she was playing the damsel in distress and that he was buying it. He was completely taken aback and pointed out that he was just trying to help as he would anyone. I told him that I knew there was nothing wrong with what HE did, but would he mind her estranged hubby calling me up and asking me to come over and help him with something I’m better at, such as picking paint colours or furniture for his new digs? He paused. And then the lights went on and he saw what I was seeing.

I asked if he thought this woman with a master’s degree was really incapable of reviewing ratings on her own, or did he think it served her purposes better to play the victim and have other men do things for her. After all, other women’s husbands are safe since they can’t even expect a ‘perk’ for doing it. She just touches their arms, flatters them by saying how good they are at these things and how much she appreciates the help. You know, the stuff that many wives forget to do since busy spouses tend to take each other for granted over the years.

He went from thinking I was nuts to being irked about potentially being played. I think it’s safe to assume that she won’t be getting any more help from MY man. Besides, Miss I’m So Lost Since Hubby Left has three strapping sons at home, all well over six feet. If she really needs a man to do things, she needs to tap one of the walking appetites that lives with her.

What amused me the most was how THRILLED my husband was to have me ‘guard’ him. Seriously, he was all puffed up about it. I earned big points there and I wasn’t even trying to. LOL

Athol:  Audrey’s completely correct response reads exactly like we teach a husband to do when someone starts honing in on their wife. There needs to be a word for female cockblocking.

Anyway…

I realize probably a minority of my readers and certainly a decent number of other manosphere types think I’ve lost my mind and/or sold out with the new book. Sure it’s a softer approach, but the truth is I see the exact same issues playing out over and over in both sexes. 90% of the wives on the MMSL forum are the female version of Betaized Nice Guys. Too patient, too submissive, too frightened to stand up for themselves, no inner game, endlessly orbiting and sexually frustrated.

The overwhelming majority of my advice applies just as well to women as it does to men.

Get to the gym, get in shape. Dress well. Don’t allow yourself to be mistreated or taken advantage of. Be kind and affectionate, but only if you’re being treated with basic respect. Get good at something. Ask for the sex you what. Be loyal, but also be prepared to walk if the relationship is a disaster. Play up your sexuality and gender. Instigate, isolate, escalate.

I won’t lie and say the extra money isn’t nice and that the book isn’t more commercial. Of course I wanted to make money and sell more books. Duh.

But we gotta make Red Pill women, or it’s going to get very lonely for all the Red Pill men the manosphere is making.

This isn’t anything new. I wrote Why MMSL Is The Manosphere’s Root Beer nearly two years ago. I’m playing a long game here.

When a Blue Pill Nice Guy with a serious relationship problem comes stumbling into the Manosphere looking for answers, he comes with a pro-female mindset. After coming across variants of “All women are devious whores!” a few dozen times – something possible in the comments of a single post on some blogs – he can easily become repulsed and move on in his search for truth. Then we call him a Mangina for good measure. We do this because insults make other people listen better and consider our viewpoint.

Likewise, sympathetic women reading the same venom quickly become unsympathetic women. At some point we’re going to want some things to go to a vote and there are more women than men that can vote. Therefore we need the support of women to at least some degree.

So I see my role in the Manosphere as a diplomatic outpost. Some people start here and then explore the rest of the Manosphere. Some people start elsewhere in the Manosphere and get directed here after being jilted by what they first discover. Me being happily married, having a great sex life and generally being a quirky Vulcan makes MMSL taste like… root beer.

So watch the video, it’s a classic.

If other bloggers want review copies, let me know where to send them.

Transparent 3Dcover for website ad

MAP Review at Adventures in Red Pill Wifery

Okay, I really have to write a proper post, but while I get cracking on that…

Transparent 3Dcover for website ad

Via Adventures in Red Pill Wifery…

“If you’ve read the MMSL Primer, don’t worry, this one is still worth reading… There’s some crossover material, but it’s a lot of new stuff, with a revamping of the MAP process. Consider this the laser beam approach, whereas the Primer was more of a shotgun full of buckshot in the variety of topics. Both are required reading, in my opinion.

The Mindful Attraction Plan is a freaking great blueprint for how to make yourself successful and happy, not just in your marriage, but in your whole life. The language is quite a bit toned down from the Primer, but the info is still red pill. It reaches a broader audience by including us ladies in the conversation, since most of the advice holds true for women as well…. Work on yourself, cut out the negativity, take control of your life.

And bonus, if you have a friend or family member that REALLY needs the marriage advice, you can give it to then without feeling awkward about the word “sex” being in the title, lol. I plan on giving it out as Christmas presents to everyone I can think of.”

The Great Material Continuum

Continuing on from yesterday’s cliffhanger…

In the movie version of my life, the last four years would look like a five minute cut scene of me making Ironman suits. Stirring music and me all slick, shiny and flying about yelling “Woo-Hoo!”. Instead it’s been way more like playing the role of Chief O’Brien…

…anyway.

April 8th I threw away everything I had written to date and started from scratch.

Everything just feel into place. The entire four years worth of crap suddenly meaningful as a dozen dark clouds decided to dump the silver linings on me en mass.

Simple. Light. Clean. Fresh. The easiest writing I think I’ve ever done.

Final pushing and it’s 417am, but I’ve finished editing the book. Have a cover. Just got the uploading to Createspace and Kindle to get done and planning a 7/4/13 release date. I’ll tell y’all more about it tomorrow… Oh I guess I mean later today. I’m so sleepy.

Author and book are doing well.

Fuck You and Fuck Your Elbow

So anyway… about two and a half months ago in the gym, I broke my personal record on the evil Leg Press machine. I had a light jabbing pain inside my head though, up high, toward the back on the right hand side.

No problem.

My next leg day, I added another 10 pounds to my personal record. I also had a medium jabbing pain inside my head, up high, toward the back on the right hand side.

No problem.

The next leg day, I added another 10 pounds to my personal record. I also had a bad jabbing pain inside my head… guess where… yeah…  up high, toward the back on the right hand side.

Okay fuck, that’s not right.

So I stopped. That’s about it. I never passed out, never had headaches, no vision issues, felt completely fine otherwise. I’ve just got zero interest in popping something in my head and spending the rest of my life drooling and only smiling when Jennifer comes to visit me in the nursing home.

So I did a fair bit of cardio for a while, skipped some days and I was pretty sick with an allergies + sinus + almost pneumonia thing there for a couple weeks too.

Anyway, first true leg day for a while. It went okay. I’ve lost a little strength, but not that much. I’ve also started doing this thing where after working out I go home and add up the total weight I’ve lifted, as in 100lbs x 10 reps = 1000lbs. I always knew leg day was heavier than arm day, but the total weight lifted is about 60-70% more for me. Leg day is brutal.

So I guess all I’m saying is take it all the way up to Fuck You and Fuck Your Elbow, then peg it back just a notch or two. You still have to push it, but you don’t have to break yourself to be a man. The goal is to feel good, not feel bad.

Oh and the counting the total weight thing. Just have to beat the last total weight lifted by 1%. That’s it. I figure the goal might as well be something positive than thinking about getting injured as the gold standard of being committed. Just 1% better. That’s it.

Jennifer:

Athol:  And no I wasn’t dying. I just wanted to use the video lol.

Was It The Booze, Or Was It The MAP?

Valmont:  So, recently started MAPing and sex has been rare (like once or twice a month) and a source of tension for two years. Her enjoyment has been sporadic to say the least (but not totally gone). I just want your views on last night.

We had a party and had parked the kids with grandparents. I’ve been MAPing, imperfectly for about a month. There’ve been signals that she’s been picking up on this but yet to have a real conversion into the bedroom. So, yeah, I was hoping for something out of a decent party with no kids to come home to.

That night, I mapped it like a mofo. I’m not normally into dress up events but, what’s that babe? you want me to grow an awesome mo? Game on. You wear that mini skirt and it’s a deal.

Get to the party and get her a drink but then make a mental note to start chatting to the other ladies there. After about 10 minutes I remembered something; how freaking charming I can be when I want to turn it on. So I turned it on. Never in a threatening way but enough that by the end of the night I had her and her best lady friends laughing, flirting, dancing, and just not leaving my side. Gold.

I also made a point of keeping tabs on what I was drinking. Just enough to get lucid but I paced it with soda to make keep me level.

So we get home at about 3. She’s never one for affection in public but the minute we shut the front door – bang. I’m not going to turn this into some indiscreet penthouse forum clone but I have been wracking my brain to think of anytime, ever, when we have fucked like that, and I simply can’t. It. Was. Awesome. She wanted to be taken, and how; and she was completely vocal about everything, which is so out of character but so welcome. It was like every inhibition that had built up over the years was wiped. To switch to beta, it wasn’t just fucking. It was incredibly close too. We were ecstatic afterwards.

So what’s the problem then? The next day I tried to reward this with a decent breakfast. It was then that I realized that she had hit the sauce quite a bit the night before. She was quite hungover and most embarrassed about it.

I switched to full beta mode to get us all through the day but immediately began to wonder, “ah crap, so was it just the booze?”  I know the MAP plan is send a follow up message the next day about how awesome last night was, but I knew that with a hangover she would not receive it well.  So I waited until later that night, when the fog had cleared to just drop a, “you were awesome” into conversation. I got a slightly embarrassed groan and a “I was pretty drunk.” She clearly did not want to discuss further.

My dilemma is this. My (beta) inclination is to want to sit down and say, “that was awesome, for both of us, what made it possible and how do we do it again?” But one thing I have learned is that she HATES talking about sex. Ever.

I’m really starting to get a picture of someone who intellectually has been raised with all the feminocentric programming but underneath just wants a good strong man to drag her by the hair to the cave. I think this tension causes a lot of anxiety and even shame – which corrupts not only our ability to talk like adults about sex by I also think is the big inhibitor in getting her going in the first place.

But my big question is, was it the MAP or the booze? If it’s the MAP then I just keep mapping and this sort of action should slowly become the norm. But if was just the booze…..

Athol:  Imagine a scale of 0-100 of how interested in fucking you she is. The higher the number, the more she wants it.

Let’s assume you’ve been stuck at about a 30 for ages.

A couple days back you apologized / owned your shit. +10 and you’re at 40.

You dressed up nice +10

You turned on the charm +10

You have her friend laughing and being into you +10

You got a ton of drinks into her +20

Result for that one night 90 out a 100 on her scale. Fireworks.

So was it the MAP or the booze? Well it was a bit of both.

However, over the long-term you’re going to work on the structural attraction issues, that work every single day in the background and slowly get your baseline creeping up and up. So on any given day, you don’t have to jump through a dozen hoops to make it all happen.

I mean it’s fun once in a while to spruce up and paint the town red, but gets exhausting if that’s what you have to do every single time to get laid.

On the plus side though, that one night probably got you a +2 or something to her baselines interest in you. So if before the evening she was stuck around the 40 point mark, today she’s moved up to 42. So she’s starting to thaw a little. So while the whole night was a bit of a planned charm offensive and a bit of a trick, it all went well and gave you a little boost toward your long term goal of getting her overall interest up higher.

So all in all, worth the effort. You just can’t expect tomorrow evening you’re going to get her shrieking and squealing like she’s at 90 sexual interest in you.

Always well worth getting the relationship momentum heading upwards though.