Is it really possible to get a guy to do what you want without nagging him? If you’ve ever asked your man to fix something for you, and three weeks later the something still needs fixing, then nagging might seem to be the only way to get him up off his backside to do some work, but there are better ways to spur him into action. In fact, nagging can become counterproductive, because he will start to see it as a battle of wills, and guys don’t like to lose battles. It also creates friction, which could eventually cause a fight, so read these ten tips on how you can get your man do what you want him to without having to resort to nagging.
1. Get the timing right
Men can’t do multi-tasking so, if he’s in the middle of watching a game on the TV when you ask him to take out the trash, you might get a grunt from him that makes you think he heard what you said, but don’t bank on that trash being taken at any time soon. Pick a moment when he is not distracted and not tied up with anything else and you will be far more likely to get what you want.
2. Don’t be overly critical about what he does do
When he does do a job for you, don’t tell him that he’s done it all wrong. We’ve all done it. Your man takes it upon himself to do the dishes and clean up the kitchen for you, and then you promptly go around after him, cleaning again and putting things back where they belong. Be tactful when he messes things up and then he’ll be more likely to do things for you without you even having to ask.
3. Make him think that it was his idea
Men have this psychological barrier to doing what they are told, especially at the weekends, when they are relaxing. On the other hand, men love pleasing their women by surprising them. So, if you need the lawn cut in the back garden, don’t ask him to do it. Instead, mention how much you are looking forward to spending some time in the garden now that it’s summertime again. Surprise! He’ll mow the lawn for you, and it will all have been his idea.
4. Make sure you always thank him when he does do something for you
If your man doesn’t offer to do much around the home, it could just be that he doesn’t feel appreciated. No one likes to be taken for granted, so make sure you thank him for what he does and compliment him when he does do something well.
5. Be clear about what you need doing
“I need some help around here” really doesn’t give him much of a clue about what really needs to be done, does it? Try to be specific about what needs doing and then he will understand what the problem is. Vague requests for help will seem like nagging, but if you explain exactly what needs doing, it will seem more reasonable.
6. Don’t get bitter too quickly
Don’t start shouting at him just because he didn’t jump up and immediately do what you wanted that second. The moment you start with words like “you never do anything for me” or “you never listen to me”, you are asking for an argument and he will just get more and more stubborn. He might have genuinely forgotten what you said, so ask again nicely, and it will get more done.
7. Butter him up!
If you just spent the last hour giving him a hard time, and then you ask him to do something for you, you can hardly expect him to be over the moon about the idea. We’re not talking about being manipulative, but if you do nice things for him, you are more likely to get a result when you ask him to do you a favour.
8. Reward him
One good turn deserves another, so get into the habit of rewarding him for his hard work. If he spent all afternoon helping you clean the home, then you could cook him his favourite meal in the evening, or buy him a few cans of beer when you go out. Just something that says thank you is all it takes to make him more willing to help you out the next time.
9. Explain why it needs doing
If you just bark out your orders to a man, he’s going to react badly. If you explain what needs doing and why, it will sink in with him better. “Please, could you fix that squeaking door, it’s driving me mad” will work a lot better than – “Are you ever going to get off your lazy butt and fix that door?!”
8. Talk to him about it
On a more serious note, if your guy isn’t pulling his weight around the home, you really do need to talk about it. If you are both working, then you will both be tired at the end of the day and you will both need your down time at the weekends. Talk about how you can share the chores fairly and agree on who will do what. A calm discussion about the problem will get you farther than nagging ever will.