Tag Archives: Advice

Real Talk From Real Men


 

Photo Courtesy of Getty Images

 

It only took a smoky, dimly lit lounge and a few glasses of adult beverages after work for a group of otherwise professionally conservative corporate folks to drop their inhibitions and launch into the mother of all discussions. A discussion about the age old question that seems to always come up when men and women are hanging out together, “what do men really want from women?”

It seems no matter how many times this question gets asked and answered in magazine after magazine, including this month’s Essence, it continues to be one that never fails to strike up a spirited conversation. This time was no different. In true blogger fashion I took the opportunity to jot down a few responses from this diverse group of men. Just to be clear, the men ranged in age from early 30’s to mid 40’s, majority African American with one Caucasian American, and all had different marital statuses including married with children, divorced with children and single without children.

So when asked the question, “what do men really want from women?” here’s what these real men had to say:

  • It’s All in the Details – Men like a woman who cares enough to pay attention to the details when it comes to her appearance. Do the best with what you have to work with. Translation…heels, toes and nails done ladies. They went on and on about the appeal of a woman with a mean shoe game and were ready to stage a collective beat down on whoever it was that invented the ballet flat. (Side note: All the women in the group were wearing heels but had a pair of ballet flats in our bags!)
  • Break from the Group – Apparently (in my sarcastic voice) a group of more than three of us is intimidating for men to approach. So they suggested we should break from the group during the night to give a guy a fighting chance to get to know us away from our girls.
  • Carry-on Sized Baggage – No man wants to pay the price for your past hurts. So ladies, do the work to unpack that baggage and get it down to carry-on size.
  • Let Us Know We Matter – A man wants to feel like they matter, like you’re happy to be with “them” in particular. Little gestures like a hand on the knee, rubbing their head, or laughing at their jokes are how we can demonstrate that they matter to us.
  • Professional but Keep it Real – This group of men took a page out of rapper Ludacris’s book. They say every man wants a “lady in the street but a …” you finish the rest. They also want a woman they can basically take anywhere, whether its out with friends or to a business function.
  • Don’t Try to Fix Us – How many times have we heard this one? Stop trying to “fix” a man. No more projects ladies. They are who they are and while maturity and experiences may prove to change them over time, we should put a period to trying to actively be the catalyst for that change.
  • Profess, Protect, Provide – They all unanimously agreed with Steve Harvey’s statement from his “Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man” best selling book. The statement being that if a man really loves and cares about you, he will profess it outwardly and unabashedly when asked about you, he will do all he can to protect you (including things like taking care of your car, etc.) and he will want and try to provide for you.

As I was writing this article, I had an “a-ha” moment. My “a-ha” moment was this, while all of these answers came from men, the reality is they could have very well come from women too. I don’t know any woman who doesn’t want these same things. A man who cares about the details of his appearance, who is confident enough to break from his gaggle of guys, whose baggage doesn’t crowd his relationship with us, who let’s us know we matter, who can rock a Brooks Brothers suit or a pair of Timberlands, who will let us be who we are without trying to fix us and who will show his love by professing, protecting and providing for us.

So the question becomes, if we all want basically the same thing, why is it so difficult for us to give it to one another? Vyne readers, let us know what you think!

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Travel Tips for Jet Setters


Now more than ever, women are taking on careers that require them to live and/or travel domestic and abroad on a regular basis. With security measures continuing to tighten, the experience of traveling can sometimes be a bit stressful. So we asked some of our loyal Vyne Readers, who jet set regularly, to share with us their tips that make travel run smoothly and stress free. Take a read and let us know what your travel tips are too!

“I print out my boarding pass at home and check the board for gate changes before [walking through] security. I [also] ask for bottled water (kindly) as I pass through first class.  Then I don’t have to worry about an open cup or when then the flight attendants will serve the drinks.” – Steffanie Edwards, Energy Consultant.

“When I travel internationally, I take advantage of the long flights and sleep!!! If I am not asleep, I make sure I have my iPod, good reading materials and crossword puzzles. Singapore has one of the best [airports]! They are also the best airline (next to Southwest). Every time I travel, it’s an experience and I love it!! If you get a chance to go to Bali, Indonesia, do so!! It is paradise and usually you have to stay overnight in Singapore. I would suggest scheduling your flight from there to Bali later in the day so you can enjoy the beautiful city. [Lastly], if you miss your flight, don’t sweat it – it means you probably needed the time and God had that in your plan.” -Dr. Cheryl Richardson, President, CBR Consulting, LLC

“Pack a lightweight outfit in your carry-on in case luggage is lost. Vacuum sealing clothes is a great option, but rolling (depending on luggage size) may be a better option. If traveling by yourself, send out a call for friends of friends who are locals and may be up for a meet-up. Email a scanned copy of your passport to yourself and a friend in case it gets lost. Always pack a small flashlight. …and talk to strangers.” -Melissa Creary

“Being the lady that I am :-), I always travel with 2 pashminas. I use these as blankets because I wouldn’t dare use those icky plane-provided blankets! I also ensure my carry-on has the essentials: napkins, tissue, ear plugs, eye mask, headphones, socks, hand sanitizer, lotion and snacks. Whew, I think that’s all.” -LeRon McKendrick

My strongest suggestions…pack ahead so you don’t forget anything. Weigh your bag before you get to the airport to avoid overage charges. Become part of the main mileage programs – One World, Star Alliance or Sky Team to ensure you get credit for your travel. All those miles add up to great perks!” -Karen Brown

“ Who has time to fumble with printed itineraries? I don’t. I travel to Antigua once a month and my time is precious. So I use Worldmate. It’s a free application that allows you to log in your trips, shows you the weather for where you’re arriving, allows you to book hotel/cars/etc., gets you great discounts, tells you the terminal where you will arrive, and much more. You can even book meetings and sync it with your outlook calendar. The application is free and is available for blackberry, iphone, nokia, android.” -Lynnise P. Asst Director of Financial Aid

“I recently discovered that if you put your laptop in a microfiber laptop sleeve you don’t have to take it out before putting in the bins to run through security. This way it saves you the step of having to unpack it and it stays protected.” – Veronica R., Marketing Manager

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All the Single Ladies: Dating Lessons Learned


DatingBy Keesha Boyd

It seems like every time I’m on the phone or out to eat with my single girlfriends the conversation almost inevitably turns into a discussion about the plight of dating. Not that we don’t also discuss politics, work, pop culture, etc. But at some point we find ourselves swapping those good ol’ entertaining “single stories.” I’ve heard stories ranging from men with weird dining habits that surfaced during the date and men announcing their fascination with dating women of color, to men whose idea of a date is laying up on your couch with his feet kicked up on your coffee table. Then there’s the ever popular man who just flat out lies about his status, job, interest in you, or that girl who keeps blowing up his cell phone, etc. Regardless of the experience, single ladies the world over continue to brave the dating scene in hopes of finding “Mr. Right…for me.” Whether the scene is the internet, a speed dating session, or an organized singles meet up, women continue to explore all possibilities. Although I’ve yet to venture into “internet” dating, several of my friends have and much to my surprise they have experienced positive outcomes. But by and large , they are still kissing the same amount of “internet” frogs as the next girl, despite the tedious up front profile process.

All of these fascinating, heart-breaking, funny and appalling stories (including my own) that get swapped over wine and appetizers, could probably yield some great advice for another single lady. So here goes Vyne readers! Let’s start a “dating lessons learned” list for all single women to benefit from. Sure you have your self-help books out there, but how about sharing some REAL advice, from REAL women, based on REAL experiences from our dating lives?  Post your advice and lessons learned in the comments section below. Let’s hear it ladies!

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