How To Get Exactly What You Want From Your Man (Without Trying To Control Him)

P.S. This works with women, too.

man and woman on date Dean Drobot / Shutterstock

If you know me at all, you know I’m a big fan of exercises that give me clarity, because I find that when I take steps towards becoming clear, others react to me in more positive ways.

It doesn’t mean I always get what I want, but in this world filled with people being “fuzzy” and vague, folks see me as someone who knows himself, and that seems to make people feel safer around me, which sometimes means they say yes to things I request.


Personally, I find myself more inclined to consider a request when I feel safe/safer around someone.

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Is that the same for you?

Feel free to have a different take on this approach, but, for me, things are more difficult and less enjoyable when I’m bumbling around trying to ask for something vague.

Also, when I’m not being clear, I don’t often get what I really want, which means my level of dissatisfaction increases and I eventually land in a kind of starvation loop in which I find myself unable to get my needs met.

Consider the impact of being vague as it adds up over months, years, decades …


Getting clarity for yourself about exactly what you want can be challenging ... until you realize these two things:

  • Feeling afraid to ask for what you really want is a way to know you’re moving in the right direction towards understanding it.
  • The difficulty you have figuring this out probably comes from not having exercised what I call your "clarity muscles" enough. 

When you see this, you also realize that clarity is growthful and empowering — and then you'll just keep getting better and better at it as you continue to practice!

When you have clarity AND people respond to you more positively because of it AND you continue to practice getting clear, you increase your odds of getting more of what you want in life.

Here’s a simple 3-step exercise you can try at home to help you work towards becoming even more awesome than you already are:

Note: Feel free to start with something small, but make sure it’s something you’d really like to do with someone.


1. Get the list of the things you would like to ask for out of your head and down on paper or up on a computer screen.

To do this, ask yourself these two questions (and again, I recommend writing the answers down.).

2. Identify your “asking for what you think others want” trap.

Go back and look at your first answer. Now ask yourself this: Did you choose something you really want, or did you choose something you think the other person would say yes to?

Choosing to ask for what you think someone will say yes to is a common mistake many people make, thinking it will increase the odds of getting a yes.

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But, it means that we never end up asking for what we really want.  

I did this for decades, too, so don’t beat yourself up. Many of us do this unconsciously, and you are becoming aware of it now, which means you rock! And, it means you can shift it!

I encourage you to go back and reword your answer so that it accurately reflects what you truly want.

Again, write these news answers down so you can at least get them out of your head. It’s when these thoughts are left rattling around in your brain, unchecked, that things usually end up getting worse.

3. Get specific.

Now, here’s the trick to not doing what most people do wrong. Be REALLY specific about exactly what you want to do.


Much of the time we generalize or pull back from the details in another attempt to increases the likelihood that the other person will say yes. In trying to “sweeten the pot,” we leave things vague because we don’t want to create pressure. But the truth is that vagueness creates more pressure and more weirdness than specifics do.

Clarity is contagious.

Giving people specifics often helps give them clarity and helps them identify what they want.

It's actually easier to say yes to something when you know the details of what you're being asked to do.

So, look at your answers above and think about details. That could mean the location, the time, the people involved, what they’re wearing, the flavor of ice cream you want to eat off of their … ahem …


Whatever you can think of that would help make your vision clear to the people you’re going to share it with.

You can also make it clear that you’re open to negotiation, but when you start with specific details you give people something to work with.

Here's an example:

Ambiguous request to your partner: “What about a massage?

Clear request to your partner: “I’m practicing asking for what I want. Are you open to hearing my request?” Then, provided they say that yes, they are open to hearing your request, continue with, “I’d love to lay on a blanket in front of the fire while you rub coconut oil on my back and give me a long gentle massage tonight.”


Go back to your list and for each thing you want, write down three specific details you can share to better describe exactly what it is you are asking for. Then rewrite your request including those details.

Now that you have clarity and what you want and how you can request it, bonus points for you if you ask the person you said you want to do it with!

I love doing exercises like this because it's easier for me to summon up the courage to make requests if I have them clearly written down rather than rattling around in my skull all loose and wonky.

Today, I encourage you to practice the exercise above and then get out there and ASK someone.

If they say no, thank them for taking care of themselves and congratulate yourself for improving your self-expression. You exercised your clarity muscles. Way to go!


If they don't say no, but rather want to negotiate, celebrate that you now get to find a yes-yes for all involved.

And, if they say yes, please allow yourself to enjoy it!

If you're still nervous, you could even send them this article in an email and ask if they’d like to try this exercise together.

P.S. Here's a secret tip of mine.

When working toward gaining clarity about your requests, try to brainstorm more than one person you could make the request of. Sometimes there is really only one person for “the job,” but I’ve found that many of my requests aren’t actually person-specific — I just think that they are.

If you’re like me, you might discover there are some things you want that can be fulfilled by several people, which means you just increased your “request pool,” which means you could potentially ask multiple folks, which also means that you might end up getting multiples of what you want.


And I think you deserve to get more of what you ask for. 

RELATED: If You're Not Getting What You Want From Men, Do This IMMEDIATELY

Sex and relationship expert Reid Mihalko views on sex, intimacy and relationships have been featured on The Doctors, Oprah’s Our America with Lisa Ling, Bravo’s Miss Advised, Montel, Fox News, VH1, Showtime’s Penn & Teller’s Bulls**t!, NPR, Sirius’ Maxim Radio and Cosmo Radio.