He Can’t Step Up If You Keep Beating Him To The Punch

improve communication in a relationship

How to get him to step up if you’re the one who is rowing the boat?  You can’t.  Here’s the fact: most relationships that thrive always start with men who are more eager about the women than the other way around.   It’s true in my case and many other people I know.  The guys really “chase” and lead.  The women warm up and melt at some point thanks to their persistence and masculine presence.  Compare that to the ones in which the women are more eager in the beginning than the guys, it almost never leads anywhere.

Hi Kat,

I just read your book in one sitting and I loved it! It really pointed out some thing I’m guilty of mainly sitting back and letting the guy initiate. I was looking on google today on how to salvage relationships that moved too fast and was reading an article on YourTango and your book was linked.  It was an answer to my prayers in this particular situation I’m in with this guy I met.

We met a few months ago, specifically on March 20th to be exact. It was a speed dating mixer that my friends and I were going just for fun. We had a great conversation over two beers and instantly connected. He asked for my number, set a date for us that Saturday to go out and do this again. Now note in our conversation I learned he had just moved back to LA from living a year abroad in Colombia, he was in search of his apartment, had a job that was not in his field and desired to be pursuing animation, what he studied.

The week progressed I didn’t hear from him but from his friend since we both matched on the speed dating. His friend said he liked me but saw that he and I hit it off that he would back off but that I should have fun and enjoy my date with him on Saturday. Well that never happened I never heard from him. I decided to call him out on it and text him “what happened” he gave me this line saying “I’m so sorry I’m going to make it up to you.”

We planned and went on our first date Thursday the following week. He wanted to meet late and I said no, so he switched his schedule and we met for dinner and drinks. We had a great conversation, he let me know he had just gone to see an apartment before our date. After dinner we went to his favorite hang out place to have more conversation and then went to the next door bar, which a man confused and asked us how long we’d been married.  He responded 12 months to the man.  When the man leaves we joked and laughed about that.

Then he said, “Let’s go somewhere private.”  He drove me to my car since I parked far and kissed me. Lots of chemistry in the kissing then he said he wanted to sleep with me.  I say “no, I don’t move that fast let’s just wait and see what happens on second date.”

We kissed again then I left to my car.  The next day I texted him because I had left something in his car. That was my mistake I should have not contacted him. We texted a little but that was it that day.

A week passed and NOTHING! Then I got impatient and texted him, “Hey let’s meet up.”  It was a long process to get the date and we did.  We met for a drink, things got more serious that night and I slept with him. Then as soon as it was over, he changed.  He kind of disconnected and told me that he’d call me tomorrow for lunch.

Tomorrow happened and nothing! I texted that night and again say “what happened?”  He said “sorry I’ll make it up.”

I didn’t hear from him and it was 3 weeks and I texted him for his birthday.  He was happy I remembered and we made plans to go out that Friday.  It ended up that Friday he got the keys to his apartment.  He was supposed to meet me at 9 in downtown LA and didn’t show.  When I called him he said “sorry my truck wouldn’t move, I just got my bed in the apartment.  Come over to Franklin (that was the place on our first date) oh and some friends will be there too.”

Apparently that night I met his two good friends and they asked me if they would see me on Sunday since he was moving in on Sunday. I said no I wasn’t invited and he told them “I don’t want her to move my stuff, guys.”

Well at the end of that night I drove him back home since his friends who carpooled left already.  He took me to his new apartment where there was no furniture, only a lawn chair.  We talked.  I gave him a small birthday gift, he was surprised and said that was the only wrapped birthday gift he got, not even from his sister.

We proceeded to have fun, I slept with him then he said “let’s take a bath.”  We talked during our bath and things got emotional.  He said, “Let’s face it, it’s only physical between us.”  

He said this after I said he was aloof, hot and cold, he told me I was analytical like his ex so it would never work between us. Then we talked about why being friends and I said friends always made the best relationships.

He freaked out and said “Why do you have to rush into a relationship?”   And my response was, “Says who?  I didn’t know we had an expiration date.”  His attitude changed and he said he underestimated me. We got out of the tub, slept on the floor but then I left because I was uncomfortable. We texted a little the following day and then nothing.

Then this week I made a mistake of a drunk text at 11:45pm as I was celebrating a friend’s birthday saying I was thinking about him.  He was inviting me over.  I passed out but in the morning I saw we had texted and I had said I was gonna go over but never did and he called ALOT.  I responded in the morning saying sorry I fell asleep and l was gonna make it up to him, maybe dinner tonight.

He said no he wasn’t available.  So I left it alone.  At midnight I got a text from him asking if I wanted to come over now.  I ignored it, then he called, texted till I woke up and talked with him.  I was convinced and I drove out to him.  We talked on my late drive to him and he said he thought it was sexy what I was doing.

I got to his place and one of his friends was crashing in the living room. Apparently he went out drinking with his buddy. So we proceeded to his bedroom and had fun. As soon as it was over we kind of talked but he falls asleep.

In the morning he was distant and if he could run any faster out of his house he would. I stayed behind to shower and he told me to make myself comfortable and if I needed anything his friend could accommodate me.  Granted this is his friend I met that one night I met all his buddies.

So I was having coffee and talking with his friend and his friend asked me. “Why haven’t I seen you around more often?  I would have thought you and Carl would be hanging out more?”  To which my reply was to sip my coffee because I didn’t know how to respond to that and felt a bit awkward.

I mentioned it to Carl as we texted that day and his response was “I wouldn’t pay any attention to what my friend says when he’s hungover.  Pure small talk of no importance whatsoever. You and I are friends and I think we both enjoy that”

That was this past Friday, I never responded after he said that. Was really bothered and today in the morning I decided to change my approach and forgot about him but yet googled my situation to get some insight and found out.

Any advice and suggestion you have on the matter are much appreciated. I mean I like the guy.   He has a good head on his shoulders but this distance, and the doubt make me not like him too!

Thanks for your guidance!


Here we go again, a classic situation in which a woman is way more eager than the guy and she can’t sit back and let him lead the process.  She has done all the common mistakes in the book that many women do.

Carmen, it seems to me you kept beating him to the punch from the get go.  You practically asked him out, followed up on him after the date, asked him out again for the second date, initiated all contacts/communications and kept rowing the boat to get his attention.  He might or might not have been interested, but one thing for sure your impatience and chasing behaviors dampened his enthusiasm toward you.

And you never knew his real feelings because you never gave him a chance to show it to you.  You are way ahead of him and that makes you impatient you are dragging him by her tie.  And you accepted all his conditions (you driving to him all the time) and didn’t require him to make any effort to be with you.

No man will feel romantic when a woman is ahead of him and putting so much pressure on him.  And any man will take whatever is being given to him until it becomes inconvenient to him if he’s not into you enough, a fact of which you couldn’t establish if you kept chasing him.

Leaning back, as I have learned first hand, is mighty difficult especially when your mind is focused on a guy and only him.  Okay I get it you are attracted to him and it’s not easy to find a man you are attracted to and even more so the one who also shows attraction toward you.  But here’s the key: the more you are attracted to a guy, the more you need to see other guys so you can help yourself defocus.

MORE: Do You Know Talking Less Make Him Crave You And Want To Claim You?

Here’s the fact: most relationships that thrive always start with men who are more eager about the women than the other way around.   It’s true in my case and many other people I know.  They guys really “chase” and lead.  The women warm up and melt at some point thanks to their persistence and masculine presence.

Compare that to the ones in which the women are more eager in the beginning than the guys, it almost never leads anywhere.


You Don’t Want To Miss This:  FREE Teleclass on Why Women Hang Onto A Relationship Past It’s Expiry Date

So as I have hammered over and over, it never amounts to anything to be ahead of any guy.  Even if you are, work on it…restrain yourself.  Pace yourself, stop obsessing and fantasizing.  Curb your enthusiasm.  Walk a little behind him so there is a space in which he can pursue you and take you to the place that he is.

Is He Emotionally Distant?  Here’s How To Get Him To Chase You

Now the good news is you can still remedy this situation.  Lean back and let him row the boat this time.  Not until he consistently steps up, should you feel comfortable leaning forward (remember the 70-30 ratio of initiating).  And here’s another source you should consult.

UPDATE: What a difference a year makes!  She just wrote today 8/25 in the ladies group:  “Ladies!! I just got claimed last night!! Single dad asked me to be his girlfriend. I did not see that one coming LOL at the moment I let go and Katarina knocked some sense into me I was enjoying my weekend. He asked to see me last night and I went over to his place he had bought me a souvenir shirt from his work event we were talking and then he said hey can I ask you a question and I said yes, “Will you be my girlfriend” and I was shocked and laughed and smiled and then asked him, wait what changed and he was like I’ve been thinking about this for a few months now and was scared since I hadn’t been in a relationship since my baby mama but it just feels right. You’re perfect, you’re perfect for me. You give me my space, we have fun and if things go like they have been going the next thing will be marrying you! Can you believe that !! Just like what Katarina teaches us in her book, patience pays and you need to let them have their space and lean back! AMAZING. THANK you Katarina for everything soooo much and for being an awesome teacher!!!”

Want to know her secret?  She signed up for all my programs including this brand new one Four Components Of Melting His Heart and worked closely with me updating me with every situation she encountered.  Turn your love life around by changing your mindset and shifting your energy from masculine drivenness to feminine softness the way Carmen did.

MORE: Imagine How You Can Improve Your Relationship If You Know How To Read A Man

Have you read my book yet?  If not grab it here because you will learn so much about a lot of things that haven’t worked for you in your love life and how to fix them.

My editor, Brenda, in fact just told me this: “Well Kat, I want you to know that I feel amazed at how Randy is coming back around these days!!! And I largely credit that to you! Your book helped me to finally understand WHY it’s important to let men initiate. Before I was just doing it cuz I knew it worked. Now I feel internally motivated to lean back. Thanks, I feel pretty darn excited! Totally positive vibes coming from him these days! He invited me out last Friday, and we had a beautiful time from beginning to end! He said some beautiful things that really blew me away. He still isn’t moving our “friendship” to the next level, but he is becoming far more attentive and warm!”

Please share this with the buttons below and I’d like to hear your comments as well (and don’t forget to subscribe to this blog for more insight into the mind of men on the right side bar so you’ll get notified for each new post).

Image credit Deposit Photo!


  • Hi Kat,

    I really like your articles and method but not yet had time to do further. My heart and head are fighting over a situation I’m in.

    My situation is I started dating my ex since last September. He is 12 years older than me and was very insecure because of his age and look compared to me. His only strength was his money and he kept suspecting that I was going out with him because of his money. I told him straight up form the start that I wasn’t. I didn’t even like him from the begginning He pursued very hard texted nights and days and initiated everything including a week long holiday after 2 months of dating. On holiday I found out incidentally he was asking to set up a date with another woman. I got really pissed off and broke up with him when we got back. Two weeks after that he came back begging to be in my life to be me bf exclusively and was being super sweet promised the world…introduced me to his mum talked about family marriage etc…you get the gist. We saw each other about 3/4 days a week and everything was great. Then came I had a housing issue so asked him if I could stay at his for 1 week until I sort it out. The end of the week, things werent sorted and he said I was welcomed to stay another week but I need to sort things out cos we weren’t moving in together. I got his hint so I left after the first week. We kept seeing each other 3/4 days a week. But I began to fall for him. Things were nice but not as intense as the first few months. I didn’t think anything just thought the honeymoon period was over. Then he went on holiday for 1 week by himself because he had days left to take from work and I didn’t. He came bk bought me present and was normal. That weekend we had a date, dinner,walk, sex breakfast the next day etc . Like any other weekend. And then he told me he wasn’t feeling the deep love for me and wanted T break up. I was stunt. Thought he took the wrong pill in the morning or something.

    We didn’t speak for 2 months. Then he texted wanted to meeT to catch up. I was guarded in the beginning and went along. He was very nice attentive, booked a very romantic restaurant etc…except for telling me he was taking on a new job in the State and would be leaving this fall. then we went for more drinks…I realised how much I missed him then. We got really drunk and ended up a T his and had sex. Next day I realised how much feelings I still had for him and he for me and since he was leaving soon, we should appreciate every moment we had left together. So I told him that. We kinda picked up where we left off before and got into a routine of seeing each other 3/4 days a week,he was very loving and attentive. One day I came to his on my way bk from work to pick up my car, he said his mate (a man) was coming round so I can’t come in. When I got there his mate wasnt there yet so he told me to come in to have some tea. As I just got in, his mate was ringin. ..and he basically wanted me to leave before finishing making tea. I found it very rude and got very upset, especially when I realised he put all my stuff away in the back room like he didnt want his mate to see I was there. He said he’d call me later…never did. And that was 2 weeks ago. I texted him recently,didn’t mention any of that, just that I’m very ill…He didn’t say very much and wasT showING care.
    My head thinks he’s leaving anyway, what he did was rude and noway I’m going bk there. But my heart keeps going back to the loved up time we had. I don’t know what to do from here. Should I or should I not text him again…don’t even know what to say? Everyone is telling me to let go…Would you say the same?
    Ti from UK
    p’s. Sorry for the long message!

    • Move on. I’m not sure what actually happened between you two so he fell out of love but don’t force yourself into a lukewarm guy. Why get yourself into unrequited love? Maybe start with my book to find out what you did wrong so you don’t repeat it again with the next guy?

  • When my EUM told me that he doesn’t want a relationship with me I got anxious. But then I read your blog and since then I have been leaning back, acting feminine and enjoying my life. Now he’s begun to step up.He even offered to do something for me when I mentioned it to him in passing. My question is should I accept his favor? Knowing that he’s always been interested in me on a physical level?
    Will he expect something from me in return?

    • Katarina Phang

      Of course guys want to sleep with you sooner or later. Do you want to sleep with him? Then do it and let the relationship unfold naturally.

      • I want to but the strange thing is that we make out and do everything else but have not had sex! We had just 2 opportunities, but he didn’t fuck me. In his messages etc. he claims he’s extremely attracted to me and I drive him wild. Then why would he not want to fuck? Maybe he sees sex as a commitment. A lot of guys will only have sex with their girlfriends and wives but will have oral sex maybe (like we do) with other women they’re not committed to…what are your thoughts Katrina?

        • Keep dating others till you’re turned off by him or he steps up. If a guy withholds sex from me I see it as a red flag. He might have an erectile dysfunction or something.

  • HI Kat,

    When you start leaning back, how long does it usually take for that man to step up after we you have fell out with him because he didn’t want to move the relationship to the next level? He was basically the man who acted like my boyfriend, but wanted to keep his options open. I have just recently started leaning back, less than a week.

    • Hi Najah, be patient and please don’t use leaning back as a strategy. Lean back and focus on your own life and start dating others to raise your vibration. That’s how you do it. You don’t wait around for no man. Please read my book, you won’t regret it.

  • “Lean back and let him row the boat” is the same advice Rori Raye gives, is this site affiliated with her?

  • Hello!

    Yeah, Kat! You are always right!

    it seemed to me that this guy was not interested on her since she refused not to sleep with him.right away. I think that is when he lost interest in her. But then he texted him, and she seemed forced to do whatever. Then she let him no time to devolep feelings or more attraction towards her, so he just call it a ”sex thing” going on with the two of them.

    When woman got intense the man lose interest on them, like in her case when she said that ”he was aloof, hot and cold, he told me I was analytical”. It seems to me that men only want to hang out with fun and ”easy go with the flow” girls and if they are not, well, all the attraction goes down the drain then they just say good bye. But I can get why.

    But oh well, you never know what you are getting out there and just be a secure woman, just like you have teach us and be the ones who dont need this or that guy to be happy.

    I have learnt so much from you. If it wasnt for you I will be making the exact same mistakes mentioned above! 🙂

    • Thank you, Ai. In the beginning attraction is fragile, it’s all about sexual attraction. But if a woman leans back like a feminine woman, guys will almost always be magnetically drawn toward her. It’s the law of nature.

      • Ok Kat, didnt know that, but thanks to you now I know! 🙂

        I have a friend, concerning this issue. I want him to chase me. I chased him in the past and now is like he wants me to do the same thing. He is leaning back and wants me to initiate contact . Its like he doesnt want to appear as desperate. he says he will be patient and act with intelligence, but I dont want to chase him or to ask him to hang out because for me asking him will not have the same weight or the meaning as if he is the one who asks me so.

        So what can I do in this case? :/

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