I recently worked with a woman we’ll call Jennifer.
Jennifer came to me because she had been single for over 10+ years, and she stated that she no longer wanted to be.
She told me that men always found her ‘intimidating’ and that they just didn’t know how to relate to her (which is far from the first time I’d heard this from a woman).
She said that the combination of her flourishing career, high net worth, and beauty seemed to scare off any men that she was interested in.
Jennifer’s highest stated goal was that she wanted a safe, loving, reciprocal intimate relationship with a quality man.
After a bit of probing, it became quickly apparent to me that the situation that Jennifer was presenting was only part of the story.
What’s Actually Happening When Men Are Intimidated By You
Let’s call a spade a spade…
The notion of all men being intimidated by you is always, 100% a smokescreen.
In other words, it isn’t true.
What’s actually happening in situations like these?
This might be hard to hear but the difficult truth is…
High-quality, masculine men aren’t intimidated by women. They just aren’t attracted to a woman who is shut out of her own heart.
The hyper-independent “I don’t need a man” protection mechanism repels men because it is just that – a protection layer.
It isn’t true. It’s armour.
It is far easier for a woman’s ego to convince herself that men are just afraid of her sheer awesomeness than it is to honestly self-reflect and take responsibility for the ways that she is actually terrified of letting a high quality man get close to her.
Especially when you consider how positively reinforced many of these women are by society for their external achievements and accolades.
It’s easier to go along with the reinforcement that you’ve received around being strong and capable and powerful… than to take responsibility for the fact that maybe you use your hyper-independence as a subtle fuck-you screening tool.
But here’s the thing… it’s an adolescent stage to get stuck in.
It’s Rapunzel being like ‘Climb up my hair and prove yourself to me and then I’ll maybe begin to open my heart’.
Am I saying to not be discerning? Of course not. Absolutely be discerning and optimize for what you want.
But leading with coldness, closure, and protection won’t get you very far.
Why? Because high quality men will feel the wounding underneath the mechanism and won’t be called to do your work for you.
When I say this, inevitably, a small percentage of women continue to resist this notion. But get this…
The ‘men are always intimidated by me’ woman wanting it to be everyone else’s fault and none of their own is the equivalent of a sensitive new age guy holding firm on the delusion that no, he doesn’t need to cultivate strength, resiliency, and a spine… he just needs to meet a woman who out-feminine’s his feminine.
We can cling to our favourite self-delusion and try to bypass our own inner work… or we can face reality and start doing what actually needs to be done to call in an amazing man.
But What If Men Have Actually Told You That They Are Intimidated By You?
It is entirely common for some women who run this pattern of feeling like all men are intimidated by them to have actually been explicitly told (by one or many men) that they were in fact intimidated by them.
So, in situations like these, when you hear it straight from the source, what is actually going on?
Well, there’s often a few things at play.
First, some men will say this to a woman because they themselves are simply in a season of not being in their power, and having a general fear of life. And so meeting someone who is in their power reflects back to them how they aren’t showing up in their own life. This is absolutely a thing. This generally accounts for the first time that a man tells you that he is intimidated by you. But subsequent sayings of the same sentiment is a whole other thing entirely.
Having heard that any man is intimidated by them, even if a woman’s ego loves it in the short-term, it hurts their heart. And so instead of feeling into that hurt (‘Ouch, that hurt… and oh no… will I be alone forever then?’) they start to armour up and protect themselves. But by doing this, they add to the prickliness that men continue to pick up on. Basically, this is the reactive mindset of, ‘They thought I was intimidating then? Ha! Then watch THIS!’
So through subsequent iterations of men saying some version of the same thing, this is generally (at least in part) due to the fact that the woman is responding to the old hurt, and compounding the closed-off-ness by how she moves through the world on a daily basis.
And finally, some men use phrasing like ‘I feel intimidated by you’ as a socially convenient cover-story (because that is a known societal trope that they have heard before). It’s easier to say, in essence, ‘You’re so amazing and I can’t see myself stepping up to your level’ than it is to say ‘I can’t feel your heart, and it doesn’t actually feel like you have room in your life for a man to truly love and accept you as you are.’ So they settle for the statement that will have a higher likelihood of sparing her feelings.
How To Heal This Pattern And Attract The Man You Desire
So if the story that all men are intimidated by you has brought you lacklustre results and you want more for yourself… what do you do about it? And can something even be done about it?
I have worked with hundreds of women who have said some iteration of the ‘men are intimidated by me’ story, and can happily report that I have seen this pattern shift (so that they ended up in loving relationships) more times than I can count. Any of these women who applied themselves successfully shifted this pattern, and you can too.
Honestly adhere to the following five steps and your love life will radically transform faster than you ever thought possible.
1. Be willing to drop the story (or at least a 1% sliver of it)
Nothing will shift until you are actually willing to drop the story of men being intimidated by you.
And listen, I get it. The story has likely served you in one or many ways. But it has also overstayed its welcome and likely blocked you from exploring worthy connections.
The good news is you don’t need to immediately drop the story entirely. This isn’t a black-and-white, on-off switch that you need to flip in your mind.
But for any meaningful progress to occur in your life, there needs to be at least a sliver of doubt in the story. Even if you just 1% disbelieve it (which could literally sound like, ‘Okay… maybe this isn’t true with all men all of the time…’), you can begin to make real, lasting change in your life.
2. Retire your rigid self-concept
The story of men being intimidated by you is inevitably propped up by one or several of your ego’s favourite facts about you.
It could be your exceptional beauty, your intelligence, your amazing career, or the fact that you have a lot of wealth.
Whatever it is, recognize that these things about you are not the only things about you.
In fact, when it comes to meeting and attracting a high quality, loving relationship with a man… these could actually be some of the least interesting things about you.
While the ego/mind hates hearing this, the heart recognizes the truth of it.
The truth is… you are not just your ego’s favourite thing about you that it clings to. You are far more than that.
By acknowledging and recognizing this truth, your self-concept has the room to engage in healthy diversification.
Sure, maybe you’re beautiful, and successful, and wealthy… but you are also kind. You are also warm. You are also a good listener. You also have a big heart.
The more aspects of yourself that you allow yourself to spend time with, the less rigidity there will be around the things that your ego formerly clung to.
3. Feel into your heart’s honest yearning
Like any protection mechanism, the story that men are intimidated by you is simply a way to stay stuck in our minds and disconnected from the full breadth of the human experience.
And one of the most common reasons that people stay stuck in their heads? To avoid pain. In this instance, the pain of disconnection and longing.
To counteract this emotional stuckness… allow your hearts yearning to be fully felt.
You can either take a moment now, or on a regular basis in the coming weeks, to truly feel into your heart. Feel its longing… its yearning.
Feel the ache of craving a loving, nourishing relationship with an amazing man.
Feel the desire of having someone to go to bed with and connect about your days. To wake up lying next to them and feel the overwhelming gratitude for who they are to you.
However this yearning shows up for you, allow it to simply be there. To breathe. To exist. Without rushing it away and jumping back into our heads. Simply let your heart exist.
If there is sadness to be felt, allow it. If there are tears that want to flow, let them flow.
The more a woman can tolerate honestly feeling into her open-hearted longing for a relationship, the more she will be able to be with it in life when she comes upon it.
4. Allow yourself to be connectable
Defences do what they would defend against.
The story that all men are intimidated by you has historically kept you safe from experiencing what your deeper heart desires. It has also kept you lonely and isolated.
The antithetical strategy to being walled-up and in your mind… is to soften, open into vulnerability, and to allow yourself to be connectable in the presence of others.
The extent to which this idea makes you feel wide-eyed panic versus beaming excitement will show you where you are on your journey.
Ultimately, we are here to connect and be connected to. To allow ourselves to be in relationship with others.
So the next time you’re out and engaging with someone who there could ever be any potential with… simply soften any judgmental thoughts of better-than/less-than thinking, and slide the fader into allowing yourself to be interested, curious, and open. This person doesn’t have to be your soul mate, but allowing yourself to be in the regular practice of being open and connectable will inevitably make you more compelling and attractive to the person that you are meant to end up with.
5. Lead with your heart
The entire strategy of moving away from the ‘men are intimidated by me’ story and towards a healthy loving relationship can be summarized as: get out of your head and into your heart.
The more we’re in our ego-mind, the less connectable we are and the more we will continue to repel people (repelling both the misaligned and the would-have-been-aligned).
Conversely, the more you lead with your heart, the more open you will be to meeting and attracting the kind of high quality romantic partner your heart yearns for.
The Parent At The Playground
Think of the ‘men are intimidated by me’ story as being like an overprotective parent at the playground.
The parent’s child wants to play with the other children, but the parent keeps saying to their child, ‘They aren’t good enough for you. You’re so amazing and special… why would you want to play with such stupid, dirty, silly children?’
In this situation, the child’s heart still yearns to play. Still yearns to connect. But the attempts at connection are stopped before they’ve begun.
The parent may have the best of intentions (perhaps they only want their child interacting with the best of the best so that they have the best life possible)… but there is a point where the hesitancy, the caution, the better-than thinking simply blocks the child from connecting and enjoying life.
Again, none of this new awareness is meant to have you swing the pendulum over to ‘I should drop all discernment and allow myself to connect with anyone and everyone who wants my energy and attention!’ The opposite of crazy is still crazy. You should still maintain your personal standards. This is simply about allowing yourself to see how this particular protection mechanism may have overstayed its welcome and kept you stuck in a rigid place that has blocked you from potential connection.
You’re not aiming for no boundaries and being connectable to everyone… nor are you aiming for total rigidity and repelling any and all people. The aim is the healthy middle – where you honour your standards, boundaries, and desires, while also being in your heart more often than you’re in your head.
If you want any further support with this intention, there are two things I can offer you.
If you want to speak with me directly, you can sign up for my community, The Circle, where I offer direct support and weekly group coaching calls.
Dedicated to your success,
Ps. If you enjoyed this article, you’ll love checking out the following: