We run regular live coaching sessions with guys like you to just gather the men, answer questions and give each other some brotherly support.
I ask that guys send questions in advance so Dan Dore and I can have some topics ready to address. The big topic last week was about “Limbo Land”.
It’s that time in a man’s marriage where he feels shaky, nervous and totally uncertain about where the relationship is going or if it will even survive.
He feels in “limbo”…permanently.
The question was, “Can you give more insight into what limbo land is, why it happens and what I can do about it?”
I decided to make this week’s article about that question because it seems to be a popular one.
I came up with 5 key signs that you are probably in Limbo Land. If only one is true, you may just be entering it. If all 5 are true…no doubt you’re in it up to your neck.
I go into detail about:
1. The “I just don’t know!” phase where every answer to any yes/no question is “I just don’t know!”
2. The “I need you to give me time/space” or the “We’ll just have to see” phase.
3. The “refusal to talk about feelings or your relationship” phase.
4. The “fiercely independent” phase
5. The “mixed messages” phase where she still talks about upcoming holidays and vacations and even slips in a few “I love you…but…” comments.
What is “Limbo land?”
It’s that feeling of nervous, janky, shaky, anxiety and uncertainty of not knowing where your relationship is going.
“Does she love me?” “Does she love me not?” “What’s happening?” and “How is this all going to end up?”
Limbo land is one of the biggest problems guys have because they don’t know what to do with it. They don’t know how to think or who to be.
What are the signs that you’re either arriving into or already in limbo land?
I’ve split these signs into phases but all these phases can happen at once, they’re not chronological:
Phase one is the “I just don’t know” phase.
Where you start asking questions like “What’s going on with you?” “What are you thinking?” “Where are you going?” “Why aren’t you talking to me?” “What’s the matter?” These are those hummingbird questions that I’ve talked about often and the ONLY answers you get are “I just don’t know,” “Stop asking me,” “We’ll see.”
Phase two is the “I just need time and space” phase.
Where she’s feeling the pressure of your certainty, you wanting to know everything that’s going on and all you hear is “I just need more time,” “I just need more space,” “You can’t expect me to know everything,” “I can’t tell you what you need to know.”
Phase three is the “Avoiding conversations and interactions” with you phase.
Where there’s almost total silent treatment going on except for logistics. She’s totally willing to talk about the kids and who needs what and lunches and school appointments and plumbers and stuff like that but she refuses to speak about anything related to the relationship, anything related to feelings or thoughts or anything that’s going on between you two.
It’s also characterized by a total avoidance of being alone with you. An avoidance of conversations about date nights. Avoiding going out to dinner, or avoiding getting cornered alone with you without friends around. She’ll do social things with you but she wants other people around because she doesn’t want to be left with just you and have to face the onslaught of questions while knowing full well that she’s going to give you the “I don’t know, We’ll see” treatment.
Phase four is the “Fiercely independent” phase.
Where she’s almost getting belligerent, arrogant and snarky about her sense of privacy. She gets dressed in the closet so you don’t see her naked anymore. She refuses to leave her phone out anywhere you could find it. She doesn’t let you listen in on conversations. She’s fiercely independent and fiercely private. It doesn’t necessarily mean she’s hiding something; she just doesn’t want to feel like she has to expose her life to somebody else. This is a phase where she is “getting a life.” She’s thinking that she hasn’t had a life, she wants a life, she wants to feel a sense of freedom and independence and she might even say something to you like “Why don’t you get a life?” “You don’t need to check in with me all the time, why don’t you just go get a life of your own?”
The problem here is that she’s also losing accountability. Accountability for where she is. She doesn’t check in if she’s going to be late. She doesn’t do normal things that healthy partners do in a relationship in communicating with each other, being accountable for their time away and their duties in the household and as s parent.
Phase five is the “Mixed messages” phase.
Where she gives you little hints that she might be moving back toward you. She might say things like “Oh you know that we’ve got Christmas coming up” or “What shall we do over spring break” or “Are we still going to Disney?”
At the same time she’s doing all the other things in the other phases but she’s now also talking about the future together as a thing, like it’s real and you’re going “Wait a minute, I don’t even know if I want to make vacation plans for the spring if I don’t know where this relationship is going!”
That’s what “Limbo land” does to you, it makes you uncertain and on your heels.
She may be saying, “I love you” every now and then. Or “I love you but I just don’t have those loving feelings for you.”
That’s a mixed message. It’s wishy-washy communication. But still it’s enough to give most guys the shred of hope.
Those little mixed messages like “Lets go to your parents this weekend” and you might think “Oh maybe everything is OK” and she knows that you’re searching for little shreds of hope and every now and again she’ll throw one out there – like chum when you’re fishing for a shark – and these little shreds keep you clinging on.
Now I want to make an important point about “Limbo land”.
When a woman is doing the distancing, it serves her better than it does you. She has less anxiety over it. She has created a limbo land that serves her. That serves her own sense of privacy, her need to be alone, her sense of unaccountability, her sense of freedom and independence. It serves her.
She has the family, the house, the kids, everything is there, everything is in order but she also is exercising this new life she wants. So even though she knows it’s driving you crazy, she has less anxiety. You have ALL the anxiety in limbo land.
Which is why you’re here reading this article and wondering, “Steve!! What the hell do I do when I’m in limbo land???”
What you do in limbo land is not more of the questioning, pressuring, pushing, demanding, controlling or trying to GET certainty through her.
You may believe that the feelings you have of uncertainty and anxiety are because of her, it’s all her fault and 100% in her hands…but the thing that men find out when they get through this phase is that THE ONLY WAY THROUGH IT is to live a life of your own. I don’t mean get your own life and say “Screw you,” I’m not saying divorce her – although that IS one way to create certainty – but I’m suggesting another way…
This other way is to let go of your grip. Take a huge deep breath. Look around you and realize that you are a man who has a life BEYOND being her husband and you have a life beyond being a father.
You have friends and family. There are men in the world who want to get to know you. You’ve got vitality. You’ve got gifts to give. You’ve got love, warmth and kindness, you’ve got connection. You’ve got all kinds of things going for you that at this moment you think are on hold or in limbo because of what she’s doing.
I want to encourage you to understand that the only time she may be attracted enough or calm enough or feel safe enough to talk to you about the marriage and the relationship is when she sees you letting go.
I KNOW it’s counter intuitive!
I say this all the time.
It’s counter intuitive to realize that letting go, removing the pressure, focusing on yourself and making a declaration that “If I’ve got another 30 or 40 years to live, I’m going to start from this moment choosing to be with people who want to be with me.”
“I’m going to laugh with those who want to laugh with me.” I’m going to love and kiss those who love me”, (I’m not talking about affairs, I’m talking about your family and kids).
Make sure that you OWN your mojo.
When you do this, you start to feel lighter. You laugh more. You actually sleep better.
THIS IS THE KEY TO GETTING OUT OF LIMBO LAND. Creating your own certainty instead of waiting for her to give you permission to have certainty.
Create your own certainty by becoming the man you want to be on your own terms with people who want to have that with you.
One of the easiest places to get access to people who also want this and want it for you, is to join us in our community of initiated men.
Dan and I hear loads of feedback from the guys in our community, saying things like “Holy crap, this is where I belong!” This is because it’s men like you and me, talking honestly and openly and vulnerably – being TRUTHFUL about what it’s like being a man in “Limbo land” and beyond.
That’s why these great men finally start to feel like they belong, they’re with other guys feeling what they feel, thinking what you’re thinking and who totally GET you.
Here’s the cold hard truth about Limbo Land.
You think it’s a place of chronic indecision and uncertainty seemingly created 100% by her. And you feel like you’re the powerless victim.
The truth is that the feelings of being stuck in limbo are created inside your own head.
It’s your belief that your sense of hope, well-being, happiness and long-term vitality is squarely in her hands.
But what if it’s not? What if you had the power to think of this differently?
What if you created your own sense of certainty – independently from the outcome of this phase of your marriage?
And what would that even look like?
Of course you could just hand her divorce papers and be done with it. That’s one kind of certainty some men create. But I want to suggest another to start with.
Brother, you’ve got about 30-40 years ahead of you to live a happy, connected, joyful, meaningful and loving life…surrounded by friends and family who love being with you.
Do you believe that life is crushed just because your wife is going a little nutty right now?
Do you believe you can’t make any decision and do anything that serves you now until she gives you a sign that you’re okay?
Hint: You don’t need anyone’s permission to start living the life you want.
What if right now…at this instant…you simply decided, “Hey, I’m going to live a happy, connected, joyful, meaningful and loving life…surrounded by friends and family who love being with me.”
That, my brother, is your secret key out of limbo land.
Yes, you must be outcome independent and detached from the result.
Yes, you must let go of you need to control and your need to know everything.
Yes, I know that sounds impossible to you right now. But I promise you this.
It’s the quickest way to regain your self-respect and a modicum of mojo.
You’ll start sleeping better and laughing more. You’ll connect better with your kids and your friends and family. You’ll be more effective at work.
Your wife may or may not notice. And who cares. That’s not the point. (she’ll notice, though)
But now you’re being the man YOU want to be and the one she just might be willing to talk to again.
Suddenly the “cold hard truth” doesn’t seem so bad, does it?
We’ve created many options for men to join the Goodguys2Greatmen community and our movement to build strong, secure, confident men who get to live the life they want.
You’re not alone brother. I promise.
Here are some options for you to join us and start creating a whole new reality for yourself:
The Men’s Live Coaching Roundtable is a powerful collection of men from around the world working together to transform themselves and their relationships. Dan Dore and I lead this community with 5 other professional coaches. We have live coaching video calls twice per month. The camaraderie in this group is something missing from the lives of too many men in the world.
If you want to get serious about becoming a man who knows he is going to live a life filled with happiness, connection, joy and meaning, we want to speak with you personally.
We want to spend at least an hour at first to hear your voice, learn about your dreams and coach you through some of the barriers in front of you.
On this call we can offer you immediate tips to change what you’re dealing with right now. This will make you feel calmer…stronger…and more relaxed and measured every day over the holidays.
We can give you details about the options you have for going deeper to transform yourself and current reality.
At the end of the call we fully expect you to say what other men have said.
“Damn, this felt better than a year of counseling! I can’t believe someone really listened to me and understands exactly who I am and where I am!”.
Click HERE to go to the application for your free consultation. We want to know some things about you first and will schedule the call right away. You will be matched up with either to me or one of my certified coaches around the world.
Our UK retreat from 24th – 27th April this year is now 50% full – we’ll be diving deep into what it means to be a masculine confident man and how to lead yourself and your relationships with others . What makes a woman desire a man and other men trust him? If it sounds like something that might interest you, find out more here.
Our online course How to Defuse the Divorce Bomb is a deep and intense dive into handling yourself when you hear, “I love you but I’m not in love with you anymore.” Tim Wade and I host monthly live Q&A calls with all the students in this course which includes many other bonuses as well. Find out more here.
The MEXICO MOJO MASTERY retreat for March 2020 is now 90% full! This is an advanced retreat for men who have had one-on-one coaching or have attended other retreats.and we can’t wait to meet up again in Punta Mita at the Hacienda Alegra. Click that link for some mind-blowing pics.
We love teaching men these tools – how to be better, how to know who you are, what you stand for, what you want and how to CREATE it in your life through our Masculine Confidence coaching programs.
What if this next year everything changed for you?
That’s what we want for you brother.
My new book Straight Talk Tools for the Desperate Husband will help you to lead yourself and your relationship back to good health. Understand why your partner acts the way she does toward you and learn how to lead your life in the direction you want it to go. You CAN have the relationship you want, fulfilling all your desires while maintaining love and respect.
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