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Men vs. Women: 44 Psychological Ways Guys & Girls Think & Behave Differently

Do you think that men and women are so different that they’ll never understand each other? If these differences have caused problems, here are the answers.

men women difference

There was a book that came out back in the 1990s called Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus. Revolutionary, it was the first time that anyone formally came to the conclusion that men and women are inherently different.

And really, there aren’t many who wouldn’t agree that by and large, the sexes not only speak a different language but also view the world around them in very opposing ways.

It isn’t just our spatial abilities or verbal understanding that are the cornerstone of the difference between us. Because on the whole, not only are we mostly all alike gender-wise, but we all also have the same struggles in our relationships.

When you are first starting out in a long-term relationship, you never imagined it would be so hard to get along. But as time goes on, you begin to see predictable patterns of behavior that can either complement each other or tear each other apart.

So, just how different are men and women? And how can these two genders get along despite their differences? [Read: Relationship stages – phases couples go through by months and years]

Why it’s important to understand the differences between men and women

Anyone who has been in a hetero relationship will most likely agree that sometimes men and women just don’t understand each other. And that causes a lot of relationship problems and conflicts.

A lot of people take their partner’s actions personally. They think they are acting that way because of how they feel about them. But that might not be true. They might just be acting that way because they are merely a man or a woman.

When you understand the differences between men and women, you can stop making assumptions and begin to see that one of the reasons for their behavior is their gender. [Read: 50 secrets and early signs of a good relationship that make a great one]

Once you do this, you can have more of a sense of peace and acceptance of your partner. As a result, you will be happier overall.

The differences between men and women

There are some major differences between men and women. So, you have to look at them separately, and then understand the reaction and behavior that results from them. 

Then you can let your better half be your better half and it doesn’t have to mean a fiery end to your relationship. [Read: Mars and Venus? Obvious gender differences in communication]

These are the major differences that if you can just accept and learn to let go, you can live much happier ever after in harmony.

1. Men can only focus on one thing at a time, whereas women can multitask

If you give a man more than one task, he will either have ten projects started and never finished, or he will only do one at a time. 

Not being able to put his focus on more than one thing at a time, he gets flustered easily, and irritated even more easily, at the slightest distraction. [Read: 59 relationship lessons and honest love advice only experience can teach you]

Women, on the other hand, can work on ten different projects at once. They can go from one task to the next and pick up where they left off with ease.

2. Men show love, whereas women voice love

When a woman is in love with someone, she can’t stop gushing over it. Wanting to text and talk about her latest crush all day, she can’t vocalize her emotions enough. 

A guy is not the same. When he is in love with a woman, he won’t tell everyone around him. Instead, he will “do” things for her. [Read: 48 heartfelt ways to prove you love someone and show them you really care]

If you notice that a guy has changed your washer fluid without being asked to, or if he’s taken the garbage out without being told to, that means he loves you.

3. Men are typically visual creatures when it comes to sex—women, not so much

Men are very visual creatures when it comes to sex. They need the fantasy more than most women do and become turned on by seeing sexual acts.

On the other hand, women are more focused on the emotional side of a sexual act. To get in the mood, they need a good mix of erotica and some form of emotional connection. It isn’t that women don’t get excited by porn, but rather, they just need more than the visual experience.

[Read: 46 sizzling sex life secrets to spice up your bedroom and leave you horny 24/7]

4. Women are concerned about the emotions and feelings of others, whereas men are concerned about their hunger and basic needs

Women spend a good majority of their time worrying about their children, their husbands, their neighbors, and what their friends meant with their passive-aggressive comments the other day, and that is all in one moment’s time. 

A guy worries about what he is going to have for lunch and whether his wife is going to be in a good mood so that maybe he can have sex.

A woman is always on edge with reason. She believes that the weight of the world rests on her shoulders. That is a lot of stress to handle. In the reverse, a guy worries about very little. 

5. Men are more logical, analytical, and rational. Women are more intuitive, holistic, creative, and integrative

Men use the left side of their brains more than women. It helps a person with logic, sequencing, linear thinking, mathematics, facts, and thinking in words. [Read: The psychological facts about relationships everyone should know]

The right brain is more visual and intuitive. People sometimes refer to it as the “analog brain.” It’s more creative and has a less organized way of thinking. And women use their right brain more than men do.

As a result, women tend to be better at things like imagination, holistic thinking, intuition, visualization, art, daydreaming, and reading nonverbal cues from other people.

6. Men are less in touch with feelings and emotions than women

Men have a much more difficult time relating to their own feelings and may feel very threatened by the expression of feelings in their presence. [Read: Emotionally unavailable man – 52 signs, causes, and ways to make him love you]

In addition, when other people express their emotions, they are not as good at knowing how to respond. It might make them uncomfortable, and they might say or do awkward things as a result. This can create problems in relationships when their girlfriend tries to express her feelings and she’s only met by her man’s… awkwardness.

Women are more in touch with a much wider range of feelings—both their own and others. In addition, women tend to not only have more emotions than men, but they also express them more as well.

7. Women tend to be much more sensitive to sounds and smells than men are, and women as such tend to place a greater emphasis on “atmosphere”

Have you ever walked into a single man’s house and thought, “Did you just move in?” because there are no decorations?

Even if they have some, it might just be a poster of a hot woman or some beer signs. [Read: 33 emotional needs in a relationship, signs they’re unmet and how to meet them]

Women care more about how their home looks. She is more likely to have colors, textures, and photos of loved ones all around the house. In addition, she’ll likely have scented candles or the smell of freshly baked cookies wafting through the air at any given time.

8. Women want empathy, while men usually offer solutions

A male’s orientation toward life tends to be outward. He focuses on fixing things and finding solutions. Women, however, put more importance on the emotional side of things. When there’s a problem, they worry about the emotional impacts of those problems.

For example, when a woman comes home from a bad day, she just wants him to listen and comfort her. She wants him to express empathy and understand her point of view. [Read: How to show empathy and learn to understand someone else’s feelings]

However, instead of doing that, a man is more likely to offer to fix her problems so that she doesn’t have to feel that way again. Meanwhile, the woman isn’t feeling “heard” and he doesn’t understand why she doesn’t want him to help her solve her problem. 

9. Men are more explorative

Have you ever wondered why most of the great explorers throughout history are mostly men? It’s because they have a more natural instinct to go explore the world. Why else would Christopher Columbus have sailed the vast ocean in primitive ships?

Even if they don’t explore the world, they’re more likely to take apart a car or a machine in order to figure out how it works. Women just care that it works, they don’t care how. [Read: Bored in a relationship – 78 signs, reasons, and ways to make it fun ASAP]

10. Men are determined to “deliver the goods” 

A man places great stock in knowing that he has what it takes to complete the quest and accomplish the task at hand. If you look throughout history, they are usually the “conquerors” of the world. They are the ones who usually start and fight wars.

So, it’s important for men to know that they are capable and can achieve what they need to achieve. They need to be respected by other people, and part of that is being admired for their accomplishments.

11. Men need to know what’s next

Men are more opportunistic than women. That’s because the male is a doer. [Read: 51 secrets to reconnect with your spouse and improve your marriage ASAP]

And in the final analysis, his feelings about what he’s doing, or his reasons for doing it, are less important to him than the urge and the opportunity to get it done.

So, men are always looking toward what kind of action they can take next. He’s looking to make things happen a little more than a woman is.

12. Men take more chances

There is a reason that most of the “daredevils” in the world are men. They are just more prone to take risks than women. And that makes sense from a survival point of view. [Read: The honest truth about why men are so attracted to women and their curves]

Back in caveman days, the males had to go risk their lives in order to kill animals and drag them back to the family to feed them. In order to accomplish this, they had to risk their lives because they could be attacked and eaten by wild animals.

While most men don’t have to hunt for food anymore, their brains are still wired for risky behavior and taking chances more than women’s brains are.

13. Men are initiators

Traditionally speaking, men are the ones who pursued women in the dating game. [Read: Why men like to chase and how to use it in your favor]

Women were the “prize” and men chased after them. It made the man feel powerful and “in charge” when they did this, and women felt admired and adored.

So, whether it’s the dating game or just life in general, men tend to initiate action more. Even if it’s being the first person to extend their hand for a handshake, being an initiator indicates that they are the more dominant person in any situation.

14. Men are more active and aggressive

Men have more testosterone than women, and this hormone is responsible for aggression and physical action. [Read: Aggressive sex – what it is, why people like it, and 23 secrets to give it a try]

You don’t see women getting into bar fights as often as men. Sure, women can fight too, but it’s not the same as men.

You can even see these differences in babies and toddlers. Male babies and toddlers move their bodies more than females. Females babble as babies and talk earlier than males do. This is mostly just a natural thing that is determined by biology.

15. Men are more competitive and dominant

Another result of higher testosterone is that men tend to be more competitive and dominant.

You can see this is true because of how males dominate most professional sports. They are just more “cut-throat” when it comes to being competitive than women are.

That’s not to say that women can’t be competitive and dominant too. Of course, they can. However, on average, men just tend to be that way more than women. [Read: How to be dominant – 20 calm and firm ways to be the real alpha]

16. A woman’s perspective tends to be more inwardly directed

Self-awareness is something that not a lot of people are very capable of. It comes quite naturally to some people, but others are much more out of touch with their thoughts and feelings. And women are more in touch than women.

Because men tend to focus on “doing” and being more active, that doesn’t require them to think about themselves very much. They’re more focused outwardly than inwardly like women are.

17. Women value intimacy above action 

As we said earlier, a man is more active and dominant. He is more concerned about getting things done and is a “doer.” [Read: 32 fun ideas to build and grow intimacy in a relationship and feel more loved]

But a woman cares more about being than doing. She is more content to just be with the people she loves rather than accomplishing a major task.

Women also value emotional intimacy more than men. Sure, men love the physical intimacy that comes along with sex, but women crave the emotional connection with other people. 

It doesn’t matter whether it’s a romantic relationship or just a platonic one. Women want to be emotionally connected to other people. [Read: Emotional connection – 38 signs, secrets, and ways to build a real bond]

18. Women seek more security

Most people know that the “male role” in the family is usually that of being the “protector.” He is usually bigger and physically stronger than the woman. As a result, he would be able to fight off an intruder in the house or carry his family out of a burning building.

As a result, women’s instincts are to be protected and like the security that a man can bring to their life. Without a man as the protector, she would have to do it herself. Not that a woman can’t do it, but she would rather have the security of knowing the man will do it for her.

19. Women prefer modesty

Women are more modest when it comes to acknowledging their achievements. They don’t go around bragging as much as men do. Instead, they are more likely to attribute their accomplishments to teamwork and other people helping them.

20. Women are more caring 

Females are more naturally inclined to respond to the distressed, the needy, or the hurting with immediate compassion and care. This makes sense because they bear the children. [Read: Controlling vs. caring – a thin line controlling people love to cross]

After carrying a baby for nine months, then they have to take care of them for the next 18 years. So, women are just wired to be nurturing so that they can keep their babies alive and thriving. Their brains are constantly looking to see how they can care for people.

21. Men and women use words differently

Men talk to communicate information or ideas. As we discussed earlier, they are more action-oriented and problem-solving/solution oriented. So, that affects the way they speak as well. They talk about tasks and doing things.

On the other hand, women talk to communicate feelings and thoughts. [Read: 29 signs someone is detached and doesn’t care about you or your feelings]

The example we used earlier of when a woman complains about her hard day, she just wants her feelings to be acknowledged and she wants to be listened to. 

But the man will use his words to fix her problem and communicate information and ideas to help her with a solution.

22. Women desire equality and submission

While times have changed, historically speaking, men have been the more dominant sex in all aspects of life.

Just look back at history and see how many men ruled the world vs. how many women did. Men greatly outnumber women. [Read: Divine feminine energy – what it is, and how to tap into the powerhouse]

Because of this, women tend to be more naturally submissive than men. And since they care more about other people’s feelings, they also tend to desire that everyone be treated fairly and with respect. They want everyone to be equal and to be loved.

The big gender differences in communication

If you consider going into a relationship or wonder how to solve an issue with someone of the opposite sex, the best way to approach these things is to look at it through their point of view. 

This isn’t always easy, but understanding the opposite sex is necessary when it comes to effective communication. If not, you just end up asking yourself hundreds of questions that don’t really solve the problem or help you attain a specific goal.

Communication is essential for any relationship whether it’s a friendship or romantic relationship. Whether you’re a man or woman, you need to know the gender differences in communication.

1. There are good and bad differences

Listen, this isn’t about starting a gender war over which one is better. Both men and women have pros and cons when it comes to the way they communicate. [Read: List of sexualities – 15 gender orientations you need to know about]

The point is to understand how you and the opposite sex communicate and work towards improving it.

2. Women are great listeners

Usually, men are more selective when it comes to listening. They listen to what they need to listen to, ignoring things that aren’t relative or important to them. 

Women tend to be great listeners. They listen to all the small details, ask questions, and remember most of the information, whether relevant or not. [Read: 19 ways to be a much better listener in a relationship and read their mind]

3. Men get to the point

Men aren’t into explaining every detail. They focus on just getting to the point of the story. 

When you’re in a business meeting or talking to a male friend, they usually go straight to the point of what’s happening, etc. The language they use is more direct and brief. Whereas women go into detail and meander around the point of the story.

4. Women are more empathetic

This doesn’t mean that men are not emotional, they are. And they are empathetic. But when it comes to communicating, women are more capable of showing empathy to the person they’re talk to. [Read: Why empathy is so important in a relationship]

This is also because they’re better listeners. In addition, they’re more likely to show emotions, thus, come off as empathetic.

5. Eye contact

You may think men use more eye contact, but you’re wrong. In typical conversations, women are more likely to use direct eye contact. 

This is because they work to develop a connection and relationship. Whereas men use eye contact to assert dominance or challenge a position. [Read: How to make eye contact while making sure you don’t look creepy]

6. Women use more facial expressions

Now, this doesn’t mean women look like animated characters when they speak, but, out of the 10,000 facial expressions that humans have, women use more of them. This is because women rely heavily on facial expressions to read people and their emotions.

7. Space matters

You may not have noticed, but the space between men and women when communicating is different. Usually, men take up personal space and prefer face-to-face communication. [Read: How to know when to give someone space – 19 signs they’re sick of you]

However, women are typically more comfortable talking to someone from the side and don’t mind another woman in their personal space.

8. They lead differently

Both women and men lead differently. Women typically lead by consensus. Men are more hierarchical and usually only have one person next to them during the decision process. 

When you think about male leaders, you see the leadership dynamic more clearly. They usually have a “right-hand” man next to them. [Read: Tried and true ways to becoming a better leader]

9. Touch matters

Who would have thought that men and women touch differently? But it’s true. Men typically pat or slap the shoulder or back of another person, either male or female, to assert dominance. 

And, usually, upon first introduction, they shake the other person’s hand, setting the tone for the interaction. But women touch the arm or shoulders of another person to connect and support the other.

10. Men talk more

Usually, men talk more than women, specifically in the workplace. Women minimize the amount they talk, ensuring equal talking time within the room. [Read: 20 skills and secrets to be a ladies man and charm any woman you talk to]

You’re probably not surprised by the fact that men talk more than women. Men also tend to cut off other people while talking more than women.

11. Men are task-oriented

Men focus more on completing tasks as opposed to women. They do not feel the need to build relationships in order to complete something. Instead, they go straight to the task at hand. 

Women, on the other hand, are relationship-oriented and accomplish tasks through the building of relationships. [Read: Why men ogle and the best ways to get rid of your man’s wandering eye]

12. Processing information

Women and men think differently when processing information. When women make a decision, they examine their options usually out loud. Men examine their options by processing the information internally until they find a solution.

This usually causes issues between men and women as women assume the man is unresponsive, but that’s not the case. They simply go through the situation and options in their head.

13. Women like paralanguage

Paralanguage is the filler words such as “umm, er, ah, mhm, uh, oh.” Women use these words more during a conversation because they show the other person they understand what’s being spoken. [Read: 21 honest reasons why your relationship is drifting and why it happens]

Men use paralanguage as well. But on a lower scale, like simply saying, “Yes, no” or “I agree/disagree”

14. Playful antagonizing 

Men often avoid asking questions, fearing that doing so will diminish their perceived power. Women often see this as “childish,” and even “arrogant.” 

Men can also joke around and antagonize other people. While some people find this to be annoying, others find it funny. But it probably is related to avoiding the emotional connection that comes with a real conversation.

15. Women tend to apologize more often, which can signal weakness to men

Women are taught to be nice and polite to people. While this is generally a good thing, it can also make them seem powerless. In fact, they often use “powerless language” that undercuts their credibility with other people. 

Men view this kind of language and way of speaking as powerless because it appears that you are giving up your power to someone else when you apologize or are overly polite. Men are taught to speak more assertively than women, and therefore, seem more powerful.

16. Men tend to compliment others less often than women

Because women care about other people’s feelings more than men do, they tend to compliment people more. Whether it’s saying how much they like someone’s new haircut, or jewelry, or just saying how smart they are, women like to make others feel good.

It’s not that men don’t compliment other people, they just don’t do it as often. [Read: 53 flirty things to say to a girl to compliment her and make her blush]

Women just notice details about other people more as well. In order to compliment someone, you have to notice the little things about them, which men tend to not be able to do as well.

17. Men focus on fact-based conversations that can end abruptly, while women tend toward extended conversations about complex, often emotional topics

Let’s say two men who are friends but haven’t seen each other in a long time are on the phone with each other. They’re more likely to talk about sports, work, video games, or world events than their personal lives.

Whereas the same scenario with two women would result in them knowing everything about what has been going on with them including all the emotions involved. [Read: Divine masculine – what it means, 37 qualities, signs, and secrets to awaken it]

They might not talk about anything other than their personal lives, unlike men.

18. Women tend to focus on metamessages and the bigger picture while men focus more on literal messages

There are two components to a message—what is said *the words* and how it is said *the nonverbal cues*. The words aren’t always where the real meaning lies. In fact, women tend to trust the nonverbals more than the words.

For example, if a woman says “I’m fine” to a man, he will assume that she is fine because she said so. But a woman would pick up on the nonverbal cues that indicate that she really means the opposite. [Read: How to awaken your divine feminine and connect to your inner goddess]

Women tend to speak more indirectly, so that’s why they pick up on others’ intentions easier than men. Men speak more directly, so they think everyone else does that too.

19. In same-sex groups women and men speak differently

When women are with other women, they tend to share stories about people and family. This is called “rapport talk.” They want to keep up with all the things that are going on in each other’s personal lives and talk about feelings and emotions.

On the other hand, men engage in “report talk.” What this means is that they use talk to gather and dispel information with each other. [Read: The alpha male – 65 traits of a real alpha and true secrets to be one yourself]

So, they’re much less likely to talk about their personal lives and more likely to talk about work, sports, or world events. 

20. Women and men differ in confirming feelings

Women confirm the feelings of others when they are expressed in conversation. Because they care about other people’s emotions, they will ask more about them and tell them to expand so they can express empathy.

However, when men have conversations, they tend to discuss their own problems and downplay those of others. [Read: 18 emotions you shouldn’t feel in a healthy relationship]

In other words, they are more self-focused than other-focused. They tend to value their opinions and thoughts more than others feelings.

21. In same-sex groups, they react differently to what is said

Back to same-sex group communication, women are more likely to acknowledge points made by others. They will comment on them and even compliment others on how insightful or interesting what they’re saying is.

Men don’t do that as much. They are more likely to interrupt, heckle, and insult each other. [Read: 72 bromandments – the bro code rules every guy must know and follow]

This is most likely an attempt to establish power in the conversation and to one-up other people. It’s almost like they are vying to be the alpha male and the leader of the pack.

22. Women bring up sticky issues more than men

No one really likes talking about difficult things. In fact, many people avoid them at all costs. But women are more likely to talk about things that men would like to avoid.

For example, you have probably heard the stereotypical line women say to men, “We need to talk.” And that scares men because they automatically know that she’s not happy about something—and it probably includes him. [Read: How to have a difficult conversation without losing your nerve]

Men might not even notice the problems that women do. They might think that their relationship/marriage is happy and not notice that their partner isn’t. When she initiates the difficult conversation about needing to fix the relationship, he might be blindsided and not want to participate in the conversation.

[Read: 35 new relationship advice and tips to avoid common mistakes couples make]

Now that you know the gender differences in communication between men and women, you’ll be able to work on communicating properly and effectively. 

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Carol Morgan LP
Dr. Carol Morgan
Dr. Carol Morgan has a Ph.D. in communication and is a professor at Wright State University where she loves corrupting young minds. As a relationship and succes...