How to Get a Man to Commit WITHOUT Giving an Ultimatum
How to Give an Ultimatum
Giving an ultimatum to someone in your life is a game changing strategy, whether it's given to a spouse, lover, child, parent, boss, coworker, client or anyone else you interact with. By the time you reach this stage, it's possible that you've already gone through a lot of trauma and difficulty as a result of this person's behavior, actions or comments and so it's likely that a lot of emotion is tied up in the ultimatum. However, you still need to think clearly and rationally to be sure that this is the only option left open to you and more importantly, that it is something you absolutely mean. Ultimately, you must be prepared to follow through or walk way after an ultimatum because this... is it!
Reflect over the reasons for reaching this point.Giving an ultimatum is as much a test ofyourconvictions as it is a test of the other person's willingness to change their ways and that is very confronting unless you've already reached peace with your side of the likely outcome. It mayfeellike the only approach left but it's neither easy nor necessarily the only way to progress a relationship with someone else. And it's final. Be sure you've exhausted all other avenues from discussing, asking, explaining your feelings, demonstrating the consequences, etc., before launching into an ultimatum.
Assess your own feelings.If you're giving an ultimatum as a result of not being able to contain your feelings, this is a danger zone. To give an ultimatum because you're frustrated, angry, annoyed, fed up or insecure is likely to backfire on you. If the person doesn't agree, you're still mired in your negative feelings. And even if they do agree, your negative feelings might cause you to find it hard or even impossible to cope with a changed direction in your relationship. Be sure you've already worked through all the issues with clarity and that you've assessed how your feelings are driving your response. Only after you have accepted the possible consequences and have dealt with your own feelings should you proceed.
Make a realistic assessment of the chances of success.The chances of an ultimatum working are dependent on a number of factors, such as the personality of the person you're giving the ultimatum to and their own feelings or coping strategies. If they are an open person with a willingness to listen and learn from objective discussion of their ways, the ultimatum is more likely to have an impact than on someone who is stoned all the time and unable to spare a sober moment to work through their self-pity and unhappiness.
An ultimatum rarely works with someone whose own faculties for coping with life are disabled by depression, drug or alcohol abuse or other negative coping strategies. In this case, facilitating the provision of professional help for them is more important than demanding they change; until they can think straight, ultimatums could push them over the precipice. The times when an ultimatum might work include:
- Someone you've been dating for ages but appears unable to commit. If you're certain that they love you despite the cold feet, the little push provided by an ultimatum might help them. On the other hand, if you know deep down that this person really isn't committed to you, then the ultimatum isn't likely to work.
- Someone you care about and you know who cares about you but hasn't been spending much time with you or who is too distracted to focus on you because of work or other commitments may be moved by an ultimatum to realize the effect of their distancing.
- Someone in your life needs to make a decision so that you can make changes to something, like where you live or how a work practice is followed through. However, be very careful that you're not using their indecision or inability to make changes to excuse yourself from finding alternative and more constructive ways to change things to better your life.
Choose an appropriate moment.The person you're giving an ultimatum to should be alert and willing to engage with you, so choose a moment in which you have their full attention focused on you. Make sure they're not under the influence of alcohol or drugs or they're not distracted by something else while talking to you. You don't want them brushing you off or agreeing to anything without meaning it because they want to restore peace. This will take some careful analysis of the right time from you but it's worth it.
- Equally, choose a time whenyouare calm and collected. There is no point offering an ultimatum in the middle of a screaming match or when you're so upset or angry that you're unable to think straight. The ultimatum deserves you being at your best, thinking clearly.
Be reasonable.If you're giving an ultimatum, make it one that the other person can actually achieve. It's no use asking for the moon when the person can barely plant their two feet on earth. In particular, don't ask anything that you know seeks to change the person. There is a fine line between asking for certain bad habits and behaviors to be changed and expecting a person to stop being who they are. Help them to see that bad behavior is not who they are; in other words, rather than calling them names or insinuating that they're defective as a person, always focus on the behavior and its consequences for you.
- Never ask for an irrational or unethical ultimatum of another person. Moreover, anything you know goes against their heart should not form part of an ultimatum.
Make it clear what you expect and what the consequences will be from your end should the things you're asking for not happen.This should be very straight forward, such as "If A doesn't happen, then I do B." For example:
- "If you won't stop growing Mary Jane in our backyard by next Monday, then I am moving to somewhere where there are no drugs grown in the backyard."
- "We have been together for 20 years. I don't like this common law marriage arrangement anymore – it makes me feel you don't want to truly commit to me. I want to be married and I need to know by the end of this month if you agree to marry me. If you don't agree to this, then I am going to leave you."
- "I have asked you five times already to help me decide on the school little Johnny is going to. I have shown you the brochures and explained the prices and the enrollment date is almost up. If you don't agree to discuss which school is best, I am going to enroll him in [insert most expensive Elementary school here] by the end of tomorrow."
Expect a negative reaction.Hardly anyone likes being given an ultimatum. Sometimes it may be just what the listener needs but that doesn't make it any easier to hear. And for the person struggling to overcome the issue you've just drawn attention to in no uncertain terms, it's likely you've touched a raw nerve. As such, expect resentment and possible negative results. For example, asking someone to make a commitment to you can result in the complete opposite in the case of a person who realizes that you mean business and that your demand clashes with their wish to remain footloose and fancy free.
Since an ultimatum often touches on the heart of what someone else has been avoiding explicitly clarifying for themselves, they may choose to see you as the enemy. This is why you must be prepared to let go if they don't agree.
- The person may be nasty, gossip about you, bawl you out, snigger, ignore or berate you. All of these things are targeted at belittling you while avoiding their own pain or lack of direction, and even if you're in the right, you need to realize that pushing someone is a touchy and possibly rupturing thing to do.
Be prepared to let go.You need to be absolutely sure that you will walk or end a situation as outlined in your ultimatum if the person calls your bluff. As with teaching a toddler to behave, there must be follow-through that is consistent with the message given. And if you've just handled that person the final message they've been longing to hear, then you must be prepared for that outcome and do as you've said.
QuestionMy boyfriend keeps coming and going. I need him to say once and for all if he wants to be with me. What do I do?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerHe comes and goes because you let him. He realizes that this is a pattern that you accept in your relationship with him. This will continue until you start to recognize the repetitive behavior (signs) and acknowledge them verbally. Bad habits are difficult to break and take a lot of work and patience to overcome. You probably already know what to say to him. You just need to find the inner strength to say it, and the courage to hear what his response may be. Respect yourself enough to take that step and require more of him.Thanks!
QuestionMy boyfriend of 2 years wont decide if he wants a long-term relationship with me, or if he wants to live with me and my children. He says he has no plans of leaving me, though. What does this mean?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerHe's either confused and doesn't know what he wants to do, or he's leading you on until he "finds a better deal," so to speak. Either way, tell him you and your kids are a package deal, so he needs to decide if he wants to be with you or not. There's no sense in wasting your time on someone who is not sure they will be with you in a year.Thanks!
QuestionMy boyfriend thinks smoking pot with other men in the room that we rent is a deal breaker, but I have never had this type of rule before in other relationships. What should I do?ParachuteCommunity AnswerYou need to decide whether your relationship is important enough for you to want to compromise. It is all right for you to feel like he is being unfair. Think about it from his perspective, he maybe feeling insecure or might just be ideologically opposed to smoking pot. Talk to him about why he feels it's a deal breaker and try understanding him. If you are willing to compromise but feel like he'd be controlling you if you agreed, then talk to him and ask him if he too is willing to make a compromise about it. Try to discuss it and come to a common agreement.Thanks!
QuestionI keep asking my girlfriend if she wants to end the relationship, and get no definitive answer, what do I do?ParachuteCommunity AnswerHer denial could be because of numerous reasons other than the obvious. If it feels like she isn't into the relationship and it is making you unhappy, it is best to end it. Stay friends with her and try talking about why it didn't work after some time has passed, if you still need closure from it.Thanks!
QuestionIs the no contact rule still the best option in a breakup if you still want to get the lady back?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerStaying friends and keeping contact may be what you want to do. However, a period of no contact is advised.Thanks!
QuestionIs it okay to restart the no-contact rule after breaking it?Top AnswererIt's like carrying a huge heavy rock up the stairs - you take one step at a time. If the rock falls, you have to start again. So yes, start again. However, there must be consequences. If all they learn from breaking the rules is that they just get a new chance, they haven't learned anything and will just keep on breaking the rules.Thanks!
- Mother Teresa once said:"I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love."Sometimes when you conjure up a desperate need to give an ultimatum, the person you really need to look at is yourself. In exploring your own triggers (or buttons) that are being pushed, you may find that the real issue is that you need to learn how to cope with someone who isn't "being" or "doing" what you'd like them to be or do. And you may need to realize that probably you can't force them in any direction and that it isyouwho needs to change perspective and approach it very differently. Loving more challenging people can bring much hurt and sacrifice but in turn, you can become a much better person by continuing to push through your own hurt until you find how to love again, all without adding conditions and your neediness to the equation.
- Ultimatums that are given without following through will earn you the reputation of a weak character and people will start to assume you "cry wolf" if you always backtrack on an ultimatum.
- Ultimatums are deal breakers; they end relationships. You know this before giving one, so be prepared for the end.
- Some people, regardless of the validity of an ultimatum, will walk away from people that give them 100% of the time because they feel it is a form of emotional blackmail.
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Video: How to Give an Ultimatum
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