How to trigger the hero instinct in your man: 8 tips to help him become the best he can be

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We all want to feel like the hero of our own story, and for men, a biological, innate instinct kicks in when he feels like the hero in his relationship. 

Forget about the cape wearing, sword wielding Hollywood versions that we see in films; by making your man feel like a true hero, you’ll create a long lasting, happier relationship for both of you. 

So how can these hero instincts be triggered? In this article we’ll cover what the hero instinct is, and 8 ways in which you can make your man feel like a true hero.

What is the hero instinct? 

The hero instinct is a theory which was first coined by psychologist James Bauer, in his book ‘His Secret Obsession’. 

 In contrast to how the term sounds, it’s not about men feeling like a superhero and sending him off to save burning cities. The hero instinct is about men needing to feel appreciated, wanted and valued by their partners. 

This biological urge runs deep, and it appeals to men’s instinct to protect and provide for the ones they love. 

Once a woman knows and understands this concept, she can trigger the hero instinct in her man at any point in their relationship, making him feel accomplished and appreciated. These simple actions can lead to him becoming more committed and invested in the relationship, and can increase their levels of respect and love. 

8 ways to trigger the hero instinct in your man 

Follow these 8 steps below to spark the hero within your man, and see how this can significantly improve your relationship:

1) Be appreciative and grateful

Everyone feels good when their hard work and efforts are recognized, regardless of how small they are. Part of making your man feel like a hero involves showing your appreciation for the things he does.  

When you thank your man for his actions, you’re letting him know that he has value and worth in the relationship. He’ll feel needed and the fact that you’re recognizing his efforts will only spur him on to continue doing them. 

Your appreciation can be shown in a number of small ways, as grand gestures for every small action he does will make you come across as less genuine. 

This can be put into action by:

Simply saying ‘thank you’ or cooking his favourite meal. He’ll be happy to receive any type of gratitude as long as it’s honest from you and well deserved on his part.

2) Don’t be too thankful 

In contrast to the last point, you should be appreciative and thank your man, but don’t overdo it. 

Men can sense when you’re forcing your gratitude, so keep it genuine and honest. Thank him for actions which he has put real effort into, not small everyday acts like picking up his socks or putting the toilet seat down. 

It’s important to remember that triggering the hero instinct in your man should be done by playing on his strengths and emphasising them. If you go overboard, he’ll start to see less importance and value in your gratitude.

This can be put into action by:

Focus on significant tasks or jobs that he’s done, instead of the everyday mundane things. You don’t want to be condescending, so stick to the things that matter. 

3) Don’t be afraid to ask for help 

Relationships and the gender roles within them are constantly evolving; women’s roles are much more different to how they used to be. 

Whilst you definitely shouldn’t have to appear or act weak in front of your partner, asking for a little help from time to time will go a long way in your relationship.

The point isn’t to relinquish your control and independence, rather to include him and make him feel needed. 

Your man knows that you are capable of handling most things alone, but by seeking his help you are triggering one of his main hero instincts. By making him feel useful, you’ll be reinforcing to him how much you value his presence in your life. 

This can be put into action by:

The next time you find something difficult (whether you can do it or not), ask your man to help you with it. From DIY to writing that difficult email to your boss, your man will feel glad to give his input and help. 

4) Praise him openly 

Compliments and praise are not reserved just for women, men also love to hear their partner sing their praises. When your man achieves something in life, or has been particularly helpful around the house, make sure to recognize these actions and verbalize them.

It’s also important to do this in front of his family and friends. Not only will it be a massive confidence boost for him, it’ll show him that you really see all his hard work and you aren’t afraid to let everyone know it. 

As a result, your man will feel proud of himself, and proud of you for being his biggest supporter. After all, we all need that one person who cheers for us and supports us in our daily quests. 

This can be put into action by:

Focussing on something your man feels proud of, or something he found difficult but managed to overcome. Don’t praise him over simple things, instead find something meaningful to him and let everyone know at your next social outing.

5) Let him know that he makes you happy 

Sometimes, we forget to voice or show how happy we are. Life becomes busy and although your man makes you feel great, letting him know that can be easily forgotten.

As women, we like to hear these things vocalized. We’re great at asking our partners or friends their feelings and gaining reassurance about ourselves in the process. 

Men don’t always know how to ask these questions, so it’s important to let him know yourself before he fears that you’re unhappy in the relationship. That way you’ll make him feel great about himself, and also activate his hero instinct in the process.  

This can be put into action by:

A simple text, phone call or casual conversation over dinner can be enough to let him know that he’s stepping up to the plate in the relationship, all your needs are met and that you’re happy with him. 

6) Encourage and support him in his interests 

A major part of any relationship is to support your partner and encourage him to be his best self. This can also be applied when triggering the hero instinct within your man. 

Alongside all the previous points, supporting your man and standing by his side when he chases his goals and dreams will massively increase his confidence. 

When a man feels like he’s accomplishing goals in life, he’ll feel like he can achieve anything that he sets his mind to. And, if you’re the woman who’s always there to support him, he’ll appreciate you immensely.

This can be put into action by:

Taking an interest in his work or hobbies. Be there for him when he’s under a lot of pressure, and always encourage him to follow his dreams (regardless of how big or small they might be). 

7) Respect him for who he is 

Respect is an important part in a relationship, and when it comes to the hero instinct, simply showing some respect to your partner can cause massive changes within him.

Respect should come genuinely, and not be forced or fake as it’s very easy to see through an act. Men want to feel respected, and they also want to earn that respect. 

By allowing your man to be the hero of his life and yours, you’ll give him a chance to step up and earn that respect from you by being more involved in your life and relationship.

The key is to build and maintain these high levels of respect. It’s not something which can be displayed just when times are going good. Respect should be given even in the hardest points of your relationship, as this will show him that you’re genuine and really value his place in your life. 

This can be put into action by:

Avoid belittling your man, even with jokes if you know it bothers him. Show him respect by listening to his opinion and taking his actions seriously. Finally, including him in major decisions will be a sure way to show him you respect his input in the relationship.

8) Allow him to take control 

Relinquishing control, for some people, can be very difficult, especially if you are used to being in charge of your life. 

Triggering the hero instinct in your man doesn’t necessarily mean you have to give up full control, but you can make space for him and delegate challenges and tasks for him to be in charge of.

This will make him feel both needed and it will appeal to his instincts of providing and protecting his loved ones. 

You’ll be giving him the space to achieve and implement his ideas, and this can do wonders for his self-confidence and self-esteem. 

And on top of all those reasons, you may actually find it makes your life a little easier to split responsibilities and decisions. When two people both step up to the plate, they become stronger and can build a long lasting, happy relationship. 

This can be put into action by:

Letting him fix things around the house or organizing your next family outing, no matter how small the challenge is, these small actions will make him feel indispensable. 

The benefits of triggering his hero instinct 

Activating the hero instinct in your man will run much deeper than being sexy or keeping him physically attracted to you. 

Once your man feels like a hero in his life and yours, he’ll be fully committed to your relationship and to keeping both of you happy and secure. 

Filling this void in his life will allow him to be a happier, more complete person, and in return, what he’ll bring to the relationship will be like a breath of fresh air. He’ll go above and beyond for the woman who triggers the hero in him, and who wouldn’t want that in a partner? 

Final thoughts 

Most women won’t be aware that they can easily awaken this instinct and change their relationship for the better, and most men don’t even realize that they have this void in their life. 

The good news is that triggering the hero instinct in your man doesn’t need to be difficult, it just takes a little understanding of what men want in a relationship, and how not feeling like a hero can cause him to feel incomplete. 

To find out more about the hero instinct and how it can change your relationship, watch this video in which Bauer explains this phenomenon in more detail.

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