In many of my articles I refer to “courtship” or “courting women,” when discussing chivalry and romance, but it is rarely defined in modern times. According to Dictionary.com, what is courtship, exactly?
1. The wooing of one person by another.
2. The period during which such wooing takes place.
3. Solicitation of favors, applause, etc.
4. Ethology. behavior in animals that occurs before and during mating, often including elaborate displays.
5. Obsolete. courtly behavior; courtesy; gallantry.
While “solicitation of favors” is questionable, one of these points stands out to me even more – the use of “Obsolete” in number five, in addition to courtesy.
Why is taking the time to ‘woo’ someone obsolete? Where have all the good men gone? Why has it all but disappeared from modern society, and why do I think we should work to keep it alive? Here are five reasons:
1. You’ll develop a stronger relationship.
It is traditionally so that the man in a new relationship will be the one who is courting a woman. As men, we are the pursuers, both naturally and societally. I have often heard men ask “what’s in it for me?” Well, first of all if you’re performing acts of kindness for the sake of a reward (see #3 in the definition above) then it is not true kindness.
Real kindness comes from the goodness of your heart without the want for reward but it should also be noted that courting a woman will bring two things into your life:
The type of woman with the maturity and dignity to only accept advances from a man who treats her with respect.
The ability to therefore grow a stronger and longer lasting relationship with the woman in question, because she will possess the necessary qualities to build one alongside you.
2. You become better in all areas of life.
Courtship is (read: should be) a selfless act. It requires you to put in effort for another person’s enjoyment, learn about them and learn about yourself in the process. When committing one’s self to efforts such as these, one cannot help but to develop internally as well. We become more aware of the world around us, what people want and need in order to be happy, and how we can help give it to them.
If making others happy isn’t good enough for you – remember that people are willing to do more for those who do more for them.
3. You will gain her trust.
One of the biggest factors in relationships failing these days is lack of trust. Either lack of trust during the beginning stages, or even after commitment has been established.
If a man takes the time to court a woman, it requires him to build a foundation for the relationship. Relationships do not simply appear out of thin air. They take time, energy, and commitment to build, much like a house. But a relationship without this trust and friendship is like a house built on sand. It may look good from the outside, but it will have nothing to keep it standing when the weather gets rough.
If a woman has a clear view that you’re willing to build this foundation with her, it will limit her insecurities and help build her confidence in you.
4. You will intensify your intimacy.
Through the process of courtship, men and women tend to develop a stronger emotional connection than if they had simply jumped into a relationship or a “friends with benefits” scenario. What many people don’t realize is that a stronger emotional connection, especially for a woman, translates to a stronger physical connection.
People think of intimacy as strictly physical, but in reality it’s built through small actions that show each other you care: romance, chivalry, and courtship. Intimacy, therefore, is in reality built outside of the bedroom.
5. You will find the right person for YOU.
Many people get so caught up in finding the “perfect” person that they might miss the person who is actually perfect for them. Additionally, I have heard from many men (“nice guys”) that women just don’t appreciate their efforts or personalities and they get discouraged.
It’s important to stay true to yourself, your nature, and what feels comfortable to you. If someone (man or woman) is pushed away by your kindness, then instead of being discouraged, try to see it as a positive sign that you learned early on in the relationship that they weren’t the right person for you.
The right type of person will appreciate small details, the kindness you exude to those around you, and the effort you put in specifically for them. Through the courtship process we learn if a woman (or man) is going to be appreciative of what we do for them and how they will respond.
If we jump into a relationship, as many do these days, we are left complaining about how they “changed” after a few months of being with them, and then breaking up. In reality, nobody changed at all – you simply learned who they truly are.
If we take the time to practice courtship, we will eliminate these surprises down the road and truly learn who we are building a relationship with at the proper time to do so : in the beginning.
Show someone your respect for yourself as well as for them, by keeping courtship alive.