Book notes: No More Mr. Nice Guy by Robert Glover

No More Mr. Nice Guy by Robert Glover book summary review and key ideas.

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No More Mr. Nice Guy: A Proven Plan for Getting What You Want in Love, Sex and Life by Dr. Robert Glover

Synopsis:

“Nice Guy, according to Dr. Robert Glover, a pioneering expert on the Nice Guy Syndrome, is a man who believes he is not okay just as he is. He is convinced that he must become what he thinks others want him to be liked, loved, and get his needs met. He also believes that he must hide anything about himself that might trigger a negative response in others.

The paradigm of the Nice Guy Syndrome is driven by three faulty covert contracts. Nice Guys believe:  

  • If I am good, then I will be liked and loved.
  • If I meet other people’s needs without them having to ask, then they will meet my needs without me having to ask.
  • If I do everything right, then I will have a smooth, problem-free life.

The inauthentic and chameleon-like approach to life causes Nice Guys to often feel frustrated, confused, and resentful. Subsequently, these men are often anything but nice.

This process of recovery from the Nice Guy Syndrome allows men to move through:  

  • Depression
  • Social anxiety and shyness
  • Codependency
  • Low self-esteem
  • Loneliness and hopelessness
  • Feelings of failure
  • Lack of confidence and purpose
  • Compulsive behaviors and addictions
  • Feeling stuck in life

Contrary to what the title might seem to imply, No More Mr. Nice Guy does not teach men how to be not nice. Dr. Glover shows men how to become what he calls Integrated Males. Becoming integrated does not mean becoming different or better. It means being able to accept all aspects of oneself. An integrated male can embrace everything that makes him unique – his power, his assertiveness, his humor, his courage, and his mission, as well as his fears, his imperfections, his mistakes, his rough edges, and his dark side.” -Audible


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Opening thoughts:

It’s been a while since I’ve read a dating/relationship book catered towards just men, but I think it’s always good to revisit these topics. It’s not only a good reminder of myself on how to be a grounded person, but also because it might be interesting or useful for my readers.


Key notes:

Preface

  • He didn’t set out to write a new book
    • This started therapy to be getting working on issues in his marriage because he couldn’t figure out why being a nice guy didn’t make his wife happy or sexually interested in him
  • He discovered that when people let go of the inaccurate road maps developed in childhood, and begin searching for more helpful life paradigms, they open the door for an amazing adventure
  • Nice guys are men who have been condition by society to seek the approval of others
    • Nice guys are concerned with looking good and doing it right
    • They are happiest when they’re making others happy and avoid conflict like the plague, and will go to great lengths to not upset anyone

Chapter 1: the nice guy syndrome

  • The term nice guy doesn’t refer to behaviors, but rather core beliefs
    • It is actually a misnomer because nice guys have a lot of negative traits such as being dishonest and deceptive because of the need to make others happy and seek approval
      • Nice guys are controlling and they give to get
      • Nice guys have a problem with boundaries and saying no
      • Nice guys have trouble accepting responsibility and push the blame on others
    • Because of the nice guy’s desire to be liked and loved, they make it difficult for people to get close to them
      • Nice guys are also attracted to situations that need fixing
    • Nice guys tend to swing back-and-forth between nice and not so nice personalities
  • The opposite of being a nice guy is being integrated
    • Being integrated means being able to accept all aspects of oneself
    • An integrated man is able to embrace all of the things that make him unique
      • It also means he accepts his imperfections, mistakes, and his dark side
  • A paradigm is a roadmap that we used to navigate life’s journey
    • Nice guys find it difficult to change their paradigm or accept anything outside of it despite their paradigms not producing the results they want

Chapter 2: The Making of a Nice Guy

  • All children when growing up have the fear of abandonment and are egocentric
    • They also think anything that happens as a result of their own actions

Exercise: write up experiences you had growing up that signal to you that it was not OK to be who you were

Reader’s note: This section talks about how historically there have been social changes and climates, particularly radical feminism ans single-parent households that have contributed to a couple generations of boys being raised into nice guys. The author says it has to do with not having a strong male figure in their lives or being told how to be a man by the women who raised them.

Chapter 3: Learn to Please Yourself

  • Just about everything a nice guy does is calculated to gain approval or avoid disapproval

Exercise: Write down a list of behaviors that you do in order to seek approval

  • Nice guys seek external validation in just about every social situation
    • But their quest for approval is most pronounced in their relationships with women
  • When nice guys put a woman or women on a pedestal and attempt to win their approval, sooner or later, this adoration will turn to rage when these objects of worship failed to live up to the nice guys expectations
  • Affirming oneself helps nice guys to approve of themselves

Chapter 4: Make Your Needs a Priority

  • Trying to appear needless and wantless prevents nice guys from getting their needs met
    • Covert contracts are unsaid agreements where one person gives with the expectation that they would get from their partner
  • Confidence and self-assurance are attractive
    • Most people are attracted to men who have a sense of self

Chapter 5: Reclaim Your Personal Power

  • Personal power is a state of mind in which a person is confident they can handle whatever may come
    • This power not only deals with challenges and adversity, it welcomes them
    • It isn’t the absence of fear but the result of feeling fear but not giving into it
  • Ironically, the most important aspect of reclaiming personal power and getting what one once in love and life is surrender
    • Surrender doesn’t mean giving up, but letting go of what one can change and changing what one can
    • Letting go doesn’t mean not caring or not trying. It means letting be
  • Intense feelings from others or themselves make nice guys feel like their lives are out of control
  • Facing a present day fear helps one’s overcome a memory fear by building confidence they can
  • Boundary setting is one of the most fundamental skills needed for a recovering nice guy

Chapter 6: Reclaim Your Masculinity

  • Nice guys tend to be disconnected from their masculinity
    • Masculinity is defined as that part of a man that equips him to survive as an individual, clan, and species
    • This masculine energy allows us as a species helps prevent us from going extinct
  • Nice guys tend to seek the approval of women
    • Nice guys tend to experience tremendous frustration in getting the approval they so intensely desire
  • Connecting with men is essential for reclaiming masculinity
    • One of the most significant benefits for developing male relationships is that it improves relationships with women
  • Think about what a healthy male would look like and what kind of healthy masculine traits they want to develop

Chapter 7: get the love you want – Success strategies for intimate relationships

  • Toxic shame prevents nice guys from getting the love they want
    • Intimacy implies vulnerability
    • He defines intimacy as knowing the self, being known by another, and knowing another
  • Patterns of avoidance and enmeshment prevent nice guys from getting the love they want
    • Enmeshment is becoming overly involved in an intimate relationship at the expense of oneself and other outside interests
    • Avoidance is being emotionally unavailable to a primary partner while playing the nice guy roll outside of the relationship
  • It is human nature to be attracted to what is familiar
    • Because of this reality, nice guys create adult relationships that mirror the dynamics of their dysfunctional childhood relationships
    • The tendency of nice guys to be monogamous with their mother seriously inhibits having a genuinely intimate relationship with a partner in adulthood
  • Setting boundaries creates respect because it shows you’ll stand up for yourself and for your partner
  • Focusing on the relationship, not their partner, helps recovering nice guys get what they want 
  • Wounded people are attracted to wounded people
  • People often behave like pets in that they behave the way they’ve been trained to behave

Chapter 8: get the sex you want – Success strategies for satisfying sex

  • The difficulty nice guys have with sex can be directly linked to two issues: shame and fear 
    • Trying to be a good lover prevents nice guys from getting the sex they want
  • When nice guys sit out to be great lovers, they are creating a recipe for boring sex
    • Sex that focuses on trying to please the other guarantees a routine and boring experience
  • He’s developed a theory that the nicer the guy, the darker the sexual secrets
  • Nice guys hide their sexual desires and behavior because they want others approval
    • Settling for bad sex prevents nice guys from getting the sex they want
  • Recovering nice guys need to take responsibility for getting their sexual needs met
  • Change the little things and the big picture changes as a result
  • Healthy masturbation removes the shame and fear about being sexual
    • He feels that pornography and fantasy are detrimental to a healthy sex life
    • He defines good sex as two people taking for responsibility for meeting their needs
    • It has no goal, free of agendas and expectations
      • Rather than being a performance, it is an unfolding of sexual energy
  • Having a sexual moratorium helps a recovering nice guy reclaim his sexual responsibility
    • As in nature, the greatest aphrodisiac is self-confidence

Chapter 9: get the life you want – Discover your passion and purpose in life, work, and career

  • Ask yourself: Are you creating the life you want? If not, why not?
  • One common factor at the core of every problem experienced by nice guys is fear
    • Pretty much everything nice guys do or don’t do is governed by fear
    • Trying to do it right prevents nice guys from getting the life they want
      • Nice guys feel like they have to do everything themselves and find difficulty in allowing others to help them
    • The basis of a nice guy’s toxic shame is that makes them believe they are not important or good enough

Exercise: Write down a list of your fears and take steps to facing each fear one at a time

Exercise: What do you really want in life? What’s preventing you from making it happen? Write down three things you want to make happen in your life. Then write a personal affirmation that will take you where you want to go and post it on a sheet of paper where you can see it

  • In order to start getting what they want out of life, work, and career, recovering nice guys have to make the conscious decision to get out of their own way
    • One way of doing this is changing the way they think about change

Exercise: Identify how you sabotage yourself. Once you have identified your patterns, determine what you have to do different to get what you really want. Review each item and identify specific behaviors that will help you stop sabotaging yourself and achieve your goals

  • Developing a more accurate view of the world allows nice guys to get the life that they want
General Advice for Recovering Nice Guys
  • Whatever you do, do it 100%
  • You are the only person on this planet responsible for your needs, wants, and happiness
  • Ask for what you want
  • If what you were doing isn’t working, do something different
  • Be clear and direct
  • Learn to say no
  • Don’t make excuses
  • If you’re an adult, you’re old enough to make your own rules
  • Let people help you
  • Be honest with yourself
  • Do not let anyone treat you badly
  • Remove yourself from a bad situation instead of waiting for the situation to change
  • Live with integrity. Decide what is right for you then do it
  • Accept the consequences of your actions
  • Think abundance
  • Face difficult situations and conflict head-on
  • Don’t do anything in secret
  • Do it now
  • Be willing to let go of what you have so you can get what you want
  • Have fun. If you’re not having fun, something is wrong
  • Give yourself room to fail. There are no mistakes, only learning experiences
  • Control is an illusion. Let go, let life happen
  • The world can’t give us something that we’re not ready to receive

Closing thoughts:

This is a phenomenal book. It exceeded my expectations and then some. I think it does a great job outlining the prevailing problems of people who are dissatisfied with their relationships and want to improve them.

Essentially, anyone can be a “nice guy” who seeks the approval of others at the expense of his or her own needs. This leads to resentment, frustration, and dissatisfaction across the board.

This book also gives really good advice on how to be an “integrated” person in simple, actionable steps. Practicality is important in making a book go from good to great.

The only part of the book I wasn’t sure of is the theory on how more nice guys have been popping up because more of the men in recent generations were raised by women instead of strong “male figures”. I don’t agree with this assertion or how the author makes this connection. I think it can be more explained by an overall culture shift towards being more agreeable rather than “masculine” as defined by the author.

Ultimately, I highly recommend this book for men and women alike to understand the people in our lives who have people-pleasing tendencies and how to resolve them for more fulfilling relationships.


One Takeaway / Putting into practice:

There’s so many great points in this book, but my favorite and most all-encompassing point, in my opinion, is this one:

  • The opposite of being a nice guy is being integrated. Being integrated means being able to accept all aspects of oneself

This concept is similar to others found in some dating/relationship books, such as that of the non-needy person, or the grounded person. Both essentially mean the same thing as an integrated person. One who is integrated has self-confidence because they know who they are, what their values are, and are acting consistent to those values.


Nutshell:

Dr. Robert Glover exposes how being a Nice Guy deteriorates relationships and leads to unhappiness. On the other hand, being an integrated person, which is about accepting all aspects of yourself, will improve your relationships with others.


Similar books:


Rating:

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

4.5/5

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