10 Things I Learned From Niecy Nash’s “It’s Hard To Fight Na ked”
If you’ve been getting your daily dose of MadameNoire for the past couple of weeks, then you’ve noticed that we’ve been pubbing Niecy Nash’s relationship book It’s Hard To Fight Na ked more than a little bit. We’ve published two video interviews with her and even wrote a news piece when we first learned about her relationship book. So you might be thinking, is Niecy Nash sliding MN some money under the table? Is she on payroll? No, no my love. She isn’t. But having just finished her book over the past weekend, I found it refreshing. Not because it was chalked full of advide I’d never heard before, but because it was honest in the application of that advice. And there were some pretty radical things in there too. And I thought it’d be nice to share. So check out the cliff notes and grab the book if you feel so inclined.
Create an “I Want” Journal
Towards the very beginning of the book, Niecy emphasizes the importance of not only knowing what you want; but asking for those very same things. She talks about writing your desires down. And not just the relationship ones. Everything from frivolous aspirations to “bigger life visions.” As you’re writing in your “I Want” journal, Niecy also warns against becoming impatient in your quest for a relationship.
“Be patient. Recognize that love won’t always come exactly when you want it, but like God, it’s always on time.”
Dating for priority not your preference
I’m not here to tell you don’t be specific in your “I Want” journal, but hopefully as you make your list, you’ll start to realize which “wants” are more essential than others. Niecy suggests dating for priorities and not preferences. Meaning that instead of declaring that you won’t date a man who doesn’t have hazel eyes and an s-curl, you should make yourself open to men who possess the types of characteristics you will need to make you happy.
“When you date for your preferences, all you wind up with is a collection of people who all look the same and act the same, and all of them together aren’t worth a damn! You could wrap ’em up and sell them for ten cents. It’s when you start dating for your priorities that you find yourself in relationships that are full of contentment and emotional satisfaction.”
Praying for the other woman
You might have been able to surmise, long ago, that Niecy has a bit of a wild side. And that is very evident in her book. She recalls several stories from her younger dating days. In one particular story, she talks about a time she was dating a man who was also dating someone else. Niecy knew about the other woman and assumed the other woman knew about her. But she didn’t. And when she called to confront Niecy, insisting that she was going to marry and have babies with this man, instead of cussing the woman out or calling her delusional, she prayed for her.
“I know. Crazy, right? Who prays for the other woman? Me, I guess. since she was in her late thirties, I asked the Lord to hold the gates of her womb open a little while longer because, honestly, I didn’t know what else to say.”
So many times when two women are vying for the attention of one man, they tend to take it out on each other. Calling the other woman all out of her name and so on. But is that really the person you should be upset with? You’re in a relationship with ole dude. Not the woman. If he’s the one stepping out, you need to address your concerns with him, the one who you’re supposed to hold accountable.
Take care of numero uno
People know but tend to disregard the fact that in order to be in a successful relationship, it’s imperative that you have yourself together first. But getting yourself mentally, psychologically and emotionally together is an arduous, lonely task. And we get impatient. So we rush into a relationship only to find that it won’t work. Niecy explains that being by yourself, taking time to work on you is a luxury; because being in a relationship working on your needs and simultaneously making sure the needs of another are met, is no easy task. Having worked on herself first, Niecy writes that she was willing and able to accept the right man for her.
“But eventually my guy showed up– and all the time I put in, working toward being ready to receive a man who was a reflection of me felt like a small price to have paid compared to the lifetime of love I have ahead of me.”
Bottom Up, Top Down
It may sound like some type of new sex position. But it’s actually about love. Niecy does a great job of explaining this concept, so I’ll just allow her to do it.
“When a man sees you, he’ll take all of you in from head to toe, but they approach love from the bottom up– which is to say that at first they think with their penises, determining whether they’re sexually attracted to you– and if he stays at it long enough, he may start to catch feelings in his heart. Only then will he make a decision with his big head about whether he can see turning the sex with you into a more meaningful relationship.”
But we women are the exact opposite.
“A man could be overweight, too tall, too short, to this, too that, but if he’s talking right, if he’s captured her thought and her mind, she’ll want to continue hearing what he has to say and spend more time getting to know him. And the more she talks to a man and enjoys his company, the more her feelings start to grow– and only after she feels something in her heart does she decide to give a man the good stuff.
I’d argue that’s accurate for a large segment of the population, wouldn’t you?
The Wondrous BJ
There is no shortage of the role oral can play in your marriage. In fact, Niecy says she literally wakes her husband up every morning with a BJ. Amazing right?! You might not be able to make this type of commitment; but she does expound upon the importance of frequent sex and how it can protect your relationship. In one instance in particular, her husband was getting ready to go to an event where she knew there would be groupies tryna holler. So literally, five minutes before he left, she broke him off. And she could rest easy. She referred to it as “taking the hunt” out of him. If he’s sexually spent before he leaves the house, he won’t be on the prowl once he steps out.
“…a well timed BJ kept both of us from acting out in ways we’d have wished we hadn’t. Instead of being completely irrational, I was the understanding wife, encouraging her husband to spend more time with the guys.”
Cutting Off the Exes
Many of us, for whatever reason tend to maintain contact with our exes. That’s all fine and good when you’re not into anything serious; but Niecy’s husband suggested that when you’re serious about protecting your relationship those conversations should come to an end. Here’s why he said that.
“Anytime you reach back around to a guy you used to be with, even if he knows you’re with somebody, he’s going to see that as an open door, a chance, a possibility. You may or may not take it, but that’s how we see it. ‘All I gotta do is wear her down long enough.’ Because he has your ear and you’re in communication. That’s how a man is gonna take that.”
Learning the Love Language
I found this one particularly helpful. And if you remember it, you just might save yourself a lot of disappointment. Towards the end of the book she talks about she and her husband’s first few months together. She says that she wanted him to verbally express his love…frequently. So that’s what she was doing to him. But she discovered that because he already knew she loved him, the words didn’t have the same affect as when she would do things for him. She writes:
“See, at the beginning of relationships, most people tend to give love in the way they want it reciprocated. But when you really love someone, your goal should be to give them what they need and trust that they will, in turn, give you what you need.”
Giving Up The Desire to Be Right
Whew! Niecy might as well have attached my first, middle and last names to this little piece of advice. Nobody wants to be wrong but I yearn to be right. This desire has obviously proven itself to be annoying, at best, and hurtful, at worst, in a lot of my relationships, not just the romantic ones. So, needless to say it was important that I stumble across this little piece of advice. Niecy says that particularly in a romantic relationship you have to determine whether it’s more important to you to maintain the relationship or “be right.” I put “be right” in quotations because in our quests to prove a point, we often end up disregarding or dismissing someone else which really isn’t right at all. She writes: “Being alone in your rightness doesn’t feel anywhere near as good as sharing a home with someone you love.”
Consistency is Key
At the end of her book, Niecy was so kind as to let her husband Jay give a few of his own pointers to the ladies and the fellas. The point that stood out for me which is really something we’ve heard several times before was this:
“Once he stops questioning himself and your relationship, his days of running hot one day and cold the next should be over. Consistency is key.”
The reason I point it out here is because when we’re told that a man isn’t being consistent, it’s usually because he doesn’t like us or he’s not that into us. And I’m sure most of the time, that’s the case; but there are also times, as I believe Jay suggests, when men are questioning themselves. Now, that’s not to mean that this is time for you to fight for him, you probably still need to leave him alone. But leave him alone in the knowledge that it wasn’t necessarily you or anything you could have done but moreso things he needed to sort out in his own mind/life.