What His Guilty Pleasure Says about Him
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What's His Pleasure?1 of 11
By Natasha Burton
How a man chooses to pick himself back up after a stressful day at work—or reward himself after a particularly good one—can give you a little insight into what motivates him, while also revealing a bit about his true character. We asked behavioral expert Patrick Wanis, Ph.D., for his take on what these ten common indulgences mean about the man.
Dark Chocolate2 of 11
A man who chooses to indulge in a hunk of rich Ghirardelli after a long day is the type who's in touch with his emotions and able to engage in deep conversation. "We often associate people who eat dark chocolate with being romantic, spontaneous and philosophical," says Wanis.
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Reality Adventure TV3 of 11
If he tunes in to shows like Survivor and Man vs. Wild to help tune out his tension, then "he's a guy who loves to take risks, who's adventurous and who loves to be challenged," says Wanis. However, if this description doesn't fit your guy, then this pleasure "could indicate his subconscious desire to be more assertive or aggressive," says Wanis. "He watches thinking, 'I wish I could do that.'"
Gadgets4 of 11
Some guys just have to have the latest iWhatever—even if they don't actually need it. Wanis explains that a man with an affinity for gadgets could simply love exploring new technology because he truly appreciates what the human mind can create. On the flip side, he could be seeking social acceptance and feels more comfortable when following the crowd. While his new toy may make him feel ahead of the curve, "ultimately, he doesn't set the trends; he follows them," says Wanis.
A Good Pampering5 of 11
A man who likes unwinding with a massage may seem high-maintenance, but don't be too quick to judge. According to Wanis, he might just be self-aware enough to know when he needs to give himself a break. "In America, we tend to punish ourselves for leisure time, believing that we can only enjoy it as a result of hard work," he says. "A guy who knows that it's OK to receive good things in life will be less inclined to sabotage a good relationship."
Designer Accessories6 of 11
If a guy has a penchant for rewarding himself by splurging on a new watch, pair of sunglasses or shoes, Wanis says that he's either able to recognize how hard he's worked and truly believes that he deserves to treat himself with something well-crafted, or he may be driven by a need to convince other people how wealthy and successful he is. In the latter case, he says, "It's more than just vanity; he's trying to get attention and approval."
Luxury Cars7 of 11
A luxury car is the ultimate status symbol, says Wanis. However, if your guy's guilty pleasure is more about jonesing for a sweet ride than actually driving one, then he might be obsessed with where he'd like to be in life but lack the ambition to get there. "A guy who fantasizes about cars wants them just as much as the guy who has them," says Wanis. "The difference is that one wants the power and the other has it."
Sleeping Till Noon8 of 11
Although Wanis says that this could indicate that he's lazy and lacks motivation, it might be that he merely understands the importance of a balanced life—a quality that will also affect his relationship with you. "If he's motivated to sleep in because he recognizes that he's overwhelmed, then he will have the capacity to be compassionate to you when you're run down," he says. This type of guy will likely encourage you to enjoy life and relax when needed.
Online Games9 of 11
Games like "FarmVille" or "World of Warcraft" may provide a necessary means of mental escape. "Fantasies can be OK if they are in balance and if they are occasional," says Wanis. However, it's important to keep in mind that "there's a difference between rare or occasional and habitual guilty pleasures," he says. If your guy compulsively wields a controller—and spends more time with Master Chief in "Halo" than with you—then this could be "a sign of an unresolved psychological issue that's causing him to escape real relationships with real people."
'80s Music10 of 11
After a tough week, your guy might spend the commute home jamming to the likes of Duran Duran or Depeche Mode. Wanis explains that going back in time allows people a sense of security. "The '80s ultimately represented self-indulgence and narcissism, the beginning of the whole self-esteem movement," he says. Thus, a guy might find solace in reliving a time that was about enjoying everything in excess and having fun.
Good Scotch11 of 11
Perhaps your guy likes to unwind with a fine spirit. This shows that he's the type of person who appreciates the finer things in life, particular those made with care and effort. This guilty pleasure is a "reflection of someone who takes pride in himself and in his work," says Wanis.
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