1. Go with the flow
All women cry, so get your reaction right. Cuddle her, gently wipe away the tears and ask what's wrong. Then understand a fundamental difference between men and women: she doesn't want solutions, she just wants you to listen.

2. Clean up afterwards
Every time she cleans your shaving stubble from the basin, she loves you a little less.

3. Keep quiet
Women are genetically programmed to ask you why you split up with your ex-girlfriends and to over-analyse what your answer means for your relationship. Avoid problems with a simple, "She wasn't you".

4. Be prepared
Stash a photo of her in your wallet. She'll deny it, but all women rummage at some point, so use this to your advantage.

5. Come clean
Women have a much better sense of smell than men, so wash yourself, your doona and clothes before you think you need to.

6. Give her a reason
"I love you" is from anyone to anyone, so explain why you love her. Whether it's the way she nibbles a Kit-Kat or how her nose scrunches when she drinks tequila - your reasons make it unique to her.

7. Talk...
Often and properly. If she asks you how your day went, don't say "fine". Giving her details makes her feel involved in your life.

8. ...and listen
Ask about her day, really listen, then ask her a question about what she's just told you, to prove you were paying attention.

9. Get personal
Roses are good, but they could be for anyone, so if you first danced to Hold Me Now by the Thompson Twins, hunt down the vinyl to show your singular love for her.

10. Discern
Only give good tips for good service. It shows you're observant, value attention and that you're selective with praise and generosity, making her feel "chosen" as well.

11. Call room service
When she's away, phone the hotel where she's staying and have strawberries and bubbly sent up to her room. A treat when you're not around shows that you're not expecting anything in return.

12. Consult her
Ask her advice on something important to you, even if you don't really need it. It will show her you value her opinion and that she's part of your plans.

13. Don't stop
Most men start out as great boyfriends: love notes under her pillow, waxing lyrical about her "fantastic" body and actually listening when she talks. A year later it's rings around her bath, waxing lyrical about J-Lo's bum and needing a sharp elbow to facilitate any kind of communication. Don't take her for granted - keep at it.

14. Take her with you . . .
To a football or rugby match. Once she too has experienced the relief that comes from verbally abusing the ref, she'll be far more forgiving of the time you spend watching sport.

15. Be a family man
Introduce her to your brother, sister, nephew, grandm - it shows you care about family, without subjecting her to the terror of a parental encounter. She sees how you treat them as an indicator of how she'll be treated.



The nine best things you can say to a woman

16. "I love your eyelashes."
17. "Sex with you just gets better and better."
18. "You look beautiful when you're sleeping."
19. "The way you dance is really sexy."
20. "You have a wonderful laugh."
21. "You're so clever."
22. "Your scrambled eggs taste even better than my mum's."
23. "Your skin smells fantastic."
(And finally . . .)
24. "Lets spend the weekend at my villa in Tuscany."

25. Mop it up
Weekends away are sweet, but regularly vacuuming the house, cleaning the bathroom, cooking dinner and washing up afterwards will make her love you more. Putting in some of your hours takes more effort than getting your wallet out.

26. Don't make a period drama
A women's menstrual cycle lasts 28 days and she'll probably be emotionally fragile two or three days before the first day of her period. Jot it in your diary, set the alarm on your mobile, anything to remind you so you don't laugh out loud when she cries during Harry's Practice.

27. And keep it to yourself
"How dare you dismiss my emotional turmoil as hormonal?"

28. Remember how it was in the early days
For a happy ending, remember the beginning: the details of your first meeting, where you were, what she was wearing, what you said and how you felt. Recount them. Often.

31. Get wet
Okay, it may sound like that Herbal Essences shampoo ad, but if you wash her hair for her and give her a scalp massage while you're at it, she'll fall head over heels for you.

32. Make love
Do it softly, sweetly and with tenderness.

33. Now F**k
Yes, we also like it downright dirty sometimes.

34. Time it right
Ten minutes late shows you're a busy man, 20 minutes means you've made a miscalculation and you'll be forgiven; 30 minutes late or more and she knows you don't think her time is as important as yours.

35. Go out with your mates
Despite what you may think, no woman wants a doormat for a partner. Spend every waking moment gazing adoringly into her eyes and she'll start gazing adoringly elsewhere.

36. Explore new territory
Kissing is a given, but do a little oral orienteering to make your lip service stand out. Prime sites are lips, elbows and just below her ear. But let's not forget her inner thighs, her toes and, of course, her clitoris.

37. Shout it out
She wants everyone to know how you feel about her, so tell her she looks amazing in whatever colour she's wearing when there are other people in the room. Or send a bunch of freesias to her work (it's much less obvious than roses and they have a wonderful, strong smell, so everyone in the office will comment on them).

38. Give her a break
Run her a "holiday bath" when she gets home from work. Throw in a big, pink bath bomb (from Lush, www.lush.com.au) to turn the water fuschia pink.

39. Open doors
It's time to settle the debate once and for all: it's not condescending, it doesn't imply she can't do it herself - it's just a nice gesture.

40. Prove the ex is old news
If you bump into a previous partner, squeeze your ladies hand, pull her towards you and smile. The outward display of affection tells her it's truly over with your ex; the hand squeeze shows you have a secret bond no-one else can share.

41. Make yourself sick
Leave her love notes around the house - inside the fridge, on the bathroom mirror or under a pillow. That much sweetness might make you feel plain nauseous, but it'll make her feel like a lovesick teenager.

42. Keep a secret
You may regard Beyonce's curves as sculpted by a loving God, but no matter how many times she casually asks - and how cool she seems - don't ever tell her what you really think.

43. Time it right
You know women love compliments, but pick your moment carefully for extra brownie points. Tell her she looks great when she's just had a shower and isn't wearing make-up and figure-transforming clothing.


Gift-wrapped short cuts to a woman's heart:

44. Bulgari soft leather "Tubo" bag (call [02] 9233 3611)
Heed this timeless wisdom: harness the power of accessories and you will prosper. Add a pair of matching shoes and you'll never miss another footy final.

45. Jewellery (platinum-set diamond studs from Tiffany & Co., call [02] 9235 1777)
If you are yet to provide her with expensive, sparkly things in a blue box, do so as soon as humanely possible.

46. Nike "City Knife" trainers (call [1300] 656 453).
Sexy underwear is a nice idea - for both of you. So buy her something that's definitely just for her.

47. S.T. Dupont "Contraste" MS multifunction diary (call [02] 9315 9343).
It's beautifully lined with supple lambskin and fits into her handbag. Customise it with love notes on random dates.

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