Maggie Grace would like to talk about the C word.
"I feel like we hear too much that girls love confidence," says the single, 29-year-old actress, who's now starring in the Broadway revival of Picnic. (She's also in two new movies—the latest Twilight flick and Taken 2, as Liam Neeson's daughter.)
"And there's this misinformation out there," she continues, "that if a girl's really cute, then she's used to being hit on, and that you won't stand out unless you do something unexpected and treat her differently. You hear those things a lot. And it just ain't so."
Confident men may feel the need to dominate, from that first meeting through every little disagreement.
But, Grace says, "true power isn't domination. It's decisiveness and security with who you are as a man—that's what's really sexy as hell."
So ease off on the showboating when meeting women. And the next time an argument brews with your significant other, ask yourself Grace's simple preemptive question—"Do you want to be right, or do you want to be happy?"—and avoid the fight altogether.
Now, that's taking control of a relationship. (For more great relationship advice, sign up for our free Girl Next Door newsletter.)
Maggie fills in the blanks:
I'm always glad when a man . . .
is comfortable with affection. Physical touch. I think the population's probably 50/50, but I'm definitely on the affectionate side. Good old oxytocin and vasotocin--they make life better.
A man's touch . . .
is steadying and keeps me present.
Real men never . . .
stray from what's really important to them in an effort to impress others. I live in Los Angeles, so I would say the culture's a little different. It's a lot more about impressing and appearance than in some other places.
I wish I could teach every guy how to . . .
wrap his arms around a woman in a way that she knows she could absolutely faint and he'd catch her. That clasp around the lower back is the sexiest thing in the world. (And while you're at it, look up how to give her a sexy back rub.)
To make me feel special . . .
let what's important in my life become important to you, too.