Having coached both men and women for more than a decade, I have had the opportunity to have both sexes confess to me their biggest complaints about the other. One of the biggest pet peeves I hear from the guys I coach is that women are too negative.

Are they saying that women are unfriendly people as a gender? Of course not. Guys complain most often to me that when they ask women questions when they first meet them – whether it be a woman they approach for the first time or a woman with whom they are out on a first date – that women tend to be very negative in how they answer them.

For example, a guy during a first date may ask a woman about her past relationships, and she will bash her ex-boyfriend by saying something like “Oh, my ex-boyfriend was such an idiot. He cheated on me, and he was a complete jerk.” Then she will go on to tell the guy about all the stuff that her ex-boyfriend did that were bad.

Even if all of that is true, women need to understand how this is perceived by the men who are hearing it. In particular, women need to understand how it is perceived by men who are just meeting you or are just newly getting to know you.

When you speak negatively about a past relationship, a guy hearing that will think that if he gets involved with you that at some point down the road you will be bashing him to someone else. Don’t be so negative about your past experiences.

Don’t also be negative about what is going on in your life currently. Don’t talk negatively about your friends. Men don’t care about the turmoil that is going on in your life and with your friends.

Men don’t care that your friend did not show up at your other friend’s birthday party and didn’t even a send a present. The only thing a guy will notice is that they are on a first date with you and you are speaking negatively about your friend.

Men want to see you be positive on a first date. We don’t want to hear about all of that other negative stuff when we haven’t gotten to know you yet.

I can’t tell you how many times when I’ve walked up to a woman and started talking to her by asking how her day is, that she will begin her answer with some version of “My day is lousy…” Then when I ask her why, she will elaborate with a list of one negative thing after another.

Don’t be so negative. When men first meet you, they want to see the positive and cheery side of you.

Men of course understand that life is not all positive and cheery. In the beginning, though, show men your good side.

We all have a negative side. We all have things about which to complain. We all have things that don’t go our way. That’s perfectly fine, just don’t bring all of that up on a first date.

Don’t bash your friends and don’t be negative about past relationships. Be positive on a first date, because you need to think positive things in order to attract a great new relationship.

I remember a woman with whom I had a first date who illustrates this point perfectly. I asked her on that date whether she dated a lot, and she answered “no.” When I asked her why, her answer was “Because men suck.” She then proceeded for the next ten minutes to tell me all the reasons why men ‘suck.’

The thing was, I didn’t want to hear about why she believes men ‘suck.’ It didn’t matter. I could have said “women suck too” to try and be nice and agree with her, but they don’t. I don’t judge women as a gender based on what certain women in my past may or may not have done.

When I’m on a first date, I am open to finding out who that particular woman is and what she is all about. You should have that same attitude when you meet a new guy.

The fact is that if you’re having a bad run in life, only you can change it. So if you’re negative and you complain when you meet someone new, then you are just perpetuating that bad run and it will simply continue. So stop being negative, and start giving your future a better chance to be positive.