One of the major goals of the the Man Camp project is to help guys get better at navigating relationships. For single guys, this is pretty straight-forward. For guys in relationships, it gets a little tricky. If you've already established yourself as a weak, passive, ineffective man, you can't just flick the "masculinity" switch and expect her to happily go along. Suddenly becoming more dominant and assertive and demanding respect, without the appropriate priming, will likely make bad relationships worse.
The key - you have to establish the more subtle aspects of being a man before you bust out the more overt behaviors. You have to earn her respect first. I call this stage the "priming" stage. To do that, follow these simple steps:
Step One: Get off your lazy ass and get in shape. Odds are good you're kinda fat. Get naked. Look in a full-length mirror. If you were a women, would you want to have sex with a guy who looks like you? If not, get to work. Start lifting, eat less (and cut out the junk food), and add in a sprinkling of cardio.
Step Two: Dress better. This is tied to getting fit. The better you look, the more positively people respond to you. The better people respond to you, the more confidence you develop. It creates a really effective feedback loop.
Step Three: Learn to rein in your negative emotions. If you lose your temper, whine, cry, complain, mope, or any other such behavior, you're doing it wrong. Unless something truly tragic happens, save those emotions for your male-only groups. Masculine men learn to control their emotions instead of letting their emotions control them. To do this, study stoicism or meditation. For mediation, I highly recommend Dan Harris' book.
Step Four: Protect her. Make her feel safe and secure. The more anxiety a woman feels, the less she's going to enjoy life. Learn to fight (naturally, I recommend doing this at our gym.) Also take a defensive firearms class.
Step Five: Gain the respect of those around you. How your extended family, friends, coworkers, and other acquaintances view you matters. If they do not respect you, your wife cannot respect you. Earn their respect.
Step Six: Increase your income. If you're unemployed or under-employed, correct that as soon as possible. Being a provider is one side of the hypergamy coin and plays an important role in the attraction she feels for you.
This stage often takes a significant amount of time depending on how many of these traits you possessed before the relationship or in the early stages of the relationship. In most cases, it might take a few months up to a year to get to the point where you're ready to move on to the point of asserting yourself as the leader of the relationship. When you can pass the "Masculine Test" I describe my post on hacking female ovulation, you're probably ready.