Among my RSS feeds are a few online pickup forums. I don’t subscribe to them because I think I’ll learn anything — I subscribe because I’m curious about how guys are using the knowledge available to them. And most guys are using that knowledge wrong. Some examples (paraphrased to protect the guilty):
- “We made out for a hour. She would occasionally say ‘I hope you don’t do this with all the girls.’ Every time she said it I just played it off with a joke. Now she won’t return my calls.”
- “I negged this girl by telling her she looked fat in that dress. She didn’t seem to like that. How can I use that ‘jerk’ persona to score with her?”
- “Girls get turned off after the first date, every time. I know it’s got to be my bald spot.”
- “I approached these two sisters. I like them both. How do I get a threesome?”
I don’t blame the teachers, because even though a lot of them aren’t very good, most start with the basics of common-sense human-relations knowledge. Usually the problem is a guy who’s bought one book or read one website. Then he go out and tries it, and crashes and burns due to something the computer industry calls “user error.”
Don’t get me wrong: I give big props to every guy who just goes out and starts approaching women. But there are a few basic problems I see again and again that are a result of missing key principles you need to know in order to meet and date women.
1. You confuse a “neg” and an insult.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen guys outright call a girl “fat” and not understand how she didn’t take it as a joke. You can say it as cocky and funny as possible, but it’s never, ever, a “neg.”
A “neg” is not an insult. It’s a compliment that makes her think.
For example, pointing out how it’s so cute how her nose wiggles when she talks. That’s a neg. You’re saying it’s cute, but you’re drawing attention to her nose, which is a body part most girls would really rather not draw attention to. Makeup (“I usually don’t go for the ‘smoky eye look,’ but you rock it”), nails (the classic “awesome nails, are they real?”) and hair (“you’ve got awesome hair, is there a name for that style?”) are good for a true neg. Her weight, figure and face are almost always off-limits.
Age is only usable when she’s younger – older women are usually painfully aware that they’re older. Several years ago I once irreparably damaged a great vibe with an older woman by bringing up age very tangentially, not meaning to do so. Her demeanor changed instantly and she excused herself to find her sister. Live and learn.
2. You’re unrealistic in your goals.
So many guys buy books and take courses in pickup so they can finally win this one special girl. They’re really uninterested in finding women anywhere else. This causes two problems: first, Just because you now have “game” doesn’t mean you can magically erase an opinion a woman has already formed about you.
Second, these skills take practice, and the best possible practice comes when you’re open to meeting an awesome woman wherever she may be. It’s best for all concerned, especially yourself, if you can cut yourself loose from an unsuccessful attempt and move on to another worthy “target.”
Unfortunately, most of these unrealistic guys won’t listen to me or anyone else — this is one of the hottest topics on seduction boards. It’s usually only after this “one special girl” is lost for good that a guy then understands that although “game” can get you a woman you might never have dreamed of dating, it can’t necessarily get you that one woman you have been dreaming of.
A related issue is the relative newbie who’s dead set on getting threesomes, or sisters, or any teenage fantasy you care to name. Work on successfully attracting women first, then you can branch out to find those who are into what you’re into.
3. You try to get physical without comfort.
It’s been said that before the first time, a woman will look for any reason not to sex with you. (After the first time, she’ll look for any reason she should have sex with you again.) Even if she really does want it as much as you do (or more), goofing around with her fears and objections is a good way to stay celibate.
If you want to have sex with most women, at some point you’re going to have to cut the crap and let her know you like her and that she’s safe with you. For most guys this is the function of subsequent dates, but if you’re going to go far beyond a kiss or three the night you meet her, you’ll need to start building comfort right away. Let her know she’s the reason you threw out your rules about public makeout sessions. Show her that you aren’t going to treat her like a prostitute and that you’ll respect her boundaries. If she objects, don’t dismiss it.
And if she says no, it of course means no.
4. You prefer text to actually talking to a woman.
I see endless requests to critique “text game” from guys who haven’t bothered to actually learn to deal with a woman in person first. This is ass backwards. Some of these guys have blatantly ignored requests from women to call them, in favor of typing shorthand.
Now, there are times when you should use text. Immediately after seeing her in person, the “did u get home ok?” text, along with something to remind her of the meeting/date, is awesome.
Texting/e-mail/Facebook/MySpace is a good way to let her know you exist, and that’s about it. Unless you’ve managed to find someone who doesn’t care who she hooks up with, you’re not going to be able to text “ill b @ ur house 2nite” and make it happen. You’re going to have to do the heavy lifting in person. The faster you can segue into a face-to-face meeting, the better off you are. (By “segue,” I mean you can also use the voice capability of your cell phone as an intermediate step.)
Let’s set a rule right now: you can’t call it a successful seduction until such time as you’ve actually touched the woman.
5. You think everything is some kind of test.
There are a few pickup methods out there that are based on passing “shit tests.” And yes, such tests do exist: if you’re chatting up a girl in a bar and she tells you to buy her a drink, you can be fairly sure that if you return with the drink you’ll also return with a much lower value. Or she might call you a “player” or gently make fun of you. But most of these are common sense and relatively obvious.
There are also a lot of situations where fulfilling a request actually serves a purpose for you. A blatant example would be if she asks to move to a different part of the club where she won’t be kissing you in full view of her friends. To deny this request would actually harm her comfort level.
There’s some gray area here: if she can’t meet you on the choice of times you’ve given her for a date, she may be trying to get you to drop everything for her or she may be honestly busy. But even then, the easy answer is to be congruent. If your time constraints are what you said they are, you won’t suddenly find that “booked” evening came free after all. You’ll have to make a later window for that date.
Just make sure your actions back up your values and are congruent with who you say you are, and don’t worry too much about tests.
Don’t Worry About The Game
My biggest piece of advice for guys making the above mistakes is to not take this all so seriously. Most of these errors are due to overthinking the process of meeting women, and losing sight of the forest for the trees. If you remember the principles of congruence and respect (both for her and for yourself), and let yourself make mistakes, you’ll get the hang of it. This is about having a good time, meeting awesome women, and ending up with something special. Why stress about it?