conversation

Texting for Dates: Yes or No?

by Michael on September 20, 2009 · 0 comments

texting girls

"Is 'DURS' an insult or what?" (Photo by FaceMePLS)

So you’ve met a woman, and got her digits. Two or three days later (depending on who you believe in Swingers) you pick up the phone, look for the number in your contacts, and then…

…you get that certain twinge of fear. We’ve all had it. “What will I say? What if she doesn’t remember me? What if I get her voice mail, do I just hang up or try to leave a funny message?” Then you put down the phone and think it through.

In the past, at this point a guy had to either sack up and make the call, or make up an excuse to call her at some future time, perhaps never. But now there’s another option: “why don’t I just text her?” I mean, everyone’s got text messaging now, right? And if you’re under about 28, all of your friends text. You can ask, “whassup,” keep it casual, use a “winky face” to show that you’re flirting, and if you get rejected, it’s not like it was face-to-face…it’s perfect!

No, it’s not.

Watch Women Use Their Phones

Yes, women do text. But they talk just as much or more. Watch the cars drive around the shopping-center parking lot sometime — every third or fourth car is driven by some girl blatantly violating local laws by holding her cellie to her ear while she tries to steer. That’s because texting is for notes, and calling is for conversations, and women love conversations (in case you somehow hadn’t noticed).

It’s a fact that women are genetically set up to get cues from direct interaction. Connection is very important to them. Also, you don’t have a relationship yet. Getting a text note is cute when there’s already a considerable bond there, but not when she might not even remember your name.

Use Your Personality

No, when you’re asking for a first date, you often have to remind her why she gave you her number in the first place. Conveying personality and demonstrating value is still important. The very fact that you texted tells her you’re not comfortable talking to her — which is less likely to make her want to go out and talk with you.

In even a quick call (and I recommend quick — even if you really click on the phone, leave her wanting more), you can demonstrate a ton more personality, and clarify anything confusing, in a way you just can’t do in a one-sentence text message.

Don’t Let Her Overthink It

Texting gives her an “out” too: instead of answering your request right there on the phone, she can ponder your offer, free of time constraints. She might show her friends your text message and ask them, “remember that guy I met at the club? What did you think of him?” Your low-risk method of asking her out becomes a low-risk way of rejecting you.

And if she’s like the many women I’ve heard from, the fact that you sent her a text instead of talking with her is a strike against you. It doesn’t matter what you think of texting: when the goal is to get a date, what matters is how she feels about it.

It’s Simple

You can avoid this whole question by planning a date with her when you first meet. In fact, it’s the best way to prevent the “flake-outs” we’ve all had to deal with. But if you can’t do that, the initial phone contact becomes the next critical step. Visualize your conversation, think of one or two talking points, and just do it. You can either reinforce the value you displayed when when you got her number and demonstrate a little confidence, or send her “hey hows ur day?”

You’re going to have to talk to her eventually anyway, you know.

Leave a comment

10 Steps to Working a Room

by Michael on August 13, 2009 · 0 comments

You'd think showing up naked to the networking lunch would offer a natural conversation starter... (Photo by earcos)

You'd think showing up naked to the networking lunch would offer a natural conversation starter...turns out it just makes people uncomfortable. (Photo by earcos)

One of the greatest indications of a high status (or “alpha”) male is his ability to work a room: somehow meeting everyone at a party or function and drawing them into interesting conversation.

When you can walk into a room full of strangers and engage them in discussion, you’ll be perceived as a leader by men, and desired by women — in fact, this skill set is a part of any decent pickup artist’s repertoire. You can make more business contacts and make new friends as well, and as you practice your confidence level will skyrocket.

The basics are simple:

  1. Be on the lookout for interesting things. You’ll use them as conversation starters (or “openers”). The best way to start a conversation is with a question (“Is that an actual Pollock on the wall?”). This is where being observant pays dividends.
  2. Ask open-ended questions (“How do you know [the host]?” “What did you think of [city they’ve been to]?”) that encourage people to talk about themselves, even at a business networking function. When you seem interested in someone, they perceive you as interesting.
  3. Be the leader. Move around the room, starting multiple conversations. Your goal is to be less of a guest and more of a host. Take it upon yourself to make sure everyone’s having fun and/or making connections.
  4. Watch your body language. Make eye contact, smile, keep your body “open” (no crossed arms). Don’t “hotbox,” or stand directly facing one person: this prevents others joining you, and can make that person feel uncomfortable. Instead, stand slightly at an angle to them.
  5. Avoid permanently joining a “huddle” or “rock pile.” While it may feel comfortable, it prevents you from achieving your goal of meeting new people. You can talk to the same person more than once, however…
  6. Draw people you previously spoke with into your new conversations. As they approach or pass by, greet them by name, ask if they know the person you’re now speaking with, and then tell them what you’re discussing.
  7. The first time you talk to someone, you’re a stranger; the second time, you’re a friend. This may be oversimplifying, but familiarity is a positive.
  8. When you’re nervous, use it as a bonding tool. People thrown together as strangers are often nervous themselves, and empathy forms a strong connection.
  9. Watch baristas and bartenders. They’re paid to be social. Small-company CEOs and “outside” salespeople also have jobs that depend on befriending others, but they’re harder to follow and observe.
  10. Practice! Parties, business networking events, checkout lines, the dining hall or cafeteria — you can meet people anywhere. When I was building my skills I signed up for every business networking event I could find: there are always people who will be happy to meet you at networking events.

The basics (which are really all you need: details fill themselves in as you practice) are all here in this video from the Ignite! series. Note that the speaker isn’t someone you’d guess would be a master (mistress?) at working a room:

There’s more, with a business angle, in this short article from GigaOM, geared towards the entrepreneur but valuable to any guy who wants to build confidence and/or his social circle. From there it’s easy to visualize meeting people and having fun — emphasis on the fun — anywhere you go.

If you’re interested enough to want some in-depth networking advice, the book I own is Work the Pond by Darcy Rezac. It’s easy, quick reading and a great reference you can return to as you practice.

How to Work the Room [GigaOM]

How to Work a Crowd by Alexis Bauer [Ignite] (via Lifehacker)

Work the Pond! Use the Power of Positive Networking to Leap Forward in Work and Life [Amazon.com]

Leave a comment

The One-Upper

July 29, 2009 Living

It’s 100+ degrees in Seattle today. It has never previously topped 100 in the history of recorded temperatures. Our average July high temperature is 75. Every couple of years we get an 89 or 90-degree day. But what happens in this city of transplants every time someone mentions the heat? Someone shoots back, “Ha! This […]

Read more →