Mod Note (Andy) - as the year comes to an end we're reposting the top discussions from 2015, this one ranks #24 and was originally posted 3/21/2015.
I figured I'd make this post mostly because it's a topic I enjoy water cooler or barroom talk about, and since people have some strong opinions about this it might lead to something interesting. Besides which a lot of the folks on here who are even younger than I am(or have less experience) might not have to go through what I did before I realized the key ingredients to dating success.
Bit of background: I'm 29 now, and in a good relationship. It wasn't always that way, as I was borderline Aspie in high school and only had a few disastrous relationships in my undergraduate. That changed slowly over time as I began to get so frustrated with my lack of romantic success that the status quo was no longer an option and I finally got motivated to improve that aspect of my life.
The bottom line is that it's entirely about marketing and sales. If you've ever taken a sales class you're going to recognize a lot of what I'm going to say. If you haven't almost all of the core concepts that your finance club or career center taught you about the job search apply here.
Since I don't have all day to hang around on the forums I'll condense it down to the main lessons I've learned and add story as necessary later. They're in this order for a reason as I recommend learning the concepts in that order.
My Core Philosophies
#1: Women do the choosing
If you struggling with dating, then this point comes before all others. The phrasing is borrowed from a mentor I had back in the day for good reason: every other thing here is based on a recognition of this fact. While I recognize that a lot of dudes aren't comfortable with concept(particularly PUA goobers, who usually get very defensive when I say that), just admit that you're wrong. Every time the topic has been studied the results are that female selection defines courtship behavior....in ANY mammalian species, not just humans.
#2: Know yourself,
Self explanatory. You need to know who you are, what your personality is, what your strengths are, and what your weaknesses are. This goes a bit deeper than just being able to write a profile as you need to understand what really makes you tick and what your own motivations and emotional drives are. As an extension of this you also need to have a high level of self awareness so you can understand how different aspects of your communication and presentation are perceived by others.
#3 Know your Target Audience
#1 is why this important, and you need to know #2 to be able to use this information. If we accept that women control sexual selection that it logically follows that the way to get what you want (whether that be laid, a harem, a girlfriend, or married) is dependent on your ability to give women what they want. This is although few people would look at me and think that I'm a player, and I don't have what most people would call "mad game", I'm still able to get what I want: I've figured out what my dating niche is (churchgoing, small town, girl next door types) and how to sell myself to that niche. While it's a smaller market I've got other friends who have successfully adapted my philosophy targeting other demographics (Sex and the City type career women and sorority girls respectively) and achieved fantastic results for their own goals.
To help break that down I classify them in three main categories(you may do it differently). The first is the housewives. These are the girls that want to settle down, get married, and have the kids and white picket fence. Secondly you have the freaks, who are motivated primarily by thrills(particularly sexual) and excitement. They're the ones you see licking each other's boobs and dressed in crotch-high, skin-tight dresses at the club. Needless to say you don't get with them by behaving like a respectable gentlemen. Finally you've got the diggers.....ones that are attracted primarily to guys who have status and money. You've got to be careful with that type because they've usually got some game and if you're not careful(or man enough to handle them) a skilled digger will suck you drier than the crickets I feed my pet tarantula.
Obviously your target audience may differ. If you want models, then mold yourself into a handsome and rich businessman(or be an athlete). If you want wild club girls then you want to be the kind of guy you DO NOT take home to momma....and if you want a small town country girl then you'd better be the kind of guy who doesn't mind getting sweaty or getting some elbow grease on his hands.
#4 have a sales plan
I am NOT suggesting you do like the dumbass PUA's and have a line by line script that you recite. What you should do is know what personal qualities you are using as a selling point(e.g. well dressed, smart, a fantastic lay) and what your strategy is to convey those points....and have a clear goal in mind that you are going to ACT towards(ask her out or back to your place instead of just thinking about it). This should also include a long term plan for continual improvement and maintenance of yourself.
On another note, here's a few key tips that I have found invaluable:
#1: Use the "brad pitt" rule with girls.
In other words, you ask yourself a simple question: "If I were Brad Pitt(or any other attractive celebrity of your choice), would this girl be behaving the way she is?" If you were Brad Pitt would she flake on a date? Would she suddenly need to "use the bathroom" while talking to you if you were a famous actor?
You know the answer to that question.....and deep down you know what that says about her level of interest in you. Following this rule has dramatically improved the quality of my own relationships, culminating with my wife. I highly doubt that she'd treat any celebrity better than she treats me.
If you're using online dating it applies there. Don't waste your time with girls who aren't responding to your messages quickly and enthusiastically. Girls these days have their damn phones within arm's reach 24/7 so there's rarely any reason why she should take longer than a few hours to get back to your texts/emails/calls.
#2: "Eye contact".
In public, don't approach every girl. You'll look like a desperate goober and blow out the bar. Instead take a look around and only approach girls who make eye contact with you and either hold it or look away submissively (typically down, not away sideways). Eventually you'll be able to intuitively "feel" which girls you can connect with but I don't recommend trying it until you've already had some success with women.
#3. Active Listening.
The better you are at this skill the better you will do. PAY ATTENTION to what a girl is telling you, don't interrupt, and learn how to ask follow on questions to guide the conversation while still letting her do most of the talking. Don't make the mistake most guys do of trying to run their mouths in order to impress a girl. Most of the time she should do about 2/3 of the talking.
#4 Know how to dance.
If you're meeting women in the club, by far the best way to get girls is by being able to dance. I've got an actor buddy who pulls like crazy because he will generally go into the club, look for a woman who returns his gaze, then without asking reach out his hand and take them over to the dance floor before just pulling out his phone and giving it to them.
#5 Know how to fuck.
Being good in the sack is a key skill. If you can take charge in bed and get a woman to lose control while you fuck then there are a lot of ways this will benefit your game. Besides the obvious benefits that come with being able to give women powerful, addictive, orgasms that keep them coming back for more there are also other side benefits. some guys use this to gain emotional control by speaking to her while she's having orgasms. I use this actively at home by using words at the right intimate moments to create a feeling of powerful connection to me. That's one of many reasons why I'm not the least bit worried about her cheating on me: she can't get better dick than mine, or an emotional high like I give her, anywhere else and I make sure she knows it.
#6 Look good.
If you look beautiful, good for you. Most people are average by definition of the word and while I've seen a lot of well presented people in finance there are very few qualified to be male models. You can close the gap by keeping yourself in good shape and by dressing well. Women notice when you are health and well put together a lot more than you think they do, and I guarantee you can find anecdotal evidence to back that up. I had one acquaintance(an executive with a MM Marketing company) who saw a dramatic increase in both the quantity and quality of women on his team simply by going from 15% body fat(not noticeably fat) to 11%(no flab). Similarly know how to dress. Obviously your office style is no good at a club. I highly recommend getting a style consultant to work with you and give you a list of suggested color combinations and styles to use.
This will also benefit your professional career. Who usually gets the job: the best qualified or the best looking candidate? You all don't need me to tell you the answer to that question.
#7 Verbal communication takes practice.
It's a no brainer why this is important. Personally I recommend Toastmasters as they have modules designed for different aspects of communication, and they can be a fantastic networking resource. Doing it will dramatically improve your social confidence, storytelling skills, and it will also improve professional communication skills that will be invaluable as you advance in your career. I've got another acquaintance who is a tech expert in NYC, and has recently advanced his career( and salary) considerably as his bosses noticed the dramatic improvement in his speaking skills.
For something that's a bit more fun try an improv class.
#8 Don't get fucking lazy.
Don't take shortcuts, don't try to run scripts, don't think that just having cash or "prestige" is going to get you good results(although that might lead to you getting played by a digger).... and don't get complacent just because you have a girlfriend. I've made that mistake before and the result is that you are going to slip up and get assed out. You are ALWAYS in the game no matter what your relationship status is. Even if you're monogamous like I am then you still game your woman.
#9 Don't be a stereotypical nice guy.
Forget all that hollywood bullshit. It's sold to you because women like seeing sappy guys in movies, males like that aren't threatening to the audience, and it's a feminist friendly portrayal of males. If you're a "nice guy" you're also full of bullshit. The only reason you're being "nice" is because you want to fuck her.
What if I told you that you can be a gentleman but still be aggressive?
Instead of being one of those get the fuck over yourself, man up, and learn how to be a leader. Most women want a man that they can trust in a position of leadership. It's your job to fill those shoes and you aren't going to do it by being a "nice guy". Less Ted Mosby and Michael Cera, more James Bond, Jack Donaghy and Jax Teller.