Category: Basics

15. Text Game

Text game is weird because the technology is new, and it’s changing rather quickly. And it’s not just the technology that changes, but how we socialize with it. Digital natives will have a different attitude towards texting than Gen X. What’s congruent to the personality of a 38 year old will not be the same as what works for an 18 year old. That said, I’m going to try to give advice which I think applies to most people and will keep on being good for years to come.

Good Text Game Relies on Good In-Person Game

If you want to be good at texting girls, you need to be good at talking to them in person. And yes, rAFCs, I can feel your collective frustration. I know, you wanted the secrets to good text game because you can never think of what to say in person, but on the phone girls can’t see how nervous you are, and you can go on AskSeddit and get advice for what to text, and you were hoping that there was some magical text game advice that would mean never having to learn how to talk to girls in person.

Tough.

There are three reasons why good normal game is key to good text game. First, you just need to build up your experience and instincts when it comes to talking to girls. If you can’t learn to interpret what a girl is saying when you can see her facial expressions, her body language, and hear the tone of her voice, then you’re not going to be very good at figuring her out without the benefit of all those extra clues. Talking at a club is like walking through a minefield. Texting is like walking through a minefield blindfolded.

Second, like everything in pickup, texting is largely a numbers game. If you’re trying to figure out the perfect thing to text back to that one girl you’re after then you’ve already lost. You should be experimenting with different approaches for the five or ten girls you #closed over the week. And in order to get a lot of numbers to send texts to, you need to be good in the field.

Finally, everything you text will be read in the context of the girl’s impression of you when you met. If the girl just gave you her number hoping it would get you to leave and was intending on just ignoring you when you called later, then nothing you text is going to get you anywhere. She predetermined to flake, and you’re out of luck. But if you had a solid interaction and she’s looking forward to hearing from you, then your text game needs to only be to not say anything stupid and you’ll be fine.

A Note About the Numbers Game

Some guys view #closing as an end unto itself. If you’re very new to the game and working on getting your first number, or trying to figure out just how to get the words out without sounding like a moron, then that’s fine. But once you’ve gotten 10 or 20 numbers, you need to adopt Mystery’s philosophy that numbers are wood. They are, on their own, worthless.

If you walk up to a girl, chat for two minutes, and say “Hey, I have to get back to my friends, but I’d like to call you some time,” there’s a decent chance you’ll get her number. With the aid of a little bit of Red Bull and a lot of venue changing, in a single night it wouldn’t be that tough to get 10 numbers. And you’ll never hear back from any of them.

If you want to decrease your flake rate, the key isn’t good text game, but rather having a solid interaction with the girl before you get her number. Also, don’t immediately run away once you get her number (unless you’re actually leaving the venue), otherwise she might feel like you were just trying to be the cool dude who got some numbers, rather than actually being interested in her. Making her feel like just another notch on whatever you’re notching to keep score is a sure way to active her Anti Slut Defense.

A simple “Before I forget, let me get your number,” followed by another 5-10 minutes of conversation can do wonders for reducing your flake rate.

Why Does the Convo Die?

I’ve seen this a whole lot on the forums: You meet a girl, get her number, and then text her. She replies, you reply, and it goes back and forth more or less like a chat conversation for a while. And then the conversation just dies and she goes days without texting you back. How can she go from hot to cold so fast?

Do you have the friend or relative who will just not stop talking? If you answer their call, you know that you’re committing to be on the phone for at least an hour because they seem oblivious to the idea that you might have other shit to do with your time. Guess what, Mr. Text-Chatter, you’ve become that person.

She might have fun chatting with you that first time, but eventually she wants to get on with her life. When you text her the next day she’ll remember how much time you monopolized, and she doesn’t want to devote her whole afternoon to texting with you. So, she ignores you.

Limit yourself to no more than 3 messages with the girl per day, and you probably need to take a day or two off before texting her again. There’s no hard and fast rule, so you need to adjust the numbers a bit based on what you find working, but that’s a good baseline to start from, and certainly better than texting her 50 times a day every single day. The exception of course is if you’re actually in the process of making plans. If she texts back “Not sure where that is,” don’t be a shithead and not text back because you’re at your limit.

When to Text

You’ve met a girl, got her number, and now you’re wondering how long to wait until you text her. I take the same approach to this as I’ve used for knowing when to call her: When I want to.

The question really isn’t so much When, but Why. And that Why should almost always be to set up plans with her. Texting (or calling) just to chat is a sign that you’re bored and lonely. That’s not a great image to convey.

The big exception is that you should probably text her once either later that night or early the next day so that she’ll remember who you are.

A question I see a lot of is what to do if you get her number and then one (or both) of you aren’t available for a few weeks. How do you keep her interested in the interim? Unless you’ve already been out with her since your initial meeting, my advice is to not do anything. Wait until you’re back from your vacation or whatever, and then contact her. “I’m getting back in town tomorrow and have a serious craving for That Food Place.”

If you have been out with here, there’s really too many variables for generalized advice. Calibration, congruence, don’t screw shit up.

Phone Game vs. Text Game

Whether to call her or to text her really comes down to your style, what’s congruent for you, what you’re planning on saying, etc. So, there’s no real answer to whether you should call or text. What you need to know though is that calling is a more aggressive move.

These days people have shit for social skills and they tend to feel put on the spot when someone calls. This is true just as much for women. The phone rings and they think “Shit, I’m going to have to make sounds with my mouth! What do I do?!” So, calling a girl can make her very uncomfortable, which of course increases the chances that she won’t answer.

On the other hand, calling demonstrates that you’re not a wimp who is too afraid to pick up the phone and call a girl.

If you have good in-field game, this will be pretty obvious to you. If you go in guns blazing with a lot of teasing on a target who is smart and confident and can give it right back to you, you’re going to do pretty well. If you take the same approach with a girl who is very reserved, you’re just going to come across as an asshole. Same with phone vs. text, it’s all about knowing your target.

Txtsp34k

Yet again, congruence is king here. I write with full words, in full sentences, with full stops at the end. But, I’m also in a graduate writing program and have two articles published in academic journals, so it’d look stupid and incongruent for me to use text speak. Likewise, if you’re a freshman in college and try to emulate my writing style, you’re going to sound like you’ve got a stick up your ass. Do what feels natural, while also occasionally thinking about why you write the way you do, and what it conveys about you.

The Final Word

Stop trying to come up with the perfect text. The more you think about it, the more stressed you get, and the more likely you are to over complicate things and send a wholly inappropriate message. Just send the damn text and go do something productive with your time. Plus, the prefect text has nothing to do with the content of the text and everything to do with being sent by that incredibly charming guy she met a couple days ago.

16. Results

This post probably isn’t going to be what you’re expecting. It’s not yet another lecture on how the game is about being process oriented rather than results oriented, even though that’s completely true. But, you should have heard that by now.

This also isn’t about how to get results, meaning it’s not some magic bullet, the one trick you need to get laid tonight, cure all unified theory of everything.

This post is about what sort of results you should be going for.

Getting laid, right? That’s the goal for a lot of guys. Or getting laid by a hot girl. Or getting a girlfriend. Lots of guys see these things as the result they’re aiming for, and along the way they have incremental results they want to achieve, things like learning to open, having a good rate of hooking sets, getting number closes, makeouts, D2s, etc.

That’s all well and good, but there is one result which I think encompasses all the others and which gets virtually no mention in the community these days.

Choice.

That is the result to end all results.

You don’t want to have sex with the only girl out there who’s willing to have you. You don’t want your girlfriend to be the first person who’s ever tolerated you enough to stick around. What you want is to be in the position where you can turn someone down because they’re not right for you. Technically, any AFC out there can turn someone down, but I mean you want to be in the position where you can turn someone down and still have options remaining that you’re happy with.

Now I know what some of you are thinking, or at least what I’d be thinking if I was reading this: “That’s fine, Billy. But, I can’t even get one girl to like me, so what good does telling me I should be trying to get options do?”

Abundance mentality.

If you go to a club and immediately latch on to the first set that hooks and are committed to taking it all the way with the girl you’re going to come across as desperate, creepy, and a bit of a loser. That’s because your goal was to just get laid and you’re not too terribly picky about who you have sex with. That mentality is going to bleed through to your words and actions, the girl will pick up on it, and then you’re going to get blown out.

Instead, you should be thinking about creating options. Okay, the set hooked, the girl is interested, if it’s still early in the evening, just get her number and say you want to meet up later that night but you need to get back to your friends or whatever. Then you go open another set, and surprise, this set is going to be easier because you’re (1) riding an emotional high, and (2) you’re not seeking their validation because you know if you get blown out you can just go back to that first set later.

Wash, rinse, repeat. Of course you don’t want the girls to see you ping-ponging between sets, so do actually go back to talk to your friends for a bit, but assuming you’re smart about things, over the course of an evening you can get yourself a few options.

Then you can build on that in two ways. First, you’ll have numbers from previous nights among your pool of options. Second, you’ll gain confidence in your ability to find someone else should you walk away from this set without any other options lined up yet.

Eventually you will make a choice, of course. Try to keep all the doors open for too long and eventually they’ll all be shut. You’ll get the timing down with enough experience, but a good rule of thumb is that before midnight you should be focusing on creating options, and after midnight you should start your choice process.

What too many guys are doing wrong is starting in that second phase. The moment they make an approach they’ve already made all the relevant choices. The ball is entirely in her court and all that’s left is for her to say Yes. Instead, you have to approach this as a series of decisions. Yes I want to approach, but I haven’t decided if I want to stay in the conversation. Yes, this girl is cool, I like talking to her, but I haven’t decided yet if I want to go home with her. Withhold your decisions until you’ve actually gotten to know her well enough to justify those decisions and you know what’ll happen? She’ll be more attracted to you. Surprise, girls want you to choose them because you actually like them, not because they’re available.

The Four Coaches Every Recovering AFC Needs

Please note that these are not in order of importance.

1. Theory. These are the books, seminar videos, blogs and forums. And this is actually where a lot of guys get stuck. There’s so much stuff out there it’s easy to get lost in it all and waste a lot of time trying to consume everything out there instead of going out and talking to girls. Why? Because talking to girls requires work. You have to shower, get out of the house, maybe adjust your budget so you can afford drinks, cabs, or if you’re both poor and in DC like me you have to work around just the metro fare. Sitting at your desk watching yet another hour of videos (some you’ve probably seen before, be honest) is easy.

But you do need some theory. You need the basics. You need to learn some of the common myths most of us grew up believing about women (they pretty ones are scary!) and a few basic rules about how to interact (don’t supplicate). I recommend no longer than 5 hours of this before you get out and make your first 10 approaches, and really you can be pretty set just by watching Wayne Elise’s seminar, it’s less than 3 hours and doesn’t ramble like some of those 8+ hour programs. You should be looking for theory you can quickly consume and then go out and implement, not theory that takes so long to get through that by the time you reach the end you’ve completely forgotten about girls.

2. The Field. The field is king, y’all. Every time you go out into the field and approach women you will come away from the experience knowing at least a little bit more, and sometimes a lot more. It’s a bit like evolution. Without your knowing it, your surroundings will cause you to adapt and over time (a lot of time for most guys) you’ll evolve to survive in this environment. But it’s also a bit of a punctuated equilibrium. Most of the change is gradual, but every once in a while something clicks and you see some rapid progression. Though, there will also be plateaus and setbacks, that’s completely normal.

Now a bit about how the field and theory interact. Most guys read read read, then maybe go out, make three approaches, then go home and spend the next day reading more. They’re mostly trying to learn about what they should do, specifically how to avoid mistakes. That’s completely intuitive and completely backwards. Once you’ve spent your 3-5 hours learning the very basics you need to reverse your order of priorities. Go out into the field, and only when something has confused you should you come back to theory. Theory is a tool for analyzing data, and unless you’re collecting more data you ain’t got anything to analyze. For every 5 hours out in the field, allow yourself one hour consuming theory. Didn’t go out last weekend? Get off Seddit, and spend your Seddit time working on lifestyle instead (you know you could use the extra exercise).

3. A Good Wingman. If you’ve been around a seduction forum for any amount of time you’ve seen plenty of posts along the lines of this: “Hey, I approached a girl with X opener, and she said Z, what do?” These posts always have the most minimal amounts of information, but seduction is all about context, nuance, and specifics. What was your body language like? Your vocal tonality? Her body language? What angle did you approach from? How was your eye contact? How busy was the venue? What time was it? What was she doing when you approached? Did her boyfriend show up right after you got blown out? Etc, etc. Basically, unless you’ve got high quality audio and video of the approach, there’s not much advice you can get from the internet.

You know who’s got high quality audio and video though? Your wingman. No, he’s not filming it. He’s just got eyes and ears. He can absorb much of the relevant information and provide you with the kind of feedback you need.

When looking for a wingman you need someone who knows the basics of pickup theory, who has a similar style to you (some guys are very aggressive assholes, some are cheesy romantic charmers, both can work), and he’s someone who’s willing to provide feedback. Too often guys looks at their wingmen just as someone to stand next to and talk with so they don’t look like an awkward loner loser. And that is useful; social proof is incredibly powerful. But you also need to be able to observe each other and provide feedback. Be willing to do the same for your wingman. Also, minimize the unsolicited advice (don’t come across as a superior douchebag). And, when giving advice know it’s as important to focus on what went well as what went wrong. Very easy to get caught up on the negatives, but while it’s important to know what to fix, it’s just as important to know what to keep doing.

4. Yourself. This isn’t some new age hippy feel good item. I mean you really need to turn yourself into a serious analytical resource. Too many guys have just switched their own brains off and demand to be treated like helpless little children with the answer spoon fed to them by the guys who’ve actually put in the time and energy to figure this stuff out. Some stuff can be given to you like that (see #1 on this list), and you don’t need to reinvent the wheel, but this is all going to be really general basic stuff. If you want to get good at pickup you really have to learn to think for yourself, and this is something that’s going to do double duty for you (and a bonus third duty for the rest of us).

First duty: You’re basically going to internalize your own wingman/coach/guru. The more you try to figure out solutions on your own the better you’ll get at it, and the faster your analysis will become so that instead of working through things the next day you’re able to realize what happened just after it happened, then get faster and see it as its happened, and then you move into ninja mode and see things coming before they even happen and can steer the interaction how he wants. It’s Quizat Haderach level game.

You need this because you’re the one in the interaction, you can feel its vibe, and you can give yourself advice fast enough to make conversation in real time (even someone talking in your ear doesn’t match the efficiency of your own brain talking to you). There are times when you need an outside point of view, especially for things like watching body language. But, there’s a lot even a great wingman can’t see. The most important bits of the interaction are things only you have access to, so if you don’t learn how to process them yourself there is literally no one else in the world who can help you.

Second duty: People who think for themselves are more interesting an attractive. This should be a big “duh” moment. Who do you think a girl will find more attractive, a guy who can solve his own problems, or the guy who has to run to a forum every time he encounters the slightest difficulty? Women, men, everyone admires personal strength, but it’s something you have to build up by repeatedly working things out for yourself.

This will also convert you from a value taker to a value giver. When you work things out for yourself you stop asking people to give value to you, and you acquire the skills to help other people when they need help with their problems.

Third bonus duty for us: It’ll improve the forum. Ideally, seduction forums should be about 90% posts that are either insights gained from someone dealing with the same situation 10-30 times, or questions from people who’ve encountered the same problem 10-30 times and have attempted to fix it in a number of ways but are still failing. Those types of posts add value and contribute to a growing knowledge base that can be shared by all. A post asking for help on a problem you could figure out with just 30 minutes of reviewing basic theory and moderately intelligent thinking really doesn’t help anyone else but you – the answer is already out there and what you’re doing is asking for it to be duplicated because you can’t be bothered to find it. That’s the same as the kid who raises his hand in class and asks a question with an answer that’s clearly explained on the syllabus. Come on man, class time can be used for better stuff than that.

Don’t Know What To Say? Your Approach Plan Is Backwards

If you’ve ever been an AFC, then you’ve likely experienced this scenario:

You’re at a bar, you spot a cute girl who you’d like to approach, but oh no! You can’t think of anything to say! So, you sit there and try to come up with some sort of situational opener. And then 5 minutes pass, 10 minutes, a half hour, and now it’s going to be weird if you go up and approach because she’s seen you sitting there trying to think of something to say. She doesn’t want to talk to some creeper who’s spent the last half hour obsessing over what to say to her. So, you give up, go home and cry into your pillow.

If you find yourself hitting the “I don’t know what to say” wall, then your approach plan probably looks something like this:

Spot Target –> Think of Something to Say –> Open

You get hung up on the second step, so you do a Google search for pickup lines, you go to a forum (like this one) and ask for help, and you try to get a new approach plan:

Think of Something to Say –> Spot Target –> Open

Hey, much better plan, right? You won’t get blocked if you show up to the venue with a few openers in your backpack. Problem solved! And, for a lot of guys, this does actually solve the problem, at least for an evening or two until they need to think of new openers. If that system is working for you, awesome, stick with it.

But, some guys still find themselves blocked. They forget the openers, or once they’re out in the venue they seem to corny, incongruent, stupid, or out of context to work. Hm… go back to trying to think of a situational opener, stall, fail, go home, cry cry cry.

If this is the situation your find yourself in, I’m going to propose a different approach plan:

Spot Target –> Open –> Think of Something to Say

What? I must be crazy, right? Am I actually suggesting that you walk up to the target, make eye contact, open your mouth and have fully committed to the approach before you even have an idea of what to say?

Yes. Exactly that.

You know what’ll happen? You’ll probably say something. It’ll probably be stupid, the conversation will fall flat pretty quick, the girls will reject you, turn their backs to you and go back to talking to each other.

But you opened!

Remember, you need to be focused on the process. If your sticking point is that you’re not approaching because you can’t think of anything to say, this is the exercise you need. Get to the point where you can force yourself to walk up to a girl and say something. Once you have that down, then you can focus on saying something good. Break the skills down and work on them piece by piece instead of trying to master all parts at the same time.

And really, after a few crash and burns you’re going to start saying something moderately decent, like “Hey, you’re pretty, I’m Billy.” Not great, but is she going to stick around to hear the next thing you say? Absolutely. Now you’re striking out one line later into the conversation! Progress!

Hopefully that helps some of you, and for the more daring out there looking for some lulz, here’s an even weirder approach plan:

Open –> Spot Target –> Approach

“Roll Tide! YEAH! ROLL DAMN TIDE!” (Look around, spot target who is now looking at you.) “…Hey.”

10. Kino

Early and often is the rule.

Make physical contact very early in your interaction with a girl. The easiest way to do this is to make touching her part of your approach. Approach a bit from the side, and then touch her on her shoulder/upper back or on her upper arm to get her attention.

The Force Field of Physical Awkwardness

The first few moments of your interaction create a frame the controls how everything else will be interpreted. This is especially true with kino. By making physical contact very early on you establish that your interaction is one where that’s okay. You’re assuming familiarity with the girl, and if it feels natural and congruent, the girl will almost always accept that frame.

If you don’t make contact early on though, you establish a frame where touching is off limits. Over time there begins to be an invisible barrier between you that I call the Force Field of Physical Awkwardness.

I think most guys know exactly what this feels like. You’re having fun, she’s responsive, sending some IOIs, and you’re thinking it’s time to escalate, but as soon as your hand starts to move it’s like all eyes turn on it. The initial contact is like diving through a plate glass window. Not smooth at all.

Just to make things worse, if she is really in to you it’s awkward that you haven’t made contact. You want to touch her and she knows that you want to touch her, and she wants you to touch her, and you know that she wants to be touched, and because you both know all this it’s super awkward that it isn’t happening. But then when it does happen, shit — that’s awkward too. It’s a Lose-Lose.

That’s why you have to make contact early and often. Nip it in the bud and never let that force field come up.

How the heck do you do this?

Many guys complain that they just don’t know how to kino, and that it’s always awkward, even if they do it right from the start. The only cure for this is experience. The first time you ever kiss a girl it’s going to be weird and you’re not going to do it very well. There is no amount of reading you can do that will prepare you though, you just have to learn what it’s supposed to feel like and become comfortable through experience.

If you need a crutch to facilitate kino, there are a lot of routines where physical contact is integral. Palm reading is a good choice, if you’re in to giving girls chick crack and can take yourself seriously while doing it. Another option is learning a few magic tricks, as there are a lot that involve placing something in a girl’s hand, or moving her hands around for any number of reasons — “Hold your hands out. …No, like this,” and you move them into the correct position.

If you suck at magic tricks go with “Do you like magic tricks?” Wait for them to say yes, then say “Okay, hold out your hands — No, with your palms up.” Then hold both her hands and look into her eyes. Pretty soon she’ll be wondering what the trick is, and you can just say something corny like “Love is the most powerful magic of all” or some shit. Make it cute and funny and completely transparent that you just wanted to hold her hands.

And of course, high fives. Always an easy go-to move. The trick is (for some reason I don’t understand) to look at the person’s elbow. You’ll never miss.

Don’t Be Needy

Not being needy is just a great rule for life, but it is especially relevant to kino. It’s easy to get way too excited about finally being able to touch a girl, and you just want to escalate, escalate, escalate. You haven’t touched a girl in forever, so you’re trying to get in as much contact as you can. You’re like a camel filling up on water at an oasis, and the girl will definitely pick up on this. Once she realizes that this is a novel experience for you, you’ll have exposed your low value, and she’ll be turned off.

Treat kino as an opportunity for push/pull. When you kiss her, be the one to break it off. End it while she’s still wanting more, talk for a while, and then kiss her again a few minutes later. This sends two messages; first that you’re not desperate for a little action, and second that you’re actually interested in her as a person. Every girl knows that you want to kiss her, what she’s hoping is that you’ll also want to talk to her after. So talk to her after.

The Magnetic Field of Physical Awesomeness

Think about standing close to each other as a form of kino. You will occasionally have some light bumps in to each other, and you can pick up a lot of cues based on how she responds to that. Does she move away so that you don’t accidentally touch again? Or does she stay right where she is?

You’ll also build a lot of sexual tension just by standing very close. Even without contact, she’s aware of your body’s presence, can feel the heat coming off you, and there’s a sort of tantric energy building between you. That’s the Magnetic Field of Physical Awesomeness.

08. Demonstrating Value

When picking up a woman, you have visual and non-visual value. The visual value is easy to communicate, just pull up your shirt and let her see your glorious abs. Non-visual value needs a little more finesse to demonstrate.

Before going on, make sure you have read the article on Atomic Game. To communicate value you need to believe you have value, and it really helps if you actually have value.

Show, Don’t Tell

The key to demonstrating value (other than having value and believing in yourself) is a concept well known to writers: Show, don’t tell. The way this has typically been explained in the community is “a rich man doesn’t need to say that he’s rich.”

Telling someone your good traits (awesome job, your shiny car, how you can run a marathon, or how your ex GF was really hot) just makes them think you’re insecure. If you were confident, you wouldn’t feel the need to tell people how great you are. It’s also just not at all convincing. Attraction is a feeling, not a reasoned weighing of the facts.

Showing your value on the other hand, that’s powerful. If you tell a girl that you’re really funny, she’ll think you’re just weird and suck at conversation. If you make her laugh, she’ll think you’re funny. Tell her about your awesome friends and she’ll wonder why you aren’t hanging out with them. Show up to the club with your awesome friends and let everyone see you having a good time, and she’ll think you’re a cool, popular guy.

Social Proof

Social proof is when you have other people vouch for you being an attractive, quality guy. Again, not telling, but showing. When you go to a bar with a group of friends and you are all joking with each other, have a lot of energy, and are having a good time, that’s social proof. If you were a loser, you wouldn’t be out with a bunch of cool dudes having fun, therefor everyone who sees your group knows you’re not a loser.

Hanging out with women, especially attractive women, is even better. Why would attractive women hang out with you if you were a low value loser? They wouldn’t. Even if you’re not a very good looking guy, women will assume you must have something else going for you if you can keep the attention of women.

If you’re sarging solo, social proof can be harder. In fact, if you’re out alone people may assume that it’s because you don’t have any friends, and so you end up with negative value. To overcome this, start chatting up people as soon as you arrive. Guys, girls, doesn’t matter. Be friendly to everyone. A girl who sees you talking to a couple guys doesn’t know that you just met them. Now you’ve got social proof.

For sarging solo, you’ll also want to consider doing more day game. It’s normal to be in a bookstore or cafe by yourself, so being alone in that setting doesn’t come with any negative assumptions.

Confidence

Confidence is a bit of an odd thing because it’s both a demonstration of value and an actual value itself. We like confident people, they’re just more fun to be around than people who are shy, timid, and never want to go out and have an adventure. But it’s also a way of demonstrating a generalized high value.

People are shit at judging value in a vacuum, so we look for clues. As I’ve said, social proof is one clue. Another big clue though is someone’s opinion of himself. No one has greater information about your value than yourself. You’re biased, but you’re also the world’s foremost expert.

If you act like a beta, show no confidence, and are always apologizing just for taking up space in the world, people will assume this is because you actually are low value. After all, would a really cool high value guy present himself as a piece of shit loser? Andy Kaufman aside, no way. So if you act like a loser it must be because you are one. Girls won’t waste their time trying to tell if your opinion of yourself is wrong.

It works the same way with being alpha.If you act like you’re an alpha people are very likely to believe you. There’s plenty of reasons to think you’d lie about being alpha, but that’s why I said people believe you when you act alpha. It’s hard to lie through actions, so when you act confident people will assume you have something to be confident in.

Confidence is also a form of guerrilla social proof. If you approach a girl with confidence and are comfortable talking to her, she will assume that talking to girls is something you do all the time. She hasn’t seen you with girls, but she’ll believe your life is filled with them.

Getting confidence is the trick though, and there is no magic bullet fix. Working on actually having value will help (Atomic Game), so will doing an honest assessment of your value (Inner Game). But while you’re working on that other stuff, just give yourself a little bit of positive self-talk, take a deep breath, jump in and remember that simply acting confident gives you some value. The ability to approach a stranger is a rare and admirable trait, so at a bare minimum you have that going for you.

Dancing Monkey Syndrome

You just delivered your opener perfectly, dropped some really funny jokes, everyone laughed a lot, and then you did a couple magic tricks and the set is completely blown away. Too bad you’ve about to be blown out.

You’ve contracted Dancing Monkey Syndrome. You’re telling the set you opened that you’re there to entertain them. You might be entertaining, but you’re not attracting them — you’re showing them the desperate lengths you go to just to keep their attention. Opening a complete stranger with a funny joke shows confidence. Continuing the laugh parade shows a lack of confidence.

Dancing Monkey Syndrome is also incredibly impersonal. You can tell the same jokes the exact same way to someone completely different than the girl you’re talking to, and she knows it. Someone else could also tell her the same joke. There’s absolutely no connection between you. You want to be engaging and interesting, not merely entertaining. If all she wanted was entertainment, there’s always comedy specials on HBO.

When Showing Isn’t an Option

Show, Don’t Tell is the general rule, but showing isn’t always feasible. You’re not going to ask a girl to wait around for a couple hours while you complete a marathon, odds are the bar kitchen isn’t going to invite you back to show off your skills, and while you can show wealth by spending freely that tends to come across as try-hard and actually pretty insecure about all your other traits. So what does that leave? Telling. Fortunately, there are a couple tricks to make telling your good qualities a lot more effective.

I love to cook, and not just because I like eating, though that’s a nice fringe benefit. What I really like about it is the creative process and the experimentation. You take a bunch of ingredients and transform them into something completely different. And then you do it again and again and over time the recipes slowly evolve and you branch out and experiment. You learn the way different flavors interact, often in really surprising ways, like how a really simple peach glaze takes on a complex, three dimensional flavor when you add just a little bit of dijon mustard. Every time you have one of those little moments where you see a new way of combining ingredients that experience goes into this sort of mental file cabinet that you can draw from in the future, so you’re not just transforming the food — you’re transforming the way you see and think about food. Plus, you know, there’s also the food itself, and you get to eat it. So there’s that.

Reading that, you probably think that one thing that one source of value I have is being skilled at cooking. Yet, I didn’t even say I’m good at it. What gives?

Emotion. Enthusiasm. Passion. Whatever you want to call it, when we hear someone speak about something with emotion we immediately associate that thing with high value. (Except some obvious exceptions of course — if you complain with incredible compassion about how much you hate your boss you’re still not conveying value.) This works just like how we associate high prices with quality.

You also want to work in some details. They make the mental images you’re creating much more vivid and lend some credibility. If you enjoy cooking like I do, talk about a specific dish you especially enjoyed making; if you run marathons bring out a detail of the last marathon you ran, maybe a specific landmark you were passing as you broke through the wall and hit your runner’s high.

Finally, talking with emotion and enthusiasm does double duty. Just like confidence, it’s not only way of demonstrating your value, zest for life is itself a value. People who can talk about things in an exciting way make us feel excited, we want to be around those people more if for nothing than the energy they bring with them.

14. Becoming a Crew

The very first thing you need to do when becoming a crew is establish the ground rules (some basic guidelines are at the end of this post). Communicate with your crew and make sure you’re all on the same page.

This means you need to be in a crew of other community guys. You cannot just hang out with your normal guy friends and expect them to be effective wingmen. These need to be guys that understand pickup the same way you do, and with whom you can openly talk strategy.

Woo Girls

Everyone has seen these girls. It’s a group of girls and they make a ton of noise. Screeching high voices that get way too excited over their wine, cosmos and fruity shots. Woooooo!!!!!!! Annoying as hell.

And there’s a lot to learn from them.

As obnoxious as this girls are, they are bringing the party. It doesn’t matter if they’re all average looking, if you are in their proximity they are the hottest, smartest, funniest, most successful awesome women in the world because they own that space and their frame is strong.

Learn from them and emulate their frame dominance. Be loud. Not loud enough to actually annoy people and risk getting thrown out, but about 30% more than a normal conversation level. Laugh at every joke. Everything your crew says is awesome. Just being out with people is not enough to establish social proof. The people you’re with need to be a fun, high energy group of alphas.

Being loud enough to hear not only raises your group’s social proof, it also is a form of peacocking. Any girls interested in hanging out with you will now get lots of opportunities to jump into the conversation.

Neutralize Obstacles

This is so simple, and so obvious, but it’s easy to get caught up in the moment and forget what you’re actually supposed to be doing as a wing. Identify the obstacles and neutralize them.

When first opening a group, you’ll want to keep the whole group engaged, but as you see your buddy progressing and ready to isolate, it’s your time to draw the attention of everyone else. In addition to keeping them all talking and paying attention to you, try to reposition yourself to physically isolate your buddy and his target from the rest of the group.

When your buddy is being interrupted, interrupt the interrupter. Another dude comes in and starts talking to the girl, you start talking to the other dude. The mother hen comes in and wants to drag her friend away, you talk to the mother hen.

Wingwomen

I’ve heard it said that the three most over-hyped things are champagne, lobsters, and anal. They’re none of them bad — they just don’t live up to the hype. Wingwomen are not like that. They’re actually bad.

Not all, of course, but most are terrible. They think “there’s a girl” is solid game, and “go talk to her” is some next-level shit. They don’t understand what will attract women because we’re all typically pretty bad about being honest with ourselves about what we want and what attracts us. A woman would tell you that push/pull would never work, but of course it always works.

Women are also bad wings because they’ve never seen the mechanics from the other side. They’ve been in the audience in the magic show, but that doesn’t tell them anything about the trap doors and deck switches that are being used.

Now all that aside, if you have a cool female friend who does understand the fundamentals of pickup, she is going to be a very strong member of your crew. Women are immune to the bitch shield and auto-reject instincts of other women. They fly in under the radar, and they are extremely powerful at neutralizing obstacles.

Rules for Being a Good Wingman

Whoever opens has dibs on the target.

Don’t get greedy calling dibs on more than one girl. Don’t call dibs if you’re not going to pursue her.

Never go after a girl your mate is after. And he decides when his attempt is over, not you.

Be on time to the venue.

Tell your wing if you’re leaving. Minimum send a text.

Always act with respect towards your crew.

Stay positive.

09. Escalation

The problem most guys have with escalation is that they’re thinking in terms of the DiCarlo escalation ladder. Each of these steps is a Micro Escalation. Guys asking about micro escalations want to know how you go for it to move for the next base and how exactly you should position your hand, the speed, velocity, amount of pressure, etc. That’s just the wrong way to be thinking about escalation because the answer to all those “But how do I touch her?” questions is as simple as it is unfulfilling:

Experience.

Have you gotten sufficient IOIs to go ahead? Okay, then go ahead. Then gauge her response and calibrate. How do you know if you got enough IOIs? Experience. How do you make your movements non-awkward? Experience. How do you calibrate? Experience.

Most people are somewhat awkward their first few times, and most people are also not so awkward that it even matters. Instinct will get you 95% of the way there if you let it. There’s a reason why our species is still alive, and it’s not because people are closing their eyes and thinking of England.

So if the physical how-tos of escalation aren’t what’s important, what is? Macro Escalation. Multiple screening layers and timing. I know, not nearly as sexy as talking about how to grab a boob.

Screening

I’m starting with screening because the idea of escalation being how you round the bases is just silly. Escalation is how you move from one phase of the interaction to the next and most guys have absolutely no screening process. If they see a cute girl that is the entirety of the screen. If she turns out to be a complete bitch or is a logistical nightmare he might eject, but other than that he’s thinking only in terms of getting past her screens. That’s a terrible mindset to have.

Just think for a moment of how one-directional that process is and what it says about you. It basically says that you have shit for standards and that you don’t really care what the girl is like. Do you think a girl wants to be with a guy who’s got low standards and who doesn’t even care what she’s like? Nope. Here’s the screening process you need to both demonstrate you have some respect for yourself and for the women you’re talking to.

1. The Opening – Initial Physical Attraction

There’s no way around this bit of the nitty gritty. You’re choosing who to approach based almost entirely on finding them physically attractive. What’s important to remember here is that you’ve decided only to approach. You have not decided that you like her. You don’t even know her yet, so how could you?

2. The Hook Point – Personal Connection

You’ve opened, you’ve said a few things, she’s said a few things, and after a couple minutes you should have a good idea whether or not you want to keep talking to this person. It’s basically a question of whether you like the girl’s vibe. This is the second screen, you’re deciding if you want to get to know this person and invest your time and energy in the interaction.

3. The Pull – Physical Connection

Now that you’ve had a chance to actually get to know the girl you’re finally ready to decide if you want to get physical with her. There should have been some light kino earlier on, but this is the point where the physical contact takes on sexual tone. And if you don’t know what that means: experience.

The problem a lot of guys have is that they answer Yes to Screen 1 and immediately also answer Yes to Screen 3 and completely bypass Screen 2. Don’t do that.

Timing

Now that you know what the different stages of escalation are, you can learn when to transition from one stage to the next. I’m going to steal this directly from Juggler because I think he nailed it. You escalate on her high points in the interaction. A high point is basically any time she’s putting effort into the conversation. If she tells a joke, that’s a high point, even if the joke was bad. Now the fact that the joke was bad might make you not like her personality and decide you don’t want to escalate, but assuming you’re still in to her, the high point is when you shift into the next stage of the interaction.

Whenever you shift gears the girl is naturally going to think “what caused this change?” The answer you want her to give herself is “Because I just did something to get him to like me more.”

Compare this to the alternative, escalating on your high point. You tell a great joke, she laughs, you kino and tell her that she’s cute (a micro escalation). That’s your instinct, right? You just scored a point so you get to move to the next square. Nope. Now she’s asking “what caused this change?” And the answer she comes up with is “Because he’s following a set pattern that has absolutely nothing to do with what I bring to the table.” Oops!

Just a final clarification: You don’t Macro Escalate on every high point she has. That’d be silly. What you do is talk to her enough to decide that you do want to Macro Escalate, then you look for an opportunity to do so. While you’re still in the process of deciding, you can Micro Escalate on her high points, and you can Micro Escalate if you’re waiting to overcome logistical obstacles.

12. Going for the Kiss

When it comes to getting that first kiss, there are two questions that come up: How do I know if she wants me to kiss her? And how do I go about doing it, logistics wise? Fortunately, both of these questions have the same answer, the process of advancing towards the kiss increases the feedback you get from her about her receptiveness.

Disclaimer: This is not the only way to go for a first kiss. One time I was out at a rooftop bar in New York, talking to a girl for a while and she got a phone call. While she was listening to the other person talk at one point I just went for it and kissed her. She then continued her conversation, but afterward we spent the rest of the night making out. That probably won’t ever work again.

There’s more than one way to skin a cat, but what follows is the most basic, time tested, reliable method for separating a cat from its skin.

First Contact

[Note that this is starting with the assumption that you’ve already isolated her. I may do a separate post on that at some point, but it’s too much to include here. If you try to kiss a girl with her friends or your friends watching it’s going to be far more difficult.]

Going for a first kiss is basic light kino escalation. As you’re talking you make contact with her arm, her shoulder, her knee, the small of her back, her hand, non-threatening places you’re allowed to touch someone in public. You’re essentially probing for feedback. Does she pull away? Does the mood suddenly get awkward? Does she reciprocate with contact?

The Voyage Home

Once you know that she’s not turned off by physical contact with you, the next step is to close the space between you. This can be a little bit difficult if you’re seated because you have to lift up and shift your entire body weight to move; it’s really obvious and awkward, especially if you’re going to be making a bunch of small moves. Standing is much easier as people rarely keep their feet firmly planted, even when standing in place. It’s natural to shift your weight a bit and move your feet, so you can incrementally close the space between you. Standing also makes it easier to get feedback from her, so watch if she moves away to keep the same distance from you.

At this point you’ll also want to increase eye contact and slow the rhythm of your speech a bit if you’re a fast/nervous talker. Don’t be worried about silences here. Silences when you open a set are awkward. Silences when sexual tension is building just lets the air get even more charged.

The Undiscovered Country (Alternatively: The Final Frontier)

So now you’re in close. You can practically feel the heat coming off her body. It’s like holding two magnets close, you can feel the energy trying to pull them together. If you don’t feel this, it’s probably not the right time. Go back to your other attraction material, and come back to the kiss later.

But if you do feel it, now we’re in the last phase. It’s go time, and this is where the technology has gotten pretty sophisticated.

Traditionally the advice was the Three Point Look. You look into her left eye with your right eye, then down at her lips with both eyes, and then back up and maybe look cross-eyed into her left eye or something. Frankly, the Three Point Look was overly complicated and you’re going to lose the mood trying to remember the precise combination on that lock.

What worked in the Three Point Look was the quick glance down at her lips. You make eye contact, hold it …then as quick as you can look at her lips and then back up, re-establishing eye contact. You don’t sit there starting at her mouth like a fool, this is the briefest of glances.

The idea is that you’re allowing your eyes to betray your thoughts. She will notice what just happened, which means she’ll know what you’re thinking about. We’re all afraid of rejection, and by giving that quick look you’re “accidentally” making the first move. You give her the confidence to send some non-verbal cues of her own without fear of rejection, possibly the same Three Point Look, but more often Doggy Dinner Bowl eyes. (If you don’t know what that is, picture the pleading look on a puppy’s face when it wants to be fed.) Sometimes you won’t be entirely certain of her response, and no amount of advice will better inform you. What you’ll have to do is just get more experience so you can better read body language and facial expressions in these circumstances. Theory only gets you so far, you need field experience to master this stuff.

90/10 Rule

But wait, there’s more! The 90-10 Rule. This rule states that when going for a kiss, you lean in 90% of the way, and wait for her to come the other 10% of the way to you. I’m not a big fan of this rule, and prefer the 80-10-5/5 Rule. You go in 80% of the way, wait for her to go 10% of the way, then you split the remaining 5%.

I also don’t think either of these rules is something to worry too much about. It can give you confidence to have a game plan, but the biggest resource you can have is experience reading a situation.

Mystery’s Line

Finally, there’s Mystery’s “Would you like to kiss me?” routine. It goes like this: “Would you like to kiss me?” Do not use the AFC version, “Can I kiss you?” Both can work, but Mystery’s line tends to be more successful. This is useful when you’re moving in closer but just hit a wall and can’t progress naturally, but there’s still that tension in the air. Don’t use this line if the situation feels cold, because you’re sure to get a No, and then it’s game over. Once she’s said it, she’s pretty much married to the position. Had you not asked, she might have warmed up to it, but now that she has said it she’s not likely to change her mind. When using the “Would you like to kiss me?” line you will rarely get a straight forward Yes. But the nature of the question creates a context where you both understand that anything other than a No is a Yes. You’re basically saying, “I’m going to kiss you now, so if you want to object, here’s your chance,” just with far more subtle and romantic wording.

So that’s pretty much all you need to know about how to tell if a girl wants to kiss you, and how to move in for it.

Oh, one last thing: It’s mouth-to-mouth. Just want to make sure that’s clear because I didn’t say so at the start.