Mar 15

Where to Meet Women – The Guide to Stop Swiping and Hoping

By Marcus Neo | Dating Advice for Men

The quantity of girls you meet is going to be solely dependent your ability to meet women. If you get good at approaching girls, you’ll will increase the number of girls you meet. If you develop good communication skills, it’ll will help with the converting your leads to dates, awesome sex and girlfriends. So, where can you meet women? Let’s take a look at what meeting women really entails like.

Where to Meet Women: The Warm Market

The warm market is how 98% of men meet girls. The majority of male uses the warm market, aka his social circle for his dating opportunities.

  • Social Circles

Social circles are mostly made up of old friends, colleagues or school friends. Cultivating great social circles is a good strategy for the guy who’s patient enough to cultivate and upkeep these social relationships. I personally know of guys who are naturally great a keeping and maintaining different social circles with groups of guys and girls.

If you hit off with a stranger and assuming you’re someone who got things going for yourself, then just simply ask them if they can join them for that event.

You can simply just say: I’m completely new here, can I join you guys?

To get invited to private parties, events, all you got to do is to just ask. However, before you ask, you can’t be a dickhead. This means having an ability to make others feel comfortable and appreciated around you.

If you’re looking to start or keep your own social cricle, start organising or start joining people for hang out sessions. You can also be the leader of your own social circle. Instead of joining and fitting into other people’s social circles? Why not create your own, with the current people you have in your life?

I made this mistake when starting out. I merely put myself in other people’s social circles. I resisted the idea of ‘bossing others around’ initially as dislike the idea that I might be controlling others. However, as I got better at social skills, it’s hard not to take note that you’re the one that people subtlety looks to make decisions, I naturally become more of a social leader.

You can be the one to organize, plan and execute on events. This can be your core group of friends that you hang out with on a weekly basis at the bar.

You can start inviting girls and her friends you approach (that aren’t romantically available to join you for your event):

‘Hey, you’re really nice to talk to, let’s keep in touch, my friends and I are having drinks this weekend, why don’t you come and join us?’

The downsides of relying on social circles is that they tend to be extremely limiting to the people in the group. Hitting on girls in your social circles may also cause friction in Asian cultured friends groups because after all, Asia is a tightly knitted society. For EG. If you and your friend likes the same girl in the same social group, there may be some friction involved.

  • University

University is THE PLACE to be social, meet new women and it’s one of the last time in one’s life that you’re put in an environment where there’s an endless supply of dating opportunities. In hindsight, I regretted not taking advantage of my first year in University.

You may choose to ignore your social life and focus on your grades up in University. That might work for you for your grades, however, that’s not going to do much for you for your social life and your dating life.

I noticed that many Singaporeans a lot of weight on academic success and forget that University is one of the last periods of one’s life where you get to meet A TON of people in one environment. I’m also surprised that many of these students don’t leverage their University platforms to expand their dating pool.

There’s research that our relationships contribute to a huge percentage of our happiness. So yes, loosen up and make new connections. Stop being too cool for school. Joining a co-curricular activity in University is one of the best outlets to expand your dating opportunities, you can join a co-curricular activity that you’re interested in.

The downsides of relying on social networks in University is that you may inflicted by politics. It can also be demographically limiting as you’re exposed only to your University network.

  • Colleagues 

There’s an old (read: Asian?) saying: one should not shit where they’re eating. Basically, don’t date your colleagues. I find this limiting. Firstly, I’ve dated my colleagues. It’s doable. It’s how you go about it that matters.

Here’s how to do it without any drama: If you guys are not exclusive, there’s no need to announce it to anybody. Just don’t. Keep your ego in check. Keep it under wraps so that she won’t look like a slut in other’s eyes.

You’ll also need to handle the relationship responsibly with boundaries. So as long as both partners are responsible and accountable their own actions. If you’re able to separate romance and office life, dating your colleagues is perfectly fine. So don’t limit yourself.

However, just like social circles, your demographic is severely limited to your colleagues. If you’re an engineer (like many of my friends) then you’re more likely going to end up working in an all male environment.

The Cold Market

Now, let me introduce you to my favourite subject and the point of this entire dating advice blog: the cold market.

There are tons of advantages to the cold market. Firstly, you can choose who you want to approach. You aren’t reliant on external factors such as office politics or if she shows up to class or not. You have absolute control of who you are approaching and you aren’t limited by any demographic.

Secondly, if you are out of University, not looking to rely on dating apps or agencies, then getting competent at the cold market isn’t an option.

  • Similar Interest Groups and Networking Events

Starting out, I didn’t really practice much of cold approach strangers on the street. I leveraged on University and interest groups such as yoga classes. Similar interest groups and social, networking events can be an avenue to expand your dating opportunities. The key here is to be bold in talking your target. Just go up and introduce yourself.

You can use:

There are events specifically for dating and singles such as speed dating events. However, I’ll not recommend them as your first outlet as you’re going to sacrifice a little on the quality of girls you’ll meet at singles events. That’s just an ugly truth. This is the same as using dating apps: the majority of quality girls aren’t being chased, they aren’t spending their time looking for partners in speed dating events.

  • Tinder and/or Online Dating 

In general, I don’t use dating apps to meet women. I also don’t recommend Tinder, online dating and dating agencies. Let’s be brutally honest here, quality women aren’t spending their time swiping right on Tinder. Here’s an ugly truth about dating. It’s all about economics: demand and supply.

Remembered your time in school where there are only a couple of of beautiful girls in your cohort and almost every single guy found themselves infatuated with the same couple of girls. There you go. Demand and supply.

The economics of dating suggests that beautiful women are always in demand. The majority of physically attractive, high-quality girls aren’t staring at their phones on a Friday night. They are out at social events, at the most popular nightclubs and getting hit on by a ton of guys.

This is why if you’re only relying on dating apps for your dating life, you’re going to limit yourself to a certain demographic.

Secondly, if a beautiful girl is already getting so much positive social attention in her social life, you can also bet your last dollar that 99.5% of men in these apps are going to swipe right on her online dating profile. You’re also measured and judged by a limited number of words and profile pictures on your Tinder profile. How are you going to stand out through a limited dating profile? You’re up against negative odds.

However, assuming that you’re stuck in a deadbeat and you require something to get you going. Using Tinder or other dating apps to get things going can be a good thing.

  • Dating Agencies/ Paid Dating Events

It can seem ideal, meeting Mrs perfect who is recommended by a ‘trusted’ someone or company. All you got to do is to pay the bills, show up and things will magically fall into place. However, reality often doesn’t pan out that way.

I don’t recommend paying someone $100 per hour to sit across a table with an unknown stranger. If you’re not getting results in your relationships, what makes you think you’ll actually be able to build a passionate relationship with someone that’s recommended by someone determined by a ‘dating resume’.

Ultimately, if you’re reliant on dating agencies to hopefully meet someone, you’re NOT developing yourself as a person, you just filling up a resume, hoping you show up and do well on a date. You aren’t making any effort to develop conversational skillsets, overcome anxiety, build self awareness, develop social intelligence and confront of that difficult issues that brought you to a dating agency in the first place. Sorry mate, you’ll be that EXACT same person who needed a middleman to fix you a date on a Friday night.

The Cold Market at Scale: The Cold Approach 

  • The Cold Approach

The cold approach is termed coined from the pick up artist community where you just walk up to a girl anytime, anywhere and introduce yourself. Getting good at the cold approach will open up your dating opportunities to almost anyone that’s seemingly approachable. You can choose to meet girls on the streets, shopping centres and just about any daily mundane social situations.

The downsides of this philosophy is that the cold approach is a skillset you need to get down. You’re not going to get good at this on your first couple of tries. This requires practice. Cold approaching is ideal. However, it’s difficult. You’ll need to understand the mechanics of sparking something out of nothing. This isn’t just walking up any girl, throwing up a bunch of lines and hoping for it to stick. There’s a process behind it.

Here’s my guide on how to approach girls.

Note for an Asian reader: It’s not uncommon for Asian parents to tell you to not to talk to strangers whilst growing up. Asians are commonly stereotyped to be more conservative, shy and withdrawn. This is further re-enforced by Asian culture: talking to strangers is a weird thing. For every stereotype, there’s some truth to it. When I was traveling in Western cultures such as Europe and the United States, people are a lot more socially open as compared to Asian cultures.

However, you’re not limited to your culture. If you want to get good at this, screw the stereotypes and take action.

  • Clubs

I’ll categorize meeting girls in clubs under cold approach similarly. That’s because you’re still attempting to spark something out of nothing.

It safe to say that you’re going to get a more open response in clubs. It’s a more socially acceptable action to approach a girl in the club. Women in clubs are expected to be approached. This is true whether be it in Singapore (my home country), or other parts of the world. Clubs are also meant to be meet markets.

The downsides of clubs is that it takes up a lot of time and money. That’s because of the nature of clubs. If you aren’t taking her home on that night itself, you’re going to need to normalize your interaction with her to solidify your lead.

Closing Thoughts

I personally think if you want to get good at this, developing basic skillsets like starting a conversation with women in social events is going to get your results. However, if you really want to be great at this and have choice in your dating life, you need to get down the skillset of cold approaching girls. Lastly, meeting women is not just approaching or putting yourself infront of dating opportunities, you also have to curate a lifestyle you are proud of, present yourself positively and become an overall attractive individual.

 

Mar 13

How to Touch a Girl – without Being Creepy or Awkward

By Marcus Neo | Dating Advice for Men

Your ability to touch a girl and be physically assertive is going to make up 80% of your success with women. From personal experience, the majority of guys have problems with being comfortable with their sexuality, displaying sexual interest. This is why 98% of men hover desperately around women in clubs on the dance floor not daring to make a move. I’m going to spend some time talking about sexual shame before getting into any technical strategies.

How to Touch a Girl – Sexual Shame

Sexual shame occurs when any of us feel inherently wrong, immoral, unworthy of our own sexuality. Sexual shame holds us from asserting our sexual desires. It can come from traumatic past experiences. It could be coming from an overly strictly family upbringing or culture. It could be being emotionally or physically abused when you’re young. Conquering shame requires quite a bit of introspection.

I’m Asian, stereotypically, Asians are perceived as introverted and aren’t seen as sexually confident. Sex is also often seen as a taboo subject in Asian culture. Sexual shame is one of the biggest problems that Asian cultures face, for example, Japanese people choosing to stay single and unmarried.

On some fundamental level, you may believe that women do not want to be hit on, that women do not like being touched. You may belief that it’s wrong to touch a girl or if you’re physically assertive with a girl you’re ‘bad’. The first step to being more sexually comfortable with women is to re-orient our beliefs towards our own sexualities. You do this by first being aware of them and secondly challenging those beliefs.

I know of this one acquaintance of mine that gets laid regularly. He approaches girls aggressively right from the get go. He grabs them right from the get go and doesn’t ask for any permission. I’m standing there thinking: he’s going to fucking embarrass himself. Low behold, he eventually actually gets a couple of girls giggling and ends up kissing them.

When was the last time you saw a beautiful lady walk down the street and you wished you could to pin her against the wall and ravish her right there and then? Now, this is a truth, this entire attracting women thing is by nature polarising and controversial. Some are going to think you’re a creep and the right ones will appreciate you for taking the lead. If you need to be accepted or liked by everyone else, you’re going to be pushed around in subtle ways and not so subtle manners.

If you’re in the nightclub and you are afraid of what her friends might think about you if you are sexually forthright. You have a boundary issue. You’re essentially taking responsibility for other people’s actions and emotions. You don’t have to be responsible for other people’s actions and emotions. Those are not your problems. That is a problem that nice guys face, trying to please everyone and end up not asserting themselves.

Ultimately, you’re going to have to assert yourself and you’re get rejected at. Their reactions are out of your control. Confident men go for what they want without apology and are willing to ruffle a few feathers along the way. You can’t be sexually attractive without being disliked by some.

On Sexual Assertiveness: Our Emotional Realities

Psychologist Robert Glover make the argument in how an absent parent can be the making of a ‘Mr Nice Guy’, who constantly fails to assert his needs in his life. I also observed that people with difficulty in this area of their life (including myself) often have a history of a troubled childhood.

This could be overly strict parents, a religious upbringing, abusive, absent parents or past trauma.

It’s researched that people growing up without a father figure suffer from a diminished self concept, behavioural problems, truancy and poor academic performance and a host of other issues. Psychologists also argued that the father figure is important to a boy’s development of identity.

They may feel a sense of abandonment, betrayal, not being able to fit in and feeling different. Without paternal approval, boys may experience emotional pain that leads to attempts to prove themselves. This includes intense competition with other men, engaging in risky behaviors, criminal ‘tough guy’ behavior, intending to scare the world into seeing them as men. This confidence is a bravado that’s derived from overcompensation.

There’s the second argument, during the pre-industrial period, fathers bring their kids to work day. Father and son worked side by side from sunrise to sunset. This was seen as normal. Fathers taught by example, apprenticing their sons into trades, simultaneously imparting lessons on hard work and virtue.

However, during the industrial revolution, fathers abandoned the workshop for a place at the assembly line. There is a clear line drawn between home and the workplace. Fathers left for work in the morning and didn’t come home for 10-12 hours. Child rearing is left in the women’s hands. Hence, you get a generation of men who spent all their time with Mum, growing up with Mummy issues.

No More Mr Nice Guy

It’s only by confronting these issues head and getting comfortable with your sexuality, that you develop a matured form of confidence, instead of being an overcompensating prick. You may not think you’re one of ‘these people’. However, if you constantly find yourself feeling deliberated in your interactions, getting involved in toxic relationships, choosing bad partners, then there may be something there, you’re just not aware of it.

When I started being a lot more introspective about failures and decisions in my life, I found myself pissed off and hurt at many past events and got really angry at a lot of people around me. When you’re confronting these emotional realities, developing weird beliefs or finding yourself in angry phases going to be part of the process. That’s normal, inevitable and a necessary part of your growth.

The process consists of being introspective about past events that might have lead to current issues. The idea is to get in touch, process and grief through the emotions you avoided or suppressed through the years.

For example, if you feel numb or detached in intimate situations, why is that so? Is there a fear of vulnerability? Is it a fear of abandonment? If you fail to assert yourself time and time again with women, why is that so? Is there a feeling of not being good enough? If you’re too afraid of speaking your mind or going for what you want in life, why is that so? Is there a fear of failure and rejection?

In many ways, this single ability submarined my business, dating life and along with many areas of my life. I was afraid of confrontation and going for what I want.

How to Figure Out Your Emotional Truth

  • Writing

Writing letters and emails can be helpful for expressing/ reflecting on your genuine thoughts and feelings. For years, I used writing as tool, I wrote journals, I wrote letters to the people explaining misgivings I had against them. It all helped.

  • Seek Out Role Models

One way to you can feel more masculine is by taking part in group activities and learning to work with other men in groups. Developing male relationships helps undo your monogamous bond with Mum. There’s research that suggests that there are benefits to doing things together such as having a beer at the local bar once a week. Group activities build bonding and a sense of camaraderie.

You can also take this opportunity to examine your relationship with your own father and seek out healthy male role models.

Male friendships have the potential for depth and intimacy because there is no sexual agenda. With men, there’s no pressure to be someone else other than who you are. There’s no need to please, placate or lie that a lot of men tend to believe they have to around women.

I used to stick to individual activities such as martial arts or hitting the gym. However, I realized that group activities can better my relationships. One of my proudest moment in recent years was accomplishing a common goal working on a marketing project side by side with a friend.

You can seek out mentors that help you achieve your goals. I always attempt to surround myself with men who have traits that I look up: accountability, integrity and the ability to challenge themselves. David Deida, a popular writer on masculinity argued that masculinity is like a boat in an ocean, spearheading it with a direction and forging a path. Traditional masculine traits often entail accountability, confidence, decisiveness and a go-getter’s mentality.

I also recommend you to form relationships with men who not only have traditional masculine traits but the ability to open up.

  • Therapy

Forward thinking dating coaches have found out that the lack of confidence around women is partly rooted in sexual shame, that is often rooted in one’s past experiences, childhood. This is why pick up artists, often after years of going at it, find themselves often chasing a phantom and are often more or equally as miserable as before. They don’t solve the root problem: their own emotional issues.

There may underlying emotional knots that hinders you back in this area of your life. This can stem from a fear of rejection. This can stem from negative belief. The more the shame, the harder it is going to be. One the options you can use to facilitate this is psychotherapy.

Unfortunately, learning how to touch a girl can’t be overcome by solely hiring therapist. However, the only way is through. Overcoming your shame through real life interactions is the only way you’re going to get better in this.

How to Touch a Girl: The Art of Sexual Confidence

There are general levels to to work your way up. You’re not going to approach a girl and have sex with her right there and there. There’s a progression to it.

Projecting a sexual vibe the first important tenets in learning how to touch a girl. Plant your feet firmly into the ground. Show her then you’re willing to take up space and you’re willing to intrude into her personal space. Show her that you’re a potential sexual partner and not some random stranger, furthermore, you won’t be able to touch her if you’re not standing near to her.

You can be pretty confrontational in your body language depending on how comfortable she is. Squaring up to her demonstrates confidence and openness. One way you can project this is to look deep into her eyes whilst conversing and inch your body closer and then pull away, as if you’re teasing her by leaving a vacuum in between.

The Indirect Escalation

Handshakes, shoulder and elbow touches are strategies you can use to break physical contact. You can use these touches to punctuate your sentences and jokes. For example, you can lightly tap her on her elbow after making a joke.

The indirect escalation is the art of using these minor social gestures in conjunction with the push pull dynamic.

If she’s comfortable with physical proximity, you can hug her by her shoulder her like a good friend does to see if she’s comfortable with further intimacy. It’s an innocent move with both your bodies facing away, yet, your arms is resting on her shoulder like your good friends. It’s a good way to escalate physically in nightclubs.

  • Push

“We’re getting divorced. You keep the kids, I get the house and the dog.”

This is a push. This can be followed up with a slight push on her shoulder.

  • Pull

“I’m kidding, you’re awesome, I love you.”

This is a pull, you should be pulling her in for a hug by the shoulder, neck or waist, depending on where you are at in the interaction.

Repeating the push-pull dynamic and rinsing them will generate opportunities to hug her, kiss her or to move things forward.

You can calibrate and adjust accordingly to her level of interest interacting with you. Once her hands are on your shoulders or her shoulders on yours, you can leave it there for a bit see how comfortable she is with it. One of the golden rules of flirting physically is to assume that you’ve known her for years. You then take it off to avoid seemingly like a creep and keep the ambiguity of the interaction going.

Direct Escalation

The cons of escalating directly is that you are displaying too much interest. She already knows she has you. Secondly, you’re not getting any investment from her end, you’re not making her chase, you’re not making her wonder. You can kill sexual tension just by escalating too much.

Through touching her outrightly, you’re also displaying comfort with your own sexuality. If you like her, then express it directly, there’s no need for too much fanciful flirting. You are a sexual man and you can show it.

There was once I attempted to kiss a girl and she cocked her head backwards in disgust and asked me what was I up to. I plainly told her that I was trying to kiss a girl I desired. Yes, my behaviors were a little un-calibrated, but it displayed boldness. Even though I was rejected, I asserted myself unapologetically and she was actually turned on by that.

Starting out, I was weak in this area. My style of attracting women was more laid back, conversational based. This laidback attitude rendered ineffective after a while. The more polarizing you become, the more you’re expected to initiate. She’s going expecting you to move things forward and want to fall into her ‘femininity’. Take this whatever way you want, however, this is my personal experience.

Sometimes, coming up with witty push pull-strategies gets repetitive. Hence, going direct can effective. If you’re on a date and things are already going well, you can say: ‘you’re beautiful’ in an authentic manner. Step in and lean in to kiss her.

It boils down to intentions. If a behaviour is expressed unconditionally in the moment, it’s an attractive behaviour.

However, it’s NOT attractive to verbalize when or how you’re going to touch a girl at every step of the the interaction. Saying out loud: “I’m going to hold your hands now” and then holding it is pretty awkward. It doesn’t display confidence either because of that fact that you need to ‘verbalize’ and somewhat ‘seek permission’ to do it.

The Comfort Point

In my experience, if you get to the point where she is comfortable with you holding hands with her, the rest is going to flow quite naturally. Holding her hand can be initiated just by holding her hand straight out or taking her hand and leading her somewhere when you’re moving locations in the nightclub or different locations on a date.

  • Sexual Comfort, Kissing, Making Out 

Choosing the right spot and knowing where to sit will facilitate physical intimacy. You can sidle up to her and hold her by the waist whilst sitting. This is most done on a date or an isolated setting. You’ll be surprised at how much girls are receptive to this, especially in a nightclub situation. There’s an element of sexual tension when standing close to her, holding her by her neck lightly and touching slightly at her waist or arms.

You then progress on to light kissing, make outs and then touching her at erogenous zones. The rest is usually history.

Some of these stages are going to be more applicable than another in different situations. Some girls are going to be comfortable kissing you in front of her friends, and some are not. You need to be empathetic, most girls do not want to look easy, you need to see what she’s comfortable with and what she’s not comfortable with. It’s all about calibration.

Closing Thoughts

From personal experience, the main problem majority of us face out there waiting for the green lights. Here’s the truth: There are no green lights.

Your ability to be sexually assertive is going to determine if you end up with many female friends or girlfriends. This skillset is also going save you a lot of time and increase your results.

Your inability to be physically dominant even if she has given you all the clear signs is going to bleed through your interactions. She’ll be able to intuitively feel if you’re not really what you make up yourself to be. It’s going to come off in that slight hesitation.

Lastly, she’ll never assume the responsibility of moving the interaction forward. In my six years of pursuing girls, it has rarely happened. You have to be the one that puts your arm around her shoulders. You have to be the one that puts that arm around her waist. You have to be the one that takes her hand and pull her to the dance floor. You have to be the one that turns her around to face you on the dance floor. You have to be the one that has to go in for th

Mar 04

How to Tease a Girl – Even if You’re Not Naturally Funny

By Marcus Neo | Dating Advice for Men

Learning how to tease a girl is an effective strategy to take your interactions from a social one to a romantic or sexual one. It’s a necessary skillset of modern dating. If you want to be competent in your dating life, learning how to tease a girl is a key skill.

The reason why teasing is effective is because it implies a kindred bond between you and her. Old friends tease each other all the time. It can be ‘offensive’, but it also implies a bond between two people. Teasing done right is demonstrating your intentions without out rightly saying it. Teasing also adds in sexual polarity your romantic interaction.

Taking care of yourself, dressing well and demonstrating direct interest to girls can yield you results. However, it is not going to take you all the way. From personal experience, many women aren’t ready or able to receive direct compliments or direct romantic interest. They may even feel awkward if you express interest directly. This is where teasing helps ease the interaction.

Furthermore, teasing done right, can demonstrates that you’re ‘of equal or higher’ social value than the person you are interacting with (even if you are not). It sets a romantic precedent in the interaction. You aren’t just being a funny individual, you’re setting a precedent a potential romantic outcome in your interaction.

How to Tease a Girl: Understanding Push Pull

90% of teases are going to end up in a category of ‘push and pull’. The push-pull dynamic is a term coined by the pick up artist community to describe a commonly used technique of flirting. If you understand push pull, you understand 90% of the art of teasing. The push pull dynamic sends mixed signals, intentions and creates sexual tension.

  • Push

The push is when you ‘push a girl away’ with a tease or a something negatively playful. For a push to work, you got to do it in a tongue in cheek style.

Here’s an example of a push:

‘That’s kind of annoying. We’re totally not going to get a long’

  • Pull

The ‘pull’ is when you say something that pulls her back in to soften the push. It’s normally done after a ‘push’. This creates an “I love you, I hate you dynamic” which is girls find fun and arousing. There’s research that suggest that mixed signals build sexual tension.

If a girl I’m out on a date with says something smart, I could say: “You’re kind of a huge nerd. However, being smart is kind of cute.” There’s a push and the pull in one sentence. I’m teasing her for being nerd and saying it’s a good thing.

If you’re interested, I did an in-depth article on the push pull dynamic.

How to Tease without Insulting Her

Teasing done right, isn’t done to get a reaction from the girl. Teases should be done in a tongue in cheek manner… also in way that it subtlety demonstrates interest. Teasing is NOT about using it as a ‘technique’ or a ‘line’. When a tease is done right, she’ll laugh, hit you on the arms or give you a slightly shocked looked.

Teasing should be done right at the right time. For example, if you sense that your interaction with her is getting a little dry, you can add some teases to spice things up. If you feel that she’s not comfortable with you, perhaps she doesn’t feel special enough. You should stop teasing her and ease up a little.

There was this one approach with a Korean girl at the club. I approached her with a direct approach. I held her cheeks in my hands and leaned in as if to examine her face. She seemed interested until the point where I threw in a disqualification.

“You look like my younger little sister”.

Her face changed immediately and she signalled her friend to walk away. In this case, I wasn’t congruent with my direct approach, where I approached her expressing interest directly. Teasing has it’s right time and place in any situation.

Secondly, only teasing in the interaction may make it seem that you’re only interested in insulting her. It also demonstrates that you’re actually afraid of show your interest for her and that you’re using teases as a way to means cover up your lack of confidence.

4 Examples of How to Tease a Girl You Can Use Today

  • Role Playing

Role playing is assuming imaginary roles between you and her and creating interesting scenarios out of it. Roleplaying is one of my favourite go to. The one I used to milk the hell out of is the husband and wife role play:

“We’re getting divorced, you’re keeping the kids, I get the TV and the music”

Other role plays dynamics can be girlfriend boyfriend dynamic, the crazy ex girlfriend, teacher and student and anything can imply a potentially romantic/ sexual interaction. You can also call back to the same role play time to time throughout your time spent with her.

  • Stereotypes

Stereotypes are fun to play with. You can play around with common cultural narratives and jokes that are unique to your culture.

In Singapore (my home country), there’s a stereotype known as the ‘ah lian’. If a girl is ah lian, it means she’s outspoken and unkempt. I used to milk this stereotype. Stereotype styled jokes are culture and country specific. If you’re traveling to a new culture, it may be difficult for you to implement. I only suggest this method in a culture you are familiar with.

Here a one size fits all solution:

“I have this idea that everyone from [her country] is [borderline racist stereotype].”

There are more universal stereotypes that you can tease her from observations. If a girl is wearing spectacles and like to read, you can tease her about being nerdy. If she studying mass communication/ law/ political science or whatever, you can tease her about being an intellectual snob.

  • Embarrassing Physical or Personality Trait

This type of teases are usually delivered through an observation about an embarrassing physical or personal trait in her. Even if you’re just guessing and she doesn’t actually display that trait. If she does something clumsy, or loud, or attention-seeking. You can tie the behaviour to a children’s character, or an immature youth and expand on it to ridiculous proportions.

This style of teasing is mostly done situationally.

You can use conversational jump off points about her job or about her current mood and link it back to something childish. This should also be done positively, and not negatively. That’s the difference between a tease and an insult.

The sensible and irresponsible dynamic:

 “You are the sensible one, aren’t you? She’s always having dumb ideas and you have to make the decisions before everything goes disastrously wrong.”

The bad girl good girl dynamic:

“You’re a bad girl. She’s a nice girl – I can see it in her eyes. You are trouble. I don’t trust you. My mother warned me to stay away from girls like you.”

“You’re the older sister, right? Always watching the baby one and keeping her out of trouble.”

  • Disqualification

Teasing can also be incorporated to disqualification. The basic idea of disqualification is to actively demonstrate to someone, that she may NOT be a right fit for you. At the start of every relationship, both parties isn’t invested in any outcome. She isn’t chasing. She hasn’t invested.

If done right, this can elicit her to start qualifying herself, value you more and maybe start chasing you a little.

To properly disqualify girls, you need to be of value first. This means you can’t be a bum and start disqualifying yourself. Only after you have built value, displayed status and demonstrated you’re a win for her. Then you can actively evaluate her.

Here are some disqualification lines you can use:

‘You seem… interesting…’
‘You have the silliest/ most adorable expressions’
‘Your trouble’
‘You and I are so not going to get along’
‘You’re actually kind of cute’
‘You would make a great girlfriend/ wife if you weren’t so X’
‘You’ll never get into my pants if you keep doing that’

They all subtly say: I’m interested but I’m not quite sold yet, you got to show me more. I’m also screening and judging you if you are a right fit in my life. Through disqualifying yourself as a potential partner, you send ambiguous signals. 

Ideally, a ‘gap’ is created between you and her and gets her to think ‘Who the hell is he? I’m hot, however, this guy doesn’t seem to want to get with me. Why is that so?’

It’s puts in her head: ‘am I not good enough?’

  • The Call Back Humor Styled Tease

Lastly, I enjoy using call back humour styled tease because it’s reusable and it relies on free association and improv skills. For example, early on in the interaction, you teased her about being nerdy. From then on, for every ‘mistake’ or ‘foolish’ action she does, you can call back to the tease of her being nerdy and relate the action to that.

In my experience, you can milk the initial tease a couple more times. However, she may start getting insulted if you bring it too far.

How to Incorporate Teasing to Touching and Touching

Just teasing a girl with words isn’t enough. There’s nothing inherently wrong with the push and pull style of flirting, childish teases and coming up with role plays. However, these strategies can become repetitive and boring. If you’re over reliant on teasing her, then you’re going end up with a lot laughs and a weird physical void. Sexual tension is never really reliant just on words.

You’ll need to add physicality at some point of the interaction or she’ll sense that you’re just masking your confidence with clever lines. Note: The more attractive you become, the more girls to expect you to lead the interaction.

However, not to worry, to incorporate your teases with touching her, it falls back the the same dynamic of push pull. For example, you can tease her saying that she’s annoyingly childish and then reel her back in with a shoulder hug or front hug. Rinse and repeat this push-pull dynamic and you’ll get a sexually charged interaction.

Here’s a sequence:

[Tease Verbally + Touch]

“You’re either the really independent type of girl or so you’re one of those pretentious bankers with that suit and tie. I’m just kidding, I really like the outfit, it has a sexy secretary look to it.” +  Shoulder Hug. 

If you’re looking for a more detailed process, you can take a look at my guide on how to touch a girl.

The push pull model remains in this process. There is a negative and positive to your words and actions. You can rinse and repeat this model in different variations during different phases your interactions and it creates sexual tension.

Closing Thoughts

Ultimately, teasing is a core skillset you need to get down to set a romantic/sexual precedent in your interactions and move your interactions forward. Girls do it, guys do it and everyone does it. It’s the way people introduce sexual polarity between each other then. 

Mar 01

How to Make a Girl Laugh – In an Attractive Manner

By Marcus Neo | Dating Advice for Men

It’s said that if you can make a woman laugh, you get her to laugh right into bed. Getting a girl to laugh isn’t a cure all to your dating woes, however, it’s a necessary social skill to build. Other than making a girl laugh, humour is also a way of make her and others feel comfortable around you.

How to Make a Girl Laugh – The Ultimate Guide

Making women laugh, at the core of it, is the the art of drawing connections between too completely unrelated ideas or objects that’s completely absurd. It’s a creative activity. There’s no math behind it. You cannot over prepare for it. It’s not something you can box or put down to an algorithm.

Your sense of humour, ability to make her laugh, tease her is dependent on your willingness to be polarizing and edgy. The thing about making women laugh and putting jokes out there is that a good percentage of of them is going to fall flat. This is unavoidable.

Some times, I get a flat silence when I mouth off something ridiculous. Other times, I get a huge laugh. It’s a social risk I’m willing to take. The rule of thumb is this: if your joke fall flats don’t try to laugh at yourself or make fun of yourself. Just act as if nothing happens and move your conversational threads forward.

Appreciating Language

The best way to learn humor to help you make a girl laugh is to appreciate language and wit.

One of the ways to study stand up comedy.  You’ll see me referencing stand up comedians for the rest of this article. I remembered when I first started reading up. I’ll stay up on Youtube to watch videos after videos of stand up comedy. I started listening to comedians like Louis Ck and Chris Rock. I also attended a couple of improvisation classes. You can find these improv classes on MeetUp.Com or just Google them. They are often affordable.

Humour Techniques, The Your Bread and Butter

There’s a good percentage of my clients that are the nice guy sort. They are good listeners, yes, however, most of them aren’t willing to assert themselves in a more edgy, polarising manner. To get good at attracting women, you need to be somewhat edgy. Teasing her can go wrong. Saying something potentially offensive may piss her off.

There’s a HUGE difference in being humorous, having a sense of humour, and teasing her. Yes, there are overlapping principles, however, the former is making jokes that she finds funny, the latter is eliciting a man to woman frame by making fun of her. The latter is more useful to elicit sexual polarity in your interactions

  • Teasing 

Teasing is when you make humorous comments that are derogatory about someone. You can tease her just about everything: about how fake her hair looks. Or how red her shoes are. Try to be creative with this. When she dresses up, you can tell her she looks like some cartoon character from some movie.

Sarcasm DOESN’T come off well in certain situations. In some cultures, women can be quite offended or don’t react well to some good-natured ribbing. This can be quite true for the Singaporean or Asian culture. It all depends on who you are with. Some girls react well to more derogatory teasing, and some girls appreciate genuine compliments. Mix it up.

For the Singaporean readers: One classic line I used to do is to associate a girl with an ‘ah lian’ but in a light hearted manner. The ‘ah lian’ is a stereotype for a girl who isn’t that intelligent who’s quite unkempt in the Singaporean context.

Teasing should be done in good fun, it should be said with a smile. The perfect tease creates a mixture of emotions in a girl: defensiveness yet happiness. An ideal reaction from her should be: ‘Oh my god, I can’t believe you just said that.’ However, she’s smiling and laughing at the same time.

Comedian to study: Russell Brand

  • Stereotypes and Cultural References

This can be practiced by studying local comedians that perform to your local audiences. Stereotypes are poked fun at almost every local comedy show. Teasing can be done along with the concept of common stereotypes. Russell Peters do a good job and racial jokes. Singaporean comedians like Kumar exploits it by going into Chinese, Malay and Indian stereotypes. One good one I often use is the good girl/ bad girl stereotypes.

  • Exaggeration

This is the safest form of humour where you joke about something outside of you and the girl. Exaggeration has to be something absurd and non-logical.

Comedian to Study: Russell Peters

  • Misdirection

The technique of misdirection is one of the most common and easiest forms of humor. Misdirection occurs when you begin to say something or tell a story which leads to the listener to believe you’re making one point, but you proceed to say something completely different.

Here’s a good example of misdirection: I use all the time is to joke with girls that I’m actually quite shy, after spending an entire evening being slightly cocky and extroverted. I’ll also insert in at a point in the interaction where it’s least expected, just for the extra effect.

Comedian to study: Craig Ferguson

The master of misinterpretations

  • Role Plays

The technique of role plays is taken right out of the pick up artist textbooks.

They are playful and can be useful to spice up a stale interaction. You can role play girlfriend/boyfriend, husband/wife, student/teacher or any potentially sexual relationship. If she’s your ‘girlfriend’, you can either break up or get together with her. If she’s your ‘wife’, you can either divorce or marry her. One other role play and a slight dis-qualifier I use these days is complain to some else that your ex girlfriend (her) is bothering you.

Role playing is fun and refreshing for a girl. Nobody ever does it.

Just like all other humour techniques, role plays should be done in context. I used to do: ‘I’ll like to adopt you as my little sister’ (as a minor disqualification). However, this rarely works for me anymore. Girls often take it in a wrong way where they’ll think I’m not interested in her.

  • Misinterpretation

Here’s one of the most useful flirting, humor techniques, misinterpretation. It’s also a commonly known technique to answer ‘shit tests’.

For example, if a girl says: ‘I’m not too sure about that shirt you are wearing?’

You can misinterpret it as: ‘I’m flattered you’re thinking about my face, but hey slow down, didn’t we just meet?’ (done with a tongue in cheek manner)

This is basically misinterpreting anything a girl says as a compliment or a sexual advancement. However, be careful not to take it too far. Use it in context.

How to Make a Girl Laugh: Subjective Humor

If your sense of humour revolves around a darker or intellectual form of humour, not everyone is going to get it. My sense of humour revolves around sarcasm, word puns and dark humour. Like making fun of dead babies, that sort. I’ve also rubbed people the wrong way.

Wordplays, puns, sarcasm and swearing falls under the category of subjective humor. They aren’t for everybody. However, if you find a girl that can connect you on such humor, then you’re may be hitting the lottery ticket.

  • Wordplay and Puns

Wordplay is similar to misdirection. However, wordplay practices misdirection by using words that have different meanings.

Girl: ‘Stop being so mean Marcus.’
Me: ‘Stop calling me average.’

Puns and wordplays are even a rarer form of appreciated humour than sarcasm. They tend to be intellectual in nature. You’ll find a small demographic of women who’ll appreciate them.

  • Sarcasm

Sarcasm is a darker form of humor than teasing and it doesn’t really work well with most of the girls. This is especially true with Asian women. Asian culture is a lot more reserved and sensitive. The majority of women won’t get sarcastic humor. It may be misconstrued as being serious and get confused. Sarcasm, in my experience, gets even worst on text. However, you’ll get the rare one or two woman that understands sarcasm and she’ll love you for it.

  • Role of Swearing

Inserting a ‘fuck’ in your jokes can give you cheap laughs. I use it quite a bit during my teenage years and it has given me lots of laughs and weird stares simultaneously.

Swear words can be used sparingly if there’s a right delivery and you know that the person that you’re communicating to is cool with little swear words here and there. With that being said, it’s uncool to just based your conversations with too many swear words. It can show that you have a limited vocabulary.

Dropping an F-bomb in an already well timed joke can make the joke even funnier. However, dropping an F-Bomb in everything you say can make you come off as unsophisticated.

Side note: Swearing should be used minimally in Asian situations. (especially when there is elder family around.)

Example: Joe Rogan

  • Self Deprecating Humor

There’s a form humour called self deprecating humour. It’s the art of making jokes at yourself. There’s a popular argument if someone that can laugh at himself and the world conveys a high level of confidence. He isn’t taking things too seriously or himself too seriously. He’s not really concerned about someone else’s perception of him. Compare this to someone who’s very serious and unable to laugh at himself or the world. This conveys that he is over invested in what others think of him and therefore is not confident.

Louis CK is hilarious but not in a sexy way.

I started off learning humor by studying Louis Ck. His style is humorous for him because he’s overweight and balding. However, despite being humourous, he’s not the kind the guy that women want to go home with. This is why for beginners, if you’re making fun of yourself and putting yourself down to get a laugh, you’ll come off as unconfident. You’ll need to be aware based on context. If you’re going out with a girl who’s really shy around you. Putting yourself down and laughing at yourself can help her loosen up and open up.

How to Practice: Frame, Playfulness, Timing & Expression

Okay, knowing jokes or the lines isn’t enough. There’s an art to telling jokes, teasing a girl or dropping an F-bomb. You need to pay attention to delivery, timing and facial expressions. These techniques unfortunately, can’t be taught through words.

Russell Brand, one of the all time best with wit and language.

The best way to learn this is to watch stand up comedians and watch their stand up routines. Take note of how they interact with the audience, their style of humor, their routines, how they tell a story and how they nail a punchline. Take note of how they time their jokes, their delivery and facial expressions when they make a joke.

One single sentence can be interpreted in multiple ways depending on you say it, deliver it. There are also often multiple meanings to words. This is known as innuendos. If you get good at timing, delivery, tonality and facial expressions, you can use plain English to say something in a sexual manner. “I like beach walks that are long, wet and hard”.

Humor isn’t to be studied logically like a Math exam. Humor is to be experienced creatively. If you are teasing her, it should be done with a smile, with a grin and with tongue in cheek. You don’t go up to her and ‘execute the humor’. Making women laugh is a creative skillset that relies on free association. The better you can freely associate any social situation, the better tou get.

Using Humour to Bring Up Sex

One of the best ways to use humor isn’t to make her laugh, but to bring up sex in the conversation. If anything at all, the best use of humor is to use it to escalate physically with a girl. Openly talking about sex is a taboo topic in many cultures and many are uncomfortable to talk about it. However, if you bring humour into sex, then it’s a lot more acceptable.

Humor is commonly used by comedians to criticize sensitive issues or individuals in politics, as opposed to an outright assertion (that’ll get you sued). This is the same for sex. If it’s funny, you’re not being creepy.

To take your interaction to a more sexual frame, using humour to bring up sex can grease the wheels. It’s likely to get away with a controversial topic when it is funny.

Humor in Westernized Cultures as Compared to Asian Culture

The form of humor that works in an Asian dating culture is a lot different from the Westernized culture. In general, I find dark humour a lot more accepted in Western cultures. Not everyone responds well a darker sense of humour.

I’ll also stay away from religious jokes in most cultures. To give an example, the Singaporean culture has an interesting mix of a myriad of races and religion living cohesively. It’s safe to say that you should avoid jokes that are sensitive to religion.

The best method is to train yourself to be universally funny. That is: humor that is relatable to all people, regardless of culture. Louis Ck does a good job at this within certain themes. He’s able to express the nuances of humanity in a humorous way.

Caveat: Louis Ck has a self-depreciating style of humor that doesn’t suit well for many personalities (including mine). Girls ultimately desire a confident man that don’t poke fun at himself just to get laughs.

Being Funny as Cure all in Getting Girls?

Finally, your sense of humour and your ability to make a girl laugh isn’t a cure all for your problems for attracting women. If she’s smiling and laugh, your jokes must be working right? That’s a pitfall that I fell into for a period of time.

If you over rely on their ability to make a girl laugh, you’ll end up as the dancing monkey or the ‘entertainer’ constantly seeking laughs from girls. You might find yourself over reliant on quick wit and jokes to avoid asserting yourself romantically or sexually.

In general, if you’re able to to crack a joke or two, then humour isn’t your main problem. If she’s laughing but your interactions seem to go nowhere, then your problem is being sexually assertive with her.

Feb 29

How to Be Vulnerable – The Power of Vulnerability

By Marcus Neo | Relationships

I grew up in a culture where men aren’t supposed to be showing their emotions. You know, the typical Asian male. He’s suppose to stoically get into a good University, do something related to Science or Math, get a ‘stable job’, get a wife, raise a couple of kids and achieve career success, whatever the hell ‘career success’ means.

How to be vulnerable? What is vulnerability? You may think it’s some thing you do that’s feminine, soft hearted and sprinkled with fairy dust. 

Singapore, my home country, also happens to be one of the costliest cities in the world. A patriarchal society where the metric of success of largely measured by material wealth and academic success. You’re supposed to achieve these pursuits stoically. The expression of any emotion or vulnerability along the way is seen as weak.

However, vulnerability isn’t only limited to the emotional aspect of it, but also social vulnerability and physical aspects of it.

Boldness

The first form of vulnerability is your willingness to risk rejection and embarrassment. The truly confident individual will not be afraid to show that he’s attracted to her. The truly confident man pursues a woman based on his own values and desires.

He’s has no problems with rejection. He understands he cannot be accepted by everyone, and rejection is inevitable. This form of confidence also cannot be attained by external factors.

The process of attracting women is controversial and polarizing by nature. Why do you think all the girls go for the ‘bad boys’? That’s because they stand for something. They are a leader and are willing to face humiliation, rejection, and controversy.

Ramit Sethi, talks about excellence versus vulnerability. He doesn’t really like people talking about ‘how vulnerable they are’, because he argues that it’s easy to be vulnerable, and difficult to be excellent. I’ll argue that excellence, is also part of being vulnerable.

The Power of Vulnerability

I define the second form of vulnerability by the willingness to open yourself up. The majority of men get confused with what vulnerability looks like. They think it’s a macho activity where you HAVE to be dominant or right in every conversation. 

He doesn’t just run his mouth on everything and anything. There is weight in his word. When he makes a mistakes, he’s willing to apologize and admit it. He’s unafraid speak up, even if it means getting rejected. 

Now, take the second person. He has always done everything in his life to fit in to society. He studied hard because that’s what society told him to do. He gets a job not because he truly enjoys it, but because he’s afraid of not fitting in. He avoids conflicts. He never takes any risks in his life, too concerned about fitting in. When he fucks up, he tries to blame others or pretend like it never happened.

Who will you trust? Which of these two men is more powerful? Which one do you think women would be more attracted to?

In the dating advice community, the reason why many people memorize lines and techniques is because they are still using is a control strategy: it is ultimately to avoid the fear of rejection, instead of hiding behind scripted lines and routines, why not take some risks and be comfortable with your vulnerabilities?

Word On Vulnerability and Boldness

OKAY MARCUS!

Let’s tell women about my dead goldfish and how much I cried when I flushed in down the toilet. She’s going to love it and have sex with me.

One mistake that many people make when it comes to vulnerability is seeing it as an exchange.

Vulnerability has to be expressed unconditionally, as a gift, and not used as technique or a line. If you share a heart-breaking story to get attention, validation or love from the opposite sex, then you’re not being vulnerable, you are downright manipulative and desperate. 

However, if you’re sharing a story as a means of relating to the emotions and experiences of someone else. Then, that’s just the who you are. That’s an honest expression. There’s no desire to control her perception of you.

Emotional Vomit

Secondly, you should not use being vulnerable as an opportunity to unload an inappropriate amount of emotions and personal history onto someone else. 

Emotional vomit is difficult as it’s genuinely vulnerable, but on the other hand, it’s you being honest about how pathetic and needy you are.

It may feel good in the moment. However, emotional vomit only doesn’t actually fix anger or hurt. Emotionally vomiting actually points you to do the healing, however, not is ISN’T the healing itself. However, at times, it’s necessary, and part of the process. I recommend consulting a therapist, where healing can be done in a safe environment.

The golden rule: any form of vulnerability HAS as to be accompanied with personal accountability.

How to Be Vulnerable (like actually)

Let me ask you, what’s the difference between having a general enthusiasm for meeting new people versus using scripted lines hoping to get a positive reaction from a potential romantic partner? One is a long run behaviour and one is a short-run behaviour. One is sustainable and the other one isn’t. One is a vulnerable behaviour and the other isn’t. 

Vulnerability is actually nothing like that, it’s about being introspective and engaging emotionally. 

If you’ve bottled up your emotions throughout your life, the more painful these actions are going to be. The less you talk about your shame, the more you have them. Eventually, you’ll have to be responsible for your baggage.. If not, you’re just going to be resentful, angry and frustrated, turning off everyone that comes your way.

Perhaps you realize your anger of towards you ex girlfriend stems anger towards your parents and this is the first time in your life you’re forced to confront this issue. When I was rubbing up against my emotional realities, I found myself at developing weird beliefs and getting extremely angry at certain people in my life.

The Shit Test Paranoia

The term ‘shit test’ is a common terminology used in the men’s dating advice industry where woman consciously uses tests to figure out if a male is really who he portrays himself to be or not.

Hence everyone’s half afraid of ‘shit tests’. Usually, these guys rely on ‘game’ and perceive other people’s behaviours as something that can is controlled. They think it’s a logical mathematical game to be won, they see social interactions as something that you can just run the numbers and it will just happen. These behaviours fall into non vulnerable behaviours.

If you take this worldview, the friendly way she jokes about your hair suddenly becomes shit test. That honest question about your job becomes a ‘shit test’. That concern from her that you don’t speak to your Dad becomes a ‘shit test’. Every time a genuine question of what you do for a living becomes a shit test, every time a woman makes fun of you becomes a test, on the other hand, she could just be genuinely concerned and or interested.

It’s a miserable perspective.

Sometimes, they’ll continue to pursue a woman even when it’s a clear big fat NO from her. Why? That’s because he thinks that she’s merely ‘testing him’.

If you’re strong in your values and boundaries, then it doesn’t what the opposite person across you says. I don’t care if she’s testing me or not. If she’s trying to play mind games with me, then I’ll simply ignore her and move on. I prefer spending my time with women that don’t play mind games. 

Of course, I know, there are people out there that purposely set hoops for you to jump through. However, we’re looking for high self-esteemed, non-bitchy, non-manipulative partners to be with, right?

  • The ‘I Have a Boyfriend’ Issue

Now, you’re going to run into this common line. Some girl down the road is going to say that she has a ‘boyfriend’.

There could be mainly a couple of reasons why she’s saying that: 1) she really has a boyfriend. 2) She’s not interested and is politely rejecting you. 3) Let’s presume she’s REALLY testing you. Then she must be quite screwed up person to tell you that she has a boyfriend to try to get you win her over

Hence, it doesn’t matter, just move on. If she is trying to fuck with you, then she is out.

The Power of Vulnerability 

I don’t just hold these standards in my relationships in my dating life. I hold these standards with my personal friends, my business partners, my clients and my family.

You put in less effort, you’re no longer spending time coming up with witty one liners, you’re no longer spending time worrying. You actually get to enjoy your relationships. Well, the whole point relationships IS to enjoy each other’s company, RIGHT!?!

The psychological research demonstrates that you are who you hang out with. If you’re genuine and honest in your behaviour, people are more likely to respond in a genuine and honest manner. If you constantly attract manipulative women who’s constantly testing you, then there’s something manipulative in you that you don’t see yet.

The majority of us like you and I were brought up in way as to not express our emotions. Don’t be controversial. Don’t be unique. Don’t do anything ‘crazy’, ‘stupid’ or ‘selfish’. You need to be ‘useful’ to society. Straying from the conventional path is seen as ‘rebellious’. Expressing yourself openly about topics such as sex is shamed upon, divorce is seen as taboo, being upfront and honest is viewed as rude.

They can come from our upbringing, culture or a combination of both. Perhaps, our parents themselves were shit poor with their emotions.

So how can vulnerability look like in your day to day life?

It can come in many minute manners. For some, it can mean actually putting in work for an examination, and finding out if you were all that smart or not. It can come in the form of finally taking action in your relationships and building the required social skillsets and behaviours to better your dating life. The art of being vulnerable can be expressed by pursuing that lifestyle or job that we’ve been hesitating to pursue, making that career switch, that business hustle, and other pursuits that we’ve held back because of the fear of what our family, friends and society might think.

You’re going to rub up against your fears. You’re going stand out. You’re going to risk rejection and embarrassment. You are going to face inevitable failure, in a multitude of tiny and macro ways. Unlike everything else people tell you, real personal growth is not always rosy. In fact, many a times, it’s often downright painful. However, it’s necessary for long term growth and happiness.

 

Feb 27

How to Overcome Shame – Toxic Shame Recovery Guide

By Marcus Neo | Relationships

Shame is a concept ignored in many of the dating and relationship advice and self help community.  It isn’t exactly sexy or the new trend to be talking about your childhood issues. However, my personal belief is that people struggling with issues in their personal life to relationships may be struggling with shame.

How Does Shame Occurs

Shame is the belief that you’re fundamentally flawed as a human being. Shame often leads to emotional discomfort and the gnawing belief that one is inherently flawed, defective and unworthy of love. Shame is different from guilt. If you feel guilty, there’s no judgment on yourself, on the other hand, shame places a judgment on the self.

Shame may be formed in childhood, and is the result of early trauma, emotional abuse and negative experiences. 

  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Strict/ Religious Upbringing
  • Neglected family background
  • Growing up in dire economic conditions

These events may lead the child to internalise that he or she fundamentally isn’t worthy of love as an individual. That he or she is only worth of love from his actions or achievements and not as a human being. The child has to learn that he can not be perfect or even good at something and still be worthy of love and still not be defective. They are the repercussions of trauma.

Shame causes us to disconnect from pleasure or comfort.  Suppressing one’s core feelings take a huge amount of energy. It saps motivation and willpower to pursue worthwhile goals. Meanwhile, you are accumulating stress hormones, leaving you emptied out, with headaches, migraines, problems with bowels and sexual dysfunction.

Trauma triggers a fight or flight response. This cause anxiety or avoidance. You either react by being hyper aroused (anxiety) or you shut down from the stimuli (avoidance). It’s also an issue of being stuck in the past and as much a problem of not being fully alive in the present. The apprehension about being hijacked by uncomfortable sensations keeps the body frozen and the mind numbed. 

In order the avoid these negative feelings, some of the common coping measures of people inflicted with shame are:

These actions not only aren’t helpful, but they also exacerbate pre-existing shame. They create a deeper sense of emotional discomfort and a more powerful need, desire to escape and dissociate.

It’s suggested that shame based individuals didn’t receive the nurturance, unconditional love and their needs fulfilled when they’re a child. 

Someone that is shamed may seek to fulfil these unmet needs in adult pursuits through accomplishments, sexual pursuits, financial goals or any other means. This leads an ever fluctuation of self esteem and mood, because the external world is always changing and one’s self esteem cannot be dependent on the reactions of others. 

Ultimately, if you go on to try to meet these unmet childhood needs solely through external pursuits. They are band aid solutions. 

In such cases, one is reacting to an insecurity by either avoiding, surrendering or overcompensate around that insecurity. If one is overcompensating in that certain aspect, it’s feeds further into that insecurity. For example, if an individual is insecure about his sexuality around women, attempting to overcompensate and sleeping with a hundred girls is still feeding that insecurity. The way to get comfortable with your sexuality isn’t trying to have sex with the whole planet but to find that middle ground of not overcompensating or avoiding that insecurity. 

The Problems that Come along with Shame

  • Self Criticism 

One of the effects of shame is self criticism. The amygdala is designed to detect threats in the environment, when we experience a threatening situation, the fight or flight response is triggered and the amygdala sends signals that increase blood pressure, adrenaline and cortisol.

This system was designed to deal with physical attacks and is activated just as readily by emotional attacks. From ourselves and others. Over time, increased cortisol levels lead to depression by depleting various neurotransmitters involved in the ability to experience pleasure. It leads to a lot of unneeded daily mental stress, as if you’re constantly in fight or flight mode.

  • Self-Handicapping

Shame based individual’s self handicap themselves a lot. This can play out not only in your relationships, but in all other areas of life.

This is because they perceive every rejection or failure as a judgment about their identity. It’s the guy who doesn’t studies and goes into the examinations. If he failed, it would be an easy excuse to say: well, I didn’t study after all. If he did alright: he’ll be able to say that he could have done better if he had studied. It’s much easier to go in half assed, and not put his identity on his line, rather than give it his best, and put himself up for failure or rejection.

  • The Sub human/ Super human Dichotomy

Shame based individuals may also have trouble integrating worldview. This is also known as the subhuman and superhuman dichotomy. Everything is all or nothing, black or white, one extreme or another. Everyone’s your best friend or your enemy, every pursuit is your life purpose or a waste of time, everyone girl you date is either your soul mate or a time sink. They cannot see a situation or a human for it is good and bad, and understand that it can both occur at the same time.

How to Heal Your Shame

In my own experience, it’s difficult to heal shame through willpower or pure discipline.

  • Psychotherapy

Human beings are driven by unconscious and subconscious drives and some times, circumstances that are out of our control. Our minds are really smart at building up defence mechanism.

You may find yourself in temporary frustration of the surroundings around you, upset at how little you expected out of yourself in the past, upset at all the decisions made out of shame.

Nonetheless, the only way is through and the self responsibility of healing growth and change. 

So far, I’ve discussed methods that are self generated. However, as with everything done by your own, it has limitations. 

One of the most helpful ways to get a third person’s perspective is the hire a professional psychologist. You’re dealing with someone who you can openly talk about your shame, who is capable of not only listen to it, but help you with it. 

There are many forms of therapy that can help with resolving trauma and shame ranging from cognitive behavioural therapy to EMDR. 

You’re going to find yourself being angry at certain people in your life for no reason. More often than not, behind anger is almost always hurt and sadness. Instead of feeling hurt, you covered it up with anger.

In psychotherapy, the aim of it is to make unconscious emotions conscious and to grief through them. 

It’s only after you identify the root of these responses that you can start identifying why you behave in a certain way and another.

You cannot put traumatic events behind until they are able to acknowledge what has happened and start to recognize the invisible narratives you’re struggling with. 

Through being more forthright about your thoughts, feelings and desires to yourself and others, you’re closer expressing your shame, expressing parts of yourself you were embarrassed about. 

  • Cultivating Mindfulness

Shame often leads us to be disembodied, removed from our physical experiences and often unable to experience the pleasure that we would normally experience if not for all the layers of shame. 

Learning to locate tense body parts and progressively relax them in anxiety-provoking scenarios (real or imagined) allows us to re-experience our bodies in non-shaming ways. This way, you nudge yourself to explore our sexualities in new, safe and pleasurable manners, you can chip at your emotional habits.

One of the techniques I found helpful over the years was to be aware of how I was feeling of my body. This is to simply focus on the sensations in your body when you’re in different situations. 

You can yourself questions like: why does that part of your body feel stuck when I’m talking to this person. Was I repressing a certain emotion? 

Mindfulness puts us in touch with the transitory nature of our feelings, beliefs and perceptions. Simply noticing our annoyance, nervousness, anxiety, helps shift our perspective and opens up new options other than automatic, habitual reactions.  You can recognize the ebb and flows in your emotions, and ultimately have more control over them. 

  • Meditation

Meditation can also help by observing our thoughts, emotions throughout our day. By being aware of our beliefs, you can test out new beliefs and find new evidence to support new beliefs.

  • Challenging Your Core Beliefs

You can also try to figure out where did these old beliefs came from. These beliefs probably came from past experiences in your life. This may come in the form of overbearing, critical parents, past trauma from past experiences. For EG. If you had been constantly turned down by your parents when you’re in need for affection, you’ll may constantly feel unworthy of love or attention. 

In my case, my core belief is that I’m not ‘useful’, ‘smart’ or ‘hardworking’ if I don’t have a ‘practical’ degree. The counter argument for that would be: I’ve consulted two businesses in their digital marketing campaigns and achieved results for them, there’s no reason why I’m not ‘useful’, ‘smart’ or ‘hardworking’.

  • Self Compassion

Through the last few years, researchers have taken an increased interest in the subject of compassion. There’s been research done between shame and self compassion. 

Research also suggests that self compassion is significantly associated with positive mental health benefits and adaptive function.

When I first started bettering my social skillsets, the primary motivation was to get better with women and influence others. There were many instances where I ended up feeling empty inside at times. It’s almost as if I was trying to please others, or become someone else in order to win their approval. I felt like I could understand them, but they couldn’t understand me. It’s not enough to be understanding or empathetic to your world around you. You got to extend it to yourself. 

  • Social Support, Safe Relationships and Communal Rhythms

Safe relationships are important for the healing process. You need to find someone who is emotionally mature enough to talk to and express your hurt and anger without giving you biased advice or judgment. Social support and safe relationships are one of the key factors when getting better with trauma. 

It is going to be difficult to express grief in modern society. You need to find yourself someone that can REALLY listen. Family members or friends around you might feel impatient if you’re in the grieving process. This is why I highly recommend hiring a therapist and letting him or her do the heavy work for you. 

I also recommend keeping a community of friends around you and take part in social activities. Socializing is a helpful activity to find a sense of connection.

There’s research that goes to show that taking part in activities involving music and communal rhythms can help with trauma. This can come in the form of aikido, kickboxing classes, tango dancing and other forms of communal rhythm.  Some of these activities helps you reconnect with your bodies. Traumatized people are afraid to feel, remember? When you play together, you feel physically attuned and experience a sense of connection.