Wednesday, July 11, 2007

How I beat the "no chemistry" problem

It seems like I've been beating up on the pick-up community a lot lately... but I've learned a lot from them. And I'm grateful - they've helped me solve a lot of the difficulties that I had in developing a relationship.

One of them? The chemistry problem.

Before I started to educate myself, my dates went pretty predictably. I'm pretty good at having conversations with people... but, after an evening of pleasant conversation, I wouldn't get a second date. The usual? "You're a really great guy... but I just can't see you as a boyfriend."

It was clear. I needed to make changes. And I made a lot of them.

I can't talk with authority here. There are people in the community who are much more experienced than me. But I can talk about some of the key things that made a difference for me.

Set expectations during the first phone call
Typically, during my first phone conversation with a woman, we talk a little bit about our eHarmony experience - it's something that we have in common from the start. One thing that I say is that I've met some great people through the service... but just didn't have chemistry with that many of them.

And there we go. I've set a subtle expectation. If she wants to stay with me... she's got to work to hold my baser instincts at attention, too. Otherwise... we're just friends.

Get comfortable with playful touching
This was another problem that I had - after all, when I returned to the dating scene, I hadn't physically flirted with another woman for over ten years.

I was uncomfortable. Awkward. Afraid she'd slap me away, and that I'd blow it completely.

Well... I was dead wrong with that last sentence.

Most women have had uncomfortable physical advances. And they've learned how to politely turn away. Unless you're doing something really boorish... you're probably going to be okay. Even if you're a little too aggressive.

But if she's starting to show subtle signs of interest, and you're not initiating physical contact... it's a fast track to the friend zone.

There are tons of guides on the internet about initiating touch. A google search on "kino escalation" (the pick-up artist's term for this) will probably turn up some good articles. Or, maybe some experienced pickup artists can leave a comment with an article they found helpful. Find them, read them, and learn.

Keep the suspense alive
A lot of guys end the date by relieving tension. Saying they had a good time. Asking for the next date, right then and there. Ending when you're kind of happy, but exhausted and running out of things to say.

You may be satisfying some short-term urges. But you're removing tension.

You want her to wonder if she's meeting your standards.

First of all, keep the first date a little short. You want her to wish it had been longer.

Next, when she gets home, you want her to be nervous about when and whether that phone will ring. Because, if you don't... she'll be spending her time worrying if a relationship would work out. And she'll start analyzing the date for "red flags". And no one passes that test.

If she asks if you're having a good time? Give a polite yes.

If she asks about the next date? Be vague. Say that you need to check your calendar, and that you'll call her. (That's girl talk for "I'm thinking about it.")

How soon should you call back? Experiment.

For me, personally? If a girl is interested, she'll usually call before I call her. Many pickup artists talk about waiting 3 or more days... but waiting that long hasn't worked well for me, personally. Two days has been the "sweet spot" for me.

So, for me, when I started to display that I was rating her on "chemistry", and left her in suspense about my judgment... I've found that women will try hard to please me. And they'll do it with physical play, once I started to get the ball rolling.


Uncle Fester said...

So in order to get your dates to produce the result you want, you're modifying your behavior. Becoming more "touchy-feely" when it's really not in your nature, etc. How does that make you feel? Does the end justify the means? What happens on future dates when they discover more about your real personality?

I struggle with this basic issue. It's against my basic nature to not "be myself". Now it's true that my success rate is lousy and my meetings haven't gone anywhere either, but I'm still not willing to "change myself" because of it.

Scott Grey said...

I didn't change who I was. I wanted to be able to have a physical relationship with a woman I liked. I was anxious about making the first move.

There's a difference between doing what you want to do (in spite of your anxiety), and being a "fake person".

And if you think this process is about changing yourself (rather than presenting yourself well, and being yourself), I think we've got some misunderstandings about what this is about...

Uncle Fester said...

You seemed to say that you weren't a "playful touching" person by nature. I know I am not. I worry in my case if it would seem forced and artificial. If that's not what you were saying, I apologize.

I've just tried the "set expectations" (paraphrased your comment about looking for chemistry). I'll report to the Google group if anything remarkable comes of it.

Scott Grey said...

... This would be a GREAT topic for the Google group.

R3dcurlz said...

Funny, my current boyfriend asked me out for a 2nd date at the end of our first date. Man, was I impressed. That and he had a fabulous date in mind. Without those two things, we probably wouldn't have had that 2nd date. Of course, I have a hard time telling someone "no" to their face, so it was a tad more pressure than I expected or wanted. But it turned out just fine.