Diggity's Guide to Successful Dating, for Men: This is a guide to help men do a number of things. The target audience of this Guide are Men who consistently have trouble meeting women and getting a dating relationship started with them. Most of the guys in my target audience always seem to end up being just friends with the Object of their Affection (OA), and don’t understand why this happens to them. This guide is designed to help guys who are like this understand why it happens, as well as what they can do to prevent it. Before I get into this, I want to clear up a few things. These things are definitions and labels that I will be using to describe certain people. These labels that I will use have different meanings to different people. When one person uses the following terms, it might mean something different to them than it would if you or I were using it. So I will ask you to drop your own definition of these labels when reading this Guide, because when I use them, I am using them with my own definition in mind. Here they are: Part 1, Definitions: 1) “Nice Guy” – First off, when I use the term “Nice Guy” I am NOT referring to “all guys who are nice”. I am referring to a certain type of guy who is nice. When I use the term “Nice Guy”, I am referring to guys who either are so nice that they allow themselves to be taken advantage of, or guys who use excessive niceness as a way to get people to like them. Both of those types of “Nice Guys” usually run into the same problems with women, (the friend zone) and it is that problem that I am hoping to help these guys correct by using this Guide. 2) “The Jerk” – Now, there are two types of guys that I will throw this label on. One type of “Jerk” is a guy that really is a Jerk. He doesn’t treat women with respect and he doesn’t treat people the way he thinks that he should be treated. This guy is very selfish and no respectable girl should ever allow herself to be trapped with a guy like this… but it sometimes does happen. This Guide will not focus on this type of Jerk at all, because there is no reason to. Women generally do not like Jerks like this and neither do you want to be like this. The people who say that women like this type of jerk are usually confused and frustrated men who will likely fall into the “Nice Guy” group that I will be talking about. The second type of “Jerk” is the guy that the Nice Guys think are jerks, but whom might not actually be one. This guy is probably dating the Object of the "Nice Guy's" Affection (OA), or a friend of theirs. It’s quite possible that this guy is the Type 1 Jerk, but realistically, he probably is not. He might simply be a guy that will not tolerate disrespect from anyone, including his Significant Other (SO). It might be her that is starting a lot of their feuds. He might have every right to call out her BS and stand up for himself. She might do this a lot, and if so the result is that they will fight a lot. This does not make him a jerk, but the “Nice Guy” who is this girls best buddy probably thinks the fighting is all the "jerks" fault because she vents her frustration to the "Nice Guy" when she needs a shoulder to cry on. Like a good puppy dog the “Nice Guy” will be there to be used for this. 3) “Gentleman” - The final label I want to get into is the “Gentleman”. This is the guy every man should be. The Gentleman sometimes might actually be Jerk #2 but the Nice Guy doesn’t know this-which is where a lot of the Jerk confusion comes into play. He wasn't a jerk, just the "Nice Guy" thought he was because the girl used him as a shoulder to cry on. This “Gentleman” knows how to treat a woman right, which is very important. A lot of “Nice Guys” may also know how to respect and treat a girl right, but it’s the second part of a relationship that the "Gentleman" has perfected and the "Nice Guy" has not. That second and most important part of a relationship is respecting yourself and controlling how you allow yourself to be treated. This is the fundamental flaw of the Nice Guys that I am talking about. They lack that second part. There are probably a lot of "Nice Guys" out there that lack this second thing and don’t even know it, nor will they want to believe it. My goal is to help show the "Nice Guy" what he should not allow happen if he truly respected himself. I hope to show him that he deserves more than what he has and shouldn’t tolerate receiving less than he deserves. Part 2, Be you, but a BETTER you: More Self Confidence More Self Respect I’ve been helping guys for a couple of years now, and there is a trend with the “Nice Guys”. Something that is very common in their form of approaching women is that they are very discreet, and approach under the guise of not being interested. Why they choose to be discreet about their feelings with the OA instead of asking them out from the beginning could be a number of things. The most common two reasons are: 1) Shyness. 2) Fear of rejection. Common excuses I hear are: 3) They want to get to know the girl better first. This you could easily do through dating her first, so often this is simply an excuse from these guys for being shy or having a fear of rejection. You don’t have to go straight to a relationship; you can date first and get to know the girl that way like most people do. 4) Guys claim they were friends with a girl first and developed feelings later and didn’t know what to do. While sometimes this may be true, I also believe that the vast majority of the time this is an excuse. I’ve been here myself, and before I became friends with the girl and started crushing on her I always at least found her attractive, which was also one of the reasons I became friends with her in the first place. 5) The girl will think you are a player if you approach her for her number right away. Another lame excuse. You can't control what someone else thinks of you, and if you approach in a friendly and non threatening manner then there is no reason she should conclude that you are a player. If she does, then forget her. She's way too judgemental and you don't need that. 6) I'm not comfortable enough to make a move upon just meeting someone. Hardly anyone feels completely comfortable approaching someone and expressing interest in them, but doing so shows that you had enough self confidence to give it a shot. If you hide your intentions rather then pursue them, then you show a lack of self confidence. Confidence is attractive, and even acting like you have confidence is better than hiding under a false image of friendship to cover up for your weakness. For whatever reason you have for being discreet about your crush, it ends up taking you down the same road, and that is the road to being stuck in the FRIEND ZONE. There are always exceptions to the rule, but I absolutely hate talking about exceptions because all that does is give guys hope in a nearly hopeless situation. What I truly believe is that if you are a good person then you deserve better than to sit around and hope that you are the exception to this rule. So why do these “Nice Guys” get stuck in the friend zone so much? It has nothing to do with women wanting “Jerks”; it has to do with how the "Nice Guy" handles the situation and himself from the very begining. I’ve heard and experienced in my time on the field that most women will decide whether or not you are “Dating Material” within a short amount of time after meeting you. It’s in this small time frame that what you do will have the most impact to how things will work out. If you meet a new girl and try to be discreet and hide your true intentions under a cover of “just friends”, then that is very likely where she will put you on her list of “Guys who are Dating Material”. It’s not her fault that you didn’t have the guts to ask her out. If you take the initiative right away to approach the girl and ask her out, you show confidence and you will find out if she is interested or not right away rather than months later. As long as you approach her friendly, calm, respectful, and are smiling, then you will get an honest answer from her. When I titled this section as: Be a better you, I meant that you should be yourself, but a more confident you. A person that respects himself. Besides self confidence, other big weaknesses with most "Nice Guys" is their lack of self respect along with their inability to realize that they deserve more and shouldn’t tolerate less than what they deserve. If you are such a nice guy, don’t you think you deserve more than to be the best guy friend of the Object of your Affection (OA)? Do you really deserve to be stuck in the friend zone listening to this girl talk about other guys or her boyfriend? Don’t you think you deserve someone that will actually return your affections rather than use you as her shoulder to cry on/emotional tampon? Well then take control of the situation! Don't let it happen this way. If you truly had a healthy level of self respect you wouldn’t be giving so much of yourself to someone who is giving all that you want of her to some other guy. You are basically making yourself a victim of the situation and you started doing that when you didn’t have the confidence to take control of the situation from the very beginning. You deserve more than that. If you could see that then you wouldn’t waste another second sitting in the friend zone. I’m not saying you cannot be friends with a girl, but if you have a secret crush on her and allow yourself to sit in this position of being her shoulder to cry on, then you are a doormat. Sure, it’s a nice thing to do for her, but what about YOU!? This is exactly what I am talking about when going over the differences between being a “Nice Guy” and being a “Gentleman”! I know you don’t enjoy sitting there wanting this girl and thinking that you are a better guy than the others she has been with. I know you don’t enjoy hearing all about her boyfriend and their sex life, and the other things they do. But you allow yourself to sit in this dead end situation anyway and you do it because you want to be around her and you want her to see how good of a person you are. It doesn’t work. I don’t care if it worked for some Jim Bozo out in Arizona once. The bottom line is that the vast majority of the time this doesn’t work, and even if it somehow did you could have gone through a whole lot less to get the same outcome if you would have done the right thing from the very beginning. The friend zone is a horrible trap that “Nice Guys” walk into. It’s even worse when they are sitting in the friend zone hurting themselves by listening to the girls problems about her guy or whatever. The longer they linger here the more painful it will be because they fall harder and harder for her as time goes on. Why do this to yourself? Wouldn’t it be much easier to muster the nerve to ask a girl out from the very beginning? That way, you get her answer and that’s it. It's done. How hard would it be to move on right then rather than months later after you have devoted all of that time and energy into the girl that ended up not wanting you? I simply do not get it. I look back at when I used to do this and I think, “What the hell was I thinking?” If you can dig up the courage to make your move early, you save yourself a whole lot of heartache and time. Part 3, Real Niceness is selfless: Being nice should be natural, not an effort. Women are not stupid creatures. If anything you do is controlled by the fact that you are trying to make her see you are nice, then you aren't letting the situation flow naturally, and likely she will see your efforts for what they are. I still see a lot of guys go overboard with the "niceness" stuff. I am not talking about just being nice, I am talking about going overboard. If you really are a good guy then a girl will know that you are. You don't need to "show" her. There are many examples of guys who do this, and the guys I am talking about are guys who use this extra niceness for their own purposes. You might actually be a good guy and still make this mistake-without ever even realizing that you do it. I did this before and I never thought that I was a bad guy. I did this because of insecurity. I thought the only way to get a girl I liked was to prove to her that I was different, that I was a "Nice Guy". In my naïve state of mind I didn't realize that I was so transparent, and that I was better off just being comfortable with myself. If I was truly the good guy that I thought I was then I didn't need to do this for her to know that about me. There's a difference between just being your self and trying to impress her. It's kind of like buying favors with niceness. You think that by doing these extra favors and proving your niceness that you show her how different you are from the rest, but she doesn't owe you for that selfish behavior. Not at all. You did it for you, not her. In a discussion with one guy, he was asking whether or not he should buy a girl a rose for their first date. It seemed sweet, and the girls all advised this guy to do it because they were imagining it their dream man doing this and it was a nice fantasy for them. The problem is that he wasn’t buying the girl a rose to be sweet to her. He was doing it because he wanted her to think he was a great guy, different from all of those “Jerks” out there. The reason I thought it was selfish was because guys aren't doing this extra nice stuff for her but for himself. Guys can deny it all day long, and I would have too, but the fact remains is that you are buying her gifts or throwing out the extra niceness because you want her to think you are a good guy. Deny it if you want, but it is a bribe. Not an official bribe, but the purpose isn't selfless, it's selfish. It is one reason why I like to advise that you don't buy gifts for a girl unless she is your girlfriend. This doesn't apply for just gifts. It applies to favors, or anything else. Do you do this kind of stuff for everyone? Do you give everyone the same amount of attention that you do her? If not, then why do the extra effort? I think I made it clear why. You are trying to impress her with niceness, and it's not a natural thing. If you truly are comfortable with yourself, and if you are confident that you are a good guy, these things aren't necessary. She will know the real you if you let her. You don’t need to show her. Part 4, Understanding Women: Another thing that guys need to work on is understanding women. Understanding women seems like a very difficult task-and it is!-but it is so much easier if you learn to pay attention to a woman’s actions rather than her words. Forget what she just said to you, what happened? What did she do? When a woman, especially if she is your friend, turns you down, she will do so in the best way she can think of that will let you down easy. The problem is that guys don’t take the hint. Her words might be, “Well John, I’m just not interested in dating anyone right now, so let’s just be friends…” or, “Steve, you’re such a good guy, but we’re good friends.”, and even, “There’s so much going on in my life Mike that I don’t have time for a relationship…” What she is telling you is her excuse. What is she REALLY SAYING? She is turning you down, that’s what’s happening. I know it’s not a, “Hey moron, can’t you tell I am not interested and never will be?” but they don’t want to say that to you so they try to break it down on you easy. Bottom line, if she was interested in you and you asked her out, she would be with you. It is that simple. Any excuse she gives that causes you to not be with her is a big fat NO, and is also a “I hope he takes the hint and leaves me alone about it.” Unfortunately you guys don’t take the hint. Even if a guy does take the hint and tries to move on, all it takes is a little flirting on her part and you are right back in the palm of her hand thinking something changed. She might do this because she knows that by doing so she can to get you back to being one of her admirers-and girls love having admirers. And why not? You always listened to her problems, complimented her, you hung out with her, you bought her things, etc. Why wouldn’t she want this back? The problem is that you did this because you liked her romantically and thought that by doing it she would like you the same way. Some of your actions may have been because you were friends, but the reason you put so much effort into her was because you wanted a romantic relationship. Unfortunately, these guys, even after being rejected, are so wrapped up in this girl that they come running right back to the table begging for more scraps as soon as she sends a signal. Her answer didn’t change, she just wants you there again like you were before. Part 5, Putting it together: How do you meet women, and what do you do once you meet them? Isn’t that the question… If you meet a stranger it is best to approach them in an environment that is not threatening, and do so in a friendly manner. When you meet someone new you probably have at least an idea of how to start a conversation based on what they are wearing, where they are at, what they are doing, etc. Whatever your approach is, it is best to be friendly, calm, appear interested in what they have to say, and smile. If you are able to build a good repoir with her then tell her you want to meet her for a cup of coffee or something else similar. Don't forget to get her home phone number. Don’t ask for the number, but instead tell her that you would like to call her and ask what her home number is. Don’t give your number either, unless she asks for it. Do that only after she has given you hers, because doing so puts all of the power in her hands. The last thing you want to do is sit there helpless wondering if she will call or not. Don’t end the conversation without asking for the number if you can help it. Time is your enemy. When on a date, mainly ask questions about her and keep her talking. Not many people hate talking about their own interests, so if you keep the questions coming and are a good listener, then all should be well. If you ever want to set up another date, never use the words, “Sometime”. If you are going to set up a date, then have a specific time and date in mind. Also have a back up date ready in case she is busy for your first suggestion. A girl who is interested in you will find time, and will make an effort to do so. If she says she is busy and doesn’t bother to counter offer you another date, then the chances are not good that she has a high interest level. If she counter offers you another date but later cancels or is a no show, that also shows a low interest level. Remember, pay attention to her actions. If she didn’t show, that is a big “No Thanks!”. A girl who is interested will find time not only to reschedule, but to call you, and be courteous. If she isn’t courteous to you too many times, it shows you that she has a very low interest level. You should have too much self respect to waste time with this. Let's say the dates go fine and eventually you and the lucky girl become exclusive. This is what you have been waiting for a long time. Now isn't the time to mess it up. I know that most "Nice Guys" think that they will give a girl the relationship that she has always wanted, but you have to remember an important thing. You. You cannot sit in a relationship and give, give, give, because you will forget about you. Eventually you give so much that you become a doormat that is taken advantage of, and eventually dumped. Where is she on this? Does she give, give, give too? If you are, she had better be too. She is not a goddess. She is a regular human being who is supposed to be your partner, your equal. If you are doing all of the work then you will eventually become a pushover that does whatever she wants. This is why you hear so many guys complaining about how they gave everything to their girl only to have her cheat on him and dump him. It's sad, and the guy has no one to blame but himself for allowing the relationship to get like this. The imporant thing in the relationship isn't only treating her with respect, but making sure that YOU are treated with respect. If she wrongs you, don't be afraid so show that you won't tolerate disrespect. You deserve better. Put your foot down and mean it. If this happens so much that you put your foot down too often and she leaves, then she was not worthy of you and you are better off. You deserve better, and there is better out there. To have a successful relationship you must be able to end that relationship completely if she isn't holding up her end of the bargain. If you don't do this, and you let her run things, she will eventually lose interest in you because not many women (and no good woman!) will want a man who doesn't have enough self respect to stand up for himself. Treat her how you would want to be treated and don't allow yourself be treated any differently. Look at it from the "Nice Guy" male girlfriend's perspective. If you were friends with a girl who was dating a jerk, would you want her to stay with him? No of course not. Now if it is you dating a loser girlfriend, what is the difference? Put your foot down, don't allow it, or kick her butt out. There is a much happier relationship out there if you are willing to let go of a bad one to find it. Self respect and self confidence truly is the key.