I want to talk about this idea of becoming a “pickup artist” or a “Poooahh”.
You can find flame wars out there on bulletin boards about who is the “True PUA” and who is really the “best of the PUAs”. Shouting matches between supposed gurus about who can get more phone numbers in an hour or who has gotten more lays.
And these guys are promoting this identity of becoming a “Master Pickup Artist” or “Top Pickup Artist”.
But here’s the problem with all of this. Trying to become the Best PUA has got to be the absolute WORST sense of identity that you can give yourself.
Identity causes needy reaction seeking
Because if you start thinking of yourself as “good with girls”, you begin looking for good reactions from every girl you approach, to prove to yourself and to others that you are “good with girls”, that you’re a true “P-U-A”.
And when your sense of self is derived from being a top pickup artist or “I’m good with girls”, you’ll always be coming into social interactions with women as being needy for a positive reaction from them, so that you can live up to your self imagine as P-U-A and constantly feel the need to prove to yourself that your self-image as a P-U-A is true.
You start thinking to yourself, “Alright, I had a great night last night at the bar, I took this girl at the bar into my arms and within a few minutes I was tonguing her down and then I got her number. Awesome. And now that I am so super duper, tonight… tonight… I have to really make this happen. I’m good with girls after all. Tonight I need to get another makeout, I have to TOP what I did the night before. I have to prove to myself and to all the people in the club watching me, that yes I am good with girls now, I am an up and coming P-U-A.”
You stop taking risks or pushing
So now you start thinking to yourself that you’re a big hot shot, you start to develop an EGO, the big P-U-A ego, and this is what’s going to happen:
You become afraid that the girl you meet is not going to validate your macho big ego of yourself.
So you don’t push the interactions forward anymore because now you’re fatally afraid of not living up to your new image. So you don’t push the interactions forward, you become too afraid of failure.
Maybe the first few minutes you get the girls laughing and then… you find yourself bailing out of the sets on a high note, rather than isolating the girl, going for the makeout, or pushing for the number or bringing the girl on an instant date.
Your game becomes not about actually seducing the girl, or pushing the interactions forward, or taking risks.
Putting on a show
Instead, when you develop the P-U-A “I’m good with girls now” self-image and the ego that comes with that, it becomes all about putting on a good show for yourself, getting some laughs from the girls to validate that you can make them laugh, feeding into your big macho ego of being a top pickup artist, and then backing off the set and leaving before anything can go wrong. You stop being Reckless.
You are no longer playing to win… but you begin playing not to lose. You begin playing a very conservative game where you’re holding yourself back at every moment to preserve you fucking inflated P-U-A ego-driven image.
You’re always feeling this need to prove yourself that you need to show everyone in the room “your incredible skills with women.” And when you come from that frame your game will just SUCK.
When you’ve got the ego, the self-image, you start looking around the room for the right set of girls that you feel is the safest set to open, looking around with those hungry, needy eyes for the right set that will validate your identity.
And when you do open a group of girls, you’ll come from a very needy, value taking, “Hey girls, give me validation, laugh at my jokes, give me a good attention so that I feel better about myself” frame. You become a taker, taking energy from the group, like an energy vampire that’s needy for the girls to like him.
And other guys, to protect that toxic P-U-A identity, who just stop approaching women all together. Their excuse becomes, “Ahh, I know how to pickup girls, I don’t need to do it anymore.” They use that excuse to protect their pickup ego from being shattered on the rocks.
See, if you begin to identify with being a top pickup artist, then you will always feel approach anxiety… always, always, always until the end of time. If your image is that you are “Good with girls now”, you will always have approach anxiety.
You will never feel comfortable being in your own skin, you will always feel incongruent and needy and unsure because now you start scanning for the right sets and the right girls will feed into your ego.
And with time you’ll become exhausted by it. If you always feel you have to prove yourself whether it’s to your friends, or to the crowd in the room, or to yourself, you will become sick and tired of it very quickly. If you get caught up in preserving your inflated self-image, and caught up in chasing after validation instead of out to have fun, just fun and being social, you will get sick and tired of it very quickly.
Timeline of a downfall
If you do pursue an ego trip or this best PUA identity, this is probably what’s going to happen, this is how you’re going to rise and then fall.
At first, you have no ego. You figure you’re just a total newbie, you really have no expectations, and because of that, you actually experience some initial good results and have some good experiences.
Maybe early on you get a make out, or you get a girl who is really into you. You’re wildly excited, it’s a real rush of a feeling to start making real progress, to have results.
So the next night you go out, now, now you want to replicate what you did the previous night. You had success the previous night, it was awesome. So now you’re better with girls, you should be able to do what you did again, right?
But now you’re going in with expectations. “Oh man, I got the kiss last night I need to the kiss this night as well.” Or “A really cute girl was into me last weekend, this weekend I need to get an even cuter girl!”
So you start to have expectations, you start to have goals that you want to control and achieve. You’re already beginning to unconsciously build an identity of yourself as a guy who is “good with girls”.
And then of course, you go out, you have those needy hungry eyes to duplicate what you did in the past, maybe the past night or the past weekend. You approach girls with that neediness to replicate what you did in the past. You have that neediness which is just a total buzz-kill and turns the girls off. You have that neediness which gives you approach anxiety.
And you start to feel bad, because now you have approach anxiety, you’re not opening, or things aren’t going like they were last time. And your state pops like a deflating balloon.
And the girls are going to feel whatever you’re feeling, you lead their state. You start to feel bad because its not going how you planned, your sense of self isn’t being validated, and it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy– the girls are not going to respond well to you when you’re in a down mood, giving you bad sets, further deflating you and making you feel terrible.
And of course, you don’t do as well as last time because you’re quietly, unconsciously, taking on this to toxic identity of a “guy who is good with girls”, it’s just sneaking up on you, very quietly, very cunningly and softly, without you even realizing it.
And you don’t do as well, and you just get frustrated, and your ego deflates like an arrow hitting your ego balloon, it just deflates into the ground and you feel terrible, you feel like total crap about it. The result is, girls won’t even talk to you and consistently blow you out instantly.
Your state was so high and eager and anticipating, thinking you were going to accomplish so much, and by the end of the night, you’re down on the floor, in the mud, down on yourself, feeling like crap about your performance. Because you didn’t go out to have fun, you went out to revalidate your identity.
And at some point down the road, this will happen to you. You’ll have a major identity crisis. You’ll be thinking, “Well I’ve had big success before, surprising amazing success. So am I this big pimp I thought I was, or am I total chump who just sucks at this? What the hell am I?”
And your game will go like this. Great nights where you feel awesome about yourself, where your ego is confirmed, followed by terrible nights where your ego is popped and deflated and in the mud and you feel down and depressed about yourself.
And instead of having a general consistency from night to night, you’ll have these highs followed by terrible lows where your state is just constantly fluctuating up and down.
And it will just fuck with your mind.
And eventually down the road, to protect your go, you’ll find yourself putting on this weird pickup guy persona as opposed to just being your natural self. Every time you go out you’ll become this we’re “pickup guy” who is all timid and weird when hovering around a girl, timidly approaching her, doing really timid safe lines with a nervous, needy voice and relying heavily on canned stuff other people wrote.
And most guys I see are exhausted by it. They’re either newbies so focused on the result that the highs-and-lows of the night drain them of vitality, or more advanced guys so caught up in preserving their inflated sense-image they feel like they’re chasing after validation instead of having fun.
So I cannot think of anything that will just fuck you up more than this inflated sense of identity as a “P-U-A” or “being awesome with girls.” or being the “top pickup artist.”
My Own Story
Hey I’ll be honest with you. I have bad nights too. Some days I’ve been on the computer all day bringing to you guys material or maybe working on this program, and I get to club and I’m just not in state, I’m not feeling it. I am in uber nerd, writing state, deep inside my head, and I get to the bar and I’m like “uhh” culture shock! It can take me a little while to build up some momentum.
So I start out, and I completely suck. I’ll say hello to a girl and its like BOOM! Hit a wall, girl is not so friendly and my state isn’t overpowering them yet because my state is low and it frankly sucks.
And it’s like “oh my god”, my videos are all over the internet I hope no one recognizes me because many guys have this false impression that I’m just always ON all the time, and I shoot lasers of love from my eyes that always just knock the girls off their feet instantaneously.
But the reality is, every night I try to go in with no expectations, any success I had in the past means NOTHING, I’m just a newbie starting all over again. I have no ego to live up to and I have no one to prove myself to. And being on the internet, my face in public, you’d think there would be a lot of pressure on me to always perform to prove myself to other guys.
But guys, really I don’t care. I’m out there to have fun. The question on my mind is “Am I having fun, and what has to happen to make this fun? And even if nothing happens tonight, except that I can make this fun, is that enough for me? Do I have an ego to feed? Do I have expectations to feed? Will my face be recognized in the club and feel I have to prove myself?” Because that’s a really fast way to going down a dark, dark path that I definitely would not describe as being fun.
So point is, if I can go to a club where I’m often recognized, and not have an ego about it, if I’m cool with getting blown out, or saying stupid shit that blows up in my face or just looks dumb to some other guy watching, you need to get to that place too where your priority is to have fun for yourself, and to no one else, and neither to an inflated sense of ego.
Don’t identify with success
Okay, so the question is, how do you avoid this best PUA identity trap, that will tend to just naturally sneak up on you whether you want it or not.
Well the first rule of the game is, don’t identity with success.
Just because you screwed everything you did up, doesn’t make you a permanent screw up. You learn from your mistakes. And you come back.
Well conversely, just because you single handedly nailed half the women on the Swedish bikini volleyball team doesn’t make you a player either.
Just because you make out with a girl in a club doesn’t make you make out machine. Just because had a great state the other night, being Reckless, approaching girls left and right, doesn’t make you the divine embodiment of the Reckless action.
Just because you laid a girl each day this week Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday through Saturday doesn’t mean its going to happen today or tomorrow or next week or next year.
Hey, take credit for what you’ve done in the past, but don’t identify with it. Don’t identify with your previous successes. Yes, write down successes in your journal, and then forget about them. It’s in the past, your prior successes have nothing to do with who you are today and in the present.
Another way to look at it is, what you’ve done in the past, doesn’t make who you are right now. Your accomplishments are not you, they’re a dream inside your head that happened in a previous lifetime. Don’t go chasing after past success constantly, don’t go chasing after past successes.
Otherwise, you’ll develop this big pimp image and as soon as you get shot down by a girl, your big pimp image will just deflate like a balloon and that’s it, game over for you.
So don’t over identify with success, and drop the ego. Become humble again, like when you first started out. This game is not a place for guys with big egos. Drop it. You may need to “man down”.
You may need to walk into the social situation and be like, “Yeah I’m a dork. I feel like a total dork. I’m out of state. I forget everything. But I’m going to have fun. How can I really make this fun??”
Forget about “winning” the game. Don’t feel you always need to prove yourself. Stop looking at others’ reactions or opinions to give you your self-image. Let go of trying to control what other people think of you. Let go of trying to control how the girls will react to you.
Instead, drop all the top pickup artist identity and bullshit, drop trying to replicate past days gone by, drop trying to impress others with your “skillz”, stop trying to impress yourself, drop all that and just enjoy socializing for the fun factor. The point of all this is, after all, to have FUN. Yes to get laid eventually down the road, but in the meantime to have fun, to be a cool person, to find emotional happiness, not to drive ourselves into some kind of toxic rollercoaster up and down madness.
Just focus instead on giving value, giving girls value in the interaction. Being the man that brings the party, being the man that brings the good feelings, being the man that brings positive energy naturally radiating from within himself to everyone he touches.
Understand that having fun at this, and having your success shoot through the roof, shoot through the stars, means being a man who gives VALUE rather than trying to be a man of “success”.
Okay, so how do you avoid the best PUA pimp or top pickup artist image?
Well, that big pimp image, you have to learn to let that go. You don’t want to try to forcefully get rid of it, but just be aware of it, and overtime just let it go.
But you can further along the process by learning to laugh at yourself.
You get blown-out by a girl. Hey its funny. A girl doesn’t laugh at your joke. Hey its funny. Oh wow you got a phone number… sure it’s a success, but hey that’s funny too. You got a makeout—no big deal, it’s funny.
And if you start envisioning yourself as Mr. Pimp with the big Pimp Hat… just take a moment to laugh at yourself… hahahahahahaahahaha.
So for this exercise, just to imagine yourself as Mr. Pimp, you can get any girl you want, women fall at your feet, everything you say is interesting and fascinating, and guys want to be you. Picture yourself like that, walking into the club or bar, with this HUGE ego, you’re like George Clooney and no girl can possibly say “No” to you.
And just laugh, just laugh at that image. Hahahahaha. That’s funny.
See no big deal, no reason to get all caught up in that identity or identify with that image of identity with past successes. You can always laugh at it.