Embrace Outcome Independence
Nobody succeeds at everything, no matter how confident they are. Failure is inevitable. However, the self-confident man doesn’t dwell on failure; the failure is irrelevant to the event itself.
In practice, this means learning how to separate your desired outcome from the moment. When you’re talking to the girl you like, don’t focus on the fact that you really, really want her to go out with you. All you’re doing is making your current self-worth dependent on how something may occur. Instead, focus on the here-and-now: you’re talking to the girl you like. You’re having fun, you’re savoring the emotional rush you get from the connection you’re building and how cute she looks when she gives that half-grin you like so much.
By not expending all of your emotional energy on treating every interaction like a test that you need to pass, you’re more able to focus on the interaction itself… which in turn will make you better equipped to get the result you’re hoping for in the first place. And that will make you better at the interaction… which in turn will build your confidence.
Practice, Practice, Practice
I know that I say this often, but it bears repeating: practice is the key to success, whether it’s getting better at a sport, improving your guitar-playing skills or getting better with women. Experience and skill is built via a repetition over time; the more experience you have with something, the greater ease you will feel. The more at ease you feel, the better you will perform. The better you perform, more naturally confident you will become. The more confident you become, the easier the skill will become. When managed properly, this can become a chain of positive feedback… if you actually devote the time and effort to it.
Practice means actually spending time and energy; just as you will never improve at guitar playing only occasionally, if you want to be better at talking to women, you can’t just only go out and talk to women when you feel like it. You have to make a concerted effort to go out and take advantage of every opportunity.
With sufficient repetition, it will become almost second nature to you and you will feel relaxed and at ease. You’ll have faith in your abilities. That faith will help your self-esteem to grow in leaps and bounds.
Fear + Survival = Confidence
You need to face your fears.
Fear is the mind killer. Fear is the little death. Fear is part of what holds you back. And you need to learn to be stronger than your fears. When you confront your fears and survive, you will start to master them, and with mastery comes self-confidence.
It’s understandable to fear rejection or humilation; romantic rejection hurts, literally. It activates the same centers of the brain that deal with physical pain. But the fact of the matter is, rejection isn’t going to kill you; at the end of the day, whether getting rejected by someone you’re attracted to hurts or not is ultimately up to you. With enough experience1 and exposure, you’ll start to learn that how it affects you is determined by your attitude2.
Fear can be a tool. It can be used to motivate yourself. Use your fear as a signal; when you feel intimidated or afraid of approaching someone, use that as a sign that you need to go up to her if only to prove to yourself that you can beat this. Through exposure and repetition, you will being to understand that what you fear is the product of your own mind. Your fear of rejection is really tying your self-worth to her reaction. By letting her have that much power over your self-image, you’re taking the locus of control of your life and handing it to someone else.
Once you begin to understand that rejection is nothing to be fear, you’ll start to relax around women. Relaxing around women will make you feel more self-assured and more in the moment.
Every time you confront your fears, they lose the ability to control you. Every time you let that fear wash over you and push through it, you’ll feel the sense of accomplishment that comes with conquering a challenge. Every time you beat your fear, you’ll feel your sense of ease and confidence grow.
And that confidence you feel? Women will notice it. And then they’ll start to realize you’re a lot more attractive than they’d thought at first.
- there’s that practice aspect again… [↩]
- And there’s outcome independence. Do you see how all of this ties together yet? [↩]