One of the hardest things about getting better at dating is that you have to learn how to take the hit.
Back in high-school, I started studying martial arts; Tae Kwon Do and Kenpo primarily. As much as I’d told people that I was learning it for the self-discipline and the focus it taught me, just between you, me and the everyone else reading this: I wanted to be Billy Bad-Ass. I had the same fantasies of being Terry Bogard1 or VanDamme or Jeff Speakman that every other would-be ninja warrior had. But reality finds a way of stomping on those dreams with big ol’ boots. See, I was great at doing the kattas and perfecting my form and even things like breaking boards and blocks… but sparring was my weak point. I was constantly playing defense, always backing away, passing up on openings to strike… because I was afraid of getting hit.
Not surprisingly, I approached my dating life the same way: I didn’t want to get rejected, so I was continually playing it safe. It was easier to be a Nice GuyTM and follow my crush around like a lost puppy instead of sucking it up and asking her out.
But in sparring as in dating one thing was true: unless I was willing to take the hit, I was never going to get any strikes in. I could either stay on the defensive, take no risks and just tire myself out… or I could learn how to roll with the punches.
The more you fear rejection, the harder you’re making dating on yourself. If you want more romantic, social success, you have to learn how to get over your fear of rejection. You have to learn how to take the hit.
- Look, I was a Fatal Fury kid more than Street Fighter, ‘kay? [↩]