Category Archives: Personal development

Personal development and transformation

The Challenges of Being an Attractive Girl

FreeImages.com/Fran Priestley.

FreeImages.com/Fran Priestley.

I recently had an opportunity to peak into the mind of an attractive woman – let’s call her Lorraine – who honestly discussed with me the issues she is getting around men.

I met her on a hospitality exchange website and spent some time hanging out with her. We had a take-away meal together, took a walk, and went for a coffee/ice cream over the course of two days. It definitely wasn’t just a quick chat.

She confessed that men she meets on that website are frequently falling in love with her, which expresses itself in an odd behavior such as trying to give her frequent (unwanted) massages, crawling into her bed to snuggle, or just generally going gaga over her. She said that none of those men she considered dangerous, nonetheless I can understand why she is averse to that kind of behavior. It can be pretty annoying if someone you barely know is constantly all over you.

Attractive women inevitably get trained from a young age on how to deal with stuff like that and acquire a sixth sense for the bullshit. She said she knew within walking into someone’s home if he will bother her like that or not.

I said to Lorraine that I’m not surprised that she has that kind of effect on men, because she obviously is attractive, but I acknowledged that they shouldn’t be doing that to her. I mean, there is nothing wrong if someone just tries to flirt with another person, however it becomes objectionable if that leads then to harassment. Especially uncool is to do that as a host and harass a guest of yours.

She couldn’t understand, though, why a man would fall for a woman he has only just met, even though she is attractive. What about first establishing a connection with a person? Obviously, that was her female brain speaking. On the other hand, men are primarily visually stimulated, and although looks are not everything, they can give an attractive woman a huge initial advantage, partially due to the halo effect.

The halo effect is a cognitive bias that induces you to have a positive predisposition toward a certain thing if you happen to like one aspect of it. For example, if you find someone attractive, you may also perceive them to be trustworthy and friendly, even though you don’t know anything about them.

I guess that somewhat explains the origin of the so–called “bitch shield”, a front women will sometimes put up in the presence of men, if they don’t want to be hit on. They will act like cold bitches in an effort to neutralize the halo effect and be left alone. Not that any of them is normally aware of what they are doing – they have just internalized appropriate behavior by trial-and-error and watching how other women deal with men.

Lorraine didn’t act bitchy toward me at all (it would make little sense to do that in a hospitality exchange, and could potentially lead to a bad reference on her profile), but she did eventually confess to me that she was being a little stand-offish toward me, as she didn’t want me to fall in love with her like so many others. I found that quite amusing.

She has another challenge, though. In addition to many men who are acting obsessive when in her presence, some of the men out there are being emotionally indifferent toward her. She lamented that it just doesn’t seem that a healthy middle ground exists.

I don’t know enough about Lorraine to speculate whether or not she has a pattern of being attracted to the wrong people – i.e. players who have no desire of being in a relationship – or whether she just has a bad luck with men. Or something else entirely.

She said that she can never know if guys really want her because of her or because of how she looks. She thinks that less physically attractive women are better-off, as they don’t have to deal with this kind of problems.

Maybe she has a valid point here, I don’t know. I certainly don’t agree that unattractive women have an advantage over attractive ones (quite the opposite), but maybe being a cute, average looking woman is in fact emotionally healthier than being a super hot one.

Speaking of hotness: Mark Manson, a former dating coach, once wrote in his book that men should ditch any sort of rating scale for women (e.g. 1 to 10), as it is toxic, because it induces men to treat really beautiful women differently for superficial reasons. He recommended men to use a binary system: either you’re interested or not. Nothing else should matter.

His book got revised in 2016, but you can read my review of the book from the previous year. I highly recommend this book to anyone, man or woman. It is arguably the best book on dating on the market.

Click here for the review of his book “Models – Attract Women Through Honesty”.

There is no easy answer to this conundrum, though. Even if all men would internalize the principles laid out in this book and would be able to hold a normal conversation with a very attractive woman without reverting to obsessive behavior, the fact remains that she will still have more potential suitors than an average girl, due to the fact that more men find her attractive.

So, I guess attractive women will always be a little stand-offish for a simple reason that they can’t possibly give attention to all the men who would want to talk to them. There simply isn’t enough hours in a day. That’s the price of living in a high population density world of today.

But maybe we can all seek to understand each other better and not take things personally.

Guerrilla marketing example

I’ve never been working in advertising, but I’ve always found the concept of guerrilla marketing fascinating. Promoting your products in an unconventional way with limited budgets available requires a lot of imagination and creativity, and that is why I’m drawn to it. It’s not boring.

I don’t claim that I’m very good at it, but occasionally I’ve had an idea or two. Not much has been realized though (as I said, this is not my profession). One marketing idea that has been put into practice and that I’m proud of, is this one:

The product here is Overcome Anxiety Course, that I’ve written review of in my last post. This marketing idea utilizes a domain hack tr.im (reading it as “trim”), a URL shortening service, in order to convey a message: trim anxiety (by trimming the poster, going to the web address that is written on the trimmed part, and signing up for the course).

We will see if there will be any signups. I like my idea, I think it’s clever, but whether it will be effective is another question.

Do you know any good examples of guerrilla marketing? Leave links in the comment section, and I’ll be happy to check them.


P.S.: If you want to sign up for the Overcome Anxiety Course, you better do it as soon as possible. This is not a marketing trick. The author of the course (Mark Manson) decided to pull the courses off the market soon (in a couple of months) as it’s too much work with it and he wants to dedicate his full time to his writing career instead. The courses will continue to work, but no new members will be admitted.

Overcome Anxiety Course (review)

FreeImages.com/Márcia Rodrigues.

FreeImages.com/Márcia Rodrigues.

I’ve recently completed an online course on how to overcome anxiety. The author of the course is Mark Manson, and since I’m a fan of his work – as was obvious from one of my previous posts – I decided to write a review of this course as well.

The course consists of 8 video lessons. Each video is accompanied with a short written summary of the things explained in the video, and an interactive exercise underneath. The exercises require you to write something about yourself, or incite you to plan your future actions. You cannot progress to the next lesson until you do the exercise. An exercise can also require you to comment on what other people have written in the same lesson. Most videos are around 10 minutes long, the longest is a little less than 20 minutes.

The focus of this course is self-explanatory. It uses Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) methods to help you overcome your anxieties.

The central point of the course is that anxieties arise because you don’t feel competent of meeting the expectations of whatever you are facing. So, the solution is to either increase your skills and/or change your expectations. One lesson is dedicated to exploring your defense mechanisms that we do in order to avoid things that we are anxious about. The final stages of the course instruct you on how you can structure your life, so that success becomes inevitable and streamlined. When you finish the course you hopefully have a plan of committing to baby steps that will lead you to success.

When you get the course, you also gain access to a private forum, many additional bonus videos from Mark, and some downloadable bonus materials (PDFs, audio files). The community on the forums is very kind and helpful. Being a private forum behind a paywall practically ensures that only highly motivated people will flock there. Members are of both sexes, though I don’t know what the ratio is.

The price for the course is $67, which is a little costly. I think this price is intentionally inflated, because Mark also offers two other courses: Connection Course and Dating and Relationships Course, and naturally he would want you to sell you all of them. You can get all three courses for $117, which is a much better deal.

I’m currently in the middle of doing the Connection Course. I haven’t finished it yet, but from what I’ve seen so far, I’m satisfied with the course. This course teaches how to improve your conversation skills, in order to be able to better connect with people, which is very useful if you suffer from social anxiety. In that sense, both courses neatly work together.

All courses can be repeated as many times as you want – you don’t lose access once you’ve finished a course. Mark also offers 100% money-back guarantee on all sign-ups for up to 60 days. If you are not happy with the course, just demand a refund.

So, if you would like to get Overcome Anxiety Course, here is my affiliate link:

http://bit.ly/anxiety321

If you want to get all three courses, then just select option “ALL THREE COURSES” when placing an order.

Models – Attract Women Through Honesty (book review)

Woman

FreeImages.com/Lukáš Patkaň.

In my last post I shared Mark Manson’s blog post about the four stages of life, so it makes sense to review now his book “Models – Attract Women Through Honesty”, which I have read some time ago.

The book comes in the form of an e-book and an audio book, which is read by the author himself. I have read quite a few books on dating and I can say that Mark’s book is one of the very best.

Contrary to some other products on dating/seduction, his book focuses on the core issues of building attraction and does not build its case on tricks and techniques. As the title of the book suggests, his dating model consists of being honest with women, even if that means inviting rejection from them. In fact, rejection is vitally important in his method. In his own words:

Most pick up advice obsesses over the avoidance of rejection. Rejection plays an integral part in my strategy. It’s unavoidable, so I figure we may as well develop a strategy that uses it to help us. Rejection exists for a reason.

According to Mark, rejection is a good thing, because it’s a means to keep people who are not good for each other apart. If you are honest with women with whom you interact with, then they will reject you or fall in love with you based on your true self – which is a win-win situation: either you end up with a woman who is genuinely interested in the real you, or you spare yourself a lot of headache later.

The process of revealing to a woman “who you are, how you feel, and what you think” is what Mark calls “polarization”.

Polarization is what occurs when you express your truth and make yourself vulnerable [to rejection].

Polarization is the opposite of playing it safe and making small talk. It is the opposite of trying to avoid confrontation and controversy. Polarization separates unreceptive women from receptive ones, as well as pushes neutral women to decide one way or the other. As Mark says it in one of the most remarkable passages in the book:

You can’t have it both ways. The two go together. You cannot be an attractive and life-changing presence to some women without being a joke or an embarrassment to others. You simply can’t. You have to be controversial. You have to polarize. It’s the name of the game. And getting good at the game is learning to open yourself up enough emotionally, learning to express your honest self enough and be comfortable enough with your vulnerability to take those embarrassing moments with the moments of passion. A willingness to polarize is not easy. But it’s necessary.

* * *

In the first two parts of the book Mark lays a foundation of his method and explains his understanding of attraction between men and women. In the remaining parts he discusses specifics. He sorts the content into three groups which he calls the Three Fundamentals:

1. Creating an attractive and enriching lifestyle
2. Overcoming fears and anxiety around women
3. Mastering the expression of emotions and communicating fluidly

He refers to the Three Fundamentals also as: Honest Living (Lifestyle), Honest Action (Courage), and Honest Communication.

* * *

I truly think that this book is probably the only book on dating and attraction that you may ever need (though it’s probably good to read a few others for comparison), and I would also recommend it to women, because it goes beyond just advice for men – the issues that this book addresses are relevant to everyone (e.g., rationalizations that you invent to maintain the status quo and protect your ego).

Some parts of the book contain sexually explicit language, and the author is not committed to political correctness, so I’m sure not everybody will like it, though. Luckily, the book has a 60-day money back guarantee.

If you would like to know more, here is a link to the first three chapters of the book (and a table of contents), which you can get for free: http://bit.ly/1HPZCpP

Direct link to the sales page for the entire book is here:

http://bit.ly/models-ebook

(affiliate link)

Stages of life

“All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players,” wrote Shakespeare in a passage from As You Like It, where he identified the seven ages of man.

I have just finished reading Mark Manson’s blog post on the same topic, where he states that we can reduce it to just four stages. And since the name of this blog is The Changing Ways – the essence of life is change; nothing ever stays the same – I feel I have to share Mark’s article with my readers.

The four stages that he identifies are: Mimicry, Self-discovery, Commitment, and Legacy.

He says that “at each subsequent stage, happiness becomes based more on internal, controllable values and less on the externalities of the ever-changing outside world.”

Previous stages are not replaced, they are transcended. At each stage your life priorities get reshuffled, but you continue to exhibit some behaviour from previous stages.

I don’t want to put any spoilers here, I recommend that you read the entire article for yourself: The Four Stages of Life.

I will just reveal that it gets deeply philosophical at the end. It reminded me of the famous Tears in rain monologue from Blade Runner.