The Terrible Temptation of Bragging

First of all, I have no idea who this is a picture of. He was on the Wikimedia creative commons page for the keyword “arrogant” and he definitely looks the part. However, I have to offer my utmost apologies to whoever this guy is who I just made into the personification of a “bragger”.

One of the worst social mistakes a man (or anybody) can make is the “brag”, a statement, comment, or response framed as a self-assurance of one’s own accomplishments.

For men trying to meet women, it can also be the final factor to assure that he’ll never get a return phone-call.

To understand the absurdity of the brag, let’s examine just the basics of why a person would even do it.

Bragging is Either to Relieve Anxiety, or to Manipulate

These are the two only psychological reasons why a person would boast about himself.

The first is the very weak phenomenon of self-assurance. In a situation where a person feels insecure, he may try to prop himself up so that he feels less anxiety about the situation.

For instance: a guy at an exclusive party for film-makers feels out of place and insecure. He may try to brag about his minor accomplishments with a student film he created years ago.

The only thing that this communicates is: “Please help me fit in. I feel like less of a man. Please tell me I’m worth something to you and that it’s OK to be here.”

Obviously, this sends the exact opposite message; that he’s an outsider who is clutching at straws. This behavior is extremely transparent.

The second motivation for bragging is as a very shrewd attempt to manipulate a person’s favor.

For instance, let’s say you’re among a group of industry professionals. You really have made some great accomplishments in your field. However, not everybody around you knows about what you believe to be an entitled sense of prestige. And, that intoxicating feeling of power you get when people bow to you has now become a craving.

So, you look for ways to inject your accomplishments into the conversation.

“Yeah, that was like the time I released an app that sold 1.4 million copies. Well, not quite.”

The typical reaction to this type of bragging is a sort-of feigned positivity by the audience.

“Wow, that’s really impressive. How did you do that?”

This is because our brains seem to register facts more quickly than personality assessments. Unfortunately, the quasi-positive reactions only serve to fuel the bragger’s misconstrued idea that he’s not committing social suicide.

When the party is over, that’s when people get together and unanimously agree that the guy was a douchebag.

Understand that it’s this very motive, to try and prop oneself up at the expense of others, that is so unhealthy. From cocktail parties to dates, it makes everybody uncomfortable.

How to Show Value Without Bragging

I would suggest to look at how very accomplished men behave themselves socially. For instance, Bill Gates, Bill Clinton, Richard Branson. If you dig around YouTube, you’ll find plenty of examples.

What you won’t find is these guys bragging. Ever. They know what they’re worth, they have absolutely no need to reassure themselves, or others, of their value.

However, they allow their actions and who they are to speak for themselves.

This means they do not hesitate to provide their wisdom and ideas to people. They only talk about their accomplishments after they are asked about them.

For instance, if somebody asked Clinton, “gee, you sure know a lot about politics, why is that?”

At this point, it would be socially acceptable for Clinton to list his accomplishments (and, in this case, inquire if the person had been living in a cave his entire life).

In Summary

Bragging is a seriously bad habit that you MUST shake off. If you feel a desire to constantly obtain social approval and acceptance, then you must work on yourself to find the root causes of these desires. Bragging is typically a mere symptom of a bigger disease known as insecurity.

What Do You Think?

How do you feel around people who brag? Does it make you uncomfortable, or do you disagree? What was the worst example of a bragger you ever dealt with?

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How to Behave Around the Most Beautiful Women

beautiful women

Every man must learn how to behave around the most beautiful women in the world. This is easily where the majority of guys fall short, and we desperately need some education on this matter. Really beautiful women are subject to a massive influx of unnecessary status, attention, jealousy, opportunities and calamities from all walks of life. This is because we live in a society that worships youth and beauty above almost everything else.

For this reason, your only chance of making friends with, or dating, a woman like this is by going outside the box completely. While a lot of men only fantasize about dating supermodels in Ibiza, some men are really doing it. Here’s some tips I’ve learned along the way:

Never Compliment Her Appearance: Duh, rule number-fucking-one. Telling a beautiful woman that she’s pretty is as awkward as asking an eskimo if he likes snow. The only exception to this rule is if you are eight years-old. It worked pretty good for me back then.

Be Wary of Other Compliments: Most men learn what chode behavior it is to tell a hot girl “you’re hot”, so they try to go “under the radar” to hand their value to them in more subtle ways. For instance, excessive compliments about their intelligence, writing skills or their shoes. Come on, give it a rest, they know what you’re doing (trying to win favor) and it will never work.

Never Treat Her as a “Thing”: Without realizing it, common male behavior toward genetically gifted ladies actually undermines them. After the 1000th man hits on her (by around age 17 or 18), a beautiful woman will start to feel like a walking rib roast in a town full of dogs. Men don’t realize it, but giving any added attention because of looks is akin to saying: “you’re a commodity because of your appearance”, and this makes women feel uncomfortable to put it lightly.

Focus on Making Her Laugh: Tease her, joke with her, and as many seduction coaches have put it: “treat her like your bratty little sister”. This immediately puts you in a whole new category of male.

Focus on Work: If you go to school or work with such a woman, focus on the job and don’t be like every other guy trying to take things “personal” by “getting to know her” (ie: asking about her life, what she likes, her favorite color, or other nonsense). The idea is to remain indifferent to her status as a high-status woman that every man wants. You have to be the exception to the rule. By doing this, she will generate interest in YOU and perhaps even ask you out!

Be Unavailable: Decidedly turning down offers of coffee, hanging out, or whatever is not a great idea when you’re with a girl who is not stunningly angelic and beautiful (she will just move on to someone else), but with the Perfect-10 dime pieces, since every guy is constantly TRYING to get with them, by having something better to do — you’ll become the cool guy she will never have to worry is going to pursue and 12 AM Facebook stalk her.

Tell Her She’s Beautiful AFTER You’re Dating Her: Beautiful women are insecure, freaked out age 30 or 35 will be unkind to them, and trying to keep up with better looking females getting better jobs in “hot girl industries” like modelling or acting. Once you’re with the girl, it’s your job to help keep her self-esteem up.

There’s Degrees of Beauty: I actually think there’s a difference between “hot” (not physically perfect, but sexual, personally appealing, the girl-next-door, etc) and “beautiful” (Olivia Wilde, for instance). The former category of “hot” is the majority of women you’re attracted to. The article you just read is about that 5-percentile of goddesses, and the rules are pretty specific. I’m curious what you think, though. What’s the difference between hot and beautiful? You can post via the Facebook comments on the bottom.

In Summary

Some people may tell you the only way to date a gorgeous woman is to either: be a celebrity DJ, a celebrity actor, or a total asshole. As it turns out, a lot of these women are sick of vain guys in show-business; and what they’re probably looking for are authentic men like yourself. So, that’s good news, isn’t it?

Signs You’re Coming on Too Strong

coming on too strong

In the context of dating, relationships and seduction, the common problem I help guys with is poor calibration. In fact, the majority of problems can be traced to this core issue. Whether coming on too strong, or being too weak, both extremes can hinder your social life unless you are aware of the symptoms of such behavior. Today, we’ll talk about the danger of pushing too hard.

Recognizing the Behavior

image

There are different degrees of coming on too strong. From regular pushy or abrasive behavior to needy, creepy or even malevolent behavior–as the above “psycho girlfriend” meme I selected for this article demonstrates

The really bad kind of psychotic pushiness is often the result of making assumptions in combination with having an extremely skewed or insecure version of reality. Obviously, assuming a first date is ready to talk about having children with you is laughable and absurd, and few people but the most deranged would suggest such a thing. However, you could be saying similar, terrifying things without realizing it.

For an example, avoid talking about ANY long-term plans with a woman you just met, even if you think it’s part of an innocent discussion. An example could be: “Yeah, I like to visit Wisconsin every couple of years, we’ll go together sometime.” Such a statement is not “sweet” like you imagined in your head; rather it’s a combination of “Let’s be friends forever!”, “Let’s get married and have kids!” plus “I’m desperate, PLEASE never leave me!”.

A second way that you might be coming on too strong involves controlling behavior. One time, during one of my international travels, I was staying at a youth hostel accompanied by this beautiful girl from London, with short cropped black hair and striking bedroom eyes. We hit it off like crazy, but as we planned our night, she was kind enough to express her discomfort about how I was “controlling” her too much.

As it turned out, I had been conducting a social experiment at being more “dominant” in my interactions to see if it would generate more attraction (I used to be fond of these social experiments when I was still learning things) and I had been neglecting the usual polite demeanor that accompanies my words. I rejected the usual phrases like “shall we?” and “perhaps we could” in favor of “We are doing this” and “Ok, time to go do this now”.

This change of tone had turned her off (and I learned my lesson from the experiment). There was no subtlety about it; she immediately sensed that I was being too pushy, and in her own words I was coming on too strong.

Now it’s true that some women MAY be turned on by this type of forcefulness. However, I’d guess it is a small minority; probably the same types of ladies who like you to break out the paddles, whips and chains in bed.

Are You Acting Like Tom Cruise Jumping on a Couch?

Sometimes high energy is good, and yet when Tom Cruise went haywire on that famous episode of Oprah, just about everybody felt creeped out. This is now the classic image of coming on too hard, and likely being considered a nutcase as a result.

If you are prone to high energy bouts of enthusiasm, you may want to consider gauging your outbursts, especially if the addition of sugar and caffeine sends you over the top. Acting hyperactive by talking too much, jumping around, and barely allowing her a chance to breath is behavior that quickly kills your chances. Understand that being extremely kinetic suggests immaturity just as much as the opposite (extreme passiveness or timidity).

A Few More Notes…

Being pushy, hyperactive, and making assumptions about your relationship are easy ways to turn her off, but there’s a lot more to consider. Any time a woman feels she is being coerced by you, then you are walking a perilous path. I most commonly see this among men who feel it necessary to assert their aggressiveness or an “alpha” attitude, despite how often this behavior backfires.

Sorry to be visceral, but I knew a guy in college who would try to take any pretty little date back to the beige, single-mattress of his bunk bed; and force her down on his cock with choice language like “Suck it, bitch”. Obviously, his dorm had a revolving door of disgusted women trying to get away from him. Yet, he somehow imagined that such behavior was appropriate because—most likely—he was obsessed with aggressive porn.

If you have similar ideas in your head, understand that porn, or anything you see on television, has very little to do with the reality of social situations—especially women and sex.

In Summary

You have to be chill. Always be chill. Whether making assumptions or becoming aggressive, these are traits you have to eliminate to achieve the cool, happy demeanor that will create the success in your life you desire.

The Demonstration of Higher Value – A New Guide

Here’s an acronym you may have heard before: a “DHV”, or a demonstration of higher value. On the topic of seduction, this was (and continues to be) a big deal. It’s the idea of implanting certain “spikes” into your conversation to show your high-quality characteristics without directly stating them—which would be bragging.

Most famously, a person would spin a tale about helping some ex-girlfriend out of a bad situation in order to demonstrate both his pre-selection by other women (the existence of girlfriends) and his ability to look out for loved ones. And, based on further evolutionary psychobabble, these traits activate switches in a woman’s mind that a man is a worthy suitor. Presto, seduction accomplished (or one phase of it, anyway).

Hmmm….

Like a lot of advice created in the seduction community, I’d approach this topic with a grain of salt. If there’s a single thing that made me overthink my “game” back when I was a college sophomore, it was probably this.

Hitting up a lot of clubs in 2006 and 2007, it became obvious when I’d see guys trying to mack on girls after filling their heads with stuff like this:

“Yeah, so I was driving my yacht the other day and you wouldn’t believe what happened, I saw my ex-girlfriend on the shore and she was being attacked by a wild bobcat. So I stopped the yacht and saved her…”

WTF?

I have some news: talking like this is still a form of bragging, anybody with a shred of social acumen can sense it. I doubt it improves your chances with any woman, and if you do meet a lady after concocting DHV laden stories, I’d bet my money your success was unrelated to your technique.

However, the demonstration of higher value is still a real thing, it’s just the actual way to do it was inaccurately described when seduction-celebrity Mystery, or whoever it was, cooked up the idea in the early 2000s.

How to Really Create a Demonstration of Higher Value

The DHV is still a great way to massively improve your success in business, romance, and various other areas, and it’s something I highly recommend doing. It’s just that demonstrating value is not performed in the way that was commonly taught.

In Business and the Social Ladder

The greatest way to move up the social ladder and network with high-rollers is by showing value. The way to do it is twofold:

Treat people Equally: don’t butter up rich or famous people, but aim to be a friend or partner who accepts them unconditionally. So, be an ear of support, and have the ability to listen and offer thoughtful feedback. These are traits not commonly possessed, and the rich and powerful will want these types of people in their social circles. Furthermore, never directly recognize their social status; treating that billionaire CEO like any other normal friend of yours will yield a lot of respect.

Offer Real Utility: Whether in the form of sound-advice or actual services, be happy to help people. Never say you plan to accomplish X, Y, Z. Instead, simply do it, and let them decide if they want to compensate you or not. Through being somebody who acts, and does not talk, you’ll enter the top percentile of valuable people.

In Sex and Romance

Showing value to a woman is a bit different from showing value socially or in business. A high-value man is identified by whether his mannerisms match that of other sexually sought after men.

Non-Attachment: The best DHV in the world is to remain unaffected by a beautiful woman. High-value men may be surrounded by sexual options, so they don’t put unnecessary weight on a particular woman, and as it turns out—women like this. To practice this is as simple as never fawning over a pretty girl and to never hand over one ounce of your power in return for her favor.

Tease: Secondly, you can tease her, but not in a creepy, passive-aggressive or try-hard way: simply communicate with her as an equal, and if the opportunity arises, joke with her. There are tons of resources on the web for learning banter and humor, and this demonstrates value in many powerful ways. This is a true DHV.

What Happens: When a beautiful woman meets a man who’s completely unplugged from traditional social programming about treating her with special attention, like a princess, or any type of clingy behavior, that man becomes extremely interesting to her. So much that within minutes of behaving this way with a gorgeous girl, a puzzled look may appear on her face, followed by rapid attempts to qualify herself (which you can respond to with a bit of reassurance that you enjoy her company).

In Addition: Acts of heroics are definitely a massive value spike when demonstrated versus passively talking about it, but unless you’re Ryan Gosling, I wouldn’t depend on these moments as a way to impress the ladies.

However, through being a good-hearted guy who tries to help out, you can increase your authentic value by helping people in a selfless way—and this definitely won’t harm your success!

In Summary

The demonstration of higher value is actually performed “behind the scenes”, it is never done through hitting somebody over the head with injected lines related to past girlfriends, expensive merchandise or feats of heroism.

On the other hand, actions speak much louder than words. In business, never make empty promises, but always be making a direct impact through offering value, even if it’s just through being great, positive company. In romance, don’t explain your value, but show it by behaving in a way that is attractive. In essence, you must BE it rather than wear it like a cheap costume, and then you will have really great results.

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How to be Honest and Authentic to Enhance Your Success

How to be honest

Maybe it’s because of a late-stage quarter-life crisis, but as I get older I find myself becoming more honest about the shit that’s wrong with my life. I’ve also discovered the therapeutic nature of coming clean about these faults, and how it seems to enhance my social confidence on a number of levels.

A lack of authenticity means you are lying both to yourself, and to others, about things like your faults or weaknesses. This is a result of a feeling that it’s necessary to cover-up perceived flaws. Often, this is a very conscious effort, stemmed from a belief that other people are greater than you, and it’s necessary to lie to achieve equal footing.

Guys who are very concerned about status, what others think of them, and society’s expectations tend to be the most dishonest and inauthentic types of people. Or, they fall into weird, faux “nice guy” behavior.

In actuality, poor authenticity murders your chances with women. If you’re browsing this site looking for tips on how to meet girls, I’d suggest start by learning how to be honest as a way to jump-start this area of your life. Dishonesty, on multiple levels, creates the vibe of “swarthiness”, which is an attraction killer. Conversely, vulnerability and openness build strong connections.

Here are 9 ways to immediately become more authentic.

Come Clean About Faults through Self Deprecation

On a daily basis, your ego is wrestling with apparent shortcomings, whether they’re social stigmas or insecurities from childhood. The best way to come forward about these things is self-deprecating humor. Don’t overdo it, but if your situation in life is shit and you’re living out of your car, then humorously invite people to your Toyota after-party. In time, you will begin to own your shortcomings, versus allowing them to own you.

Put Yourself at Mercy

Another way your ego prevents you from learning how to be honest is by creating a self-defense system akin to the “Star Wars” program developed by the U.S. government during the Cold War. When people make mistakes, usually the first instinct is to cover it up, or even attack the attacker in a barrage of ego-defense laser-guided missiles.

Instead, when you make even mild mistakes—like at work—put yourself on the line and become the first to quip at your own incompetence. People around you have no reason to be harsh or condemning if it’s obvious you’re very aware of your own shortcomings. By doing this, you’ll never experience the feeling of having to “cover up” your tracks.

Example: “No, I didn’t file the report like you asked, either I’m going crazy, I’m incompetent, or both”…and then, obviously remedy your mistake.

It takes a real man to admit he’s wrong.

Admit to Vices

Another way inauthenticity enters our lives is when we live in the shadows of what we’re afraid to admit we like to do.

While I don’t think it would be a good idea to openly tell your work associates that you enjoy being tied up and spanked like a baby, there are less socially damning vices that you shouldn’t be self-conscious about.

For instance, if you play a lot of video games, fess up about it with people, and never lecture others about similar hobbies. Or, if somebody asked you what you did on Sunday and you spent the day watching reruns of “Married With Children” in your underwear, don’t enthusiastically respond with “I exercised, read some Dostoyevsky, and made a few hundred dollars on the stock exchange” because you feel it’s the most sophisticated or appropriate response.

Instead, tell them the honest-to-God truth, or else you’re deceiving yourself.

Tell People What Bothers You

Your friend tracked some dirt into your house, right after you vacuumed, and it keeps coming back to the forefront of your thoughts. Do you A: conceal it and fester about it, B: yell at them, or C: point it out and ask them to be careful in the future?

“B” and “C” are appropriate responses, but obviously “B” is very reactive and socially uncouth. Nevertheless, hiding your intentions or feelings is another way that people act inauthentic, and so even being harsh is better than festering and saying nothing, otherwise known as conflict avoidance.

Of course, the best tactic is “C”, so grace your disapproval with adequate social skills, and be quick to point out your disappointment.

Avoid Bragging And Compliment Fishing

Bragging operates in the following way: bragger accomplishes a merited task, bragger wonders why there is a lack of recognition for the significant deed, bragger begins to fish for approval, bragger receives approval and feels momentarily satisfied, OR bragger receives apathy or annoyance, and responds with passive aggressive hostility.

The root cause of bragging is insecurity. Everybody wants to feel accepted or to gain recognition, and this is fine (and perhaps it’s one of those vices you should admit to), but the sense of insecurity can run deep into your bloodstream, requiring incessant approval of accomplishments. If this is you, immediately confront yourself about it.

One clever way to brag in an “authentic way” is to state your intentions by prefacing whatever you’re about to brag about with your desire to achieve social feedback, IE: “I’m whoring myself out for approval so here’s the really cool piece of art I made, if anybody wants to comment on it feel free”.

At least this way, you’re not masking your desire for approval.

When the Truth Hurts, Tell it Anyway

The easiest way to learn how to be honest is to state facts even at the risk of confrontation.

Obviously, white lies are necessary at certain points, and you should not forego this practice when it’s necessary. However, do you ever find yourself lying just to avoid minor confrontations about things? Examples: “Yeah, I paid the electric bill” “Yup, I changed the oil after I borrowed your car, just like you asked” “I’m on a diet now, I swear” “No, I don’t think you gained weight over the summer, at all” “It’s your baby”

(Joking about the last one, obviously).

The funny thing about being honest is that sometimes people get pissed off at first, but in the long run you earn their respect. As an experiment, I made a policy with my last girlfriend to “never lie”, which would mean doing unthinkable things like telling her if she gained some weight or needed to put on makeup. We fought a lot at first, but later on our relationship became extremely trustworthy (and remains so today, actually, even after we had to separate because of distance. I’m still the guy she can ask about anything in the world and receive honest answers).

Do What You Say, No Matter What

Everybody knows “that guy” who is all talk, and nothing to show for it. Sometimes it’s on big levels (“I’m starting a business and it’s going to soar!”) or micro levels (“I’m doing my laundry today, I swear!”) but either way, whatever they say just doesn’t get done, and their promises become as hollow as their pitiful results.

Don’t be that guy. The best way to avoid this behavior is avoid any type of promise you feel reservations about. In addition, complete tasks without the expectation of approval. To be the type of guy who shows versus tells is going to create massive success in your life.

In my worldly experience, places like Los Angeles and Las Vegas are filled with people who make entire careers out of empty promises, and quality people can’t stand them!

Avoid Routines and Gambits

The more your social life is held up by the crutches of routines and fake personalities, the more it will eventually suffer.

Many people who constitute the currently small reader-base of Developed Man are friends or acquaintances in the seduction community, and sometimes these people become accustomed to the idea of scripted material and lines to meet women.

Actual, popular guys don’t need to do this kind of stuff. Over time, those routines become affixed to your personality, and your presentation morphs into something as fake as a three dollar bill.

Avoid this.

Put Your Feelings on the Line

So, as I explained at the beginning of this article, I’ve learned the therapeutic nature of putting yourself “out there” versus covering up weaknesses or flaws. Obviously, it’s not a good idea to be constantly weeping around everybody, but from time-to-time you should just come clean with friends and family about what’s working in your life, and what isn’t.

You’ll find most people are sharing similar plights as you are. Whether it’s a lack of money, relationships, or the crushing weight of comparing your dreams versus short term necessity, the human experience is surprisingly familiar among all who participate in it, and there are a lot of people willing to help you along the way when you learn how to be honest with yourself.

What Do You Think?

I just finished installing a Facebook component of Developed Man, which means you should now be able to add notes directly from your FB page by scrolling down to the comments field. If you find this article interesting, feel free to share your thoughts. If you disagree with it, I’d also like to hear from you.

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