Photo by Veer. An introductory paragraph and a case study So, you’ve set your sights on finding love and settling down, and you’ve got a solid dating strategy. But before you get out there and start getting into really fun stuff like meeting new people, there are two things you need to really understand about the dating process: 1. It’s just people This is the most important thing you need to know about dating: it’s not the school of trying to study chemistry, it’s just the art of being alive. Not everything you do, say, or think in a given moment is a sign of who you are. In fact, there are a lot of guys out there who set out to “fake it until they make it” on the Internet. They’re just regular guys looking for a little fun and excitement in their lives. They want to get laid. They want to get laid well. They want to learn about women. They want to develop a really good technique. But it’s all meaningless if you don’t actually know who you are, and who you want to be. In fact, you probably have the dating equivalent of a bad cold. You know that you have a cold, but you feel like you’ll never get better. You’ve been sick for two days and you’re not getting any better. That’s what you feel like when you start out online and decide to pretend to be a different person, just for a little fun and excitement. You’re pretending to be someone else. To be blunt: You’re pretending to be a faker. And the thing is, everybody knows. Even if you manage to fake it with just a few people, eventually the truth will come out and your life will get really miserable. The truth is going to come out in all walks of life: when it comes to dating, if you’re not presenting yourself as who you really are, eventually your lies will be uncovered. 2. Bad dates happen. People have all sorts of stories about the “best date ever,” and then they go off and have all sorts of other dates that are just kind of like that. It’s not that there isn’t a correlation between being good in bed and being great in life—there absolutely is. But remember, we’re not talking about “best ever” dates—those are just the stories we make up after a good sex night. Everybody’s like, “Oh, that was the best date ever.” But she was
What’s the Rule? Before we proceed, I should note that one of my rules here, in addition to this rule at the top: Do this a few times before you start dating, so you can mentally prepare yourself to be rejected. I’m going to assume you want to start dating, but that means you’re going to get rejected—that’s the point of starting, after all. This isn’t going to be a page about waltzing in and finding someone who wants to start dating with you. The point of these rules is to help you prepare yourself to react when it happens. You can take them or leave them, but let’s get into it! The Bottom Line In this guide, I talk about things from the perspective of a man who is looking to find a woman. That will probably be different for you, and I don’t expect that to change. I might not be looking for a date, but I might be. You don’t have to agree with my rules to do them, though. Keep in mind that dating is a very complicated thing to figure out on your own. Everyone has their own rules, they’re always evolving, and everyone is different. This isn’t a hard-and-fast guide, just the principles that work for me and the community I live in. I wish every couple had to follow these, but most of them don’t. Are You a Robot or a Human Being? If you’ve been on one date in the past five years and aren’t actively dating, you’re a robot. (Yes, I know your mom.) You might call up a buddy or find yourself bored out of your mind. Get off the dating apps and into something more meaningful, like a hobby or a community service project. If you’re on a few dates a year and aren’t a robot, you’re a human being, which is great—human beings are awesome, but robotic people are closer to being human beings in space. The more you put yourself out there, the more you’re more likely to get hurt. There’s a stark difference between a casual fling and someone who wants to settle down. Some people are like Bob from Home Improvement, and some people are like Rita.* Only one of those is really worth your time. You Should Do This If: Getting rejected sucks. (Cannot stress this enough.) If you’re wired this way, you might

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