Mindsets for eliminating approach anxiety
Approaching strange women is one of the most difficult things for a man to do.
Humans evolved to look at the world as a series of “tribes.” We want to be accepted and loved in our own tribe, and we want to fight and kill the other tribes. Approaching a random woman (or man) violates both of those emotions: if we see her as part of our own tribe, we are not going to want to approach because we will be afraid she will reject us and we will be no longer accepted in the tribe and we will have to live in the jungle alone with no food. If we see her as part of a different tribe, we will not want to approach her because we will be afraid that she will see us as a foreign invader and her and her fellow tribes members will want to fight us.
Anxiety is an emotional reaction created by evolution to prevent us from doing something stupid that could get us rejected from the tribe. Our tribal emotions also cause us to look at apes from different tribes as hostile threats, which may explain why women are more likely to be rude and reject a random guy who comes to talk to them rather than some guy they already know. But these tribal emotions, whether hers or yours, are fundamentally irrational, and can be overcome by stronger emotions.
There are tons of articles and videos on the internet about how to overcome approach anxiety. I find that most of them are not helpful and many of them actually serve to INCREASE approach anxiety because it makes you start overthinking the approach and also makes you start feeling inferior and worthless because you do not have this magical ability the cool guy in the video or article has to approach women.
Ultimately, the only way to destroy approach anxiety is to just do it. But I’ve decided to tackle this problem by listing some “mindsets” that I think can help.
Approach anxiety is an irrational emotion and rejection does not actually hurt
As I stated earlier, approach anxiety is an evolutionary instinct designed to make sure we don’t do anything stupid to get rejected from the tribe. There are actual, physical consequences to getting rejected if you are an ape: you are cut off from your source of love, sex, protection, and food. Furthermore, being rejected leaves you alone in the jungle where predators and hostile ape tribes can kill you.
These consequences, however, are irrelevant to humans. If a girl rejects us, our access to food, love, etc… will not be affected. We will not be left in the jungle alone, nor will be rejected by any “tribe.” In short, nothing our body fears will actually happen.
Of course, there are some real-world consequences of getting rejected. People may laugh at you, your feelings may get hurt, and in an extreme situation her boyfriend may try to fight you or the bar’s security guard may kick you out for being a creep. But these things are not what your approach anxiety is really afraid of, these are just excuses your emotions glom onto to not approach. And if you have emotional intelligence and situational awareness, you can avoid these consequences.
In short, nothing will happen if you get rejected. Nothing! Life will continue as before, everybody who loves you will continue to love you, and you will continue to be the same person.
Your value as a man or as a person is not dependent on what others think of you
The Greek philosopher Heraclitus famously wrote that most people are subconsciously living in a fantasy land that their own mind created. I agree with this. The fantasy land makes us feel good, so we are afraid of doing anything that could disturb the fantasy we’ve created for ourselves.
In the context of approaching, I think a lot of guys build an image in their head that they are some stud who is attractive to women, and they are afraid of approaching because they do not want to test this theory out and find out that they are not actually attractive. In other words, rejection will shatter the image that they have of themselves.
Again, this is irrational. Your value, is not dependent on what anybody else thinks or says about you. It’s better to get rejected by a woman than to never know what she would have done or worse, to assume she would have liked you.
A guy who walks in a bar and does not approach is like a skinny guy that walks into a gym and says “I can bench 400 lbs” but is too chicken to actually try it or. He should try to lift something and see how strong he really is.
When you first start going out and getting rejected, it will feel like shit. But again, it does not matter. You don’t need women or society to help you feed your fantasy image of yourself.
I am a self-contained person
Just as I do not need another person to make me happy, I do not need another person’s sociability to have fun. I bring the fun, I bring the energy, I bring the interestingness, I bring confidence, etc…. I can carry a conversation for 5 hours even if she is giving one word answers because I don’t need to rely on her energy or interest. Of course, if a girl is not interested, I don’t hang around for 5 hours, but the point is that I am not afraid of approaching because I bring everything. I can talk about my own day, I can make observations about her, I can ask her questions, etc… And most importantly, nothing she can or say can change my attitude or my energy. She isn’t going to make me feel bad, or sap my energy, or change my emotional frame. I am a totally self-contained person and my feelings are the exact same before I approach her as after.
Of course, it takes a while to get where I am, but once you are here, approaching is a lot easier.
Women’s approach anxiety is worse than yours
You know those feelings of nervousness and stark terror you get when you even consider approaching a woman? Well, women have that feeling too, but much worse. In fact, women’s approach anxiety is so bad that they rarely approach a guy, even if they think he is really hot. I have been a “wingman” for beautiful women before and they absolutely will not approach. This may be because of women’s evolutionary biology or because society has trained people to think that a woman should never chase a man. For whatever reason, women will not approach. It’s the man’s job. You have to do it.
Put this way, approaching becomes more than a fun hobby, but rather a matter of life or death. Literally, if the man does not approach the women will never meet anybody new and she will be stuck with the same idiots and losers in her life because she is too afraid to approach. You would be amazed at how many beautiful women are stuck hanging out with guys they do not like because they are afraid to approach new guys.
A lot of guys get angry or offended that it is the man’s responsibility to approach and that the man has to take the risk of getting rejected. But I think you should look at it positively. As the man, you are the hero that must save the day by approaching. Without you, the approach would never happen. You have a power the woman does not have, and you should use it.
Women who say it is creepy to approach random people are sad and miserable
A lot of guys nowadays are afraid to approach because they’ve read some blog post by some feminist with blue hair saying that a man should never approach a woman he doesn’t know because it is creepy. As a feminist, I hate these people.
Don’t listen to these idiots. These women make up 0.0001% of the population. Most girls, especially attractive ones, like being approached, but you don’t know about them because they are too busy out having an actual fun life to be writing blog posts about how they don’t want to be approached. More importantly, the only reason somebody would write such a blog post is 1) the only people that have ever approached them were creeps, in which case, their opinion is not relevant to you, or 2) they’ve never actually been approached, so they are just writing this type of blog post to look cool for the other feminists, in which case their opinion is even less relevant.
And as I pointed out in the last mindset, these women will live shitty lives because they will never meet anybody new outside of their already-constructed social circles. That’s a miserable, shitty life. I have met so many awesome people because I had the balls to cold approach, and these idiots will never experience that because of their fundamentally flawed ideology.
Approaches happen when your desire to approach exceeds your anxiety
Your brain subconsciously does a risk-reward calculation before you approach, and if it thinks that the expected downside (i.e., rejection) exceeds the expected upside (talking to her or fucking her), it will try to subconsciously sabotage your approach and make excuses as to why you shouldn’t do it. Your goal should be to hack your reward system so that the expected upside exceeds the expected downside. You can do this by getting some successful approaches under you belt so that your brain knows there can be a good payoff or doing some approaches and realizing that rejection does not hurt that bad. Some guys refrain from masturbating to make themselves hornier and force themselves to approach. Other guys hack their reward system with drugs or alcohol, either using drugs to increase the positive payoff or to decrease their anxiety. Obviously, some of the methods I just described are better than others – you don’t want to depend on drugs to be social.
Think of it this way: the point of life is to have fun and feel good, not to make anybody else happy, or to look cool, or to be “accepted” by a group of people you don’t even like. And meeting new women and then fucking them makes you feel good, so you should do it. In fact, approaching a hot chick and getting her number is one of the most thrilling experiences a man can have. You should be having fun and feeling good before you approach, as you approach, and after. If she rejects you, you may feel bad for a second, but the point of life is feeling good, so why would you let her rob you of that?
You are the insider, not her
A lot of you guys have severe social anxiety, got bullied in school, and generally look at yourselves as “outsiders,” so when you see an attractive group of people, guys or girls, you don’t want to bother them because you subconsciously assume they are the “insiders” and will reject you. I keep the opposite mindset: I am the insider - I have the inside track to the best life, the coolest people, and the most fun, so everybody should be begging to be accepted by me. Even if they pretend that they are the insiders I let them know through my demeanor that no, actually I am the insider. And if you think to yourself “I can’t feel like I am an insider because I don’t have a cool life” you need to realize that there are NO insiders or outsiders once you leave high school. Life is random chaos and nobody knows what the fuck is going on. People walk around trying to look cool and important, but they are just as confused, scared, and anxious as you.
The German philosopher Heidegger famously said that all philosophy is bullshit because nobody fundamentally knows what existence is, and if you don’t know what existence is then anything you philosophize about is just speculation. I look at social situations the same way: nobody fundamentally knows why we are here, what the point of life is, or even how our world really works, so why would I let myself be intimidated by them and feel like they are the “insider” and I am not?
This is why confidence is so important. If you are living in a random maze of chaos, which is what life is, and somebody comes along that acts like they know what they are doing, you are going to assume that they DO know what they are doing and you will want to follow them.
I feel good when I approach women because I know my intentions are pure
This may sound crazy to people who think “bro, your intentions aren’t pure, you are just trying to fuck them.” Even if I am just trying to fuck them, my intentions are pure, because I am not going to lie to them, manipulate them, pressure them, act weird, try to cajole them drinks or prizes, get sad or angry if they say no, By being honest and not creepy, I am already in the top 1% of guys who try to talk to them.
I also bring value. I am funny, I am smart, I treat women with respect, I am interesting, I am empathetic, I listen well, I am calm, I set the tone of the conversation, I am friendly, I am funny, and I will disappear if she doesn’t want me there. What’s not to like?
You do not need to be confident to approach women
I probably disagree with 99% of the pick-up community when I say this, but I do not think one needs to be confident to approach women. In fact, I think it is a bad idea to approach women based on confidence. This is probably my least-used mindset, but it may be helpful to the newbies.
Confidence is faith that you will succeed at whatever you are trying to do. But when you see a random woman at a bar or something, there is no guarantee that she will talk to you, like you, or fuck you. In fact, the chances that a random woman will like you are pretty small, no matter how good looking you are: she may have a boyfriend, you may not be her type, or she may not be in the mindset to meet somebody new at that time. Approaching random women is generally a low-percentage game, so you are lying to yourself if you expect a win every time or even most of the time. You should instead go into the game knowing that you may get a lot of rejections, but still not caring.
Some super cool PUA guys may say “nah bra, I’ve successfully approached so many women that I am now confident they will say yes.” That may or may not be true for them, and I do agree that successful approaches will make you more confident. But to me, that doesn’t matter. First, to a newbie who has not had that kind of success, this advice does not help. Second, I like to game in all kinds of diverse environments, and I have found it personally difficult to carry over confidence from previous situations to new one. For example, I know for a fact that I have a low yes rate in hipster communities where everybody has cool tattoos. Women who are covered in tattoos seem to generally prefer guys who also have a bunch of tattoos, which I do not. Nevertheless, when I am in those communities I approach the girls anyway because even if I get 50 rejections, all I need is that one tattooed hipster girl to say yes to me.
I don’t approach women because I am confident, I approach them because I am selfish
When I approach a random woman, I am not confident that she will like me because she probably won’t. And in fact, there is a big chance that she doesn’t want to talk to me and I will annoy her or disgust her.
I approach her anyway because I am selfish. I am only this earth for a short time, and I am only young and handsome for an even shorter time, so I want to take advantage of that and fuck as many girls as I can. Why should I care what she thinks? As long as I am not doing anything wrong (harassing her, insulting her, making me her feel unsafe), I am perfectly in my legal and moral rights to approach women and try to fuck them. That woman never did anything for me, and she probably wouldn’t hesitate to do something annoying to me if it would benefit her somehow, so why should I worry about her feelings and not approach her? Life is short, and I want to enjoy it. When you are 80 and in a nursing home, are you going to be happy that you didn’t approach some supermodel because you didn’t want to annoy her? No, you are going to wish you gave it a shot. So I give it a shot even though I know I will probably fail. Even if I get rejected 99 times out of 100, that 1 time will be worth it.
Of course, I am being extreme here. I can have this mindset because I am decent at approaching and I am not really selfish and I do not really annoy most women I approach. If I was actually going around annoying people and getting harsh rejections all the time I would probably feel pretty bad.
Nevertheless, I use this mindset whenever I find myself afraid of approaching because I don’t want to annoy anybody because there really is no reason for me to lessen my fun because I am worried what some stranger will think of me. Those people never did anything for me and they cannot affect me so why should I care about them?
When I do approach, however, I do it confidently
This may sound like it contradicts the point I just made, so let me explain.
When I approach a woman, I have no idea whether she will like me, and chances are she will not, but when I do approach her, I approach her AS IF I KNEW SHE WOULD LIKE ME. I basically pretend I know she will like me. When I approach my friends, I know they will talk to me and like me, so I basically approach random women like they are my friends that I already know and I am sure they will want to talk to me. In fact, sometimes if you approach somebody with a high degree of familiarity, you can subconsciously trick them into thinking that they already know you.
Approaching somebody confidently while not actually being confident is an incredibly bizarre thing to do, but this is why approaching is so hard. You have to put yourself into a mental and emotional state that may not apply to the situation you are actually in.
Approaching a woman is kind of like putting on a rock show. You put the show on the same way whether the audience is into it or not. Obviously it’s a lot more easy and fun if the crowd is giving you energy and loving it, but you cannot put on low energy show just because the crowd is being low energy. And if you give a high energy show, you may feel silly, but the crowd may come around and start to get into it. But if you give a low energy show, the crowd will definitely remain low energy.
I assume every woman I approach is crazy
Like most guys, whenever I see a beautiful woman I automatically start having negative thoughts in my head like “she is probably out of my league, she will never like me, she is probably a stuck up bitch, etc…” To kill these thoughts I just assume she is crazy, and by that I mean that I assume that anything is possible with her. I will tell myself stuff like “yeah she is a hot blonde that looks like a model, but she has a weird fetish where she likes to fuck fat, poor guys.” Of course, not all women are crazy, but I find this mindset helps reduce my anxiety. On top of that, I have approached enough super hot women to know that a lot of them ARE crazy in the sense that they are into guys that you would never imagine them being into.
Snootyness and coldness are part of the game
A lot of guys get stuck on the fact that girls look stuck up or they act cold and uninterested when they approach. But it’s good for women to be cold and snooty! Women are approached by tons of creeps, losers, and douchebags, so they need to protect themselves by putting up a wall. Women automatically shit test guys that approach them because they need to filter out the creeps and losers and also because they want to test to see if this guy is the confident alpha they want.
If you have a sister or a woman you care about, would you want her to stupidly “accept” any guy that said “hi” to her? No, you would want her to challenge, poke and prod the guy to figure out who he is first. The same way, some of the most awesome, interesting, hottest girls put up a wall and aggressively test your frame before emotionally investing in you.
Girls do not automatically fall in love with guys based on appearance them like guys do. They need an “analysis” period while they decide whether to get emotionally invested or not. You need to just stay the course and hold frame, realizing that she is being bitchy because that is part of the game. As long as she is continuing to talk to you, she is interested.
Of course, you must use your emotional intelligence to figure out if the woman is being bitchy because she is an asshole or really does not want to talk to you. Furthermore, even though it may theoretically be possible to win her over eventually, it may not be worth it. I have seen guys chase girls for YEARS before getting them, and you need to calculate whether that is a good use of your time and energy or whether it is better for you to just move on and find somebody else. I have gamed enough girls by now that I can kind of tell when it is taking too long for a woman to invest in me, and as I get older and better at game, I have less and less patience.
All women have a creamy filling
No matter how cold, snooty, bitchy a woman seems on the outside, all women have a creamy filling. Deep on the inside they want to get fucked, cuddle on the couch on a lazy Sunday, look up to a strong, confident man, and connect their creamy filing to a man’s creamy filling. These are just facts about human nature. Once you’ve broken through to a few girls’ creamy fillings, then you will realize that all girls have a creamy filling, and the goal is to just patient and hope she brings down her wall for you.
I have seen lots of cases where a girl will start out the night looking hot and snobby, but by the end of the night she is making out with some guy who is weird, short, fat, unattractive, etc... I don’t know if that’s what she wanted or if she is just settling for the best guy that approached her, but either way, I realized that she was the opposite of this image of a hot bitch that she had projected all night. All women want love and affection.
I am not afraid of the competition because I just play my game
I wrestled in high school and I remember going to wrestling tournaments and feeling paralyzed by anxiety before my matches. I would look at all the individual wrestlers and wonder how hard they trained, what moves they knew, how long they had been wrestling, etc… Eventually, I realized that this type of rumination was detrimental. Instead of thinking about all this bullshit, I needed to go out there and play my game. I had trained hard, I had a good coach, and I knew I was good. I was either going to win or lose, but ruminating about each individual opponent’s life story would do me no good.
I take that same attitude into approaching. Every woman, bar, club, and environment is different, and a million things can go wrong or right that I cannot predict. All I can do is play my game and hope I win. I approach, say hi, introduce myself, and do it confidently. I have doing pick-up for long enough to know that cold approaching works – not always and not with every person, but it works enough for me to keep doing it.
I see lots of guys that want to endlessly ruminate over the differences of bar game and club game and day game, and the differences in countries, and the differences in girls, etc… This is generally a waste of time. Your “game” should be pretty much the same everywhere and all the time, barring a few exceptions. Ruminating over the individual intricacies of your target is just your anxiety making excuses to not take action.
Mindsets don’t help
After I’ve given you a bunch of mindsets, I would like to end by saying that mindsets fundamentally do not help. What matters is doing. Oftentimes it’s better to clear your mind, stop thinking, and just do it.