How To Make The Most Out Of A Book

Personal development books are not novels. They are not meant to be read in one sit. I used to make that terrible mistake of reading a book as fast as I could just so I could get that sense of accomplishment. Needless to say, the books didn’t change my life. Nothing incredible happened after reading “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki or “The Richest Man in Babylon” by George Clason. Perhaps it is because I didn’t make the best use of them. They are called ‘life changing’ books. Yet, I read the books and I didn’t turn into a millionaire. I felt a rush to finish the books and go into the next one to accumulate as much knowledge as possible. As it turned out, this was a gross mistake.

The point of reading a book is not just to read it, finish it, and put it away in your shelf. It’s to extract its wisdom (or the author’s) as much as possible. I mentioned before that it takes a student of great books to become one of great knowledge. I didn’t say it takes a reader. I said it takes a student. A student then not only reads, but seeks to extract every bit of knowledge so that he understands it as much as possible. If it takes highlighting, underlining, circling, putting asterisk or stars, making notes on the side of the book, or discussing it with friends, then he does it. Of what use is a book if you’ll never write or talk about it? I once was reading a book by Jeffrey Gitomer – a master sales trainer – and a family member who passed by saw me reading the book. Jeffrey is known for his portable, smooth, playful looking books. As this family member saw me underline and write several things on it, he exclaimed “Don’t mess up such a nice book like that!”. He didn’t understand.

Some will say “I can’t be on the same book for more than a week!”. Bad. If you’re going to read a book, then take the extra time to actually understand it and apply it. Otherwise you will have wasted valuable time. Yes, I’m aware of some programs out there that work on the subconscious mind and enable faster reading and greater understanding. If you can afford those programs, go for it. But if you don’t, then don’t mind taking 2 or 3 weeks or even a month to fully grasp the concept of a book. Here is what I do:

I first read the book front to back, highlighting, underlining, making comments on the side as I go.
By the way, if the author recommends not to exceed one chapter a day, then I follow that. You should too. He/she is the teacher. You’re merely the student.
I then re-read what I highlighted or underlined along with the writings I made on the pages.
I might also read the sentences or paragraphs previous to the parts highlighted.
I make sure I jot down all the book’s suggestions to be applied in actuality. I then work on those suggestions.
I then go one more time through the highlights and re-write on my journal then best quotes or reminders from the book.
If something is particularly important or profound, I fold the top corner of the page, so that next time I pick up the book again, I know there is something valuable in that page.
(These simple steps can save you tremendous amounts of time in the future when you need to be refreshed. Try them.)

Something happens when you repetitively read something. You begin to see things you didn’t see the time before. You begin to perceive a particular paragraph or sentence a lot more different than you perceived it when you first read it. Or you now find a topic you ignored before but is deeply important now. For instance, I constantly refer back to “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey. And each time, I see something newer and bigger. The book may not change, but my understanding of its wisdom does.

Knowledge in Order

Author, speaker, and University President Nido Qubein brought something to my attention a while ago. He said “Have your knowledge in order. If your knowledge is not order, you become more confused by definition”. How true is that! The libraries and bookstores of America are filled with books of financial freedom, happiness, personal development, and relationships – yet, we lack these very same things today, perhaps more than before.

What happens when you read a book on finances and then one on relationships? Correct, your mind shifts its focus. While it’s great to open your mind by reading on a variety of topics, it’s more important to grasp on one topic first then move to another. Failure to do this will result in constant shift of focus. Not good.

Here is how it works: Read books from the same philosophy in sequence.

For example: Now that I’m fully done reading Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits, I move on to another one his books “Principle Centered Leadership”. I could have chosen “First Things First” or “The 8th Habit”. But I think this choice will increase my personal understanding of Covey’s philosophy, if read next. For you, it might be a different book. Follow your instinct.

You should choose a book that roots on the same philosophy – and usually that happens to be by the same author. If I read Stephen Covey and then go Napoleon Hill, then there is a distortion there. Even if they both write on personal development, their philosophy is different. It’s very tempting only to read those ‘bestsellers’ with millions of copies, but don’t fall on the trap. There are some great books out that are complementary to those bestsellers. They just never reach the recognition they deserve since other book by the same author might be his best work. Read them all. Not just the most recognized. You’ll be amazed at what you find.

Sharing Ideas. Sharing the Books.

This could go under the suggestions for better understanding of your reading, but since I’m witness of how powerful this is, I decided to elaborate a bit more.

A great man named Jim Rohn once quoted “When you share an idea with ten people, they may hear it once, but you hear it ten times. That’s good”. This statement inspired me to share my quotes and insights with everyone I meet online (Twitter, Facebook) or off it. I recently started sharing my own short quotes and they have been receiving good comments and appreciation. This is only one good side effect, the other is that I get to read that idea again and the mere fact that I share it with others pushes me a bit more to deeply understand them. After all, what would I do if someone asks me ‘Can you elaborate on that?’.

If you’re comfortable, share the books too. Give them to a friend and let him or her know that you’d like to discuss the book later. I have talked to friends who have read the same books I have and it’s amazing how much a different perspective can make yours stronger. So don’t fall shy of joining a book club or asking a friend to join you.

I hope you have gained conscience of how critically important it is to use books the right away. Do you have any other suggestions? Feel free to share them!

Why do men only talk about what men talk about?

The truth is when a group of young male friends get together they talk about three things: Sex, money and alcohol.
How much they have, how much they will have but never, ever how much they don’t have. That’s against the rules. To not have sex (let’s admit it, the activity is seen as a commodity in the majority of male minds) is to be a loser. To not drink alcohol is to be a spoil sport, and to not have money…Well that depends on what you spent it on.  I realise that by revealing this truth to the women of the internet world, my male ‘wingmen’ will be preparing some disgusting mixture of what only can  be described as brew for me to ‘longarm’ as punishment. Yet secretly, in the dark corners of pubs and clubs across the world, we all know it’s true, and what’s worse is that we all know that women all know.

When is it that the social dynamics of a ‘group’ are formed? If it’s just two guys talking to eachother then the topics will vary enormously. Depending on the friend it may include work, family, politics, philosophy, and goodness knows what else. If three friends hang out then the range of topics decrease as obviously the number of shared interests also decline. Four friends? Well now it’s reduced to universal interests such as music and sport. When there are five friends or more together, it’s my experience that unless you’re all spending a lot of time together and sharing loads of interests, the universal topics are those that you can all relate to is shagging, spending and boozing.

Take today for example. Brad and I were in the car driving into town to meet two others. Our conversation ranged from University, Archeology, websites, future plans, Anthropology and recent parties. We met two good friends for a game of Squash ( a shared interest). Sadly (or thankfully as some of the worse players *cough* would say) the courts were full so we went to the pub for a drink, or two…Actually three (another shared interest). Conversation included recent happenings and future plans as well as a bit of sport. Then we were met by another good friend and after about twenty minutes I pointed out to the group that all we had talked about was sex. How much we were having, how much we would be having, but never, ever how much we are not having. That’s against the rules.

Yet Is this really all we want to talk about as a group?

There is only so much one can talk about sex, money and alcohol. I’m a strong believer in that if a man talks about sex for more than five minutes, especially if it’s about how good it is or how much he’s getting, it means that it’s complete bullshit. Yet real men don’t blab on about this stuff, real men save the world from an economic crisis, or poverty, swine flu and even AIDs. I’d like you to read this following excerpt from a GQ article that discusses the meaning of ambition,

“Because we’re a shower, us modern men, composed for the most part of grasping, solipsistic knuckleheads, any game of tennis-elbow-foot that begins with the word “ambition” will quickly and inexorably tumble towards “money”, “power”, “success”. This is not how it ought to be. A Maserati is not an ambition. It’s a fast car. Being headhunted by a hedge fund, buying a second home in Wiltshire, picking your third wife from an online catalogue, watching your collection of Guatemalan sculpture appreciate in value, looking on as your daughter wins Wimbledon… these are goals, perhaps, but they are far too prosaic, too small, to be ambitions.”

No. This isn’t all we want to talk about. These self-gratifying instant pleasures are for boys. Curing cancer, creating an artificial black hole and solving the energy crisis is for men. This unwillingness to grow up, to look at our adolescent dream of fast cars, fast women, instant cash and to honestly say they are crap is the problem. This week I read a status, “David is finally twenteen!” Not the first time I had heard this new number popping up as teenagers seek to prolong their lack of responsibility. What’s next, twenty-thirteen, thirty-one-teen?! It’s time to aim higher, to find ambitions with slim lines of success, to put our skills to use and make this world a better place.

I am Generation Y. Many of you are Generation Y. Together we are more connected then any generation before us. We blog, we text, we Twitter, we Facebook, we call, we meet and we all have access to more of the world’s information as well as each and every human being than ever before. Yet just because there are more strings does not mean they are stronger strings. Having 10,000 friends on Facebook means nothing if you don’t have a relationship with any of them. Our quantity of connections have increased with technology, but our quality of relationships have not. Tribes start small. They are built on trust and honesty. This is why you’ll find groups of men who have real ambitions that talk about anything but sex, money and alcohol.

They will be obsessed, they will keep trying until death takes them and even then their message will spread. They will only talk about what they talk about because it’s their ambition. It’s a real man’s ambition.

Yet don’t assume those who only talk about materialistic prospects lack ambition. I think we all have it somewhere, under that layer of false beliefs. We can feel it; that yearning for more yet not in a self-gratified way. Men who talk about sex, money and alcohol do so because they haven’t found their calling. Sometimes it will take a death, other times an inspirational story or an inability to prevent something catastrophic that tears your heart apart. Just try and find it before your time runs out. My ambition is to explore the bigger systems at play in this world. To try and grasp an understanding at what makes us tick, how we as a species dance to the rhythm of life. And now that I’ve said it, we can stop talking about sex, money and alcohol… well, maybe just a little bit.

How To Sleep Less

For the last two weeks I’ve been decreasing the amount I sleep from an appalling ten (or more) hours to a fine seven. Although this doesn’t have a magnificent ‘wow!’ effect, it is less than the average eight, and it’s still falling. I didn’t read any how to sleep less manuals, hints or tips, but just followed what I would call common sense. If you want to learn how to sleep less then this article is for you. On the other hand if you’re quite content lounging around like a lioness in bed until well past noon, despite life being incredibly short then do so. Either way, sleep is incredibly important for health, learning and overall well-being. It’s not the quantity of sleep that matters, it’s the quality.

Question – if sleep were a choice, would you or wouldn’t you?
Decide now how much sleep you want

Unless you want to be walking around like a zombie for the first week, cut down your sleep in small steps. I went from ten hours to seven hours in two weeks, which is a decrease of 12.8 minutes a day. Although I wasn’t that precise. The more you want to cut down, the longer it will take. Adaptation always takes time, and if you want it to be an easy transition then give yourself a month or more. The longer the transition phase the smaller the gradient. So let’s say you wanted to cut down by two hours over three months. That’s simply a decrease of just over a minute per day.

If you’re a little bit impatient and want to sleep less right now (like me) then be prepared for some pain. Not physical pain, but just severe fatigue. It started off as an accident – I was jet lagged so after five hours of sleep I woke up at sunrise feeling fresh and ready to conquer the world. It was so amazing that I decided there and then that I always want to wake up early (looking back, it was the god awful hour of 5AM) and be able to walk on the streets with no one else around. I knew that the only way to survive on so few hours of sleep was if they were high quality.

Get some quality sleep

This is the most important factor in how to sleep less. I want to stress it so much that if I could have your CD drive open and transform into a sign ‘QUALITY NOT QUANTITY’ then I would. In my opinion there are two types of sleep: deep and light. Deep sleep is when you’re practically unconscious. Someone could tape you to the ceiling and you wouldn’t notice. It’s when you wake up and have no clue how much time has passed. It’s the sleep that heals wounds, figures out complex problems, reduces metabolism, makes you grow and generally recharges all cells in the body with that mystical energy that only sleep gives. It’s deep sleep you want as much of and as quickly as possible. Light sleep is when your mind is drifting, you see dreams yet are aware of your own presence. It’s when if you really wanted to you could wake up, if a noise is heard, or one of those really random itches are felt then you’d climb back into consciousness.

It’s all about going deep

To sleep less, the key is in reducing light sleep, and strengthening deep sleep. This is where common sense comes in. Playing video games just before bed does not help. Those of you who are computer game fanatics will know exactly what I mean when you go to bed, and you actually dream yourself in the game (‘boom headshot!’). Similarly don’t pump out those last remaining press-ups, sit ups or pistol leg squats just before you crash. These only release adrenaline and happy hormones that do anything but let you go to sleep. Some say don’t eat, but I personally found eating a huge meal before sleep helped…Oxygen goes from the brain to the stomach – but that’s my experience.

Question – Does sex make you feel more or less tired?
Bed time stories

There are countless “don’ts” but fewer “dos”. Sleep isn’t like a light switch. It’s a slow transition (unless you’re particularly knackered) that requires a routine habit. I generally found that by preparing for sleep one or two hours before actually going to bed helped hugely reduce the amount of light sleep. For some reason, parents learn and implement this for their kids but not for themselves. For instance, normally they’d say, “right! It’s time to get ready for bed: Bath, teeth and then a story.” The same routine, everyday that gets the kid to sleep…And it works for us older folk too. By having a shower, opening a book and reading in shallow (not bright) light until you are tired enough to sleep works wonders. This was my routine and it worked. I’m looking to improve it however by adding more things to the routine. Essentially all you’re trying to do is tell the body that it’s time to sleep. The more senses you stimulate signaling this the quicker it’ll get. So perhaps a scented candle, soft clothes, easy-to-read book, and calming music is the ultimate combo.

Alarm clock

Out of everything though, an alarm clock is the must have gadget. It is the deadliest weapon in all how to wake up early arsenal kits and it’ll (almost) never fail you. There are alarms on everything these days: mobile phones, microwaves, dishwashers, watches, computers and hell I wouldn’t be surprised if my hoover had one. Set it to the time you want to wake up, then another for five minutes later. Try and keep this time constant but if a social life means that every other night ends at the time you want to wake up then change it. I’ll come back to this in a bit. For the first week I used my mobile phone because it allows me to have two alarms. Yet as I discovered, this can actually work in your disfavor. If at the first alarm you don’t get up and out of bed immediately, you drift into what I call the ‘oh-no-you-don’t’ sleep phase where your body just feels like cardboard and will not get out. If you’re lucky enough to still be living at home with your parents, get your Mum to wake you up. She’ll be more than pleased to oblige.

You must, and I mean this, try your utmost hardest to literally jump out of bed at the first hearing of the alarm clock. Here’s the beauty of my how to sleep less article – Adrenaline will remove any fatigue normally associated with getting out of bed. Please try it because you will not be disappointed. After you have jumped out of bed (if you spend more than ten seconds in bed after waking you’ve failed) get in the shower. Just like going to sleep, waking up is a (far quicker) transition and requires a routine. Showering wakes up the senses, feels good, and refreshes the body ready for a hard day of work…

Not before a hearty breakfast though! After seven hours of deep sleep or less, I often found myself starving in the morning. Metabolism cranks down whilst you sleep, so unless you’re wanting to put on the pounds don’t miss this meal of the day. Food (and thus energy) is crucial to being able to stay awake for longer than normal periods of time. At first I forgot this minor detail, trying to survive an extra three hours a day with the same levels of energy. By the early evening I was feeling groggy and wondering whether this whole ambition was ridiculous. The normal statistics reveal 1940 calories per day for women and 2550 for men. This is based on a sixteen hour day ( eight hours sleep) – 121.25 and 159.7 calories per hour awake. So if you’re staying awake for longer realize now that you need at least another 200 calories per hour awake ( I increased it because these scientists are always a bit stingy).

High energy foods are of great benefit too. Bananas and cereal…Not Haribo Tangfastics (sour sweets). Don’t be shy of caffeine either, I’m a great fan of starting off the day with a hot mug of real American coffee and getting that afternoon boost from one too. Now, regarding some other stimulants/depressants…

For when you groove

Learning how to sleep less is difficult if your social or work life interrupts regular sleeping patterns. I got in a bit of a fiddle when I realized three or more times a week I would still be partying way past midnight. All I can say is don’t starve yourself of sleep. If your body needs it, then give it. You will be tired throughout the day afterward if you do not have a good nights’ sleep. So once you’ve caught up, then get back into sleeping less. Alternatively, as the Spanish discovered many centuries ago, an afternoon ciesta (or nap) works wonders. Thirty minutes of shut-eye may result in a few hours extra of partying…or working. I was often surprised to see Spanish families out until midnight or the early hours of the morning, including young children despite having to wake up early the next day. Their secret is a two or three hour ciesta around four in the afternoon.

Related Forum Post – Are Naps Misunderstood?
Create the environment

I live on a main road with a healthy stream of traffic. Large lorries drive past in the middle of the night that shake my bedroom. I’m used to it now, but when friends come over they complain of the worst night sleep ever and being woken by multiple ‘earthquakes’. However when I stay somewhere else that is quieter, I can’t sleep at all. This is why creating a suitable environment will help you achieve the perfect night sleep. If you have road lamps outside your window, or if the sun rises burning your retina get an eye mask. Ear plugs I’ve heard can be of great use too, but so far nothing is on the market for creating artificial noise/vibration (not of that kind you cheeky monkey).

Side effects

Don’t be fooled about how easy this is. The first few days for me were coffee fueled and resulted in huge black eyes. Even if I were a Zombie and raw human meat was hung before me I wouldn’t have been able to pluck up the energy to lift my arms in that Egytian style Mummy manner. OK so it wasn’t that bad, but as suggested I did cut it down slowly. One and a half hours each week. Bags under your eyes are reduced by drinking shed-loads of water, vitamins and minerals.

As written earlier I’m now experimenting with furthering my routine before bed, and cutting it down to six hours. I’m also going to be investigating how to wake up with natural sunrise i.e. leave the curtains drawn open. So in order to stay tuned, join our Facebook group below. Looking forward to some of your replies to the questions throughout, especially whether sex makes you feel more or less tired.

The Darn Good Reasons He Gets The Girl – Simplified!

1. No Fear
Fear creates resistance, resistance creates reluctance, reluctance creates… and well, reluctance creates nothing! When you do not act, you do not gain anything. Even when a man fails, he gains experience. He who doesn’t act gains nothing but a stronger sense of fear. By not acting, you are cementing that fear into your psyche. Most of the times, if you ask strikingly beautiful women if they are approached a lot, she will say no. And if you see the man she is with, you may wonder to yourself “Really? She picked him?” She didn’t pick this man because he has the best looks or the nicest car, she picked him because he had no fear, and he was  one of the few who approached her. Overcome fear, because in all reality, most of the fears you may have are really silly and illogical.
2. No reservations
This is tied closely to having no fear, but instead is more so linked to the fact that men who are successful with women aren’t tied down by much in their lives. Not much holds them back, and therefore they are able to act without being disabled by what are realistically insignificant aspects of their life. For example, I went two years of my life with a suspended license, during which time I was obviously unable to operate a motor vehicle. Some men would have taken this as a fatal blow to their ability to get girls, but instead of worrying endlessly about what I would do, I just acted. Sure, some girls were turned off by the fact I wasn’t able to pick them up for a date or disillusioned with the idea of dating a guy who was unable to drive, but for the most part this was no major roadblock.
I was honest and clear-cut with my situations and they respected the fact that I made no excuses for it. At the end of the day, it didn’t stop me at all. In fact, many of the women enjoyed playing a more commanding role in the relationship. They got to choose where we went when they would come over, and how we got there. I didn’t mind and for the most part, neither did they. Lesson being, we all have our obstacles, whether they are social, family, or material problems, we can’t let them hold us back from getting what we want.
3. Unique
Following the cookie-cutter example of what masculinity should be is only going to get you a certain type of woman and a certain type of relationship. That being, a cookie-cutter one. You are going to land yourself a ‘blah’ girl and a ‘blah’ relationship. People, in general, are drawn to that which they do not know or are unfamiliar with. If you approach a girl with the same old same old, then she is going to be unimpressed and therefore unenthusiastic in relation to you. In my years on the outside, I was told over and over again by the woman I spent my time with that they were impressed by whom I was. They were surprised when they first met me because they had expected something completely different. Once we began to converse, they were taken off guard by the fact that I was a yoga instructor, philosophy major, MMA fighter, and so on. By knocking down people’s expectations of you with a more intense and interesting illustration of the man you are, they will be absolutely drawn in, so that they may learn more!
4. Manners
There is a huge misconception that says that ‘assholes’ get all the girls. I can tell you that nothing is more false than this statement. Sure, assholes get girls, but they don’t get quality women. They get a woman who is masochistic, passive, and too submissive. What is true is that women like the ‘bad boy’ archetype, but they also want that bad boy to be a sweetheart. There is a fine balance one must strike to truly obtain Grade A women. Having good manners are an extremely important part of your persona, no matter what role you play in life. It’s really quite simple, but just like it, in these days good manners are quite rare. This again, makes you not only well-manners, but also unique.
5. Passion
Passion is a strong desire toward something of your liking. When women see a passionate men, they translate that to mean that this man will be passionate about their relationship. Passion is really the great energizer. Say you’re an animal or nature lover or you are passionate about a sport or some other activity. A woman will see that in your eyes, your words, or in your actions and she will know that this can be translated. There are different types of passion, some of which mean different things to a woman. She will see an animal lover or nature lover as a caring and compassionate caretaker, while she will see someone who is passionate about health and wellness as someone who will be a passionate lover. Knowing this can be used to your advantage in many, many ways.
6. Confidence and Competence
Often times, men walk around with a bloated sense of self-confidence when they aren’t competent – or capable – in their abilities. And other times men lack a sense of self-confidence, even when they are in fact competent in many areas of their lives. There is a balance to be struck. You cannot be confident and not be competent, because sooner or later your skills will be discovered. There is also a problem with being competent, and having no confidence. Your abilities will never have the chance to shine if you lack the confidence to display them. Men who are successful with women are both competent in their abilities and confident in themselves.
For instance, if you are an incredibly intelligent and worldly individual, but never speak up in conversation, no one will ever know this. Or if you are not intelligent, but your false sense of confidence leads you to believe you are, chance are that you may find yourself putting your foot in your mouth and showing your ignorance. Confidence drives women crazy, but over-confidence drives them away! Competence is attractive. Everyone loves someone with talents, but without the confidence to shine, those abilities will never come to light. Reflect and find your balance.
7. Honesty
Being truly honest is something that most people have incredible difficulty with. People tell lies all the time, day in and day out. Big lies and small lies. People lies so much, that many times we don’t even realize we are doing it. Whether we are embellishing a story, covering a mistake, or outright lying, it matters not. This makes honesty a rarity in today’s world. When women (or anyone for that matter) are faced with frank honesty, it is a shocker.Especially when it comes to how you feel or what you think about them. As men, we find ourselves hiding our feelings in an attempt not to be vulnerable. But from my own experiences, every time I’m completely honest with a woman, it brings good things to my relationship with her. Whether I tell her “I really like you” (she likes this) or “I am not looking for a serious relationship, but I want to continue to spend time with you” (she might not like this, but she appreciates the honesty), I always have good results. Try telling the truth; but try it all the time!
8. Deep and Simple
I have never been the guy who goes all out in an attempt to try to impress a woman. I don’t wear expensive clothes (for the most part) and my outfits are certainly not straight out from GQ. My cars have never been top-of-the-line. I’ve never confessed my love in a poem or song. I’ve never laid a bed of roses peddles with 1,000 candles in a room for an evening of romance. I’ve never gone over board with anything, though I am indeed romantic and I do get the job done. How? I try to keep my life – and therefore my relationships – as simple as possible. When I tell a woman my feelings, I don’t beat around the bush; I get right to the point. I have my likes and my dislikes, but I keep an open mind. I don’t have a lot of stuff and therefore I don’t have a lot of junk.  There is no much stress about my life, because for the most part, everything is dealt with. People enjoy being around others who are not plagued with problems and complex baggage.
From my ow personal experiences, complexity creates confusion. Every time I tried to juggle multiple relationships with women through lies and deceit, it came crashing down like a house of cards. But every time I was simply honest with these women and told them I wasn’t about to be exclusive, it was smooth sailing. It seems the simpler I keep things, the easier it is to meet new and exciting people. Perhaps it is because the more complex our lives are, the more we have to focus on life stuff; but the more simple our lives are, the more we can focus on other things – like getting girls! :) Try reducing all aspects of your life to minimums. Because with that reduction in both physical and mental “stuff”, there is a creation for new growth and opportunity to flourish.
9. Worldly Knowledge
No matter what you think, women do not want to talk about sports all the time (if ever!). Nor do they wish to talk about the inner workings of your last drunken fiasco with your buddies. Sure, they will talk about it from time to time, just like you will listen to her beef with her girlfriends. The idea is to make yourself knowledgeable – to some degree – on all topics. Politics, philosophy, current events, pop culture, science and technology, music, history, and so on. The more you know, the more you can talk about, and the greater your chances of having a meaningful conversation with the beautiful woman of your choice. Even if you are chasing an airhead, if you are able to relate to her (even if she can only talk about say, pop culture) you will be able to develop a rapport with her and therefore, create a relationship with her.
10. The X-Factor!
I’ve heard it a million times, and any guy who has been successful with women in the past can verify this one for me. “There is just something about you that I can’t put my finger on, but I like you” – She says. Whether it’s your kind heart under a rough exterior or witty attitude and ability to think on your feet. Or the way you walk, the way you talk, or the way you look into her eyes while she is talking. There is always something that each of us have. Reflection is the key here. What is that makes you, you? The problem of the guys who don’t get any, is that no one notices their X-factor. No one notices it because they haven’t noticed it, so they can’t show it! I could tell you mine, but it’s top secret. :) Find your x-factor!

A Very Unique Man

As subjective and disputable as to what the qualities that make a man unique or attractive are, why is it that few men seem to get plenty of girls while plenty of men seem to get few girls? Furthermore, why is it that even fewer men seem to get the quality girls? What makes the difference?
There are common patterns to men who get quality and quantity, just like there are common patterns to men who get quantity but low quality, and of course like the guys who get low quantity and low quality. I personally define quality as character. The great thing about defining quality by character is that character involves great looks too. Character does not discriminate looks, but good looks can fall short of character. Some people are very good looking but have very little character. Fortunately a good character attracts good character, regardless of the looks.
What’s Good Character?
Good character is looking at the heart instead of looking at the outside.
While most men are primarily concerned about the looks of woman, a rare man is first and foremost concerned about her character. This majority of men can easily ignore things like intelligence, self-esteem, sense of contribution, and so on. They fail to realize that looks wear off, but character never dies. You might initially be attracted to the looks, but you fall in love with the character. In any circumstance, when men look solely at the exterior and determine quality by it, they praise the one thing that most other men praise: Looks. Think about it – mostly everyone of your guy friends talk about “how hot that chick is” and together they praise her looks, but it’s the man who is unimpressed by her looks and more taken by her character that will win her. This scenario repeats itself over and over again.
In order to better understand the reasons behind this, put yourself in the position of a very good looking girl with strong character. Imagine being that girl and having to put up with every guy trying to grind you from behind or grabbing your arm and saying “What’s up baby girl, do you have a boyfriend?” All of these attempts are pathetic and more importantly, overused. In view of that, while all the other guys do the typical thing, there is one man who is unimpressed by the looks, but certainly curious about the character (and secretly the looks too). He knows that looks can only take someone so far therefore he wisely seeks character above all. This is what very few men know and act on, and the reason why women drool over him. It’s a rare man that sees beyond the looks and it is this quality that makes him so unique and interesting. This is a new challenge.
Take It From The Roots
Stop just treating the symptoms, cure the disease instead
If you’re well read on this site or other truthful dating sites, you may have heard that you “ought to be a challenge to women and make sure her looks don’t affect you”. While that’s true, there is a difference between achieving this with techniques or manipulative behavior and achieving it through true character. In other words, there is a difference between treating the symptom and curing it.
I’m not suggesting that you go and tell yourself one hundred times that you’re not affected by the looks of a beautiful woman, or that you ‘neg’ her to prove you’re not intimidated or to teaser her. I’m not suggesting that you treat the symptom by using techniques or band-aids for when you get rejected. Instead, I’m suggesting that you cure the disease! To cure the disease means to change your perspective instead of changing your techniques.
A change in your physical approach will bring some change, but a change in your perspective will bring massive change. Why is this so? Because your perspective on things determines your techniques and everything else! On the other hand, a change in your technique will be limited if you don’t change your perspective. A change on technique while keeping the same perspective is similar to putting an unfit tire on a car using many different tools. No matter how hard you try or how different your tool is, if the tire is does not fit, then it won’t work. Sure, massive change on technique (over time) will eventually lead to change on perspective but it might take more time than you can afford. There is no pretending on one’s perspective – eventually your behavior will give you away.
Principle-Centered Perspective
You cannot break the laws; you can only break yourself against them.
I almost feel like I’m stealing Stephen Covey’s genius, but I think it’s necessary to explain this briefly before moving on. Stephen Covey is known for his take on Principle-Centered living. His books 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Principle-Centered Leadership, and First Things First (a trilogy I strongly recommend you read) deal with principle-centered living in depth. The main idea is that there are principles for living and there are consequences when we either live in harmony with these principles or against them. For instance, one principle is that of fairness. We can try to cheat the system, violate the rules, be unfair, but at the end, life will hammer us out. But if we live in harmony with fairness, we’ll be rewarded. In short, there is a way things work. Oh how true this is… there are ways things are supposed to work. We can fight against them but we’ll never win. Let’s now apply this concept of principle-centered living to dating, specifically the…
The Perspective of Imperfect Beings and Oneness
Get used to imperfection, it’ll make you more human.
I thought about it for a long time and experience with it for even longer; if there is one perspective to have on dating is that we are all imperfect beings – that indeed we’ll never be perfect. No matter how gorgeous looking or how promising someone is, people will let us down in one way or another. But that’s not the whole equation, we need oneness in it. Oneness tells us that we must live with imperfection and accept it. We must learn to forgive, move on, and in some occasions trust again. When one adopts this perspective, then we tend to seek for character. Looks no longer make up the perfect girl. We see beyond the surface and this makes the timid uneasy and the confident feel at home. Remember that everything wears off except character. It’s one of the few things no one can take away from you.
This is not to disappoint anyone and quickly look for a person’s fault. This is to say that when the fault comes, you’re okay with it. Knowing that we’ll never be perfect makes it so that we don’t glorify looks, but at the same time, it helps us appreciate the character of others.
Skills, Looks, and Competence
Character is not visible at first sight but other things are
You may have a great character, but how will someone ever know if they were never intrigued to find out? Character is not visible at first sight, that’s why you capitalize on skills and looks. Ian Smith put it best in his brilliant article The Darn Good Reasons He Gets The Girl, when he said “Men who are successful with women are both competent in their abilities and confident in themselves”. Here is the deal: You do need the skills and you do need the looks. They are the ones that make the first impressions (and how important are those!). By skills I don’t mean you ought to be able to tell an entertaining story to dozens of people at the same time or fight a lion, but I do mean basic skills such as holding a good conversation or speaking confidently with her friends. And by looks I don’t mean you ought to look like Brad Pitt, but I do mean well-groomed, well-dressed and with an inviting smile. Needless to say, some skills are more attractive than others (per say artistic or fighting skills) and the better looks the merrier, but these are never defining. They just add to the equation.
Let me reiterate that again, skills and looks are not defining, they just add to the equation.