Amazing discussion last week. I have to tell you, it’s so rewarding to see so many of you sharing your thoughts. I spend so much time doing the day-to-day, running the business stuff and I love these opportunities to connect.
So listen – tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. I have the good fortune to be spending it with an awesome girl I’ve been dating for about eight months, and I gotta say, she’s a “ten” to me.
Note to self: make dinner reservations after I write this.
It wasn’t always this way. In grade school, I was the kid who’d get a few sympathy cards from girls and the teacher… think “I Choo Choo Choose You” if you’re a Simpsons fan.
And there have been plenty of years spent single on Valentine’s Day as an adult. If that’s you, man… you better get out there tomorrow. Just about any girl who’s at the bar with her friends is either single, or seeking revenge for the lousy gift her boyfriend gave her.
Note to self: find a gift for my girlfriend after I write this.
But if you’ve been following for awhile, you know that I’m much happier in a relationship with an awesome girl, than I am being single. And I’ve been uncompromising about the sort of woman I want.
Funny thing is, I get the sense that a lot of other guys can’t say the same.
I retell this story all the time – when speaking at a conference in Germany, in front of about 300 guys, I asked them to raise their hands if they felt like they “deserved” a “ten.” Or, in other words, their “dream girl.” And only half the guys in the room raised their hands.
Yet I know that there have been many times in my life when I felt so far from having a great woman in it. Usually, it had something to do money or finance – it’s hard to have space to think about going out, partying, and meeting girls when you’re reminded five or six times daily, by the calls you’re ignoring from American Express Collections, that you owe the bank a lot of money.
And as much as The Social Man is about “being better with women,” that’s only part of the bigger picture of being an awesome guy – becoming a “ten.” So if you’re not at a place where you’re ready for that girl, hey… I get it.
A few things that I knew I had to get “handled”
- I had to have a degree of control over my career and professional situation. Working in startups is awesome, but if you don’t have ownership, or outside capital, there’s always a risk of the rug being pulled out from under you. A girl actually left me when one of my companies fell apart, and whatever that may say about her loyalty, my own freneticism and self-doubt during that time surely had something to do with the breakup. Never wanted to let that one happen again.
- I had to get over my own ego. I had a few relationships that were very subtly sabotaged by the fact that I still had something to prove to myself.
- On the flip side of that coin, there were a few points in my twenties where I knew that I wasn’t ready to “call it a day” with dating. Singlehood has high highs, and low lows, but the adventure of it – especially in New York – was a siren song too sweet to resist for several years.
- I needed to know how to deal with guys. I’ve always been a good guy (I’d like to think) and too often a nice guy, and too conflict averse. That’s lead to getting pushed around too much by other guys. No woman wants to see that – especially not a strong woman.
- I needed to learn how to have FUN. Man, when I was 21, I’d try to talk to girls at bars about philosophy. Way too in my head, and not at all in the world. Andrew W.K., Jackass, and a few friends changed all that.
- I had to feel like I was my own man. Like I knew what my boundaries were, and what my goals and priorities were. And I needed to know these things for myself, not for what a woman wanted me to be.
I can’t overstate the importance of that last one. Sure, you can learn some pickup “game” to run on chicks at bars, but being your own man… that’s a big part of being able to have a woman look you in the eye and develop attraction from what she’s feeling, not from what you’re saying.
There’s always more work to do, higher goals to hit, etc. But it’s a good place to be at.
So here’s my question for you – do you feel like you’re the man you want to be, for the woman you want to have in your life?
If you’re dating her right now, I’d love for you to share a few things you had to go through and overcome to get here.
And if you’re not dating her, I’d love to hear what you have yet to do, to learn, to be, etc.
And most importantly: what are you doing this year… what goals have you set and what plans have you put in place.. so that next Valentine’s Day, you’ll be spending it with a “ten” of your own?