Wow, hard to believe that Nick and I have been co-conspirators for almost a decade now! That gem of a photo up above dates back to 2008, when we were in the thick of our coaching misadventures.
For those who don’t know the history, Nick Sparks is the author of the recently released bestselling book, As You Are, which hit #1 in it’s Amazon categories in less than 24 hours of it’s launch.
He’s also one of the most infamous and sought-after men’s coaches in the world, and I managed to corner him and get you backstage for the book launch.
Man, the book launch is blowing up… it’s ranking tops in Amazon, and the reviews have been nothing short of exceptional. How are you feeling about this?
It’s amazing. I mean, my work has been validated enough through all the success I’ve had coaching, but to be able to help such a dramatically wider group of men — many who weren’t able to afford coaching with me — has simply been incredible. I feel incredibly fortunate to have such a positive effect on so many lives.
Yeah, I’m excited to think about all the guys who’ll be learning from you for the first time! You’ve been working on this book for about 3 years… why did it take you so long?
That’s a good question. It’s almost hard to believe that it’s been that long, but the calendar doesn’t lie.
The reason it’s taken so long is that this is really my life’s work — the questions I’ve been asking myself since adolescence and what I’ve dedicated my life to this past decade — and I couldn’t settle for anything less than perfect.
The first time I wrote everything down that had previously only been in my head and taught in my workshops, it was like this mental block had been lifted. With everything down on paper my brain no longer had to hold it all and it was suddenly free to start thinking about everything from a fresh perspective.
Then I had to edit the book again. Then I’d have some series of experiences that would change my perspective on everything, and I’d have to edit it all again. I can’t count the number of times I did this, but it was all worth it… I couldn’t be happier with the finished product.
Speaking of finished product – what surprises you the most about the book… something that made it in there that you weren’t even thinking about 3 years ago?
Oh man, so many things. I barely understood what holding space was 3 years ago, let alone be able to articulate it. That was one of those ideas where I was like, “I know there’s something there” — and I could talk about it in a round-about way, but it took awhile to be able to really unpack it fully.
The same could be said for the meat of the sexual stuff — easy to talk around, tough to nail down. Same goes for the core idea that runs through this book: letting go of the outcome and staying with the feelings of the moment.
It’s something that you’ve heard before, but to actually align it with every aspect of what you teach is another thing altogether. I’d think I was finished and then read through the book again and say, “no, that doesn’t match up with this principle… what am I missing?”
Honestly, this list could include aspects of the majority of the book.
You dedicate the book to your alumni. Your fans are loyal to a degree rarely seen in our industry. What have you done for them that other dating coaches and writers haven’t?
I’m just a real person. I don’t bullshit them, I respect their intelligence, I treat them like I would like to be treated.
I mean, it’s not hard to love these guys. I’ve heard coaches talk about how they can’t stand the people they work with and I think it goes back to what you put out. If you put out shit in order to turn a profit, you’re not going to be working with the highest caliber of guy. If you put out stuff that you truly believe in, then you’re going to attract similarly minded people.
That’s it really: I care about them, respect them and their ideas, and they know it.
Ok, so let’s drop some wisdom to the guys who haven’ yet worked with you… and I’m going to start with a cliche question… what’s one of your very best tips for a guy who wants to be better with women?
Realize that asking that question will never get you the results that you want. It’s not about being better with women, it’s being better with people and better with yourself.
How many great friends do you have? How often do you interact with strangers, man or woman? If you treat a woman you’re attracted to any differently than you would anyone else, she can smell that a mile away. If you can’t have a great conversation with a stranger who doesn’t intimidate you, how in the world can you ever hope to have one with someone who does? If you can’t beat the game on “easy mode”, why in the world would you even try to play it on “hard”?
Work on yourself, and practice developing relationships with people. Women will simply be a by-product.
For sure… and that makes me think of another question (to which I think I know your answer!). A lot of my readers find me because they’re looking for that one special girl. Do you have some words of wisdom for them?
Yes. Enjoy the living shit out of your life. I can promise you that the right woman will not come along until you’re at a place where you couldn’t be any happier with your single life… where you wouldn’t trade it for anything (until you meet her).
Sure, you’ll meet a lot of the wrong women before then, but it won’t be until you feel like you couldn’t be happier in your life that a woman who makes you re-think that will come along.
You’ve helped a lot of guys overcome bad habits they acquired from studying pickup artists. What are some of the biggest mistakes these guys make?
I’ve said it before, guys who were heavily into the pickup artist stuff were always my toughest clients. The reason being is that that’s a school of thought that emphasizes being in your head — constantly focused on the outcome, constantly focused on some line or technique to remember or what to say and do during a conversation.
Meanwhile, the stuff I teach stresses the exact opposite. It’s hard enough to be present in a conversation with a woman you’re attracted to, but coming from a school of thought that teaches you to be more in your head makes it damn near impossible. It’s hard enough to simply enjoy an interaction with a beautiful woman without worrying about the outcome. Coming from a school of thought that emphasizes the lay as the ultimate success, again, makes it that much more difficult.
You’ve helped a LOT of guys overcome the curse of the pickup artists. What’s your favorite success story so far?
Lol, well it’s hard for my mind not to jump to one of my last clients, I guy who had never kissed a girl who ended up getting an hj under the table at one of the bars we’d frequent… I felt bad for the cleaning crew.
But honestly, the guys’ whose success made the biggest impact on me were the guys who society said couldn’t be attractive to women. The guys with stutters, the guy in a wheelchair, the guy who was blind, the guy who had cerebral palsy.
These are guys who had been told their entire lives that they’re better off not even trying, written off and swept under the rug by other coaches. Hell, I even doubted my own ability to help them. But somehow, some way, they refused to give up. They took the hand that life dealt them and said, “sorry, I’m not going to settle”. I don’t know how their did it, and I wish I had a fraction of their resilience… but those are the guys who made the biggest impact on my life. They’re the ones who inspire me.
Speaking of inspiration, what’s next for you?
Ah, dammit. You had to ask this question. That’s tough, because I’m not even sure. After coaching for a decade and answering all of the questions about dating that I had set out to answer, I no longer have the same passion for the work and have decided to step away from it for the moment.
What I can say for sure is that I’ll be working on the next phase of my own self development. In one of the last chapters of the book I asked the question: “What do you love to do?”, and I kept referencing nature as an option. I might as well have been speaking to myself because spending more time in the outdoors has definitely been calling me.
It’s been no secret that successful long-term romantic relationships have never been my strongest suit, so I definitely plan on taking some time to understand the ins and outs of those much more thoroughly.
We’ll see. This world is full of never-ending challenges. I may have pieced together one puzzle, now it’s time to figure out which one I want to tackle next. We’ll probably have to wait for my next book to completely answer this question.
You can find Nick’s bestselling book on dating and social dynamics, As You Are, on Amazon.Com. And until October 13, you can buy it for a special launch price of 99 cents. Click here to get it now.