Be a Long-Term Hedonist

Albert Ellis, arguably one of the best psychotherapists who ever lived, often described himself as a long-term hedonist. Some years ago, I’ve come to think of myself as a long-term hedonist as well. And practicing this as an overall philosophy for life has been one of the best things I’ve ever done.

Today, when I coach other people, I frequently encourage them to practice long-term hedonism in life, and I help them develop the confidence and communication skills that aid them accomplish this.

I believe that no matter who you are, if you’re seeking solid principles to guide your life by, long-term hedonism is definitely one of the best principles you can adopt. So let’s take a better look at what this concept means and how you can apply it in your life.

It’s Okay to Pursue Your Own Pleasure

Our attention will first go to the second part of this concept: hedonism. Derived from the Greek word ‘hedone’, which means pleasure, the term hedonism signifies the pursuit of pleasure. A hedonist is a person who makes the pursuit of pleasure (and implicitly, the avoidance of pain) the key theme in their life.

This pleasure can take basic forms, such as eating something tasty, as well as complex forms, such as connecting at a deep level with a like-minded person when conversing with them.

The ancient philosophers who founded hedonist schools of thought, such as Aristippus of Cyrene and Epicurus, believed that personal pleasure is the only essential good in life, and that it makes sense to live life striving to maximize your own pleasure.

You might say that’s a normal thing and there’s nothing wrong with that idea. And I would agree with you. The problem is that in the society we live today, the pursuit of one’s own pleasure is often criticized and villainized. People are frequently labeled as selfish or bad for putting their pleasure first. Under the social pressure, many of them end up constantly sacrificing their own gratification because they’ve been made to feel guilty about pursuing it.

I think that’s a big problem. I believe that it’s only rational to make the pursuit of your own happiness your most important compass in life. Every living creature on this planet does that in some way. It’s in perfect accordance with the laws of the natural world and the principles of life perpetuation.

Upside down in chair Be a Long Term HedonistThis doesn’t mean you can’t concern yourself with the happiness of others as well. In fact, often in life, you need to give others what they want and make them happier in order to get what you want and be happier yourself.

But still, keep in mind that your final goal is your happiness. You’re doing a self-interested transaction. And that’s really okay.

Other times in life though, your interests and other people’s interests will run divergent courses, and that’s when hedonism dictates that you pick the course that best suits you, not them. And doing that is really okay as well. There is no sensible reason to think it’s not.

If you’re the kind of person who often feels bad about doing what gives them pleasure instead of what helps others, this idea is something to really dwell on, regularly. You wanna learn to accept your own needs and to be comfortable with putting them first, so you can pursue them freely. Here is some more in-depth advice on how to build the confidence to achieve this.

Thinking Long-Term Makes a Huge Difference

Now that we’ve established that it’s okay to pursue your own happiness, let’s move our attention towards the first part of our concept: long-term.

The type of hedonism you’ll commonly see practiced in the world we live in is short-term hedonism. This is when an individual considers solely the options that give them pleasure quickly, and then they choose from these options the one that gives them the largest amount of pleasure. They don’t wanna wait. They want instant gratification.

Just look at some of the widespread delights people bask in and you’ll know what I mean: fast food, fast-effect booze, instant TV, instant sharing, Instagram. Notice a pattern?

The trouble is that many times, there is at least one option that will give you a lot more pleasure than the rest, but it won’t be quickly. In fact in the short-range, it may actually cause you some displeasure. The overall amount of pleasure you’ll get will be much bigger, but in order to get it you’ll have to wait a while and perhaps put in some work or make some sacrifices. Now we’re talking about delayed gratification.

When you choose to eat something healthy that tastes only decent instead of something that tasted good but is unhealthy, when you choose to prolong your education to get a high-paying job a few years down the road instead of getting a low-paying job now so you’ll have money to go out and party next week, you’re choosing with the long-term effects in mind, not just the short-term ones. That’s long-term hedonism put into practice.

Long-term hedonism doesn’t mean you sacrifice today for the deceptive promise of a better tomorrow. It means you realistically consider both today and tomorrow when you make decisions, big and small. You look at things in perspective. And perspective is crucial.

Delays, effort, compromises and all, the long-term hedonist still gets to experience a lot more joy and delight in life than the short-term one. That’s why he/she is a long-term hedonist in the first place. It’s a rational, advantageous choice.

For the reasons discussed above, long-term hedonism makes so much sense to adopt as a philosophy for life. I encourage you to be a long-term hedonist, and dedicate your life to the rational, responsible pursuit of your own pleasure. No other way of living can compare.

If you believe that a lack of confidence or a lack of social skills is holding you back from experiencing the happy and exciting life you wanna experience, I strongly encourage you to join my free social confidence newsletter, where I’ll share with you my tried and tested advice for improving in these areas and getting the social life that makes you truly happy.

Long and short-term considered, I think it’s gonna be one of the best decisions you’ll ever make. Go here now to join the newsletter.

Develop Your Conversation Style around Your Natural Strengths

Giving others advice for improving their conversation skills is very tricky.

People often expect formulaic instructions on how to talk to other people. And this probably happens to a large extent because many authors out there offer this kind of instructions. They will boldly tell you to do this, then do that, then say this, then say that, and you’ll have amazing conversations and everybody will love you.

Years ago, when I first started training others in improving their conversation skills, I was eager to give this kind of advice as well. But in time, especially by coaching others one-on-one, I came to realize this is a bad approach to helping people develop good conversation skills.

The Dynamics of Conversation

You see, conversation has one interesting attribute. It’s something that doesn’t need to be done in one single way in order to go well. In fact, there are many styles of conversation that work, just as there are many conversation styles that don’t work.

Most of the people I call my friends are very charismatic and socially skilled individuals. But if you would bring them to the same party and observe them, you’d notice that they have very different styles of talking to people. They are clear similarities, but there are also clear differences between them.

One is high energy and jokes around all the time, one rarely makes jokes but captivates people with his ideas, one has a more brazen, bad-boy attitude in conversation, and one is really good at making people feel appreciated. And all of them manage to connect well with lots of people and to sweep them off their feet.

Conversation style Develop Your Conversation Style around Your Natural StrengthsWhen you wanna help others develop their conversation skills and you have this perspective on conversation, it’s a whole different game you’re playing. You can’t just give them rigid instructions and expect good results, as if you were teaching them how to tie their shoe laces and there is only one way to do it right.

What I do instead as a communication coach is to start by helping people realize that as clumsy or awkward as they may be right now in social situations, there is a good conversationalist somewhere inside them. And there are ways to bring it out. I help them believe in themselves. I talk more about how this psychological process works in this special presentation.

Next, I usually help them discover their natural strengths and get a good understanding of their personality type. And as they get to know themselves better, it becomes clearer to them what kind of a conversation style would match well the way they are.

So then they can work with me on developing a conversation style that creates amazing results with people, and at the same time is designed around their personality and their natural strengths. Every one of my clients develops their own unique social persona, which is ideal for them.

On the other hand, when you take the approach of giving someone formulaic conversation advice, what happens most often is that the advice is gonna be so far from the person’s strengths they will never fully internalize it, and it won’t work well for them. So their conversation style will perpetually seem clumsy and inconsistent. It’s kind of like having an eagle running a horse race, or a horse trying to fly.

Unfortunately, it’s common for coaches, trainers and bloggers to teach others a conversation style that works well for their own person, since it matches the way they are, but will fail someone else who different from them.

They’ll sort of try to create replicas of themselves, who go out there in the social world and act the same way they do; sometimes to the point of dressing the same way, making the same jokes and using the same lines. Ridiculous, if you ask me.

The Path to Sizzling Conversations  

Are there conversation principles and techniques that work well for people all around? Yes, there sure are. And I teach such principles as well, in my courses as well as in my free newsletter. But these exist mostly to help you master the basics of good conversation. They just set a sturdy foundation.

When you move beyond that, to developing advanced conversation skills, it’s time to put general techniques aside and find your own unique voice. To find and implement ideas that work well for you in particular, to customize them and optimize them for your circumstances, and to mix them so they form your own distinctive conversation style.

When you do that you find that your social skills not only improve a lot faster, but your conversation style feels much more authentic to boot.

Because you’re not trying to change entirely who you are in social settings. You’re only smoothing out the rough edges, gaining some new social habits, removing your social insecurities, and building on top of the qualities you already posses as a person.

It can seem easier to just take some do-this-do-that conversation advice and apply it, but that will never be very effective in creating top-notch conversation skills. When it comes to truly mastering conversation, finding your own way is the only way as far as I’m concerned.

If you want more help in improving your conversation skills and developing the conversation style that works best for you, I recommend you join my free social confidence newsletter, where I share most of my insights concerning this area.

Go to this page and enter your email to join my newsletter right now, and I’ll talk to you there.

Dealing With a Personal Development Information Overload

Information overload is very common for people who are into personal development. It’s essentially when you’ve learned so much theory that your mind is overburdened and so it’s difficult to put it into practice.

What happens is that you consume a lot of conceptual information from books, articles, trainings and so on, and then instead of applying it, you get even more information; and more, and more. And when you finally decide to start applying it, you find out there is too much competing information in your head, to many concepts, ideas and voices telling you what to do.

You can recall everything and nothing at the same time, you don’t know where to begin with practicing, you feel confused and overwhelmed. So you become paralyzed and all that information goes to waste, because you don’t actually apply any of it to build real-life skills or attitudes.

info Dealing With a Personal Development Information Overload

I think that personal development information overload is very common because many of us, when we decide to improve an area of our life, we want to get all the information from the get go, to make sure he have any hypothetical scenario covered, and only then start using it.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t work very well. There needs to be a continuous balance between theory and practice in personal development, otherwise is gets disrupted. Considering this, here are my top 3 pieces of advice for dealing with a personal development information overload.

1. Take a Clean Break

Obviously, you’ll need to stop learning new concepts in order to prevent burdening your head with even more info. However, at first it’s also good to not try and jump into practice right away either. Instead, it’s best to take a short but clean break from both theory and practice.

You see, if you have too much information and you wanna start applying it, you’re like a person who ate an excessively big meal and wants to go jump in the swimming pool. With all that food in their stomach, it won’t be a pleasant experience. What they need is to wait a while and give time to some of that food to digest.

Similarly, you need to wait a while and give time to some of that excess information to go out. Your mind will quickly begin doing a cleaning job in your memory, dump some of the surplus info and keep and reorganize the info it sees as the most relevant.

This does indeed mean that you’ll lose some of the knowledge you acquired, but it’s much better this way. Because with less knowledge, your mind is more flexible, it can dig through the knowledge faster and it’s much easier to apply it.

2. Select Just a Few Ideas to Practice

When you start to practice the theory, don’t try to use it all at once. It’s too much. Your actions will be all over the place and you’ll make little progress in terms of building new habits.

The best route is to select only a few key ides and concentrate on applying them until you feel they’ve become a part of you and you now employ them naturally. If for example you want to be more outgoing socially, pick just 2-3 techniques and apply them. Then select a few more ideas and apply them, and so on.

This is the step-by-step approach to personal development, which is much more effective than trying to make one big jump and be done with it. The human mind works best if it focuses on a few simple tasks at a time. With this approach you’ll make the most progress in the long-run.

3. Set a Theory/Practice Ratio for the Future

In the future you’ll want to prevent information overload from happening again. This implies keeping a balance between how much theory you learn and how much you practice it.

The top way I know to achieve this is by setting a theory/practice ratio that you find convenient and sticking to it. For instance you can set a 1 to 5 hours ratio, which means that after 1 hour of conceptual studying, you need to spend 5 hours applying what you’ve learned. And you only allow yourself to go back to acquiring more info after the 5 hours of practice.

There is no universally perfect ratio; you’ll have to find one that works for you and your personal development goals. Just keep in mind that whatever ratio you pick, it’s key to have relatively short periods of learning theory followed by much longer periods of putting it into practice.

One of the perks of setting such ratios it that it forces you to be selective about what you study, since you’ve put a strict constraint on your studying time. This in turn means that you’ll be particularly picky about what you learn and you’ll be much more concerned with the quality of the information you get.

You’ll want to learn from the experts, you’ll be more willing to pay for information if it’s more valuable than free information, and the benefits will show in the results you’ll obtain consistently.

Your self-growth will be real and effective; you’ll see your behavior, your emotions and your life improve day by day, and you’ll enjoy every moment of it.

PS: I recently wrote 2 articles for DatingAdvice.com. One article is about making women notice you, the other is on how to make a girl laugh. Check them out.

Image courtesy of Will Lion

How to Be More Likeable

We all want to be liked by others, but few of us actually know how to be more likeable. Making yourself more appealing to others is a subtle social skill and it requires a good understanding of some key principles of human psychology to master.

If you’re interested in how to be more likeable as a person, either to benefit your social life, your dating life or your career, I’d like to give you my perspective, based on my experience as a communication and confidence coach.

Before anything else, there is one crucial aspect to grasp.

You Can’t Get Everybody to Like You

No matter how you are and what you do, not everybody is going to like you. Human tastes and preferences are very diverse, and very often the very behavior that will get some people to like you, will make others dislike you. And you just can’t switch between behaviors as you want, all around.

I’ve met some very likeable people over time. But none of them were liked by all. Even persons who were very upbeat and friendly with others, some found to be annoying because of this trait.

So if you’re goal in learning how to be more likeable is to get everyone to like you, forget it. It’s not gonna happen. However, you can make more people like you, you can increase your likeability factor, and this can be a goal worth pursuing.

Since I touched on this idea, it’s worth adding another thing.

Wanting to Be More Likeable May Be a Form of Approval Seeking

Likeable How to Be More LikeableI regularly coach men and women who want to be more appealing to others. One thing I noticed about them is that, frequently, they already are very likeable and many people do like them. But they aren’t happy with this. They feel they need to get everybody to like them, and this is their motivation.

This is what I refer to as an approval seeking attitude, and it’s not only unproductive, but also psychologically unhealthy. It’s often rooted in shyness, low self-esteem, perfectionism or a deep feeling of inferiority to others. This is what makes them want to be adored by all and never be rejected.

But this is a very unrealistic and disturbing expectation to have, which does more harm than good in one’s life.

If you feel that such a motivation is a big component of what is driving you right now to want to learn how to be more likeable, then I encourage you to shift your priorities and instead of trying to learn this, seek to learn how to stop approval seeking and be socially confident.

And I can definitely provide the solution. Check out this instructional presentation I created, where I will show you how to overcome an approval seeking attitude, and give you a clear-cut process for building rock-solid social confidence. Make sure you watch it, please.

This being said, if you still want to become more likeable, here are my 5 key ideas on how to do so.

1. Be Positive

People who are happy and positive tend to be by far the most likeable people. These are the people who talk about positive stuff rather than negative stuff, show optimism, radiate feelings of joy through their body language, joke around and focus on having fun.

This feel-good, have-fun attitude is extremely contagious, and it makes others around them feel good and enjoy themselves as well. And then they end up liking such a person for helping them feel this way.

2. Be Confident

Confidence is also a very likeable trait. Sure, some people find it intimidating, but most are very drawn to it; and as I said, you can’t please everybody. There is something very alluring about a person who is centered, self-assured and at ease with themselves.

If you lack confidence, fortunately, you can develop this trait. Confidence is nothing more than the result of a certain habitual way of thinking about yourself and others. And there are now a few very effective tools for developing it. Again, I suggest you watch this video to learn more about these tools.

3. Have Empathy

Empathy is essentially the ability to understand another person’s feelings and point of view. This is a very important social skill because all people have a strong desire to be understood by others. And empathy permits you to genuinely understand them, as well as to convey this.

Empathy is something you can develop mostly by interacting with others, going beyond superficial conversations and actively seeking to understand them. This is the best way I know to gain empathy: real contact with real people and their inner and outer worlds.

In addition, reading books with complex characters, learning psychology and observing people and their behavior can also help significantly.

4. Have Integrity

Integrity is a very likeable attribute, and one you won’t hear much about. When you have integrity, it means that you say what you think and you do what you say. Your thoughts, words and actions are aligned.

Why is this important? Because it makes other people trust you. And there is a big overlap between trusting someone and being fond of them. Cultivate your integrity and you’ll notice others will be more open with you; they will appreciate you more and like you more.

5. Have Something Interesting To Say

Last but not least, as a rule, the more interesting what you have to say is the more interesting and likeable you tend to be as a person. So no discussion on how to be more likeable could skip this concept.

How do you have interesting things to say? There is no shortcut. The bottom line is that you need to a have a rich life, with diverse activities, challenges and learning experiences. Then you’ll naturally be able to converse on a wide range of topics and have intriguing things to share. You become an interesting person by developing an interesting lifestyle.

As you can see, becoming more likeable is not really something you achieve through a bunch of quick tricks you can use in social interactions. Sure, tricks may help a bit, but they are not a solution to create a visible and lasting enhancement of your likeability.

If you want to be more likeable, it’s important to develop the traits and attitudes of highly likeable people. Which is something you can absolutely do. I’ve seen many folks achieve this over the years, and it’s an amazing process that will yield benefits you can’t even imagine until you experience them yourself.

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How to Better Yourself

I often say that the best way to better your life is to better yourself. With improved knowledge, skills, habits and attitudes, you can visibly enhance how you live and how happy you are (not necessarily in that order).

To do this, it’s key to have a good understanding of how to better yourself as a person. Self-improvement is not something you just do. You must follow certain steps in order to do it right. And the fact many people defy or don’t even know these steps is why they have such a hard time enhancing themselves.

As a coach, I’ve been helping others better themselves since 2006. And I’ve seen them achieve some impressive changes. Based on this experience, I’d like to give you my perspective on how to better yourself and show you 4 important strategies to follow.

1. Define Precise Personal Development Goals

The truth is that “I want to be a better person” is a resonating ideal, but a horrible personal development goal. Because it’s not specific enough. With such a goal, you don’t know where to start from, you’ll randomly jump from one area of self-improvement to another, and you’ll make little progress.

So, once you realize that you want to better yourself, it’s time to set more specific personal development goals. This entails thinking about the specific areas where you want to improve yourself the most and defining precise competencies to develop.

As a rule, try to only work on developing a few competencies at a time, so you don’t overburden yourself. You not only need to have specific goals, but you also need to program when you’ll work on them so you don’t try to work on all of them at once.

2. Get the Best Information Available

Better 300x298 How to Better Yourself

In the realm of self-improvement, there is a lot of information. There are tens of thousands of books and the internet is crammed with millions of articles.

Unfortunately, over 90% of the information available is ineffective. It’s general, simplistic, impractical, repetitive, poorly researched or just plain wrong. It’s so easy these days for anybody to write a few articles and post them online or even publish a digital book, that this niche has become flooded with poor quality material.

The implication is that in order to truly better yourself and do so effectively, you need to seek and find the best information available. Do your research, assess the information carefully, and be open-minded but use your critical thinking at the same time.

As a side note, most high-quality personal development information out there is information that you have to pay for. It’s in the form of books, courses, etc. This doesn’t mean that you won’t find quality information for free as well, or that all paid information has quality.

However, usually, the best information will come from real experts, and these people will provide some information for free but they will also charge for a lot of it. After all, they’re experts, they know how valuable what they have to offer is and they do make a living out offering it. So be willing to invest some money in bettering yourself as well.

3. Take Massive Action

In my experience, real self-growth means 20% at most getting information, and at least 80% applying it. This means you’ll have to spend at least 4 times more time practicing information than learning it.

Personally, I’ve met many folks who declare that they are into personal development, but sadly, all this means for them is reading lots of self-help books and applying almost nothing.

That’s not how you better yourself, which is why such people barely make any changes. They acquire an understanding of what and how they need to change, but they don’t actually change.

Wanna know how to better yourself? Equipped with the right info and precise goals, you take massive action. Always keep this in mind and concentrate on taking a lot of action. Be primarily a doer, not a reader.

4. Use a Social Support System

This is optional, but it’s a great way to speed up your personal development progress. As a rule, we make much more progress, much faster, in any area, if we surround ourselves with people who seek similar goals, who offer us positive advice and help us stay motivated and focused.

With respect to self-improvement, it’s ideal to make friends who are also into self-improvement and to support each other on this journey. You can even form some sort of mastermind group with them, meet regularly, discuss your goals and progress, and give each other constructive feedback.

You most certainly wanna stay away from toxic people who constantly criticize you and try to discourage you from thinking you can change. They will only pull your down when you could be going up.

Bettering yourself is a journey. And it’s not only the destination that can be very fulfilling, but the journey in itself to boot. In fact I think the only real way to do personal development is by enjoying the process at least as much as you enjoy the final outcome.

So as you better yourself, always remember to have fun!

Image courtesy of h.koppdelaney

Good Comebacks When Someone Makes Fun of You

I write a social confidence newsletter which currently has over 10.000 subscribers. One frequent question I get from subscribers is: “What are some good comebacks to use when someone makes fun of you?”

This question reminds me of my days in middle school and part of high school when me and my peers used to constantly tease each other and we would always try to have really good comebacks to what the other person said. It was a permanent battle of comments and I was pretty lousy at it.

So when I receive this question about good comebacks, I assume it’s from some 13-year old who’s in an environment with a bit too much testosterone, where putting other people down is a way to feel powerful or achieve some form of status.

Many times, this is the case. But equally often, the question comes from a full-grown adult who is dealing with teasing or denigration from others and still doesn’t know how to handle it. I guess some things never change.

So, whether you’re a teen or an adult, I want to address this issue and give you the tools to handle such situations.

Good Comebacks for What? 

I know you think that what you need is some clever comebacks. If someone could give you some very witty lines that you can use in every situation, you’d always come out on top and you’d show those people who make fun of you.

But that’s not what I’m gonna do.

comeback 300x204 Good Comebacks When Someone Makes Fun of You

Because, no matter your age, this game of who-has-the-cleverest-comebacks is silly. It’s a strenuous clash that goes on relentlessly and nobody truly wins. Sure, it can be fun sometimes, but it’s not regularly.

This is why the best advice I can give you is to not engage in these battles of comments. If you engage, you just add fuel to the fire. As a rule, when a person makes fun of you, focus on disarming the situation rather than making fun of them back. It’s much simpler and it yields much better results.

Coming from this perspective, good comebacks are not aggressive or derogatory. Rather, they reflect a disinterest in playing this game, and not because of fear or shyness, but because you don’t find it worth your time.

Today, my most common reaction when someone makes a joke about me is to make some lazy statement in response like: “Yeah man, whatever” or “You don’t say?”

And if they ask me a sarcastic question, I just give a ridiculous answer that shows I’m not taking it seriously. Like, if they ask me: “Why are you so thin?” I might answer something like “I’m going for the world record for slenderness.”

Interestingly enough, if a person makes fun of me once, they usually never do it again. Or they then do it rarely, and in a gracious manner.

One thing I’ve learned quickly is that trying to find slick comeback lines and using them robotically is the wrong approach. What is the right approach?

The right approach is to gauge your social confidence level in situations where others make fun of you. Because if you have confidence and a good self-image, I promise you that you will create just the right effect.

You’ll naturally come up with good comebacks, you’ll always have something effective to say and you’ll deliver your lines with such poise that others will not want to mess with you.

The fact of the matter is that most people who wonder about good comebacks they can use are pretty insecure and they approach social situations in a weak, defensive way. And this is the real problem.

If this is you, the best thing you can do is work on building your social confidence. The rest will take care of itself.

Now, since this is a different topic altogether, I address is separately in this special presentation. Make sure to watch it, and you’ll learn not only what makes you lack social confidence, but also how to develop it.

I’ve gone from being very insecure to feeling at ease in social situations myself. And now, the very idea of trying to find good comebacks and memorize them for future use makes me laugh.

But I understand where you’re coming from. It’s just that a couple of clever lines will only give you a temporary fix, and even that one will only work occasionally. The real solution lies in building real social confidence. Make this your priority.

Image courtesy of World Series Boxing

What Do Women Want In a Man?

Any straight man, at one point or another in his life, will ask himself: “what do women want in a man?” And when he realizes he doesn’t truly have the answer, he’ll go searching for it.

One of the most common ways for guys to find out what do women want in a man is by asking his lady friends what they want in a man. Supposing they have a big enough sample of female friends to ask this, it may provide some value for them in understanding women’s desires.

However, this method is highly flawed because of two reasons:

Woman girl 300x300 What Do Women Want In a Man?1. Many women will simply not be completely honest. They’ll tell the guy what he wants to hear or what will make them look good rather than the naked truth; many times without even realizing.

For instance, a woman may not disclose to a guy that she wants a man who can dominate her physically in bed, because she is afraid that she’ll seem like a slut, but deep down she does have this craving.

2. Women often don’t know themselves what they want in a man. So they’ll talk about what they think they want in a guy, but it’s frequently not what they truly want and what generates emotional attraction towards a guy. And this phenomenon often applies for men as well.

Considering this, what is the best way to know: what do women want in a man?

I believe the best way is to study women’s behavior towards men.  And, if the sample of women is big enough, you’ll reach the most reliable conclusions.

If a women says she wants s guy who is sensitive, but she constantly dates ice-cold guys despite a generous availability of sensitive guys around her, then she obviously wants ice-cold guys rather than sensitive ones.

If she says she wants a guy who is tall and dark, but then falls madly in love with and desperately pursues a guy who is short and blonde, it’s likely that her desire for tall, blonde guys is only at a superficial level.

Working as a communication and confidence coach, having built for myself a pretty rich and active social life, and being a keen observer of human nature, I have noticed a few highly consistent patterns in numerous women’s behavior towards men, which indicate convincingly what women want in a man.

Of course, every woman is different, but there is definitely on overarching theme in women’s desires regarding men.

So, if you’re asking yourself “what do women want in a man?” I’d like to share with you my conclusions. I believe that above all, women truly want and react emotionally strongly to these traits:

1. Confidence

Yes, it’s true. Confidence is, by far, one of the most attractive traits you can have. The men that I know who are very successful with women are very different, but the one quality they noticeably have in common is a high dose of confidence.

They are comfortable in their own skin and they like themselves as they are. Consequently, they are sociable, they are genuine in social interactions, they are persistent and they don’t take crap from anybody. And women quickly pick up on this and it involuntarily generates attraction.

Fortunately, confidence is a psychological trait that you can develop through deliberate action. Trust me; I help people develop it for a living.

If you want to learn the steps you need to take in order to build confidence effectively and quickly, then make sure to watch this unique presentation I have created, in which I’ll reveal them to you.

2. Masculine Energy

Ultimately, a woman desires a man, not a girlfriend with a penis. There are certain traits that come off as (primarily) masculine, just as there are certain traits that come off as (primarily) feminine.

A masculine energy is what you convey when you manifest such masculine traits.

There is a wide range of characteristics that are generally masculine: decisiveness, dominance (not the same as aggressiveness), firm voice tone, strong eye contact, seeking challenge, having clear goals and ambitions in life, perseverance, practical thinking, being protective, achieving status, and so on.

The lesson here is two-folded:

1) Don’t be afraid to convey the masculine traits you have (yes, you have lots of them, even if you may have lost touch with some). Put them out there and be proud to be a man.

2) Develop your masculine traits. Pick just one or two of them at a time, and work on improving them.

3. Good Social Skills

If you look during social interactions at the guys women react very well to (they flirt with them, they seek their attention, they ‘eye-fuck’ them) these guys will demonstrate some class of sharp social skills.

Maybe they are funny or they are very fluent verbally. Maybe they are charismatic or they know how to make a girl feel special. Maybe they are good listeners or mesmerizing story tellers. Or maybe they have a mix of these qualities.

Any way you cut it, they have a range of good social skills. The bigger the range and the higher each skill in it, the more attractive they are.

We live in a social world; we always have. And this is why social skills make all the difference in the world, and they are worth enhancing. Again, this presentation will prove very useful here.

4. An Interesting Lifestyle

The key is to not be just another guy who goes to a boring 9 to 5 job, then watches TV and plays computer games all day long. Too many guys are like that, and they all lack an edge.

You don’t need to have a James Bond lifestyle either, but it does prove tremendously helpful if there are just a few elements in your life that make it unordinary, above average and exciting. They make it interesting and then women feel the natural urge to be a part of it, and to be with you.

This is why I always encourage men to take on interesting hobbies, to try new things, to constantly challenge themselves and to do things they are passionate about. A man with an interesting life is very sexy.

Okay; at this point you may be asking yourself: but what about money, looks and fame?

My answer is that these things do help, but now having theme is definitely not a deal breaker, at least not with the vast majority of women.

At the end of the day, confidence, masculine energy, good social skills and an interesting lifestyle outweigh everything else. What do women want in a man most of all? It’s these 4 traits.

This is great because, while there are limits to how much you can improve your looks and few people will ever become millionaires, becoming more confident, masculine, and skilled socially, and gaining a more interesting lifestyle are within your reach, no matter who you are.

So, all that’s left for me to say is: get out there, better yourself as a man, live the best life possible and have fun. Your attractiveness will soar as a result.

Image courtesy of sebastien.b

Wow! 22 Personal Development Guides

5538800235 3242c9dc3a Wow! 22 Personal Development Guides

If you are a personal development passionate, if you want to make the best out of your life, this is literally a once in a lifetime offer and I’m writing this post to let you know about it as soon as possible.

Some of the best and the brightest personal development bloggers out there have joined forces to give you their e-books, courses and guides in a package like you’ve never seen before. Check it out here.

Here’s why this is an awesome learning and growth opportunity for you:

  • There are 22 products in this package, worth a total of $1087.
  • For only 72 hours, you can have them all of them as a bundle, for only $97.

The package covers pretty much the entire range of personal development: money, career, happiness, confidence, relationships, productivity, traveling, love, and the list goes on.

Some of the tiles in this pack that grabbed my eye include:

  • Focus by Leo Babauta, one of the best and most read bloggers alive;
  • Reclaim Your Dreams by Jonathan Mead, who is an authority on, well, reclaiming your dreams.
  • A Daring Adventure collection, by Tim Brownson, one of the truly good life coaches out there.

What you have here is a compilation of the finest information products in the realm of personal development from people who really know their stuff. Their combined power to help you transform your life is impressive.

I can’t think of enough ways to tell you that you don’t want to miss this opportunity. Each guide in this package sells separately for anywhere between $37 and $77. For only 72 hours, you can get all 22 of them for just $97.

This special offer expires at Noon Eastern, on Thursday, June 23 and it will not be repeated. So you might wanna hurry up. Check out this package here.

Image courtesy of HarshPatel

The Benefits of Coaching

4789352849 751503d18c The Benefits of Coaching

In the realm of personal development, there are two things I passionately believe in: people skills as a worthy set of skills to develop and coaching as a worthy method to employ. I believe in coaching because I believe in the benefits of coaching.

Coaching can take your personal development further and faster than any other method, in whatever direction interests you. Articles, books and DVDs can all help you a lot, but in comparison with individual coaching done right, they’re like a tractor racing against a Ferrari.

The way I see it, training is also a second rate option in comparison with coaching. The more confidence coaching I do, the more I believe in the benefits of coaching and the less I believe in the effectiveness of training, which is why I now do little training.

The benefits of coaching are numerous. However, I think there are five benefits of coaching that take the cake and make coaching the ultimate personal development solution. Here they are:

1. Seeing Your Blind Spots

Often, there are critical things we simply don’t see. I call these our blind spots. We can have blind spots about the way we come across socially, the limiting beliefs we operate on, the real consequences of certain behaviors, etc.

Since you can’t change or take into consideration what you don’t see, blind spots typically keep you stuck and thwart your improvement. Well, the best way to see your blond spots is none other than individual coaching.

Some of my communication coaching clients made big leaps forward by seeing crucial blinds spots they had. Seeing one of their blind spots was occasionally so mind-blowing that it kept them awake at night. It’s quite the transformational phenomenon.

2. Choosing the Best Action Steps

Once you know what specifically you want to achieve, the key question is: How? From improving your people skills to improving your time management, from getting more dates to making more money, there are so many tools and techniques available that choosing the best ones can be a burden.

This is where good coaching comes in, as a way to determine the tools and techniques that work best and that work best for your context, your problems and your person. Thus, you can pick the right actions steps for you and make huge progress instead of running in circles.

3. Implementing Each Step Effectively

One thing I’ve realized as a confidence coach is the enormous difference between understanding an idea conceptually and applying it correctly. Most people tend to think they’re practicing a new idea properly, when in fact they aren’t.

Coaching provides a coach the opportunity to study how you’re implementing certain ideas and give you accurate feedback. Role-plays, practical exercises and debriefings are great tools in the coach’s toolbox for this.

Thus, a coach can guide you into implementing what you’re learning effectively and can ensure that you’re shifting in the right direction, that you’re evolving not just changing.

4. Taking Massive Action

Fundamentally, changing any area of your life is at most 10% theory and at least 90% practice. You won’t see real results unless you commit to taking the insights you get and the ideas you discover and acting on them.

One of the key benefits of coaching is that it can help put the focus on results and take massive action. A good coach will help you get motivated, trust your power to change, get out of your comfort zone and do considerably more than you would on your own.

5. Staying On Track

It’s convenient to say that every person is responsible for their personal development and that if you don’t stick to it, then you’re just lazy or lack willpower. But the psychological fact is that humans find it hard to stay motivated to do something, even if it’s important to them.

Even the most successful and strong-minded people can easily get distracted and they frequently procrastinate if they just rely on willpower. The good news is that you don’t need to rely on willpower alone.

Through coaching, you can get precious support in staying on track with your personal development. A coach can help you set specific goals, take action daily and remain committed to the process. You’ll make progress week by week and the cumulative progress will be huge.

One small warning in the end: Keep in mind that as effective as coaching can be as a method, it is only one part of the equation. Another important part is the coach, and you want to pick one that works in a professional manner and can help you obtain quality results.

It is only the right coach that can make the noteworthy benefits of coaching show. So if you decided to pick coaching as a personal development method, you have my congratulations. Now it’s time to pick the right coach for you.

Image courtesy of HikingArtist

Low Self Esteem

1531474324 1368f053b4 Low Self Esteem

Low self esteem seems to be one of the most devastating psychological conditions alive. Millions of people struggle with low self esteem, as it sabotages their people skills, their social lives, their careers and almost every other area of their existence.

Overcoming low self esteem can be done successfully. I’m going to touch on this subject shortly, but first I want to help you get a better understanding of what self esteem is and what causes its altitude. I believe it is only armed with such knowledge that you can take effective action.

What Is Self Esteem?

Psychologists define self-esteem as a person’s overall evaluation of his or her own person and the resulting feelings towards his or her person.

Therefore, as one can deduce, low self esteem means a low evaluation of one’s own person and the associated negative feelings towards oneself.

If that doesn’t tell you much, don’t worry; it doesn’t tell anybody. The art is in the details of self esteem. One such essential detail relates to the sources and forms of self esteem.

Conditional Self Esteem

For many years, the dominating view in psychology was that as a personal evaluation, self esteem is dependent on a person’s competence, effectiveness and likeability. The subsequent consequences of this view were simple:

  • If you are a seasoned and competent professional, then you have high self esteem. If you are just a novice, then you have low self esteem.
  • If you achieve success and performance in what you do, then you have high self esteem. If you fail, then you have low self esteem.
  • If other people praise you and they like you, then you have high self esteem. If they criticize you and reject you, then you have low self esteem.

Self esteem is thus a slave to the external and internal conditions of our lives. The more we improve these conditions, the better we can see ourselves and feel about ourselves.

There is however an alternative view on self-esteem emerging in psychology in the last years, a view I am in consent with as a coach with a background in psychology. According to this view, what I have described above is just one side of self esteem, meaning conditional self esteem.

But, there is also another side: the unconditional one.

Unconditional Self Esteem

This is the real crown jewel. Unconditional self esteem is not dependent upon anything. You may change, your life may change, but it is not affected by any of this.

Unconditional self esteem is not based on your achievements, your skills or how other people see you. It comes from realizing and embracing your intrinsic value as a human being.

When you comprehend that your worth stretches beyond what you do, what you own, what you are capable of, and how others see you, than you have unconditional self esteem.

I believe confidently that this is a much more powerful form of self esteem to have. It’s an inner force and drive that you can always count on, no matter the stupid things that you sometimes do as a human or that sometimes happen in your life.

It’s like your very own 500HP car that never runs out of gas.

Low Self Esteem Redefined

Now, with this new understanding, let’s look at what is low self esteem again.

Through the conditional perspective, low self esteem means an evaluation of your own overall competence, effectiveness and likeability as being poor. Here’s the key point: conditional low self esteem is not all bad.

Many people horribly underestimate themselves and thus, they end up with low self esteem that damages their lives. This is bad. However, a very good but unrealistic image of yourself is also bad practically, as it leads to poor decisions and childish choices.

In addition, there is some solid research today that points out how people with high conditional self esteem are often narcissistic and antisocial in their behavior. Not the kind of folks you want at your Christmas table.

Low unconditional self esteem on the other hand is always bad. It is a reflection of your inability to see your inner worth.

When your unconditional self esteem is high though, it means you see your inner worth with clarity. A lot of scientific research links this to more success, to better health and in combination with good people skills, to better relationships.

Overcoming Low Self Esteem

All this discussion has also been a huge overture to a few key points I want to make on overcoming low self esteem:

1. Before anything else, think carefully if your low self esteem is based on a faulty self image or not. It may be just a sign that you’re not growing or that you’re selling yourself short.

2. If you conclude that your low self esteem is indeed based on a faulty self image, then you overcome it by becoming more aware of your strengths, your successes and the people who like you (the conditional side) or your intrinsic value (the unconditional side).

3. Changing a false self-image can only be done effectively by gradually changing your automatic thinking about yourself. This is what you want to focus on. When the way you talk to yourself habitually improves, your self esteem improves with it.

In whatever ways you handle low self esteem, do not ignore the unconditional side of it. Competence and performance are all good, but they do not define you. There is a deep bright light inside of you and it shines unconditionally.

Image courtesy of vernhart