Basic Psychological Principles

Pain/Pleasure

This is the ultimate human motivational mechanism, and the most basic. Everything you learn in this course is based on this one principle. If there's one understanding about our mental processes that you absorb, it's this:

People seek those things that give them pleasure,

and work to avoid those things that cause them pain.

When stacked beside each other, we are more motivated by the fear of pain than the promise of pleasure. There are many reasons for this:

o We understand and believe in the consistency of pain more than that of pleasure. For instance, you know touching a hot stove will cause you definite pain, but you don't know for sure that a given action will always produce pleasure. o Pain is hardwired at a basic, instinctual level, and pleasure is a more rational construct.

o Pain is more potent and vivid, while pleasure is more diluted. o Pain is more universally understood; we define pain in very similar terms, but pleasure is very subjective and discretionary. This probably evolved from the fact that pain can be a threat to survival and had to be recognized and responded to quickly.

For some, the loss of pleasure is pain, such as in the case of addiction and addictive personalities - and most definitely in relationships. Something to remember is that in today's society, most people's tolerance to pain is extremely low.

Sex and the relationship drive is the only case where I think pleasure returns to any primal status and gets on an equal footing with pain, and in most cases become two heads on the same serpent. Here is one place where the promise of pleasure (the touch of a woman's body, catching her eyes) can pull on you with equal force with the threat of pain (loneliness, rejection.)

Your goal is to use this principle to bring more pleasure to both you and the women you date. You never willingly use a threat of pain, since this is implied in the absence of the pleasures we offer. A woman will know that to turn down your offer of a fun, exciting date is stupid, and she will not risk your giving that pleasure to another woman.

What causes opponents to come of their own accord is the prospect of gain.

What discourages opponents from coming is the prospect of harm.

Scarcity and Appreciation

Human beings appreciate what is rare. Diamonds are worth money because they are relatively rare, and it takes skill to turn one into a presentable ornament. Paintings by dead artists are valuable because there will never be any more made by that person; there is a fixed quantity of their work available. In essence:

We want what we cannot have.

Another important part of scarcity is the perception. If you have to work hard to get something, it is appreciated more. Simply because if you can't get it easily, it must be rare, and therefore have value. Think of all those fad Christmas toys that sell out each year. Every parent sells their eternal soul to get them for their kids, and the stores raise the prices accordingly.

You're familiar with the "rich kid" syndrome. We'll use Danny as an example. This is the kid who was born into a family with money, and his parents gave him everything as a child (probably under the misguided notion that they can give him a better childhood than theirs was by spoiling him.) Danny gets a BMW for his eighteenth birthday and the car is always dirty and never kept up, wrappers and trash everywhere. The oil is never changed, and the car never gets a tune-up. He proceeds to wrap it around a telephone pole a few months after he gets it. The whole time you shake your head at what an idiot he is.

Danny didn't appreciate his car because it took no effort or work to get it or to keep it. It's the same thing for relationships and you, my friend. If you do not make yourself scarce enough to the person you want, you will be taken for granted. It's human nature, and you can't argue it away.

This is the entire psychology behind the female ploy of playing hard-to-get. It works, and it works every time, as long as you don't become so scarce that you disappear.

She has to feel lucky to get you. Perception of scarcity (and value) can be controlled, and it's up to you to control your perceived value in the stock market of dating. Here's how:

Reduce your availability and Increase your perceived desirability:

- Don't answer the phone unless you need to. You're too busy out dating, remember?

- You only have two times to offer each woman per week to be with you. If they want to be with you, they will make it work. (And if they don't work, they aren't interested enough. Why would you want to be with a woman who doesn't want to be with you?)

- Be sure to talk about other women you know and see. Some men think that a woman will hear this and get scared off. She'll think, "Whoah! I better back out of this race; he's already taken."Totally and completely incorrect. She will find you more desirable because other women find you desirable.

- I'll restate that first rule of showbiz for you: Always leave them wanting more.

o You must be the one to end the date early and say goodnight. When you hang around long enough that she has to tell you to go, you've already lost some of her interest. She goes from desire to withdrawal. o You must be the one to end the kisses first. When she has to pull away, you've started a process of her feeling the need to get away from you. If you end it first, she'll want more, and think about getting more the whole time you're apart.

- Later, you will reduce your availability so that a woman can feel the ache of your absence. If she can't miss you, she can't want you very much, either.

You cannot appreciate that which you get for free. Your time, your energy, your entire fantastic world must have a price for her to pay, or she will never adequately appreciate or sense a threat of loss. What would it be like if the Olympics gave medals to everyone who participates?

Also, resist the urge to reassure her when she seems uncertain. Men tend to misinterpret a woman in the ecstasy of uncertainty as needing assurance that the man will be there or is interested in her. The man then proceeds to tell her everything, hoping that if he reassures her enough, she'll fall in love. It works exactly in the opposite way.

Remember: The more you make things definite and certain for a woman, the less mystery and wonder you leave her with, and you will reduce her attraction. Only an extremely insecure woman needs to be reassured constantly.

Confidence kills excitement.

Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of formlessness and soundlessness. Thereby you can be the director of the opponent's fate.

Female Attraction

Women feel attracted to men for reasons that are not logical. As the saying goes in sales, buying decisions are made emotionally first, and then backed up with logic later. A

woman will not look you over, tally up your positive qualities, and then decide that she wants you. That's not how it works. She wants you because of behaviors that you exhibit that inspire her attraction at a primal level. Later on, after she's good and infatuated with you, she'll back up her decision with a highly positive picture. She'll remember that image of you later when her friends and family ask her what she sees in you, or when she thinks she might be losing you.

It's your job to be on good behavior, demonstrate these attraction qualities, and stay just far enough away that it gives her room to take action on her attraction. This doesn't mean she'll be hunting you down and begging you for dates (although in some cases, when you get good, this can happen). You'll still need to initiate, but she will now be in a place where the advances are hoped for and welcome, and she'll seize them when you put them in front of her.

Defensive Shields

Women come with a set of pre-programmed defensive shields (yes, just like on Star Trek, for the geeks out there like me) that must be brought down if you are to get into her heart. Or, ahem, into other areas.

A woman's first consideration is a worry about physical safety and freedom from harm, as I've stated. She then worries about mental safety - will he hurt me the way my other boyfriends did?

Defenses are inherent in everyone. We all interact on a certain level of defense -defending others from the chinks and tarnish in our armor of self-esteem. You see this most vividly when people interact in a business setting and egos start to come into play. One person makes a statement that really isn't meant as an attack on another, but is interpreted by another person's defense mechanism as a criticism. Then things escalate as each person digs their heels in and tunes out what the other person is really saying.

(Come to think of it, this also sounds like most relationship arguments, doesn't it?)

I've found that the best way to overcome the defensive shield posture is to learn how to genuinely look at things from another person's perspective, putting your ego aside to really see things another way. This takes a lot of work on your self-esteem so that you can abandon your need to impress others or defend your position. It's not easy, but it is the only True cure for the issues that come up in almost all relationships - romantic or otherwise. You'll be able to see the "why" for almost any situation when you can put aside your own feelings and dented armor. I'm not suggesting you'll be able to fix all the issues, but at least you'll have understanding and a choice.

Psychological Posture

Posture is another term from sales and other psychological studies. I'm not referring to your physical slouching (sit up straight!), per se. Posture is a very generic term for your overall social presence. It is, when all is said and done, the impression left behind with people after

© 2003 - Carlos Xuma. - DD Publications - All Rights Reserved -

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they've experienced you, and it also encompasses your ability to command respect in those you meet. When I say you should have posture, I mean that you need to have the ability to present yourself on at least equal terms to another person, their personality, ego, and demands.

In the dating dynamic, it's your ability to feel like you have control over the situations you enter with women, whether this is asking for the phone number, date behavior, sexual initiation, whatever. You have to feel like you have some control, and you won't make as many errors due to insecurity. When you go out on a date, you need to enter the situation with self-control and assurance. This assurance comes from the deep-seated belief that you are the one with the goods - this woman needs something you have.

Posture can be gauged on a scale, like those wide speedometers on old luxury cars. On the far left (near 0 mph) is your total ambivalence (and just a bit of avoidance) to the situation or woman. On the right (where your engine is maxxed out), you are hopelessly obsessed, anticipating and bemoaning every waking minute you're not near her. In the middle is a comfortable place for the needle to rest. In this ideal posture zone, you occasionally think about her, but you know you can also remain detached.

Think of how you felt when you knew someone you were not attracted to had a crush you: Part of you was flattered, but mostly you couldn't have cared less. Think of how you treated her. You were probably cool and a bit aloof, not wanting to instigate further feelings of attraction on her part. The ironic thing is that this only made her want you more.

The point here is that you should strive to emulate this kind of attitude with every woman you relate to. The trick is that you practice this cool detachment with a balance of flirtatious interest, but only enough to give them some doubt about your intentions -- Mystery.

But keep in mind that posture is not just a hardened statue of manliness. On the contrary, your ability to remain vulnerable and flexible is essential to success. The man that is rigid and unbending will break (as the Taoist saying about the reed in the wind.) Balance your firmness with a measure of emotional warmth.

Another possible trap of false posture is the manipulation of a woman's self-esteem, and you should avoid this as well. It can be tempting to use a woman's insecurities against her as a tool to control her. This is not the correct use of posture.

You'll know you have posture when you have the will to get up and leave ANY situation you happen to be in with a woman if it suits you. You'll be able to pull back from a kiss first, thus leaving her wanting more. You'll be able to call her bluffs and tests. You'll be able to turn her down for a date because you're busy. You'll be able to walk away from a potentially poisonous woman, no matter how beautiful. You'll be able to turn her down for sex because you have alternatives and options - as well as knowing that she needs it more than you.

Posture. She'll respect you and admire you for keeping it, no matter what. And you'll respect and admire yourself, too. Imagine what that will feel like.

Self-interest

We are ruled by self-interest. One of the fundamental traits of human beings is that we are all interested primarily in our own survival and ourselves in general. The more this need is met for us - feeling adequate, worthy, confident, etc. - the more we are able to reach out

© 2003 - Carlos Xuma. - DD Publications - All Rights Reserved -

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beyond this shell of inner focus and attend to others. The Truth is that self-interest wins out over altruism and good intentions every time.

This is not a bad thing. You have to have a certain fundamental level of selfishness in order to be able to do anything good for others. Ultimately, those people who can establish a firm sense of "self" in their life, have a much more fully charged battery pack for giving later down the road. They don't burn out and die from martyrdom, and as a result, they give a great deal.

There's a famous scene in "Wall Street" where Michael Douglas' character, Gordon Gecko, makes a speech about how "greed is good." It's a pretty convincing argument, and there are a few points that are true. In the spirit of his speech, I'd like to propose that being self-centered is good as well. Not to the extreme, but in a way that allows everyone to fully develop his or her sense of self-esteem and self-confidence. If we were all able to raise our levels of self-confidence and drop the need for defenses, we would experience much more fulfillment from our relationships. We would also have much less violence and conflict in society from those at the extreme edge of dysfunction - criminals and tyrants whose own self-esteem thirsts for power.

The woman's self-interest causes her to behave in certain ways. She looks out for her own safety, foremost. She also looks to determine if you will be able to meet her needs, over the short and long term. Will you be a good lover? Protector? Provider?

You have to weigh your needs, and also be willing to satisfy some of her questions of self-interest first. And this will require self-discipline from you.

Addiction

Love is a drug. It's potent, it's euphoric, and it is psychologically addictive. With that addiction comes many of the same effects you see in chemical dependencies. Understanding this dynamic makes it almost essential that you understand how you can become a dealer yourself - a Pusher for the best drug on earth.

When you first meet with a woman, you want to give her an exciting, euphoric experience. You want her to have fun. When you can do that, she will feel a little rush, just enough to make her feel different. The last ten guys might have brought her to a fancy restaurant, but none of them raised her pulse by more than five beats per minute. You want to get her a little excited and tingly. You'll do this for free the first few times. You don't need repayment in sex or immediate pledging of her love. You're patient. And in between, she dreams of another chance to get a hit from the Love Bong.

The next time you get together, she wants more of the drug, and you give it to her. More excitement, more reasons to smile and tingle. She gets a bigger rush from the anticipation, and you know that she's starting to really enjoy this stuff. In between your dates (her fixes), she's starting to feel a bit jittery, wondering when it will happen again. You didn't ask for another date, but she wants more, and the uncertainty of when the next hit will come makes it more visceral and thrilling.

After a few rounds, our happy little Pusher decides to put a bit more time in between, and now she starts to get a little anxious, gets a little case of cotton-mouth. "Wh-what?" she stutters. "What do you mean you can't go out this Friday? I want ... I need to see you!"

"Hmm," you say, shaking your head. "I don't know if I can rearrange my plans."

"Please? Come on! I'll take you to dinner! And, I'll wear that dress you said you liked." Now she's willing to pay a little bit. She still gets her fix, but the price is still reasonable for what she gets. By the time the Pusher has shown her the price, she doesn't care anymore. It's worth it.

And step by step, a (good) addiction develops.

We all know the horrible affects of love withdrawal when a woman dumps us hard. It's like a junkie who's been cut off cold, getting the shakes and a nervous, obsessed manner that is upsetting to witness - even pitiful. A lot of guys end up this way because they didn't realize they were taking her drug and getting addicted before she got a taste of his.

Control Principle

The one who loves the least controls the relationship

During this dating dance we engage in, it is important to understand the principle of control, and how it influences your decisions. The previous quote pretty much sums up what I've been trying to convey to you with respect to the flow of power in a relationship. Control is what we as humans seek to have to feel a sense of security. To the degree that you feel in control, you feel secure and self-confident. To the degree that you feel out of control, you feel insecure and no confidence.

In a relationship, the one who feels most out of control is usually more infatuated with the other. Control (perceived or real) is a very strong influence over the amount of attraction you feel toward someone else, and how they feel about you. Remember back to your teenage years when you felt wildly obsessed with someone you liked, and how this was often in proportion to the degree you felt you could influence them. Remember also how you felt when you were with someone who you felt you could direct to do anything, and they went along with every plan you had. You probably felt confident in your own abilities, but your attraction to her lowered as you realized that you had no challenges to overcome. She wasn't as attractive when she failed to challenge you through showing the Three S's.

I am not proposing that relationships become a power struggle, or to seek control of a woman to meet the needs of your ego. What I am saying is that the only thing you can control in a relationship is your own thinking and behavior. Ultimately this is all you will need to draw more women into your life, and to gain the control you need over your relationships.

Female Behavior

One common topic of discussion among guys is why women are so concerned about appearances, and how this relates to their catty behavior. First of all, it's generally understood that women dress nice not for men, but for other women. So that they can one-up their rivals, who are all buying into a myth of male perfection: Five foot five, one hundred pounds, with legs to her neck and boobs like prize-winning cantaloupes.

I think this is generally true, but needs to be amended. Women do use the "butterfly" behavior to attract men, but it's not in the sense of "Aren't you impressed at how good I look in these clothes/shoes?" It is actually in the sense of "Aren't you impressed at how much better I look than other women in these clothes/shoes?"

You see, women are catty because they live in comparison. Everything they have been brought up with tells them that they exist only in comparison to other women, typically the stickbug models on the cover of "Cosmopolitan" or "Vogue." So, their concern is not as much on impressing us with their stand-alone looks and qualities as it is with standing out from the herd of other Kitty-kats. I suspect this also ties to other behavior, such as their heart-stopping question of "Do I look fat?" They're thinking about how they look in comparison to other women, not because they're worried about not satisfying their man's ideal. This may help men in addressing women's seemingly neurotic questions by phrasing answers the way they really want to hear them - not the way they are asked. Your answer should always say that there is no other woman that compares. (But maybe with just a hint of doubt...)

Words and Actions

Equally important is that you need to pay attention to a woman's actions, not what she says. This may sound very contradictory to my previous advice about listening to a woman, but it's really not. Her words will tell you facts, things about her and her life, etc., and those are reliable - for the most part. She's actually giving you indirect clues. Very often, a woman says one thing, but means another, and that is precisely why you must only believe what you see and feel, not what you hear.

For example, a woman tells you she thinks you're very cute and she really wants to get together with you, yet she hasn't returned the last six calls you've made, and she is still not forthcoming with a day this week you two can get together. What is she really saying? Her actions are doing the talking: She isn't attracted or interested enough in you. If she was, she would make the time to get with you. (She most probably is a guy-collector or expert dater, leading on as many men as she can so she can drive up her own perception of popularity, but the reason doesn't matter if she isn't chasing after you.) When a woman is "busy all the time," she's trying to tell you in woman-speak is that she isn't interested. She's trying to drop you a hint to move on.

Learn to stop listening at a certain point and simply watch what she is doing. Her actions are the Truth. Her words ... well, she just can't help saying what she does. She only wants to avoid hurting your feelings.

Drama and Meaning

Women have a need for drama, something that has been stated before here and elsewhere. What does this really mean, though?

© 2003 - Carlos Xuma. - DD Publications - All Rights Reserved -

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Women want to find more mystical meaning in the universe. Women are not logical; they are spiritual and not like us. Men want to find order; women need to find meaning. This is a critical distinction you must understand.

What happens in many relationships is that the man does not understand why the woman is always trying to "read into" things, or always trying to find some alternate meaning. They drive us crazy with their interpretations, when - as Freud once said - "Sometimes a cigar is ... just a cigar."

Stroked and Un-stroked

Though there are many kinds of women, as many stars as there are in the night sky, there is a dynamic to watch for with this particular classification. There are two camps a woman generally originates from, starting in those formative years of their childhood. This delineation, while not perfect, gives you an important indicator for your relationship. These two kinds of women are Stroked and Un-stroked.

This analysis can also translate into many other splits of the female persona, but I believe these two sum up the essence of their behavior. (And their behavior is all that we really care about, isn't it?)

I used to approach women as if they were all the same, but the reality is that even if they are alike more ways than they are different, we need to have some flexibility in our approach to get results. Allow me explain these two types:

STROKED

This woman got plenty of praise and adoring attention as a kid. She was cute enough or loved enough to have established a good sense of self-esteem, and she doesn't suffer for adoration. As an adult, she likes hearing a compliment, but she responds more when she doesn't get the immediate gratification from a man. She responds very clearly to challenge. She still has holes and a deficit in her self-esteem (what woman or man does not?) but overall she is a bit cocky of her appearance and control over men. She occasionally plays the 'games' we're so used to. Testing. Controlling. Hard-to-get. Etc.

UN-STROKED

This woman never got her fair share of attention and words of praise, either by family or friends (or an ex). She sought to replace it as she got older, but never reclaimed that sense of esteem that she so desires. As an adult, she is desperate for recognition, in any way it can be had. She responds to men's attention and compliments, and this appreciation can often be addictive. If it is given and then taken away, she would sell her mother into slavery to get it back. (Also, some of these girls can border on being damaged goods. Frequently, their relationship with one of their parents is toxic, and they're still trying to obtain his/her respect and love, and they will to their dying day.)

The Stroked tend to be givers, when provoked enough and managed through the standard strategies of the Dynamic Man. They have a surplus of love energy in them, ready to share with you, if you'll be a Self-confident man who can challenge them and raise their attraction along the way. It's their nurturing, loving way.

The Un-Stroked tend to be takers. They have a deficit, an emptiness in their love battery that never quite gets charged. They go through the motions of relationships, knowing that they have to give to get, but they never really have enough to spare. These gals are often in therapy, healing past relationships and managing those anxieties from their past. They require a lot of energy to keep happy.

Sometimes the Un-Stroked are just in a temporary slump, brought on by a bad relationship. Every woman becomes Un-Stroked after a particularly difficult relationship they've just been liberated from. They need to focus on themselves and rebuilding their very damaged self-esteem. Stroked and Un-Stroked can also appear as phases that you'll surely encounter a woman in at some point.

The reason I point these differences to you is that the usual tactics can have misleading affects on the Un-Stroked. They may act contrary to the norm. Taking a two-steps-forward / one-step-back approach with them often only leaves them standing there, not taking a step back toward you on their own. You're left standing there, puzzled: Why isn't this working? Because these women are not capable of meeting you fairly on the battlefield of Love. They want you to recharge them, and you may not have the power to do so. I used to wonder why my strategies and tactics didn't work on them, when it was because they are, for all intensive purposes, just a little crazy. Hence, inconsistent and often contrary reactions will occur.

How do you react to these women?

Quite simply, you NEVER react to a woman. (Sorry, trick question.) Just be quiet and listen enough at the start to understand which you're dealing with. Listen close, my friend, for the clues and the reality is usually hidden under many layers of fickle behavior and social camouflage. It's up to you to save yourself from a decision that will either make you very happy or ... miserable and despairing.

Poisonous Women

Women have faults. I know, I know, it's hard to believe this when you meet a lady who is so gorgeous she might be a divine entity, but you must try to keep women in perspective. They are no better or worse than men. We just cover our eyes with daydreams and fantasies when we first meet them. It's only after we've been with one woman for a while, we start to see their faults.

An important ability is to see through this blinding haze early on. I'm going to discuss the harmful female personality types and how to recognize them early enough that you can do something about it.

Unstable or Downright Crazy: This woman is an emotional train wreck, totally irrational and looking to drag you down with her. You never know what her reaction will be, and you're always walking on eggshells. She's capable of anything, and you're afraid for your safety.

- Erratic behavior - Unable to control her impulses or her emotions from moment to moment. One moment she's manically happy, the next she's depressed and suicidal.

- Exhibits neurotic patterns in most of her day-to-day life. Obsessive tendencies, the inability to escape thoughts of worry, gloom, panic

- Takes medications - Lithium, Prozac, Valium

- Has been accused of stalking before

- When you feel your tactics are totally ineffective on her, there's a good chance you've got a nut-case.

The Gold-digger/Super-ambitious: She wants money, as much as she can get. She's not necessarily going to work to acquire it, either. This type is preoccupied with material possessions. She is either looking for a sugar daddy, or another method of easily obtaining wealth and power

- Asks questions about your status and power, many about money

- Talks about income and possessions - to the extreme

- Work-a-holic

- Superficial/name-drops

- Insists on nice restaurants, expensive hotels, expensive jewelry

- Tends to be in debt, or spends beyond her means

- Obsessed with appearances and image

- Obsessed with connections and maintaining a huge group of "friends"

Unable to Commit - The Female Player: This woman has all the dating techniques down, and she uses Challenge to her benefit. She may not be ready for a relationship or monogamous dating, or she may just be unsure of her own intentions or goals. Sometimes this woman just likes the attention and validation she gets from having as many guys as she can get.

- Excessively stand-offish, well out of reach

- Teases you with the occasional date, but most often you're left frustrated

- What she says rarely matches her behavior, and you're left confused

- She's a slave to the "good times," looking for the next party

- Often younger and a social butterfly

Violent and Abusive: She starts out moderate, with an occasional teasing insult, but she escalates rapidly. She is only feeling loved if she is in the center of a Tasmanian-Devil whirlwind, drama on the level of Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson. She'll do whatever it takes to get you angry enough to react and fuel the fire. Love isn't love until it hurts.

- Prone to aggression and violence - throws and breaks objects

- May attack you physically in moments of anger

- Swears a lot at you and uses name-calling - verbally abusive

- Likes rough sex - to the extreme

- Angers easily. Interacting with her is like handling delicate explosives

- Behavior usually stems from an abusive childhood

The Flake/The Sketch: This woman is totally incapable of follow-through. She will make plans with the best intentions, but your ability to actually hook up with her is next to zero. She even comes across with sincerity, making you think she'll follow through this time, but let's you down. She never delivers.

- Always late, frequently no-showing

- Fails to follow through on promises

- Very inconsistent between what she says and what she does

- Never returns calls or emails

The Thrill-Seeker: She wants to experience all the highs life has to offer. She'll take you along on her reckless adventures, which often flirt with wildness you don't need. She only wants to be around you when it's fun.

- Loves to stay out late at clubs and party - slave to the "good times"

- Impulsive about her plans

- Labels you a killjoy if you put a damper of common sense on her constant flightiness

- Loses interest quickly. You have to be doing something new and fantastically interesting to keep her attention

- Very often the "bad-girl" stereotype

The Bitch/Nag: You see this trait by the bushel. She manipulates her men through a constant stream of verbal assaults. She's one of the trickier ones to handle since she'll often have a sweet side that she uses to keep you interested. You'll sometimes think: Well, it's not that bad. She's often very unpleasant and impossible to please.

- At first, she just seems like a "strong personality," which is attractive at first but rapidly progresses into something more sinister

- She tends to tell you to "shut up" frequently, and tries to end conversations on her terms

- Pulls an attitude when she wants to get her way - sulks a lot

- Jealous - to the extreme

- Restricts your time with other guys

- She has a hen-pecked father

- She will use repetition to get you to comply (Nagging)

- Will bring up past issues constantly. Things never seem to get resolved.

The Control Freak/Man-master: This type is a more dominant form of the Bitch/Nag. She wants to have you completely under her thumb, and isn't shy about letting you and everyone else know. (See "The Need to Change You.")

- She seems like a strong personality in the beginning, and this lures you in. She has a lot of male (yang) traits, and you may be lured in with her ability to morph into one of the guys.

- Controls conversations initially

- She has a hen-pecked father

- Answers your phone/reads your mail/snoops through your stuff

- Jealous - to the extreme

- Restricts your time with other guys

The Me-monkey: This woman is truly in love with herself and believes that all men should worship her. If you don't worship her, she will be challenged, but only until she realizes you won't give her what she wants - blood sacrifices or a temple erected to her. Once that realization hits her, you're out.

- She's typically gorgeous - and she knows it

- She pampers herself to the extreme

- She doesn't care at all about what's going on with you and your life

- Talks incessantly about herself and her friends

- Superficial - to the extreme. Obsessed with image

- Typically has poor relations with her mother

- Can only function when she's the center of attention and the focus

Insubstantial Woman: This gal is barely there. She cannot make any decisions for herself, much less be a willing and capable participant in a relationship. At first, you're drawn in because she goes along with everything you want, perhaps even sex. Then you realize that she's got a passive-aggressive streak a mile wide. Some psychological circles call this a borderline personality disorder.

- Does everything you say

- Ignores her needs - to the extreme

- Codependent

- Unhealthy closeness to her mother or father

- Her emotions mirror your emotions. She can't be in a good mood if you aren't

- Can't stand up to you or anyone, but can use her passivity to manipulate you when necessary

Emotional Leech/Clingy-Needy Chick: This girl is sweet as peach cobbler, and you think you've met a woman you can finally bond with at the cellular level. She seems to want to jump in and not "play games." You start out spending the first few weeks together, 24 hours a day/7 days per week. You're in sexual rapture, and it seems this girl is totally on your level. You drop all your structure, defenses, and strategies and let her into your heart, your apartment, and your world. Then, you start to feel a bit smothered. The air is tight, and you need a little space. You suggest you both spend a day apart so you can get some chores done, but she's wrapped around you so tight you feel like Oprah in a wet suit. Your panic starts to hint at what's to come. This is often described as the "addictive" personality.

- Calls you often

- Close to her mother - to the extreme

- Tendency to want to change things about you to prove that you belong to her. She'll dress you up and try to inject her style into yours

- Spends an inordinate amount of time at your apartment or house

- Her emotions always seem to mirror your emotions

- Excessively jealous

- Places too much emphasis on work achievement for validation

- In extreme cases she can be suicidal, or threatens self-harm or suicide as a manipulative trick

- High potential for stalking

The Narcissist: This woman believes on some level that the world is focused on her. A common misperception is that a narcissistic person is merely vain and self-centered. This is not always so, and in many cases the narcissist carries a lot of self-hate. The narcissist is extremely paranoid about the image she presents to others, and fosters a preoccupation with herself. She is defined by how other people see her.

- She is extremely concerned with what other people think of her

- Preoccupied with external validation and approval - requires excessive admiration

- Very internally focused

- Cannot see other people's points of view

- Has boundary issues (See "Boundaries.")

- Has a highly underdeveloped sense of humor, especially unable to laugh at herself

- Lack of empathy for others

- Insecure and envious

- Has a sense of entitlement

The Baby: This gal is unbelievably immature. While she has a freshness and vitality about her, she acts like a spoiled brat much of the time, and her moments of lucidity are few and far in between. It's easy to be enamored of her playful behavior - at first.

- She is very self-centered

- Emotionally under-developed. She cries and throws tantrums, often breaking things she owns.

- Insecure

- Needs a lot of attention. Demonstrates a lot of "Look at me!" behavior

- Poor decision-making. Spends all her discretionary income.

- Careless and very forgetful

- Is messy and disorganized at home

- Impulsive behavior

All women possess some of these traits to some degree. There are also many that I didn't cover, like drug abusers and other non-desirables. It's up to you to identify the problem women from the rest and weed them out early enough to save yourself a lot of headache. As I told you before, a great deal of your ability to keep a relationship going with a woman will depend on your ability to cope with her problem behavior (and her coping with yours.) Choose well.

Danger Signs

Learn to recognize some of the warning signs of entering into a poisonous relationship. These relationships do not always occur because of an unhealthy partner, but sometimes the dynamic between the two people is toxic. ^ ___ ^—

Watch out for these indications in yourself: C=^C1 f ^tjM n^th ¡n?^ rant handle.

■ Unhealthy obsession o Often characterized by the "Amour Fou" syndrome, where romantic obsession leads to back-and-forth crazy behavior o Initial lust leads to a volatile chemistry, imitating love o You don't feel happy or good when you're alone o Sleep habits are erratic because of your obsessive thinking patterns o Your priorities start to change o Extreme jealousy kicks in, which leads to the next indicator ...

■ Loss of impulse control and self-discipline o You freak out and find yourself frequently angry o You find yourself doing things you can't seem to control, like parking outside her house, or calling at all hours. You find that jealousy is now almost constant.

o Your priorities alter even further, and you start sacrificing your hobbies, which then contributes to the next indicator .

■ Self-destructive behavior o Any tendency to make rash and potentially harmful decisions, such as neglecting work or family, or a long-distance relocation for the "relationship." o Violent outbursts that "aren't like you" o Loaning her money, or excessive self-sacrifice o Excessive drinking, partying, or drug use o Exercise and health become secondary priorities o Jeopardizing your lifestyle for her.

Break this chain before it wrecks you. If necessary, seek out professional help to break out of this self-destructive pattern. No woman is worth compromising your integrity or happiness.

Women at 30

I've heard this age called the "no-fly zone" for dating, meaning the age of 28 to 32. Things change for a woman at around 27 or 28. Before this, she was in perpetual party mode. She could cruise with the gals until the wee hours of the morn, and party like it was 1999. These were her days of occasional one-night-stands and reckless behavior. (Hey, most guys go

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through this, too.) When she hits the end of her twenties, she starts to understand that she's approaching the big three-oh - and she hasn't had any babies. She sees her sisters building little families, and even if she hasn't been fully sold that she should become a mother, she thinks she ought to, because time is running out and she doesn't want to miss the opportunity. She's probably heard that misquoted statistic about women who don't marry by 35 never do, and fear strikes her heart like Igor ringing the bells of Notre Dame. She has a lifetime of programs instilled in her that say that a woman in our society gets married, gets a house, and starts making babies when she's in her thirties. If she doesn't, there's something wrong with her.

It's at this point that she takes on what I call the Blood-scent. The reason I call it this is because you can smell it on her a mile away, just by her attitudes and almost manic focus on all things marriage and family related. She subscribes to "Bride" even when she's not dating. She dotes on her nephews and nieces as if the were her own. She goes home at night and burns ceremonial incense to the pagan gods if they will bring her a man and keep her womb fertile.

Okay, so I took this a little extreme, but you get my point. Every man has seen this woman around, and been scared like hell when one snares him. How do you spot her?

- She's very interested in dating you, almost coming across as a bit fervent and manic. You feel her sizing you up when introduced by a friend. You swear you might have even seen fangs when she smiled at you.

- She's the one who asked/begged her female and male friends to hook her up with everyone they knew.

- She's talks a lot about marriage, babies, houses, and life plans.

- She doesn't seem to be living her life, all so that she won't scare off a potential husband. She doesn't see that her difficulty in having successful relationships is an indicator that she's placing far too much importance on her programmed goal of getting married rather than living out her life.

- She laments that there are no good men out there, looking for only her "knight in shining armor." She wants a man and a family to complete her.

Is she bad? No, not at all. She's just going after what she wants, the same way you are. The mistake I've seen being made by this woman all the time is that she allows her goal to cloud her vision - and her selection process. Instead of finding a man she can bond with and forge a solid relationship, she wants the one who will father her children and provide. She also does this by ignoring her own life and becomes what she thinks she needs to be to get a husband. She will succeed, but down the road, after twenty-odd years of child-rearing, there's not much left between her and the man to keep the relationship from dissolving. She's blinding herself to the prerequisite of a good match and selling herself into the Marriage Program.

The Program Woman

This is a type of woman I didn't include in the previous section for a reason. I don't feel there's anything necessarily wrong with her desire, only that looking to fulfill herself through a fairy-tale family skews her decision process. Happily-ever-after is what she's been looking for her whole life, ignoring herself. Her goal is a distortion created from her self-image. This makes it doubly important that you have your goals clear and can see what is happening.

The Program Woman has had a plan, ever since she first read Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty - or at least the sugary-sweet Disney versions - and decided she knew the exact family unit she wanted to acquire. She played with dolls and doll houses almost exclusively as a little girl, emulating mommy. She's a mercenary for her vision: A two-story home in the suburbs, 2.4 children, a dog (his), a cat (hers), and a Land Rover in the garage. She's the epitome of the "soccer mom," and she's had this plan orchestrated and ready to execute since she got out of her last sorority party before graduation where she sowed her last wild oat. She's the extreme of the thirty-something woman who knows that time is not on her side. Her window of opportunity serves as a kind of doomsday clock, and she doesn't feel like she's a woman unless she's signed on for the Program, got the husband and two-story in the suburbs, and had a few children.

Keep in mind that our culture fosters this kind of approach to dating, love, marriage, and families. Girls have been sold a bill of goods since they were small and innocent. Women are given specific gender roles, which are reinforced through the media. Girls are programmed that they must dress in pink, not blue, and play with baby dolls, not cars or trucks. They are given Walt Disney movies that tell you how to think of men as "Prince Charming" stereotypes, who will someday come and sweep you off your feet. They buy magazines (Cosmopolitan, Vogue, etc.) that proclaim to help them build their female esteem by adhering to a code of physical appearance (be skinny as a rail and wear these clothes and shoes), and they compare themselves with other women at every opportunity.

I tell you this not to fill you with despair, but so you'll know what kind of playing field to expect when you leave the locker room. Guys are more disillusioned than ever, mostly because we've been paying attention to the unseen announcer of this dating game, who's telling us that women want this ... Wait! No, they want that... Hold on! They really want this...

As I said before, I resolved at an early age to not get married until I was at least 30. I'm past that now, and I'm damn glad I made that decision. We don't really know what we want when we're young. That's not to say you will figure it all out later (or can't figure it out sooner), but experience will make for better decisions. Also, there are many mistakes you must make, and some mistakes you can't simply learn from watching others. I've seen how many marriages end up with a man who feels like a cog in a machine, having no real importance to his wife but the role he fills as provider, chauffer, and chaperone. And we men deserve much more than that.

The female "program" should only further reinforce the importance of building your plan early on. These are tricky and treacherous waters. If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there. I want you to see what's up ahead and make your own decisions - not the ones someone else has made for you.

The High-Maintenance Woman

Like the Player, the High-Maintenance Woman is difficult to define, as every man has his own definition, but I think we can come up with a workable characterization:

A High-Maintenance Woman demands more emotional and/or material effort than is comfortable for most men.

High-maintenance refers not only to her material needs, but her emotional needs as well. Here is a list of red-flags to watch out for:

■ Over-sensitive: Takes offense at almost everything, no sense of humor. Cannot take any form of criticism. Interprets almost everything you say as disapproval.

■ Frequently freaks out: Uncontrollable anger. Tends toward bi-polar behavior.

■ Self-centered to the extreme: Thinks she's God's gift

■ Needs constant pampering and coddling

■ Sexually inconsistent: Hot and cold with respect to her sexual mood.

■ Expects you to know what she's thinking at all times and cater to her.

■ She never thinks she's wrong.

■ Extremely critical and judgmental of you and others. Insulting and mean.

■ Believes she is entitled to everything in life.

■ Needs to be entertained constantly to keep her attention.

■ Incessantly worries about what people think about her, overly concerned with other's opinions

■ Inconsistent and irrational: A big indication of her erratic behavior is the success you have with her using these principles. If you find yourself struggling to get any results using these strategies, or you find them to work very inconsistently with a woman, chances are she is slightly unstable and very high-maintenance.

■ She can only see her point of view, no others. The high mark of emotional maturity is how well someone can see a situation from another person's point of view. When a woman can see things only from her own limited reference, she is going to be very painful to work through problems with. (See "Narcissism.")

Generally speaking, if you find yourself hesitating before any interaction with a woman because you have to think about whether you will irritate her, make her mad, or upset her in any way, you have a high-maintenance woman (or your self-confidence is very low.) This kind of ambiguity and trepidation will leave you feeling very nervous and insecure.

From my personal experience, high-maintenance women are emotionally exhausting, and they suck the souls out of the men they come in contact with. They also rarely have any real generosity available to give to you. Life is too short to devote most of your precious life energy to her unhealthy demands. Get a woman who has the emotional reserves to attend to you on occasion. ^

Profile of a Good Woman - The Four Essential Qualities

After covering all these negative qualities, I wanted to take a moment to suggest some of the positive traits of the woman that most men find amenable to them. This is a simple formula for judging her essence. I consider these the Four Essential Qualities of a good woman.

1) Flexible/Positive Attitude: Her philosophy of life has to be upbeat, not dark. She's conscious of her health. She expects the best from life. She has an open and

The Dating Black Book adventurous spirit. She has an intellect you find engaging, not condescending and dismissive. She's giving. She respects you. When you suggest an activity, you don't get a bunch of excuses. This woman is low to reasonable maintenance. She's also patient, not jumping to conclusions or having to be soothed all the time.

2) High-integrity/Trust: You need a woman of good moral fiber. You need to be able to trust her. This woman could end up raising your children. You can't accept a woman who you have to worry about. If she engages in a lot of backstabbing, chances are she is a resentful type who will stow away her slights and hit you with them like a grocery list when the time is right. You've got to be able to trust her with your life

3) Sexually and intellectually attractive: You have to be able to interact and talk on a fairly equitable level. She has to excite you physically and mentally. (You'd be surprised how much longer the sex lasts when she isn't as dumb as a box of rocks.) She also needs to have at least a comparable sex drive with you. You don't want to struggle over satisfying physical needs. If she has a good attitude, you should at least be able to discuss this and reach agreements where needed, but start with a healthy sex drive. It makes the road much easier to travel.

4) Capable and competent: I've dated more than my fair share of women who were looking for father figures or saviors, and I'll tell you that their maturity level always leaves you wanting. There are a great deal of men who like this role, but they don't realize how badly their attitude suffers and how much resentment they build up having to be a boyfriend and a daddy. Your woman should be able to take care of herself and live her own life. She should have her own job and stable source of income. If you're looking to go long term with someone, they should also be capable and competent communicators. Shortcut: People are usually a wreck on the outside when they're a wreck on the inside.

It's really pretty simple. You don't have to share the exact same five outdoor hobbies or love only Jazz and Swing. If you can establish a solid foundation of flexibility, attraction, trust, and competency, you've got enough to work from.

Continue reading here: Male Female Communications

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