The Gentleman's Guide

The gentleman's guide  |  Women  |  Style  |  Grooming  |  Decor  |  Culture


The best way to meet women is for a mutual friend to introduce you; this gives you an initial topic of conversation ('So, how do you know Steve?') and takes the pressure off you making a cold approach.

Unfortunately, unless you have a wide circle of friends eager to set you up, this is unlikely to occur with sufficient frequency to keep you satisfied. You're going to have to introduce yourself to some strangers. The things you need to focus on are:

  • Dealing with being shot down.
  • Appearance.
  • Self confidence.
  • Approaching.
  • What to say.

Now, it doesn't matter who you are, how good looking you are, how much money or power you have; at some point in your life you will be shot down when approaching a woman. It's better to just accept this fact in advance, and a lot of men do. The trouble is that if you don't make some logical progression beyond the fact you're going to psyche yourself out before you've even spoken to your target.

Here's the two key points that you should reach; a) It's all part of an elaborate game, the mating ritual of our species if you will, and you wouldn't enjoy a game that was too easy would you? b) It doesn't hurt. Yes, maybe your pride may take a brief knock but you'll bounce right back in a week or a day or an hour or a minute and move right on. Don't obsess over it, accept what happened, try to learn from it and look upon the experience as character building and as a mark of pride. If this hasn't ever happened to you at least once you're missing out on one of the great defining moments of your life. Embrace it!

Of course, we'd like to reduce the number of times this happens as much as possible, so now it's time to raise your game. First, make sure your appearance is as good as it possibly can be. What, you didn't think men were the only ones to make judgements based on superficial attributes did you? Of course you'd like to get to know her personality, and equally she'll want to find out more about yours before making any further judgements, but first impressions still count for a lot so make a good one. This means you should be well dressed and well groomed. See other areas of this site for further information, buy mens lifestyle magazines like Esquire and GQ, set your VCR for Queer Eye, but take care to get this right and you'll begin to feel more confident.

Speaking of confidence, the best tailoring and haircut in the world aren't going to get you anywhere if you're lacking confidence. I want you to go get a pen and a piece of paper and write down all your positive attributes. Smart? Handsome? Funny? Well dressed? Good at cooking? Own your own apartment? Write down everything. See? You've actually got quite a bit going for yourself. Now go and look in a mirror, look yourself in the eye, read the list out loud, tell yourself that you've got a lot going for you. Then (and this is going to sound a bit weird and American self-helpy but please bear with me) I want you to give yourself permission to be confident. Say it out loud again whilst still looking at yourself. Now straighten your posture, push your chest out and your shoulders back and say it again. Give yourself permission to achieve anything you want to. Give yourself permission to get the women you want.

I know, it feels silly, but trust me that it will help. Don't be afraid to repeat this exercise every so often - maybe you'll even think of more positive things to add to your list.

So, you're dressed well, you feel confident inside, so stand like you're confident. As I said above, straight back, chest out, shoulders back. This makes you look taller, slimmer and more muscular, accentuating your shoulders and chest and pulling in your gut and backside. Swing your arms when you walk and take purposeful strides. You should now look and feel more confident and the two things feed into each other, making each other stronger.

All you've got to do now is bite the bullet and go to talk to that woman. Approach her as you would a horse - from the front but slightly off to one side so she can clearly see you. Approaching head on is rather intimidating, and from behind will spook her and make you look sneaky.

Lastly, you need to know what to say. Do not use some cheesy line. If someone used it on you, you'd think they were weird, and she'll think the same (see, men and women aren't that different). Keep it simple; saying 'Hi' and introducing yourself is a perfectly good option. That's the real hurdle done, but now you need to say something else to engage her in conversation.

First, people are reluctant to get into long conversations with strangers so say you need to get back to your friends in a minute (not necessarily true but it will relax her) then ask her opinion on something. It really doesn't matter what you ask about so long as you keep the question open. Are you watching a band? Then ask if there's any other good venues locally that she knows about. In a bar? Say you need a female opinion on your jacket/shoes/aftershave. Supermarket? Ask for help deciding which melons are ripe. Look her in the eye while you're talking but try not to stare. If you're uncomfortable with eye contact then when you break contact look at her mouth instead. Smile, be friendly, and with a little practice you should find yourself more relaxed and able to speak to her like another human being.

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You want the woman you approach to be at her ease so try to approach when she's with one or two friends. Don't forget to talk to the friends as well. In fact, talking to them more than the one you're interested in will help calm your nerves as well as securing the all important seal of approval from her peers.