I'm in pain. There's this knot or something in my back that is just gnawing away at me. It's like a parasite has attached itself to me and is sucking out all my energy. It could be from lifting something I shouldn't have, it could be from my super-heavy backpack (I'm sick of carrying so much stuff around all the time), it could also be something I did at the gym.
I've been thinking a bit about what I wrote yesterday. I have some revisions and additions. Perhaps someday it will form a book! It could easily end up being a collaborative work, because people do not hesitate to share their opinions on these matters! ;-)
- Never, ever give women what they want. Unless you're already with them, then doing so occasionally is permissible. Never buy women things either, for the same reason: If you pay for her ticket or for her meal, it's like you're paying her to be there with you. Hell, if you want that, there are escort services available for that kind of thing. And in that case you'll actually get something for your money, instead of a lot of heartache and anguish.
This is the viewpoint at its most extreme. I must admit that I have been taken advantage of in the past and am wary of it happening again - so I embraced this philosophy perhaps too wholeheartedly!
Let's be more precise. Giving women things because you want them to like you is what's actually bad. Doing things out of simple kindness or common courtesy is okay. But I must note that it's important that you extend this same kind of courtesy to everyone - don't single out the woman you're interested in, at least not right away. I still think singling out sends a poor message, unless you're actually the provider type and have the capital to do that. I could see maybe paying for your date's coffee on a first outing, but dinner? Actually, you shouldn't even be eating (out) on a first date.*
But you could eat! My cousin and her husband's first date was actually him coming over and making dinner for them! This worked, because they're both gourmands. I could ruin cereal, so I'm going to need a different tack. Hey, anyone been to the Art Gallery lately? Go on Thursday, they're open until 9, and admission is by donation. Just a suggestion...
- Never go out of your way to pay a woman you're interested in a compliment. Funny left-handed compliments are far better. (Try not to be simply irritating, though. This is something else I'm working on, and it will get easier and more natural with time.) Definitely compliment the crap out of her friends, though. If you're paying a woman a compliment, or if you're that guy who's dumbstruck by her beauty, the message you're putting in her head is, "Hmmm, I wonder if I can do even better?" Everyone's always trying to upgrade!
I still think this is true. However, when I swung away from being over-nice over-complimentary, like a released pendulum I swang into super-harsh super-mean mode. Neither extreme works. I think, though, given time, the pendulum will settle in the middle, and I'll be in a happy median. It's already happening. (Hey, my back pain is going away, too! But just wait until I try to sleep, eh?)
Aside: Our entire lives are the "game." It's all about who's with who. Almost all of society is just a reflection of permutations of the game. (Which we just lost, by the way.) Everywhere that's not your own house is the field. There is nothing wrong with making yourself attractive - nobody complains when women do it - good Lord, have you seen the magazine stands at grocery checkouts lately? Yeah, be yourself - be your better self! (Although some would say physical accoutrements are different than the ones of personality, it would be hilarious if women were suddenly advised to never wear make-up because they weren't "being themselves.")
- Keep working on this stuff, and don't give up. Rome wasn't built in a day. You will make these mistakes again, and you will suffer failures, which you'll have to pick yourself up from. But I think you will also find that, given time and practice, you will find greater successes, fewer failures, and your failures will hurt you less, since there'll be more opportunities around the bend. Now get out there and swing for the fences!
This is probably the most important idea of all. Sometimes there just isn't a there there. Don't take it personally. Just take your failures as learning experiences and move on. There are lots of people out there who we can be happy with (note that this is not saying such will solve your problems - at some level, you're really just trading one set for another), and there are lots of options out there if you're doing things right. An aside: Today I was notified that I cracked the top 100 of my friends for "Who is more confident?" (For comparison, for Best Taste in Music I rank in the 800s - a fairly meaningless category, but let's see what happens when I add Scooter! ;-) That's nice, because that's a reflection that things are heading in the right direction, setbacks aside.
Can't quit now. At the gym today I discovered that I really need to work on my balance! Fortunately there are core exercises that I will be doing that will help with that! And with better control I will be able to sing even better and do many things more gracefully - even things like getting on and off the bus (not easy when you have a zillion pounds of stuff!). (Ah, actually, I think we'd all like to change that to gracefully getting in and out of our Mercedes. But all in good time.) More realistically, it will help me alpine / Nordic ski more effectively!
Ryan told me the other night that I am the king of wishful thinking, and in a sense he's right. But since I'm doing, not just wishing, I don't feel so helpless. Like I just went on an outing tonight and I'll tell you straight up that it went a bit awkwardly. A few months ago, a similar experience would have had me wailing in despair. Today I just reflect on what I did and didn't do well, don't take it personally, and call it a learning experience. If I can make the same mistakes fewer than three times each, I should be okay eventually. ;-)
No pun intended...