Lessons about ladies from the Juggler

by GK on February 1, 2010 · 4 comments

I’m loath to go so long between blog entries, but I’m back to juggling three jobs, not including my screenplay, so my free time is scarce. But stay tuned, because I do have some good posts I want to share with you.

Speaking of jugglers, I spent a day in Seattle two weeks ago with Mr. Charisma Arts himself, Wayne Elise. It was my first time seeing him as a single guy, and watching him lead a portion of our bootcamp in a bookstore reminded me why he’s the social superstar that he is. I can get a little cocky about my instructor credentials these days, but Wayne keeps me humble — not just because he’s my boss, but also because he knows his stuff better than anyone else I’ve met.

I picked the Juggler’s brain for flirting tips that have been on his mind since he turned single, and he gave me a few. They mainly revolve around being in the moment, having the woman’s full attention and making a conversation personal. I thought I’d share them with you here:

Be reactive when you approach: This means not thinking of what you’re going to tell the woman in advance, and simply reacting to what she does when you approach. I’d never thought of it that way, but having seen Wayne do it, I can see why it’s so effective. Mind you, I think openers are overrated — even a bad opener can be overcome as long as your vibe is good — but this is good advice at any point of an interaction.

During the daytime at a bootcamp, I often tell students to simply walk up to the girl, tell her she’s cute and offer to start a short conversation with her. I’ve seen this lead to instant dates and numbers many times, and it’s an eye-opener for guys who think women don’t want to be approached. But Wayne’s way works because it begins the interaction in the best place: in the moment, with the woman’s focus.

Imagine a guy walking up to a woman in a coffee shop, planning to give the same golden opener I mentioned in the previous paragraph. Only when he starts talking to her, she’s startled by him. But he doesn’t acknolwedge this because he’s so intent on his opener, and then he starts talking about his day and asking questions, getting little back from her. Finally, he loses his nerve and walks away.

What’s wrong with his picture? He was being too active. The problem with thinking of your opener ahead of time is that you may be oblivious to what’s actually happening when you approach her. On the other hand, if you approach her with your mind blank and react to what happens, you’re likelier to pick up on the little things, which will show her you’re actually paying attention. Women like guys who pay attention.

If she smiles when you’re standing next to her, mention her smile. If she gives you a serious look, mention that. If she’s singing, sing with her. Then give her a chance to react to you. Which leads me to my next lesson:

 Use silence; don’t let silence use you: I’ve written a little about this, such as in my post about being in the moment on a date. But if a guy is afraid of silence and is constantly talking or asking questions, he’s not giving the woman a chance to commit or react to him. This means he may lose her attention, and if he doesn’t create any silence at the beginning, he may not have her attention at all.

Next time you approach a woman, rather than focusing on an opening line, think about getting her attention first. Wayne gave a good example at the bookstore when, rather than compliment a woman on her jacket as she walked by, he said “Excuse me,” waited until she stopped and turned toward him, allowed some silence to build and then complimented her on it. She actually blushed.

Also, rather than rack your brain about what to say next as she’s talking, just listen to her, and let some silence pass before you respond. She might give you all the conversation material you need.

Win the battle to keep it real: “There’s a Zen battle going on between me and the girl,” Wayne said. “Am I going to make her be real or is she going to make me feel fake?” I know I’ve been there, where it seemed as if the girl and I were having a personal conversation — she might even be asking me questions — but it still felt a bit on auto-pilot.

Wayne’s suggestion: If a woman asks you what kind of work you do, ask her, “Do you really care or are you just making conversation?” This will take her out of auto-pilot real quick, and it creates tension — a vastly underutilized flirting tool. The point here isn’t to show her up — it’s just to make sure that she’s really committed to talking to you. If she is, she’ll shape up and have a more genuine conversation.

One related tip from Wayne: a truly personal conversation should include you and her, not you or her. Talk about your guitar lesssons, but then start talking about what a torrid love affair the two of you will have when you start your own rock band.

I put this into practice that night in Seattle, when even with the flu I managed to hit it off with a cute hipster nurse. I wasn’t in town long enough for us to have a date, but we made sure to plan it for next time. Hint: it involves lots of dancing to indie rock.

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Online Dating Tips
February 1, 2010 at 1:19 pm


1 matrix February 5, 2010 at 10:50 pm

great stuff. Once you start approaching a lot, then you can really focus on other things instead of lines. That example of Wayne using silence is a prefect example….most guys would just spit the line out, instead, Wayne used suspense to actually give the compliment more oopmh.

2 Commando February 7, 2010 at 7:51 pm

GK, the whole “talk about us in the future doing something fun” thing kinda sounds cheesey to me. Although, I’m sure alot of the flirting I do with women sounds cheesey when read back word for word online. :)) Would you say this is basically foreshadowing? Thanks man.


3 GK February 7, 2010 at 9:03 pm

You’re talking to Mr. Cheese, Erich, so I have no shame there. :)

I think talking about you and her CAN be cheesy (“let’s have a tickle fight”), but it can also be serious (“I know a great wine bar we can go to”). And yeah, in a lot of cases it is foreshadowing, but not always. Everyone has different success in different ways, but I know it’s made my connections a lot more solid.

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