j3p / Jeff

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Huffduffed (19)

  1. Special 2: The Original Trilogy of Merlin Mann

    In August 2012, Brett interviewed Merlin Mann on the now-legendary 6th

    episode of Systematic. Thus was a trilogy born. From processes to pills and

    apps to naps, one of Systematic's signature returning-guest series was


    Using the latest in bleeding-edge digital technology, we have restored

    these episodes to the original creative vision that was literally,

    figuratively, and metaphysically impossible at the time.

    We've gone all the way back to the original masters, removing and modifying

    content (ads) that distracts from the auteur's intent. What results is a

    bespoke, artisanal product unlike any in the crowded Merlin Mann Podcast

    market today.

    This presentation of The Original Trilogy of Merlin Mann includes bonus,

    never-before-heard, ultra-exclusive deleted content, presented in the most

    ridiculous and semi-obtrusive way possible that does not involve a Blu-ray


    Special Thanks to George Lucas, the Fair Use Clause, The United States of

    America, and The Merlin Mann Trust.

    Artwork Sacrilege performed by Philip Mozolak


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  2. Helping Joe, Episode 18 Part 2 | MatingGrounds


    This week on Helping Joe we split a longer episode into two parts. In Part 2, Tucker and Charlie talk to Joe about how humiliating rejections from women can get stored in the brain the same way as war trauma. They repeat Joe’s Two Rules for going out and the right way to tease girls to have fun. Joe gives an update with the girl from improv (see Episode 17), and he plays an awful audio message that he left her. Tucker also talks about how Joe can get over situations he is afraid of.


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.

    Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.

    Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

    Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe


    How past emotional pain and rejection works in brain, it’s like PTSD

    How to process PTSD (or past painful emotional events)

    How to tease women and have fun

    Joe plays an awful audio message that he left the improv girl.

    Why you tell the world how to treat you

    How to meditate on the worst case scenario to overcome fear

    @beginning – It’s easy to forget all the progress you’ve made.

    “The fact that you have conversations about not staying hard with girls is a major improvement. It means girls want to have sex with you!”

    Yea this is a problem I have of forgetting where I was just a few months ago. It doesn’t feel like I’ve made a lot of progress because I still have problems but I have come a long way since we started.

    The 5 Minute Journal and journaling in general is helping with this.

    @3:00 – How past emotional pain and rejection works in brain, it’s like PTSD

    Trauma or past pain can come from parents, family, friends, school, anywhere. It gets coded in the brain and stays there.

    Trying to get past that pain to reconnect with someone else is difficult.

    We talk a little bit about PTSD. Tucker says that getting rejected at a bar in a bad way can get coded or stored as a memory in your brain the same way it stores trauma from war.

    The more I think about it, I can identify with this personally. There are a handful of memories I have where I just got rejected or turned down bad, like girls totally ignoring me or just saying “NO!” in an awful way like a total bitch. The fact that I remember those and feel bad about them means I probably took it pretty hard (there was a lot emotional pain) when it happened. It was awful and instead of going out and trying again, I was like “that sucked. Let’s NOT do that again. Just go home and jerk off. Way easier and less painful.” I’ve heard other guys say they were “scarred” from early experiences at 18, 19, 20 when they were being humiliated or rejected badly by women. And it stopped them from talking to other women.

    I wish we had explored this a little more because I get the feeling they think I have PTSD from being rejected or humiliated by women and I don’t think I have PTSD.

    “Sexual humiliation is one of the most threatening things a guy can go through on a biological level because that means ostracization which means no mating… [Rejection from a woman] is coded as a threat to our existence.”

    “If brain evolved to navigate social relationships related to mating and survival in groups of 150 people or so. A woman laughing at you is as bad as a lion chasing you. They are both total threats to your survival.”

    Fucking shit… well how the hell do I go over that? Because that’s not the case anymore, right, so how do I override my brain’s first evolutionary response to a woman laughing at me or a woman rejecting me?

    @7:00 – How to process PTSD (or past painful emotional events)

    How it happens -> emotional pain that is too hard to deal with in the moment, gets stored for in your unconscious.

    Need to process it later by bringing it back up. The trauma doesn’t leave. It can come back up as flashbacks or nightmares.

    Normally when bad memories or past painful events pop back up in my head, I try to forget them as quickly as possible and go about the rest of my day. Tucker says this is the worst thing to do because not dealing with it, it will come back up again until deal with it.

    Best thing to do is to recognize, accept, investigate, no judgement, let it run and play out, let it wash over you and then you can let it go. I really don’t want to do this. I feel like it would take too much time or take the up most of my day if this is what I did every time I thought of something shitty or bad things happened.

    This was a great metaphor: It’s like a program on your computer that was left open and it’s eating your memory / processing power so until you go back and find it and close it, the whole computer is going to run slower and be fucked up.

    9:00 – The Two Rules For Going Out, Repeated

    I tell a story about how I felt nervous at just the thought of going up and talking to a few cute women at a bar after an improv class and Tucker reminded me of the rules for going out: Find out something interesting about them & have fun.

    Here’s the thing in this situation and in other situation when I’m out with people or with girls: Before I can think about those 2 things, I just get stuck in this loop of nerves. I feel self-conscious, nervous, I don’t want to fuck up what I’m going to say, what if I look like an idiot. And that is playing in my head instead of thinking or remembering those 2 rules.

    I’ve had fun at bars before but not in a long time. Mostly it was in college or when I was traveling. Playing pool or beer pong or fooseball at a bar was fun and a great way to talk to girls. There was another time where we came up with bad pickup lines that another guy had to go use we each did this to each other and some of those lines were actually hilarious and playing this game was fun and we talked with cute women.

    I came up with a few ideas here for how I could have had fun in this specific situation but to be honest, I don’t have any confidence in trying these out. I would just fuck it up or look stupid.

    Charlie recommends that you take their picture, then take a selfie of yourself with their phone. I don’t know… this sounds weird or creepy to me. If they asked me to take their picture, I would be totally cool with it and it would be fine, but just walking up to them and asking if they wanted their picture taken sounds weird. I couldn’t see myself doing that.

    This was especially disappointing because it was right after my improv class…

    @14:00 – How to tease women and have fun

    Charlie and Tucker talk about the difference between being a dick and teasing where everyone is on the same team.

    When I was younger (20ish), I used be just a dick because I thought that worked. I quickly learned that 1) no it doesn’t work and 2) I don’t like being a dick. So now when I tease I always make sure that she is laughing and if she’s not I stop.

    A good example of this was in Episode 14 where I was arguing that she was not a nerd, but she was arguing that she was.

    @18:00 – I play the audio message that I left the improv girl. It’s awful.

    We talked about asking her out in Episode 17. I blew it again in class and didn’t find the right time or just psyched myself out after class was over. So I left her this audio message and man oh man was it bad. Fuck.

    The worst part about this is that I thought this was okay to send. I was just totally oblivious to how awful I sounded.

    They break down the multiple problems with this audio message.

    @21:00 – The difference between self-deprecation and self-laceration

    They explain how self-deprecation is funny, not sad. I know this but still it was good to mention this here.

    @24:00 – “Every interaction he has with this girls is defined by avoiding fear and avoiding admitting that he has fear”

    I don’t think this is true. I’m anxious about asking her out or going out with her and dating, but I wouldn’t say that I’m afraid of her. She wouldn’t be attracted to me if I was afraid of her. Well, at least she was attracted to me. Now, after that message who knows…

    “There’s no problem in being afraid. The problem is not recognizing it and not addressing it. That is what creates these situations.”

    Tucker mentions his favorite quote again from the History Of The Peloponnesian War in the funeral oration by Pericles: “There is no shame in poverty. There is only shame in doing nothing to alleviate the situation.” He talked about this in Episode 15 too.

    @26:00 – “It’s not even something to be afraid of!” – Joe

    Wrong. This is something I didn’t realize on the podcast but I was wrong when I said this. It is something to be afraid of because that’s how your brain evolved. We just talked about this 20 minutes ago in the beginning of this podcast. It doesn’t make sense living in a modern times, but it does makes sense if you know how the brain evolved.

    Tucker explains it here: “Here’s a girl that is in one of your social groups. If she rejects you, there’s a price to that far higher than the one on Tinder. It’s totally valid.”

    And he’s actually pretty nice and accepting about it here, but I still feel humiliated that I am afraid of talking to or asking out girls. I don’t know why but it’s embarrassing and shameful, especially since I’m not in HS or college. I’m a fucking adult and I feel incompetent or weak as a man saying that I’m afraid to talk to women, even if that is the reality at times, I hate admitting that.

    @29:00 – After this, now I have a show with her tonight, my improv show

    Tucker’s advice is to go home and mediated on this for 10-20 minutes, playing out the scenarios in my head and all the consequences.

    We play out the worst scenario, her playing that message and then making fun of me, and how I would react.

    “What’s the humor in this?” haha that’s such a great fucking question…

    I say something about playing a sad, moping around character to which Tucker responds, “You always play that character. It’s time to stop playing that character.” Haha another strong dose of truth.

    “Imagine the worst possible scenario. Actually absorb it (play it out in your head). Emotions will come up. Let them have their say. They will punch themselves out, and then it’s fine. You’ve already played out the worst scenario in your head so anything else that happens will be fine.”

    @32:00 – You’re not being honest enough. Be raw, too the fucking core.

    I didn’t know what he was getting at here. He probably wanted me to say that I was afraid or something like that. I was just guessing and groping around in the dark trying to be funny and do different things until I got this right or was “honest enough”

    @34:30 – Liking yourself and the situation

    “If you say it and act like you LIKE yourself and the situation, then you can say that stuff and deliver in a way where people are like, ‘Oh he’s OK with himself so we are OK with him.”

    Tucker’s spin on this: “You don’t have to like the situation… I like myself, but I clearly did something fucked up. So I’m going to point out everything fucked up about it and make a joke about it and we’re just going to move on.”

    Tucker breaks down all the things I did wrong leading up to and with this audio message. This is funny but also sad. I fucked up in so many ways here. We were just talking about how much progress I had made earlier, and now this … god damn it.

    “All the specific things you did wrong, dive totally into all of them, own all of the humiliating parts, and say, ‘I did it. It sucks. Now let’s move on.’” –Tucker

    SIDENOTE: I actually did this when I was talking about Helping Joe (not with this but different examples and stories from past episodes) to somebody that used to work with Tucker or maybe it was one of his friends. I can’t remember. I was talking about it and just remember being raw and honest about how awful I was (stories in Episodes 3&4, I terrible choice of clothes, etc.) but I was cool with it because I’m getting better and meeting more people in Austin. I was confident and excited about telling him all the stupid shit I had done because it was in the context of “I like myself” and “I’m getting better”. I didn’t have my head down or mope around or have sad body language. I was engaged in talking about this. I also just got back from a 1st date that went OK so I didn’t feel like I was coming from a place of desperation. I had this date to talk about too!

    “It’s an interesting social dynamic: people can say and do the craziest things, but if they just own it, they can get away with it and everything’s cool… but when you’re afraid or ashamed of what you’re doing or saying, people pick up on that.” – Charlie

    Yea another thing about fear: It’s biologically contagious. At the recommendation of Nils, I started listening to the Invisibilia podcast and one episode they have is on Fear. One of the things I took away from it is that we (and all animals) might have alarm pheromones. So when we get scared or alarmed about something, we might pass that on to those around us.

    @38:00 – “You tell the world how to treat you.” – Tucker

    Consciously and unconsciously, I tell the world to treat me like shit. This is so hard to admit because it’s really fucking stupid. WHY WOULD I DO THIS? Why would anyone do this? But the more I look in the mirror and look around, I think this is sad but true. And it feels really weak to admit that I let people treat me badly, but for most of my life and different areas, at home, in work, out in the social groups, I think this is a regular pattern that pops up and I rationalize around it.

    “And you expect it so it happens. Anything that is good or positive, you don’t process it because you’re waiting for the ax to fall.” – Charlie

    This was a fucking great point that Charlie made. And this was delaying or numbing positivity or joy was a vulnerability shield (a way people prevent themselves from being vulnerable) that Brene Brown outlined in her book Daring Greatly.

    I wish we dove more into this.

    @39:00 – “I’m already dead. I have nothing to lose.”

    Tucker’s advice going in is to accept the worst possible scenario, that’s already happened, then you can relax.

    Tucker talks about a story from history of these Gaelic or Germanic warriors that would do this ritual where they metaphorically died before battling the Romans so that they were already dead which made them crazy. They didn’t give a fuck because they were already dead so they were hard for the Romans to defeat.

    I brought up an example of probably my favorite TV Series ever Band of Brothers when Lt. Speirs, one of the heroes from Easy Company, a badass, said, “We’re all scared… you think there’s still hope, Blithe. But

    the only hope you have is to accept the fact that you’re already dead. The sooner you accept that, the sooner you’ll be able to function as a soldier is supposed to function: without mercy, without compassion, without remorse. All war depends upon it.” [VIDEO]

    I did a little bit of research on the real life guy, Ronald Speirs, and somebody said about him: “As a combat leader you couldn’t find anyone better than Ronald Speirs. He had this mind-set around him:

    ‘Don’t worry about getting killed because you’re already dead. Just move forward and when it’s your time, it’s your time.’

    Which I guess worked out perfectly for him.” From Silver Eagle – The Official Biography of Band of Brothers Veteran Clancy Lyall.

    “He had already accepted the worst possible outcome so it frees you to be everything under that.”

    That’s how I will go into the improv show later tonight.


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  3. Helping Joe, Episode 18 Part 1 | MatingGrounds


    This week on Helping Joe we split a longer episode into two parts. In Part 1, Joe gives updates on past dates, Tucker and Charlie comment on his progress since beginning the podcast, and they dig deeper into his sex shame issues. While Joe is able to have sex, he comes too quick (premature ejaculation), which is the opposite physical problem of his previous issue with getting hard. Tucker explains how this is even possible and gives Joe a few short-term fixes to help with this, including how to find out what she likes in bed. They also talk about one big difference between guys who improve and get better with women and those who don’t.

    Books that were recommended in this episode:

    – The Inner Game of Tennis

    – The Trouble With Testosterone


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.

    Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.

    Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

    Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe


    How NOT to behave on a first date

    Short-term fixes for sex shame and premature ejaculation

    The relationship between hormones and behavior: “Hormones don’t cause behavior, hormones follow behavior and thought.”

    When it’s actually better to drink before sex

    How to talk to a woman about what she likes sexually

    What a lot of women really like and want in bed and why 50 shades of grey is so popular

    How to work long-term on shame issues

    One difference between Joe and other guys who have been through this “Helping” process

    Beginning – Updates from past episodes

    The hot nurse that I liked but I blew off lost interest in me. This kinda sucks because I liked her and she was smart & cute. I talked about this at the end of Episode 13 and in the beginning of Episode 14

    What a polite blow-off looks like:

    Date with girl from speed dating

    So the last time I went speed dating (see Episode 15) I matched with only 1 woman even though I wasn’t dressed awkwardly and had a lot more fun. I went out with her but wasn’t as attracted to her as I was at the event. It’s hard to remember what everyone looks like during those things because the room is dark, you’re drinking, and you only have 5 minutes to talk to each person.

    I found out some interesting stuff about her (She lived in France) and I had fun talking about her past awful dates. One guy was from speed dating. I was dying when she was telling me about this awkward date she went on with him.

    This story reinforced the point that a lot of guys are just awful at dating. It’s kinda sad that women have to put up with this nonsense and a lot of guys are clueless but also encouraging because I’m not as bad as this dude and I’m like 5-10 years younger.

    @4:30 – Recognizing my past nervous behaviors in someone else

    When I was on a date with her, I noticed that she was a checklist person just like me (or she didn’t like me and was just trying to get thru the date) because it felt like she had a specific set of questions she had to get through in this interview (similar to how I was in Episode 9, listen to the 2nd half of that).

    This is a step forward because I’m recognizing this behavior, next step is to change it, which I am I think.

    Tucker’s advice was to say, “Hey are you nervous?” when this happens.

    @7:00 – Tucker’s comment on my progress in this podcast

    “My favorite part is that Joe has to quickly summarize dates to get to other things to talk to, whereas before he only had one date to talk about and we spent an hour dissecting that date.”

    Dates are getting easier to remember. I’m not as nervous on first dates. The podcast would take forever to do if we got into each date like we did in Episodes 3 and 4 where I was making simple, funny mistakes like sitting out in the cold or asking someone if she grew up Hispanic (I still don’t think I said that but whatever).

    It was nice for them to talk about this and they’re right. The evidence is there. I’m getting better and miles ahead of where I was when I first got here. But I still don’t feel like I’ve hit my goal or that I’ve succeeded in dating or that I am good with women because I keep making all these awful mistakes and have bad patterns and habits that I haven’t gotten rid of. And the sex I’ve had so far hasn’t been that good. I feel like a failure when I can’t stay hard or I come too quick. At least I’m having sex whereas before I wasn’t but still I feel like I’ve got all these unresolved issues that I’m dealing with and I shouldn’t celebrate or feel like a success. Each show it seems like there’s more and more work I have to do to get to where I want to be, or I have another barrier or shame issue to work on.

    Tucker talks about how I can get as many dates as I want and that might be true, maybe, but I don’t feel that way. I still feel like I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m getting better for sure and improving, not totally lost, but I’m there yet. I don’t know what “there” is though. I need to think about this and maybe readjust my goals or better figure out what I want or where I want to go. I also need to work on having a Growth Mindset and being a work-in-progress instead of good or bad, there or not there, success or failure.

    “Where as before you were just wandering in a circle lost with poop and cum covering yourself, metaphorically, but also probably literally.” – Tucker

    That was hilarious.

    @10:30 – Metaphor for my internal monologue

    The chimpanzee fight on World Star that I was talking about.

    I saw this and thought this was a good metaphor for the ridiculous thoughts and bully vs bully arguments that sometimes go on in my internal monologue.

    @13:00 – Low testosterone test and sex

    I was down because my follow-up testosterone was the same low level that I test at in February. I didn’t make any progress on this, fuck.

    We started having sex but I came too quick. At least I got semi-hard but it wasn’t good sex.

    Tucker thinks it’s still all psychological. I don’t know though. With the low testosterone I’m thinking maybe this problem is actually physical.

    We talk about the times we’ve hooked up and had sex, trying to figure out where the problem is.

    @18:00 – I took her back to my place this time

    She didn’t really care that I live like I’m in homeless shelter.

    “Once she gets to know you, she doesn’t care [about your shitty place].” – Tucker

    “Especially since you were self-deprecating and honest so it set the expectation and you’re fine.” – Charlie

    When my sex performance issues happened the last time, I was honest with her in talking about it. Charlie and Tucker were encouraging here because this is a hard thing to do. I was being vulnerable about an embarrassing problem that I was having, and talking about something like this is hard for a lot of guys. I don’t think it was that difficult for me because the alternatives were worse. I could have either blamed her or stayed quiet about it acting like nothing was wrong with me, which would have been way worse than being honest and talking about it.

    It was the only way to move forward and I was glad I did that because she was cool. She said that it was okay even said, “At least you know what foreplay is.” I guess because a lot of other guys she has been with are just in a rush to stick it in. She’s right. I am good. At foreplay. I’ve had to focus on and get good at everything around the actual sex because I have problems and can’t get hard or come too quick. Sometimes build up lasts for 30 minutes, which I’m sure she enjoys a lot.

    @23:00 – The relationship between hormones and behavior

    “Hormones don’t cause behavior, hormones follow behavior and thought.” – Tucker

    Thoughts can affect hormones. This sounds nuts but I guess it’s true. This guy Sapolsky from Stanford did studies on baboons and found that their elevation in status caused testosterone to increase. High testosterone didn’t come first. Hormones caught up with status, not the other way around.

    This is something I had never really thought about to be honest. Especially with sexual performance, I thought that having a high testosterone came first, then you would have a higher sex drive or be better in bed, etc.

    @27:00 – If you can’t get hard and then come quickly. Those are opposite physical problems. Your problem is emotional.

    This is a definite sign that my problem is emotional because coming quickly is the direct opposite problem of not being able to get hard. You can’t go from one to the other in the same session because they are opposite physical issues; they would cancel each other out. You can’t do both at the same time unless you’re crazy, which I guess I am.

    Yea I didn’t know this and its actually kind of relieving to hear. This means that my problem is emotional, not physical so there’s probably nothing going on fucked with me that’s hidden and just sitting there unseen.

    And another thing that it’s not physical… I have no problems jerking off. If you can masturbate fine, then there is no physical problem. If your dick really didn’t work, you would not be able to masturbate, just wouldn’t be possible.

    @29:00 – My internal thought monologue last time I had sex

    Yea this sucked but it helped figure out what the problem was or the loop going on in my head.

    I thought about 1) getting and staying hard and 2) not coming quick once I got going.

    THIS is what causes these problems. A lot of this was in the book Choke. When you think about choking or not screwing up, those thoughts distract you and then actually choke.

    How to fix this (short-term experiments)

    1. Charlie recommends trying to think the opposite:

    “I’m going to come so quick now!”

    “My dick is never going to hard!”

    And see if that is any better.

    This sounds ridiculous but it actually might work. I have a lot of fucking doubts about this but I’ll try it.

    1. Drink more but don’t get drunk

    Some guys have ED issues when they drink too much. But it’s when you are hammered. For me, drinking more will help me fucking relax.

    “Shutting down the monkey fight is the best thing we do to help you in short-term, not going to help you in the long-term… You can at least quiet it.” – Tucker

    Yea this makes more sense and is something I definitely do. This is easy I think and it should work or at least help me relax.

    @34:00 – You have a lot of shame issues around sex.

    Possible shame issues I have: you don’t deserve her or to have sex, having sex is wrong, you feel like you’re exploiting her, she’s dominant and that’s threatening, problems with masculinity, being aggressive in bed. There are many ways this plays out.

    I know I have sex shame issues from watching porn @14:00 in Episode 16 and I think growing up Catholic, going to a small catholic school, etc. might have fucked me up. I don’t think it did but it probably did unconsciously or whatever.

    Tucker gives a good example of how a sex shame issue can play out. Usually, you react to deep shame by avoiding it (withdrawal) or over-compensating (against it). This was something I also read in Daring Greatly (Episode 12), and these are 2 of the reactions to shame, but not healthy ways of dealing with it.

    Over the next few months: Think about what your shame issues with sex are and where they’re coming from, etc.

    “I bet your issues with testosterone are tied exactly to what your issues with sex.”

    I yea probably, but I feel like I have no fucking clue. How am I going to figure this out? They say it will take a long time and just keep doing what I’m doing but I don’t know. I feel like I have to go therapy.

    @39:00 – Start with short-term fixes, get some small wins that build to long-term comfort in having sex

    Having good sex with one woman will help me have good sex with other women.

    This is encouraging because I’ve found a girl who’s cool with me even though I have these issues, like she still wants to hang out and do stuff with me even though the sex isn’t great.

    Another issue I have: I don’t like going down on girls

    Probably because I’m inexperienced at this and I just don’t care for it. I like how it makes a woman feel and the pleasure she gets from it, but I just don’t like the activity.

    That’s something I have to get over because for a lot of women that’s a deal breaker and I’m being hypocritical because I love when a woman goes down on me and it’s deal breaker if she doesn’t give blowjobs regularly because I love blowjobs!

    So this is something I definitely have to work on because it’s weird to be 26 and not know the ins and outs of going down on a chick and it’s just going to get weirder the older I get.

    @42:00 – How to talk to her about what she likes sexually

    This is my homework: Go to a happy hour, get a few beers or glasses of wine (both of you), and casually talk about what she really likes. Keep asking questions about what she likes and this will give you permission and confidence in giving her that side of you that she wants. I don’t think I’ve ever talked about this before but this totally makes sense and I think is a great conversation to have.

    A great tip Tucker gives is to talk to her about sex outside of sex because this will help make sex much better and might help me get over some of these issues.

    One specific shame/fear it helps getting over is being too aggressive and of hurting her. I think I definitely have this. I’m not timid in bed but I am conservative. I rarely slap or spank a chick, I’m careful when pulling her hair or grabbing her neck too hard or physically controlling her too much. The funny thing is (and 50 Shades of Gray proved this out) that women actually like this more aggressive stuff. And the only way to find out if she does is by talking to her about it.

    “She’ll probably like basic rough stuff, basic kink stuff that almost every woman likes with guys they are comfortable with… Hearing her say this will make it easier to own. That’s really how I learned by listening over and over again to what women say, ‘This is what I want.’ This isn’t what you’re told growing up, but this is what every woman says over and over again.”

    @44:30 – Have this same sex anxiety / sex shame conversation with her

    Charlie recommends having a different conversation about all this other stuff we just talked about and all these other issues, “She knows. She’s on your team. And she’s cool with it.”

    That makes me a little nervous. I think exploring what she likes sexually is easier and might be fun but having this conversation about the problems I am having is going to be tough and I don’t really want to do it. Tucker recognizes this and we back off of this topic for now.

    @46:00 – Shame issue I have is being too aggressive or forceful in bed

    She told me that she liked it rough and one part of me was excited, a little relaxed that I knew now what she liked, but in the back of my head I had another thought, “What if I do it too much? And then something bad happens like she’s turned off or whatever.”

    “Start to understand where this is coming from and start thinking about it.” – Tucker

    For help dealing with this stuff, Charlie recommended, The Inner Game of Tennis

    (boring title but amazing book)

    It’s a lot of same stuff in Choke but talks about it from a different angle.

    They also recommended The Inner Game of Stress (the tennis one is better though)

    @51:00 – Work on shame issues by recognizing feelings and thoughts you have in the moment, examine and observe it, don’t fight it, nonjudgment

    Same thing with meditation: Recognize the emotion, accept that it’s okay, and investigate it / why are you feeling it, don’t judge or react to it.

    Tucker metaphor: “A fight starts with one punch, but if you don’t react to it, it doesn’t start a fight. I know it’s hard but nonjudgment is the most important thing.”

    “That’s the biggest thing for you. You are so hard on yourself. You are really hard on yourself.” – Charlie

    He’s right. I think I have a lot of ridiculous expectations of myself sometimes. And I get bent out of shape (overly critical) when I don’t live up to them.

    “You can’t stop emotions, but you can change how you react to them.”

    @53:00 – “What was different about your life back then (when the sex was better, I got hard, didn’t come quickly, etc.)?”

    We talk about when sex was good in my life, mostly when I was traveling in South America. One part of this was that I was younger and that was my sexual peak, another part is that I was more comfortable and relaxed having sex with women there because there wasn’t much of a goal or point to what I was doing. I was traveling and having fun.

    “Why can’t you take the same approach or have the same mindset here?”

    I don’t know. Probably because I put too much pressure on myself to be good at this or not weird.

    @55:00 – “Be more normal!”

    This was pretty funny.

    “Do you judge anyone as harshly as you judged yourself?” – Charlie

    “If you did, you would be the biggest dick on Earth. No one would talk to you ever if you treated other people like you treat yourself.” – Tucker

    Yep. Judges fucking suck. Awful people.

    @56:30 – What therapy really is

    All good therapy is essentially finding better ways to connect with people. Helping Joe is therapy. It’s just unusual and uncommon.

    @58:30 – The difference between me and most people

    “If someone did this with me when I was your age, I probably would have quit. I also would have fought them multiple times during the sessions. Because I wouldn’t have wanted to accept all the problems I had… No one does this.” – Tucker

    This was a great compliment that Tucker gave me, like one of the nicest fucking things he’s said to me or anyone on this podcast. And it felt good because it’s true. I can’t disqualify or deny this compliment. I show up every week. I take notes about what I want to talk about. I talk about shitty things on the show in front of 10s of 1000s of people. Tucker, Charlie, Nils help while making fun of me, laughing, and digging deeper into uncomfortable, ugly stuff. And I keep coming back. No one does this. No else who has been on this podcast does this.

    Everybody has these problems but nobody wants to talk about them because it’s painful and you have to admit shitty things about yourself. I bet most people can’t even admit these things to themselves, alone, without talking to anyone. I know for most of my life I haven’t been able to but this podcast or weird “therapy” is helping with that.

    @58:00 – “Joe is a disaster. But at least 80% of guys are the same level of disaster.”

    He right because I’ve seen it. I wouldn’t say 80% though, maybe less. I hope.

    As I’ve learned more and more through Mating Grounds and on Helping Joe I’ve started to recognize other guys, sometimes guys who are 5, 10 years older than me who are just disasters either with health, grooming, clothes, way they look or talk.

    They’re not disasters, that’s the wrong word, but they are significantly hurting their mate value or prospects, much like I was before and sometimes still am, by being oblivious to simple things or fucking up basic stuff.

    Tucker also talks about how they had 2-3 other guys who tried to do this same thing with but they quit or they didn’t want take action on the advice. They were all quitters because it was really fucking hard to do this.

    “You’re not a fucking quitter.” – Tucker … That was a great compliment.

    Tucker is also vulnerable about times he’s wanted to quit: “There were probably 20 times when I wanted to quit analysis and 3 times when I walked out of the office… Every single time I didn’t want to face the emotional problems so I picked fights with her to avoid these issues.”

    He says this because it was so hard for him to accept these things about himself so that he could change them.


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  4. Helping Joe, Episode 16 | MatingGrounds


    In this episode of Helping Joe, Joe goes on two great dates with the girl he met from Tinder (see Episode 14), and he follows Tucker’s advice by going back to her place because his has no furniture. However, things quickly go downhill when Joe has problems in the bedroom. Tucker and Nils talk him through what happened, why he has shame around sex, and what to do going forward to fix these issues. They also share sad but funny stories of similar experiences they have had.


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.

    Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.

    Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

    Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe

    @Beginning – Two more dates with girl from Tinder, Episode 14

    I went on two more dates with the girl from Tinder.

    The first date this week was a salsa dancing class at this meetup group. There were like 60 people there, a lot of women. This is definitely a great place to meet women if you like to dance. There were a lot of couples there but also a lot of women who were with their friends or who just wanted to dance salsa.

    We only stayed there an hour because I had to go hang out with my parents later that night. They were in town this week and this was their last night in Austin.

    The class was like 45 minutes, we rotated partners which is stupid. I hate when dance classes do this. I just want to dance with the person I came here with and I should have just taken us out of the circle so I could just dance with her and not other people who I didn’t know or care about.

    After the class we got a drink, sat down on a couch, and people watched, admiring the better dancers and making fun of the bad ones (neither one of us were that good either), and talked about stuff in general. We talked about our families, I found out a little more about her, we talked about dream vacations (mine = Brazil; hers = Italy).

    The second date this week was the next night, Friday, to a comedy show. It was so much fun, I love standup comedy and I guess she does too! We walked down 6th street then went to a cool cafe and got some s’mores.

    Something I didn’t mention on the podcast was that we talked about a bunch of different things, movies in particular while there. There was also this weird guy walking around this crowded late-night cafe, it was strange and he was an odd looking character so I was just making fun of him and she was laughing because he was really goofy. At least his clothes were normal though. It was like 1am when we decided to get out of there.

    @3:00 – Going back to her place because mine sucks.

    This was advice that Tucker gave me in Episode 11

    I asked her if she wanted to keep hanging out, she said yes. Then I said how about we go back to her place because mine sucks and then I just made fun it: I haven’t bought furniture yet, I live like a bum, (she laughs) no seriously my apartment is nice but my room looks like I live in a homeless shelter. She was laughing and kept saying it wasn’t a big deal, it was okay, etc. but I said no, we can’t go back there. So we went to her place. She drove. It was like 25 minutes away and I could tell she was nervous too because she kept telling me all these things about her dog, trying to prep me I guess.

    @4:00 – “Escalating”

    “Don’t say this word!” – Tucker

    I get why he doesn’t want me to say this. It’s a weird word used by pickup artists and you kinda sound like a creep when you say it. I’ll try not to say it in this context ever again.

    @4:30 – The movie I put on was Natural Born Killers

    I don’t know what I was thinking. I saw it in her Netflix queue. I heard it was good. So I put it on. 15 minutes in I was like wtf and had to change it to some other less insane drama/horror movie. Holy shit was that a bad decision. Also, I don’t know why I was putting so much thought into picking a good movie. Who gives a damn? It’s not like we’re going to be watching it anyways.

    @5:30 – I didn’t get hard and didn’t have sex with her.

    We were getting intimate and moving towards sex (clothes were coming off, kissing was getting heavier, we were getting more into it) and my dick wasn’t getting hard. It was half-mast not totally flaccid but still wtf.

    This is embarrassing and difficult to say. When your dick doesn’t work, it’s like you don’t work, like I’m incompetent or defective. I haven’t told anybody about this. I’m just really down because finally found someone I like and who likes me, we connected, and we go to have sex and nothing happens. While sex is NOT the only thing I’m interested in obviously, it’s pretty fucking important.

    I thought I would just wait until the morning and try again then, but nope still not hard, still had problems. Tucker and Nils dive into this for the rest of the episode:

    @8:00 – “This is normal and happens to every guy”

    I don’t know. This is hard for me to believe. I thought you weren’t supposed to get ED in your 20s.

    Nils explains how there’s more at stake, deep anxiety that builds up in these situations, especially when you’re younger.

    Tucker tells a story about how a lot of times he started half-mast and had to put it in to get going: “It’s so common that I can’t think of one time because it’s happened so many times.”

    This kind of blew my mind and actually made me feel a little better, like this is normal. For me I’ve almost always been hard before putting it in. I just thought that’s the way it works, you get hard then you’re ready to go. I didn’t think you could go in half-mast and still make it happen.

    “It’s hard to get really hard without some kind of physical (oral or manual) stimulation.” – Nils

    “It’s super common for guys to need more than just kissing and the thought of sex to get hard.” – Tucker

    This is not ED because it’s not a physical problem. It’s a mental one.

    @12:00 – My masturbation habits

    Tucker asks me if I have been able to get hard since then like when I masturbate. I tell Tucker that I haven’t masturbated in two weeks. He responds, “How do you go a week without masturbating?!”

    I talk about why I haven’t done it. I thought I had problems with watching too much porn and masturbating too much because of stuff I read online (see below).

    @14:00 – Sexual shame issues

    When I watch porn, I have a lot of shame and feel awful like I’m a fucking bum and should be doing something better or more productive with myself than sitting on a computer screen watching two other people have sex.

    Tucker chimes in: “This is the problem!”

    “[Masturbation] is possibly the most natural thing a male can do, besides put your penis inside of a woman, is jerk it off until it makes the white goo come out.” – Tucker

    @16:00 – Stuff I’ve read on the internet about this

    When I thought porn was the problem, I searched for and found stuff online that confirmed that it was the problem. Websites like Your Brain On Porn and Reddit’s NoFap.

    YBOP explained it in a way that I thought was a very scientific and made sense. I’m not a doctor, researcher, or scientist, so I’m not a good judge of what’s legit and what’s not, but I thought that this was legit. It detailed stories of a lot of guys having similar problems and getting better (happier, more testosterone, more sex with girls) once they stopped watching porn and stopped masturbating a lot.

    Also that subreddit is huge like over 150,000K I thought there was something to it. Maybe masturbating and watching porn fucked you up or trained/wired your brain to prefer this over real sex.

    “Don’t look to Reddit for social and cultural trends… they are looking for excuses to why their life sucks.” – Nils

    Tucker went off about this and said I should believe other crazy nonsense too (9/11 truther, scientology, creationism, etc.). My reason for believing this stuff wasn’t that there were also 150,000K other people who believed it. It was just one indicator I saw of all these people who shared the same problem, maybe there was something to this. The science angle that YBOP takes is what made this believable and why I thought it was legit, but I didn’t talk that much about it because I could see Tucker was getting angry and that I was probably wrong so I just dropped it. I should have brought this up.

    @19:00 – My masturbation peak was 2-3 times a day. Tucker laughs.

    Tucker laughs at this because his masturbated twice a day well into this 30s and this was during a time when he had regular sex with women too.

    This made me feel a lot better, even if Tucker is somewhat of an outlier in testosterone or sex drive.

    “[Masturbating] 2-3 times a day is like table stakes for a guy in their 20s.” hahaha

    “There is no one legitimate who is saying that jacking off twice a day is a problem.”

    So this is totally normal and isn’t my problem, which is cool.

    @23:00 – The % of times this has happened to me

    Over the last 2 years, probably 50%…. 50% of the times I want to have sex with a woman I was either flaccid or half-mast or I couldn’t get hard.

    Tucker’s conclusion: “You have real issues with sexual shame.”

    Yea I probably do. I grew up Catholic, went private catholic school, my mom made me got to church every sunday and all that. We rarely talked about sex in class or at home in a positive way. Actually, we didn’t talk about it much in a negative way either. We just didn’t talk about it at all.

    These shame is issues probably run so deep that I don’t even realize them or how they affect me. Well, I guess this is one of the ways it affects me.

    Nils goes into a story about a married friend of his who grew up Catholic and has so much shame around sex that he won’t let his wife go down on him and he can only have sex in the morning because it’s the only time he get hard. It almost ruined their marriage. My first reaction was surprise: how the hell did this guy get married without being able to have sex at night? Maybe his problem is more recent as he’s gotten older, I don’t know. I didn’t ask Nils about this.

    I’m not this bad (I love blowjobs!) but I am on the spectrum of shame somewhere.

    @25:30 – Erectile Dysfunction (ED)

    It’s a condition, not a disease. It’s like a sprained ankle or is a sign of deeper problems like heart disease. They don’t think that I have ED. “This isn’t a Cialis commercial.”

    Tucker explains how there is a difference between lacking confidence / having anxiety vs having shame issues. I wasn’t that nervous or anxious. I wanted to have sex with her. So it probably was a shame issue.

    “The idea that [NoFapping] sounds good to you almost certainly means you have a lot of shame issues regarding sex.” – Tucker

    Yea that makes sense. I generally think of watching porn and masturbation as “bad” or a waste of time or not good for you, which according to Tucker & Nils is bullshit. It’s totally natural to jack off and to want to jack off. And if we talked to a primate researcher about this, they would probably talk about how chimps or baboons and other animals jack off all the time too so it’s normal for humans to do this.

    @27:30 – This problem has nothing to do with logic or rationality. It’s emotional.

    “How do you pinpoint the problem and get rid of it if you can’t see it?” – Me

    “Welcome to psychology. That’s really hard. That’s why I go to therapy.” – Tucker

    I don’t think about emotions a lot or why I feel certain things. When I have a problem and think about solving it, I try to think about it logically and figure out what I need to do to solve it. But that’s not how this stuff works, unfortunately not that easy.

    Tucker gives a great analogy that you can hear music and it makes you feel a certain way but you can’t see music.

    “I wish it was all simple and easy and there was just a checklist, but it’s not. It doesn’t work that directly.”

    At this point, I felt awful because I have this problem, it’s a big problem, and I don’t even know what’s wrong or how to solve it. And the way I’m thinking about it is totally wrong.

    @29:30 – There are a lot of potential things to feel shame about here

    The sex itself, sexuality in general, the girl you are with, the way you deal with girls, and a lot more.

    How the fuck do I figure out what my specific issue is? Do I have to go to therapy to figure it out? God damn it…

    These are all things I don’t know about or that I haven’t talked about with anybody like ever.

    @32:30 – It’s probably not a physical.

    I was still worried about it being a physical problem with hormones or whatever, but that doesn’t make sense because I’m in shape and generally feel good. I should get tested or whatever to see if there’s anything odd or off that might be causing this issue.

    @33:30 – When this happened in the past

    This has happened in the past, usually the first few times I slept with a new woman. And it was really embarrassing when it first happened about a year ago but after I realized they still wanted to see me and sleep with me after I “failed” when it came to getting hard and having sex, I got more comfortable and eventually got over it and we had good sex.

    “This is the physical manifestation of your attitude toward dating women. This is exactly what you do when you talk to girls worrying that you will say the wrong thing or there’s a right or wrong answer. It’s the sexual manifestation of that mindset… When you realize she’s not going to leave you and she likes you for who you are and not just the strawberry shortcake carrot stick in your pants, then you can get comfortable and things progress.” – Nils

    At first I was like “no way this is true” (thinking this in my head), that’s ridiculous, but the more I thought about it, I think Nils might be right with this. I don’t know how he puts the pieces together like that but he’s very intelligent with this stuff.

    So on a deep unconscious level I’m probably worried about 1) performing and 2) that she likes me or the sex is good. These are the same issues I have when going out on dates (Episode 5 @14:00) and sometimes at improv (Episode 13 @19:00).

    (Paraphrasing Tucker and Nils) These worries short-circuit my sexual system. There could be a lot of different explanations like no confidence in sexual ability, sabotaging myself, testing her to see if she’s really into me. Again things I don’t even think about.

    It’s hard to believe that these issues play out when I’m having sex because I don’t really think about them in the moment. I’m just excited about getting it on and really into her. But that’s the thing: I don’t think about them and probably nobody thinks about these things consciously. They occur below the surface.

    The pattern in the past has been: Meet a girl I like & I’m into her -> we have sex and I have performance issues at first -> she keeps going out with me (reassures that she’s into me) and later we have good sex and I don’t have problems

    “There’s some psychological need [or block] that you have that you receive from having a performance issues.” – Tucker

    “Something is working inside of you out of fear, anxiety, or a defense mechanism that short circuits your ability to get rock hard instantaneously and if she still goes out with you after and you keep dating, [your dick] works again because you have that comfort level knowing she’s not going to leave you.”

    @36:30 – Performance anxiety, how they know I have it, and what causes it

    They break down the way I talk about having sex here and come to the conclusion that I’m thinking about it the wrong way and that might be why I’m having these performance issues.

    “There’s no better evidence for anxiety than proceduralism.” – Tucker

    Proceduralism (see Choke book notes) is focusing consciously on getting all the steps or moves right instead of just letting it flow. It’s thinking about each individual step and getting it right instead of just dancing. It’s like looking at conversation as a checklist instead of a dance. This self-consciousness is the reason why most people choke or have performance anxiety. They don’t let it flow and just let go unconsciously. It’s being too much in your head (big head) than being in the moment. There’s all this interesting brain science as to why that’s the case. Again, go read Choke.

    This is an issue I have had in the past on this show (Episode 9 @ 50:00) .

    @38:30 – Nils and Tucker talk about times in their pasts when this has been a problem for them

    Nils had a problem of “going limp” at the end of college when either he drank too much, a woman was attractive but he didn’t want to date her, or a woman wasn’t attractive but was throwing herself at him. His point was that it was all mental. With girls he liked, connected with, and dated = no problems. With girls that sucked who obviously weren’t right for him and he knew that consciously or unconsciously = erectile problems.

    Tucker had this problem with girls who were hot but awful people. He wrote about an awful woman in his book and the sex he had with her. If I remember the story right he went limp while he was inside of her and she was faking an orgasm. It was a funny but depressing story. I can’t remember which book it was in. Also, I remember a lawsuit being involved, and it wasn’t Miss Vermont.

    Nils tells a particularly fucked up story about a girl in college who hated him when she was sober but wanted to fuck him when she was drunk. He went to hookup with her and lost his erection during sex because emotionally he wasn’t there. On a deeper level, he wasn’t attracted to her. His dick knew this was a bad idea even if he didn’t so it got the hell out of there.

    That’s how important this emotional stuff is. Nils had issues when he was in college, an age that for men is peak testosterone, peak sex drive, and there was no online porn to blame it on back then (I think, not sure how old he is).

    These emotional barriers (“why am I fucking this awful person” or “this person hates me”) short-circuited their physical abilities and they couldn’t get hard or stay hard. Testosterone levels or sex drive didn’t matter.

    This is deep stuff that I’ve never really heard any man talk about. I’ve heard women say that they weren’t there emotionally so they couldn’t have sex with a guy. And I think that’s the cultural narrative: women are more emotional beings, men are less emotional. But maybe that’s bullshit. We’re probably all emotional because we’re all human. Men are just expected to suppress it and are better at hiding it while it’s more accepted for women to cry or “be emotional.” We talked about this in Episode 12 about vulnerability, why men have trouble showing emotions, and why I thought it was lame to cry while reading a book. This might be one reason why men are 3-4X as likely as women to kill themselves.

    They were really vulnerable here. If this has happened to them, shit it’s probably happened to a lot of men. I’m glad they decided to tell these stories. It helps put these things in perspective and I don’t feel as bad about myself and my issues.

    @42:30 – I am lost and Tucker loses it

    I just wasn’t getting it and didn’t directly understand how this was the same problem I was having. Probably because I’m dense or I didn’t connect the ideas and experiences. Tucker got a little upset because it wasn’t obvious to me. Looking back it’s pretty obvious and I’m able to understand and write about the parallels here, but in the moment I was struggling to connect the dots. Nils explains it more here. Tucker is frustrated.

    @45:30 – Nils’s more recent problems

    If he has problems now, it’s because of work anxiety.

    “My wife has a jungle gym for a body.” This was funny but his point was that his wife is gorgeous AND there’s no problem with him physically yet he still has problems when there are other big mental or emotional issues going on in his life, like work deadlines or big projects coming up.

    Meditating and having a disciplined work schedule are how he fixes this issue: “When I have all my ducks in a row at work it’s off to the races.”

    @48:00 – What I can do going forward

    1. Get a test and look at your blood levels.

    2. “Start jacking it!” This was a joke but his point was if you have these urges, don’t suppress them. Masturbation is a pleasure not a chore. Recently I’ve looked at it as a waste of time and something “bad” or something to be ashamed of.

    “If masturbation doesn’t feel good to you because you think that you are a bum because you’re doing it, then you need to look at your thoughts and your emotions related to that.”

    – Tucker

    “It’s called beating off, not beating up [yourself].” HAHAHA

    @50:00 – Your thoughts are a choice

    I talk about how thinking or feeling bad about myself after jacking off isn’t a choice and Tucker corrects me.

    “To a large extent, your thoughts are a choice… your logical thoughts are definitely a choice. That’s why you focus on reason and logic so much because your emotional life is so chaotic and painful, and you can’t control it. So you focus on what you can control, your rational thoughts. I do that a lot too. It’s a recipe for disaster.” – Tucker

    Nils put it a better way: “It’s not just that you can’t control it, you can’t make heads or tails out of it so you are trying to order it.”

    The only way to get a grip on them is to engage them and process them. Recognize them, name them, verbalize them, and bring them up to the surface. You can do this by:

    1. Meditation

    2. Journaling

    3. Talk therapy

    4. Talking to friends or family

    This Helping Joe episode and past ones are also a great way to do this: “This was a painful hour for you, but your life will get better.” – Tucker

    @52:30 – She still liked me after and wanted to go out again

    “All these things that you think are mortifyingly embarrassing about yourself, she is cool with because she likes you as a person and you’re a good dude.” – Tucker

    Yep, I dress like either an oddball or a boring dude, I don’t have a car (she drives me around), my knows my place is a shithole, and I don’t spend a lot of money when we go out and she still likes me because of all these other positive traits that I have. That feels pretty good and it’s nice that he recognized that because I usually don’t take the time to recognize that for myself. I’m getting better at this with the 5 Minute Journal.

    What I can do going forward:

    – Start allowing the emotions you have to come up and have a voice (see the 4 things above)

    – Examine them, see what they are.

    – And decide how you are going to deal with them, what you are going to do.

    Don’t ignore, or suppress or withdraw from them.

    “Your goal is to like you as much as she likes you.” – Nils

    Haha, this was a great point Nils made. And Tucker followed up with more on this.

    Man, it sucked that we had to end the podcast here because this was some great stuff we were getting into and I still feel lost. But at least now I have a direction to go in and things I can do.


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  5. Helping Joe, Episode 15 | MatingGrounds


    This week on Helping Joe, Charlie and Tucker talk to Joe about his second go at speed dating. This time Charlie went with him, and strange but hilarious things happened leading up to and during the event. Joe has big improvements in confidence by owning his oddness, but his fashion choices are still atrocious. They dig into why his idea of trying to impress women by what he wears is ineffective and what to focus on instead to make a good first impression and attract great women.


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.

    Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.

    Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

    Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe


    Joe & Charlie make out with the same woman (not at the same time) during speed dating

    How to own your quirkiness and be confident not crazy

    Joe acts like Kramer at Charlie’s apartment and still has terrible fashion

    How men who compete on fashion have little else to offer women.

    What the majority of women care about when they look at your fashion

    What really matters when making a great first impression on a woman

    “The only thing that you should be ashamed of is not working hard to improve the areas of your life that aren’t what you want.”

    5 simple questions to ask yourself so you can get to where you want to go

    @1:30 – Pre-gaming before speed dating at Charlie’s place with his friend.

    They make fun of me for bursting into this place like Kramer. This is completely true.

    My adrenaline was running high from driving in a gokart (car2go) on the highway and I ran like ½ mile to get to Charlie’s after parking the damn thing. Charlie’s friend was probably slightly terrified when I burst into his apartment out of breath like I was running from the cops or something.

    I wasn’t nervous about meeting his friend (she was cute) or about being an oddball. This was a positive. Tucker explains how if you just push through initial weirdness and act like normal after, a woman will not care that much about your craziness. Something about acting as if, like it’s normal or you don’t give a fuck, and then it’s cool.

    I had a lot of fun talking to her, talking to Charlie, pulling out clothes out of my bag (like a magician), asking them for advice, and drinking. This was a fantastic way to pre-game and warm-up before going to speed dating.

    @7:00 – Shirts I brought on speed dating

    Shirt #1 my mythical centaur shirt.

    Tucker and Charlie gave me a lot of shit for this. It’s embarrassing to say this, but I thought this was a cool shirt or nice shirt. Wrong. Again, my fashion sense turns out to be completely erroneous.

    The magician bit here from Charlie was funny.

    Shirt #2 is a lime green shirt.

    Shirt #3 is a neutral gray striped shirt. I ended up wearing this to speed dating

    @14:00 – “If Joe is confident enough to act like a complete fool and just own it, that’s a great sign.” – Tucker

    This was a nice compliment that I deserve because this shows I’m growing. I acted like a crazy man and was honest about not knowing anything about style and I just kept going. I wasn’t self conscious or nervous like I usually am. This was huge. I wish I could go into every date or interaction with a woman like that, just not really giving a fuck or at least not being preoccupied with a negative internal monologue.

    Charlie’s friend’s first impression of me was that I was an insane person with no style, and she stilled like me because I didn’t care and after I calmed down and was cool / normal it was great.

    @16:00 – The difference between quirky and crazy

    Tucker talks about how being odd or unusual or quirky is attractive to the right woman. It’s not a bad thing if you have all these other positive qualities. It’s not mental institution crazy which is about as unattractive as you can get.

    Tucker’s point was just be who you are and own it to attract the right woman. This totally worked with this woman because we had a great conversation and I found out later that she really liked me.

    @17:30 – “He was too exhausted and had sprinted the anxiety out of him.”

    They have fun with this. Tucker was right here. Maybe I should just sprint to every date instead of drive or get an Uber. I wonder what other exercises are good (maybe yoga) for relieving tension, warming up, and “sprinting the anxiety out.”

    Warming up with a drink and talking with Charlie and his friend was a great warm-up to speed dating. I should do some form of this before every date. Just warmup socially, get those muscles going.

    @20:00 – We go to speed dating

    I mentioned that we took an Uber to get here and I totally forgot or didn’t want to talk about how our Uber driver was a girl I matched with on Hinge but I never messaged her back when she messaged me because I took a 2nd look and wasn’t attracted to her.

    I was too much of a coward to say anything during the ride so I just sat in the back, buried my face in my phone, and didn’t say much the whole ride.

    At speed dating, Charlie was the guy right behind me in the circuit. So he talked to every girl I talked to immediately after I talked to her. We had a little bit of fun with this, but probably could have done a lot more funny stuff. I should have told girls “The guy right behind me has herpes. I heard him talking about it.”

    @22:00 – Backstory on Charlie’s crazy friend

    Charlie give a little context for the woman at his place who came with us to speed dating that night. She’s going through a hard time I think.

    @25:00 – My speed date with Charlie’s friend … it got weird.

    Charlie’s friend hit on me (she thought I was cute), we started making out, then she really hit me (slapped me in the face) and grabbed my neck. She said she liked 50 Shades of Gray. This was really weird. I just met her an hour ago now this bitch is smacking me (lightly, didn’t hurt). WtH is going on?

    I really didn’t understand what was going on.

    “If she’s initiating physical contact with you in an aggressive way, that’s what she wants back.” – Tucker

    Yep that does make sense.

    @28:30 – The very next chick was like Chris Farley

    I move on to this woman who was drunk and hilarious. So funny. She was like a female version of Chris Farley. Fat, long blond hair, fucked up teeth, big tits, and pathetically hilarious.

    Charlie goes on a speed date with his friend next. At some point in the date I turn around and now Charlie is making out with her. Gross. He totally has gingervitis now.

    Tucker gave him shit for this: “You made out with her and then Charlie followed you and made out with her! Charlie, you followed not just Joe, but a ginger!” – Tucker

    Charlie makes some great self-deprecating jokes: “The show should be called Helping Charlie.”

    @29:30 – I impersonate Chris Farley girl and repeat what she said to me.

    I had fun with this. That chick was a mess, but honest & hilarious.

    @32:00 – Selfie Chick Round 2

    We talked about this girl in Episode 9 and I didn’t match with her for a few key reasons that Nils and Tucker explained in the beginning of that episode. So she was there again at speed dating. This time in a very tight, low-cut black dress and heels, cherry red lipstick again.

    Charlie talked about her being sad but this went right over my head or I blew past it. Listening back to this I wish I had asked them what they thought was going on with this chick. Why she was one of the more depressing girls to talk to and different from how she was in ep 9.

    @36:00 – Charlie and his friend exit speed dating early

    They were so drunk that they just quit the speed dating thing early, sat at the bar, and made out while the speed dating thing just continued going around them. They weren’t hammered but obviously weren’t interested anymore in event. This was funny.

    @37:30 – I only matched with 1 woman

    Even though I had way more fun at this event than the last one (Episode 9), wasn’t dressed like a buffoon, and had great conversations, I matched with less women. I was kind of upset about this because there were a few girls I would have liked to go out with. Tucker explains how to display that you are into her (circle her number right there) and how to hang out and ask for their number after. Next time: just go up and talk to them after.

    @40:30 – After I saw them making out, I just thought about leaving.

    I was ready to go. They seemed pretty into each other or at least Charlie’s friend was really into him and I didn’t want to be around watching them make out so I tried to leave a few times, they convinced me to stay and hang out.

    “Joe is always looking for a reason to get away from people / pull the escape hatch.”

    Yea that’s true but I didn’t want to be around as a 3rd wheel when these 2 people were drunk, very into each other, and looked like they wanted to hook up. I don’t know. I guess I just deal with uncomfortable social situations in a fucked up way, running away from them. This is a bad pattern I have.

    We went to get pizza and this woman was all over Charlie. I was finally like, okay I’m eating pizza by myself next to 2 people making out, I’m outta here and I left.

    @42:00 – Going from risky social situation to one that is less risky

    Yea I do this a lot. I don’t know why.

    “It only makes sense if you are trying to reduce your social anxiety.”

    This is counter-productive and in the opposite direction of what I want to accomplish, meet women, make friends, and have fun. This is something I really have to work on.

    @46:00 – Charlie’s friend got in touch with me after.

    At one point in the evening, after the event was over she told me she was sorry that she made out with Charlie. Not sure she really meant it and I didn’t really care. But she did get in touch with me (texting) the next day and wanted to hang out. This when I asked Charlie about it and he gave me some advice. I would have probably gone out with her if Charlie hadn’t said anything.

    Charlie talks about how to set boundaries with a friend who you don’t want to date.

    @48:00 – We revisit my clothes and dig deeper into this

    “You should not be in charge of your fashion decisions.” – Charlie

    Yea this is stuff we’ve already talked about. I just haven’t thrown out my clothes yet.

    “Standing out with clothes is the shallowest form of trying to be noteworthy… You don’t have any money and terrible aesthetic taste. So why would you worry about this?” – Tucker

    Yea these are all great points. I don’t know why I still have it stuck in my head that I should wear this stuff. We talked about this for a bit. Here were a few takeaways:

    1. Men compete on fashion when they have little else to offer.

    2. I’m poor and have awful taste, so it’s a terrible idea.

    3. It doesn’t matter that much to the women that I am going after.

    “The point is not to be attractive to all women. It’s to be very attractive to some women.”

    I’m still not thinking like this but being on this podcast is helping with this because I know it’s the same in marketing a business: if you are all things to all people, you are nothing to nobody; if you try to please everyone, you will please no one, etc.

    “You can stop wearing stupid shit today! You can stop hurting yourself [with women]… Not dressing like an idiot is a major improvement!”

    I was really thick-headed about this. Austin is one of the worst mating markets in the country if you want to compete fashion because people are more substantive here.

    “The upside so minimal compared to the downside. So why worry about [fashion]?” – Charlie

    Charlie calls back Episode 10 @ 50:30 where I said, “[On dates] I would try to like the things she liked so she would be into me instead of being honest and going our separate ways.” This is the same thing here.

    “What’s a priority to women is that you do NOT look like an idiot.” – Tucker

    @1:03:30 – How to make a great first impression on a woman

    Be in shape…. I am.

    Be clean, hands, skin, hair…. I am.

    Projecting good energy (body language, social skills)… this is wear I need help or have to focus on

    Clothings is way, way down the list… this is where I spend too much time.

    @1:05:00 – What are things that you bring to the table that women value

    This was a cool taking-a-step-back exercise to look at everything I bring to the table that is important to women so that I can get this fashion idea out of my head. I missed the biggest one when first listing things: Being a good person, being kind. That’s what most women all over the world want, strong & kind.

    I should just write a fucking list and put on my wall somewhere because I don’t think about or acknowledge the good traits I already have, the traits that women find attractive.

    “The overall thought in your head is that you have to be something fake or different to attract women… That’s a wrong idea” – Tucker

    Yep, he nailed it.

    @1:09:00 – Focus on your energy and your body language.

    It’s better to focus on your thoughts, emotions, feelings first and they will project outwards in body language. You can’t focus on body language first. It doesn’t work that way. Yea I remember reading this in the Charisma Myth. Amy Cuddy’s TED talk is wrong. Focusing on body language directly is good for short-term but not a long-term strategy

    “That will change more of your first impression more than anything you could ever wear.”

    Wow, I really didn’t think about it this way. I’ve been wasting a lot of money and time on clothes when I could have been focusing on this more important stuff like this.

    @1:10:30 – They read my 5 minute journal

    Starting in Episode 10, I’ve been writing in a 5 Minute journal. So for the last 5 weeks or so everyday in the morning and at night I write stuff about what I’m grateful for or what went really well today, etc.

    You can hear me cursing under my breath because I was really nervous about them reading this on the podcast. These are random thoughts I just kind of spill out of my brain onto a journal everyday then I forget about them. Not really the best stuff I want everybody to hear. I’ve written about Charlie & Tucker in here (grateful that I’m in Austin and that I do this show with them).

    I wrote the Nepal thing before the earthquake that happened there. Now I am really fucking grateful that I don’t live there.

    Unfortunately my handwriting sucks and they couldn’t really read any of this.

    We talk about “I am worthy of being loved for who the fuck I am.”

    Tucker digs into why I feel this way and why I’m not doing the right things to change where I am.

    I have a lot of career or work anxieties. I usually feel like I’m not doing enough and I’m not good enough at what I do. And I don’t take enough significant steps to improve so I just get more anxiety about it because I know I’m not improving or learning at a fast pace.

    @1:14:00 – Pericles’ Funeral Oration And Getting Stuff Done

    Tucker talks about this Athenian (Greek) guy named Pericles who had this great speech and said, “There is no shame in poverty. There is only shame in not doing anything to alleviate the situation.”

    “The only thing that you should be ashamed of is not working hard to improve the areas of your life that aren’t what you want. And if you aren’t doing it, you need to sit down and figure out why.”

    1. What am I trying to accomplish? What is your goal? (Start small)

    2. Why am I doing this?

    3. What’s the measurement for when you have succeeded?

    4. How are you going to do this? What is the plan? (Actions)

    5. What is the accountability?

    Make your actions a habit, do this everyday.

    I’m already doing this with dating and Helping Joe. Now I just have to apply it to other things that matter in my life.

    @1:18:00 – Update with the nurse

    I give an update of texts with nurse that I blew off from Episode 14. I think she wants to go out, now I have to figure out what to do. My instinct is to go for a relaxing walk. Tucker makes fun of me for this. Charlie suggests mini-golf which actually sounds kind of fun. I haven’t done this in like 10 years. They give some good date ideas to send her. I’m probably way overthinking this. Hope this goes well.


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  6. Helping Joe, Episode 13 | MatingGrounds


    In this episode of Helping Joe, Joe finishes Level 1 of improv but has insecurities about moving on to Level 2 with his class. Tucker and Charlie help him put his progress in perspective and convince him to keep going. They refer back to how meditation and journaling can change ineffective thought patterns and explain how with more demonstrated performance, real evidence of increasing success, Joe will build real confidence in his social life and with women. They also dive a little deeper into Joe’s personal history, friendships, and why he has no female friends.


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.

    Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.


    This episode is sponsored by Dude Wipes, the first flushable wipes for men. They are much better than toilet paper, and we love using them. Check them out on Amazon for free shipping and sales this month.



    Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

    Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe


    When it’s ineffective to compare yourself to others around you

    How good parents with good intentions still fuck kids up

    Give yourself more evidence of success (demonstrated performance) to build real confidence

    Why meditation and journaling helps so much with changing bad thought patterns

    How an improv class is a great of a social group

    Why you miss out if you wait until you’re perfect before doing things

    Why man/woman friendships are fundamentally different than man/man friendships

    Why irrational emotions are real and one way to deal with them

    @Beginning – Improv Class

    I came into this episode upset at myself because I was at the end of my improv class and still had the same problems as when I started.

    “You know that you can’t knock out 25 years of conditioning in 18 hours.” – Charlie

    This was a good point and a smart mental check. Going through this is normal.

    To bring back a point that Nils made in the last episode…

    This is why it’s important to open up and talk to people about how you’re feeling because you can kind of check yourself or calibrate your internal emotions with what’s normal, what other people are feeling: Is what I’m feeling normal? Do other people experience this?

    If you just keep things to yourself and don’t talk to people about these problems, then there is no way for you to find this out, you can’t calibrate or check yourself.

    Also Tucker’s point about being on a continuum applies here:

    I am getting better but it takes time. I was looking at my feelings about the improv class as binary: Self-conscious / nervous = failure; fearless & fun = success … which is kind of dumb. It’s better to look at improv class as a continuum, ups and downs, but in general putting in the work to move up. And with something like this you don’t necessarily see progress day to day, it’s like being in the gym, it’s process that takes time.

    @3:00 – I was honest, kind of vulnerable with female friend at improv

    This was cool because I took what I learned from the book, did it, and had a great fucking conversation with this women and connected with her.

    @5:00 – Chick vs woman vs girl

    I don’t know why I say “chick.” I think Tucker was annoyed by it because pickup guys use it. I don’t think it’s a big deal but whatever. I can see if I was a woman I probably wouldn’t like being called a chick. As a man, I wouldn’t like it if a woman called me bro all the time.

    @7:30 – Having fun with improv

    Improv is like going to the gym each week, it takes months of doing this daily until you see some results.

    There are no hacks, techniques, or tricks. Just show up, do it.

    Especially with improv, it’s about having fun, not comparing.

    “Are you ever going to be as funny as Bill Murray?” – Tucker

    “No” – Joe

    “Then why not just give up at everything?” – Tucker

    This was a great way to point out how ridiculous it is to compare yourself to other people in class. We’re totally different, running our own race. Just because someone else is better or great doesn’t takeaway anything from what I am doing in class.

    @10:00 – How my parents helped me with problems = abusive

    When I was a kid and had a problem at school (wasn’t making friends, sucked with girls) my parents, especially my dad, would just give me compliments and boost my self-esteem, telling me how great I was or whatever, instead of actually helping me solve the problem.

    I guess this is called helicopter parenting and Tucker said it was “weirdly a form of abuse.”

    I laughed at this because it sounds ridiculous. I was never abused by my parents as a kid. But the way Tucker explains it here makes a lot of fucking sense:

    “Not teaching your child how to deal with negative emotions or understand problems and work through them, you’re impairing their development, crippling them emotionally.” – Tucker

    @11:30 – Identifying thought patterns and replacing them.

    Tucker goes into therapy talk here. It’s smart stuff but a little over my head.

    “You change because you identify why you have these patterns and you replace them with good ones… nothing I say can replace that voice in your head, but if you start to do things that create better outcomes and look at those as proof of a better outcome. That’s how it changes.”

    It’s looking at evidence of success, feeling better about yourself, and using that as a positive feedback loop: Getting better / changing -> success (and evidence of it) -> feeling better -> keep getting better

    He mentions the speed dating thing and how I did well there (matching with hot women I liked) despite being dressed awfully and going in there feeling like shit. I’m getting better and recognizing the evidence of that.

    “Once you start to accept good things about yourself, then you can accept other people’s compliments more.” – Tucker

    I think this is how confidence works: “The more that I give myself evidence of being good at things, the more I will accept other people’s positive views of me.”

    It takes a lot time to work through these patterns and build this confidence.

    “In a journey of 1,000 steps, you’ve taken the first 20.”

    @16:00 – Why meditation + journaling helps so much with this

    Meditation clears your mind and helps you get crap stuff out of your head or at least deal with it and journaling helps you focus on the positive, put good stuff into your brain.

    How confidence and real self-esteem works

    Tucker explains this and is similar to stuff we’ve talked about before and what I read in Confidence (Book Notes)

    “The more you think of yourself as attractive, then when others say it, you will hear it.”

    @19:00 – Back to why I felt bad about improv class and expectations

    Tucker helps me figure out that I have the same insecurities about an improv class (How am I doing? What are people thinking of me?) as I do on dates.

    This was kind of a big realization. How did I not connect the dots before? It’s the same fucking thing. I look at going out on a date and going to improv class as totally different events, but the same patterns of performance anxiety, being self conscious, worried about what others think of me are running in both events.

    @21:30 – Improv as foundation of a social group

    “Improv fits all the criteria of forming real friendships: You have regular proximity (spending regular time togehter), common interest (being playful and vulnerable together), and in open environment where you can let your guard down. Builds and takes time. If you pull out or change class too quickly, you won’t get that.” – Charlie

    This is a good point. I suck at making friends…. How do you keep a friendship going after improv ends? How do you take the friendship from just improv to doing fun stuff outside of improv? It’s probably the same way you set up a second date. Just go do fun stuff together or find out what the other person likes and go do that and hang out. Ask Charlie about this later.

    @23:00 – Back to conversation with friend at improv

    We were talking about if I was going to take the 2nd class and she was persuading me why I should.

    They make fun of my inner monologue (Two bullies yelling at each other.) and it’s hilarious.

    @25:00 – Being honest and leaning in (improv)

    Charlie and I talk about a game called “Truth Chair” and this fantastic + hilarious improv guy I saw and why he was so good. “He takes whatever is there and rushes into it.”

    This is called “Being (or doing) the obvious” and “committing” I think. And the best guys in my class are those that commit full on to characters and it’s great.

    Tucker makes a good observation that this is the opposite of me. And he’s right. I don’t commit (couldn’t even commit to taking a 2nd class). I tip-toe and don’t engage, play it safe and withdraw way too much.

    @28:30 – Improv games and improv stories

    Charlie asks me if I was ever like this guy where I let loose or was committed. I talk about stories where I did things that got big laughs in class. I remember these very specifically because it felt great to get those laughs.

    @31:00 – Driving analogy / parallel

    Charlie compares getting good at improv to getting good at driving.

    Tucker & Charlie make funny jokes here. “Stop sign… story of my life.”

    But with improv when you get in an accident, nothing happens, and it’s cool. It’s a safe place to fail, get better, and improv.

    @35:00 – Why I was thinking about not moving on to Level 2 of improv

    What was going through my head at the time: Man I suck, I’m not good enough, I still have these same issues of being self-conscious, self-editing, comparing myself to others, that I had in the first few classes, I should go back and do Level 1 again, I’m not ready to move on.

    The fact is that I’m about average in the class. There are 3-4 people who great, 1-3 people who are worse than me, and a handful that are about the same level. So if everyone is moving on, why shouldn’t I move on? Doesn’t make sense but I wasn’t thinking right.

    At first I thought I was being overly self-critical and that was part of it, but I think the deeper issue was wanting to be perfect before I moved on. There was this quote in Daring Greatly and I think it really applies in this situation and how I was feeling:

    “When we spend our lives waiting until we’re perfect or bulletproof before we walk into the arena, we ultimately sacrifice relationships and opportunities that may not be recoverable, we squander precious time, and we turn our backs on our gifts, those unique contributions that only we can make. Perfect and bulletproof are seductive, but they don’t exist in the human experience.”

    I think this is a big problem I have, waiting until I’m perfect or skilled enough or I know enough or I have to read this book before I do X or whatever. It’s a really fucking bad habit and it played out here by waiting until I reached some subjective level of ability that I set arbitrarily before I could let myself move on.

    @37:00 – Making friends at improv

    “Those people want you to come. They wouldn’t have grilled you if they didn’t want you to come.” – Charlie

    “You’ve made friends and they’ve tried to pull you into a friendship and you are resisting.”

    – Tucker

    Tucker’s point here was that being vulnerable with friends is risky but it’s worth it.

    “As long as you keep being open and honest and emotionally vulnerable, you will continue to be interesting for a long time. It’s our job to bring it out of you [on the podcast].”

    @40:00 – Past friends

    We talk about my closest friends. I was uncomfortable talking about this because I don’t make friends very easily. I never have. Like I don’t have any high school friends that I keep in touch with, I only have a few great friends from college that I still talk with and keep in touch with. I’m not vulnerable with them.

    There’s 1 guy who is really vulnerable with me and shares a lot and his stories are great so I love him for it. But I don’t think I’m the same way with him or on the same level of being so self-deprecating and open and vulnerable. I don’t reciprocate enough.

    Charlie talks about sometimes going to friends with big problems, when he needs help, and having long 1-2 hour conversations with them about deep stuff. And Tucker talks about how Charlie sometimes helps him with emotional stuff (Charlie is more empathetic). This is something I can’t relate to that well because for most of my life I haven’t done this. I’ve been getting better and have reached out to people a little when I have big issues (getting fired or quitting a job) but I usually try to solve it myself. This is stupid and sad. A team will always know more and outperform an individual.

    Tucker talks about how working through emotional issues and staying in one place for a long time, putting down roots, are ways to make deeper friendships.

    They make fun of lifehacker type people who travel around a lot and post cool pictures of themselves.

    Signing up for improv is a positive change.

    @49:00 – Being friends with women

    Charlie asks me if I have female friends. And to be honest, no.

    Tucker is pretty smart at reading people and was able to guess correctly that I don’t have female friends based on my problems with empathetic, emotioning connecting.

    These problems of connecting emotionally with women on dates are X10 when trying to be friends with women. “If you had female friends, you wouldn’t have these issues on dates.”

    The good news: I have the ability to do this. There’s nothing that Tucker or Charlie can see that would stop me from being friends with women.

    “Female friendships tend to be more empathy based or connection based than male friendships. The exact place where women connect with men is where you don’t connect with anyone.”

    Tucker & Charlie advise me to try and make friends or pursue a friendship with this older woman I like talk to at improv. I think it’s a great idea. I just don’t know how to do it, do I ask her out to lunch? coffee? an improv show? I should have fucking asked them more about this, making friends with women and not send wrong signals or be weird, during the show but I didn’t, goddamn it.

    @54:00 – Past female friends that I hurt

    Girls I weren’t attracted to and was friends with then she made a move or wanted more and I didn’t reciprocate or I ignored it and they were hurt and then we weren’t friends any more.

    Tucker talks about his experiences with mediocre girls thinking he’s a catch, but hot girls don’t. This is funny but might be same thing going on with me. “I’m in range for them.”

    For the most part, this is not something to worry about because women are better at picking this up + you are just projecting 10 steps in the future of this awful scenario playing out.

    @57:00 – Tucker’s comment about leaving things around his apartment.

    He called me “feral”. I didn’t take it to heart because it’s funny and a ridiculous thing to call somebody. Christ, Tucker pisses with the door wide open, all the time. He burps into the microphone constantly on the podcast and he calls me feral. I didn’t bring this up on the podcast because I wasn’t quick enough to think about it. It was a good laugh regardless.

    @58:30 – Why I didn’t followup with the improv girl I liked

    This projecting or predicting negative things into the future is why I didn’t ask out the girl I liked at improv. I was afraid of looking stupid or fucking up with her then improv would suck or it wouldn’t be fun anymore or the people in the group wouldn’t like me….

    Irrational emotions are real

    Irrational emotions are real to you and you have to deal with them.

    That’s why meditation is good. It allows you to catch yourself and you can observe that thought instead of letting it control you. It helps you lessen the pull that thought has.

    You can’t get rid of it but you can deal with it. Goal is to handle it and not let it stop you from doing things, taking risks.

    @1:02:30 – Relationships are the meaning of life, and most guys suck at them

    Harvard study linked cultures with most happiness / life satisfaction are those with strongest relationships in community. Relationships, not health, diet, exercise, level stress, nope, relationships. It’s pretty fucking interesting. All the health benefits of relationships are unseen I think and unnoticed largely I think, that might be why we don’t put a priority on them.

    @1:04:00 – Rescheduled a date with the nurse and might have blown it.

    Last Thursday I made a date to go to salsa class with cute nurse I was seeing. This would have been our 3rd date.

    I canceled on Tuesday because I wanted to hang out with a friend before he went back to England and I thought she might be able to go out another day. Wrong.

    She was busy those other days, out of the city, then worked all weekend. Thursday was her only free day and she was going to hang out with me, but I fucked up. FUCK!

    I didn’t bring her with me because I didn’t want to introduce friends yet. And my friends are younger, she’s like 32 so I was worried she wouldn’t have fun which was just stupid. My friends are cool, why wouldn’t she like them? And if she doesn’t, she has bad taste, wtf.

    Tucker’s default is always action. My default is to hesitate, withdraw, tip-top. I suck.

    “You are taking responsibility for her to have a good time and to enjoy herself. That’s not really up to you.” – Charlie

    This goes back to the unconfident arrogant thing that we have talked about in past episodes.

    @1:06:30 – Wearing different social masks with different groups of people

    I think this was another reason unconsciously why I didn’t want to (and still don’t want to) mix girls I am dating with friends I have because I act differently or wear different social masks with each group and I feel like something will go wrong (but I have no idea what) and I’ll lose one or the other or look stupid or incongruent, I don’t know.

    Charlie referenced a great Jim Gaffigan bit that directly hit on what I was talking about:

    “It’s so stressful introducing groups of friends to each other…. ‘OK so my friends don’t know I speak Spanish, so if you could not let them know.’”

    @End – “There’s a difference between looking pathetic and being honest about who and what you are and presenting your best side but being honest about the things that aren’t good.”

    I still have trouble with this because deep down I have a fear of being vulnerable, showing a woman who I really am, and her just being totally uninterested or turned off and she’ll leave.

    There’s this quote from Daring Greatly about what vulnerability is like: It’s “being naked onstage and hoping for applause rather than laughter.”

    Right now, I am just expecting laughter. I can’t see a situation where I tell her about Helping Joe or I show her my place and she doesn’t laugh or is turned off or unattracted to me.

    Or it could be that I’m just really insecure about who I am and embarrassed about things like, oh I live on a mattress on the floor OR oh I’m a podcast 1x a week where I get help because I suck with women.


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  7. Bad Advice From The Internet: Be 100% Honest 100% Of The Time, Radical Honesty | MatingGrounds

    Why This Is Bad Advice

    The human brain is not designed for radical honesty. Throughout the day you get a lot of random ideas and images that flash into your brain that come from weird places. Blurting all those out every time can hurt or confuse people and makes you look like a social retard. Pushing your honesty onto other people who are not directly asking for it signals a lack of social intelligence, which makes you less likable and less attractive to women.

    For example, if a woman asks, “What are you looking for?” and you blurt out, “I just want to have sex and not date you,” it’s an immediate turnoff for her.

    Women look for physical safety, social safety, and emotional safety before dating or sleeping with you. If you are radically honest, she worries that you will tell her friends that you two are just having sex. She will not feel socially safe with you because unfortunately we have a sex shaming culture in America where she suffers much more damage to her reputation by just having sex than you do.


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.

    The Better Advice

    If you are going to tell people the truth, you’d better make them laugh; otherwise they’ll kill you. – George Bernard Shaw

    You should always tell the truth, but there are times when it’s better to say nothing or say it indirectly than to be 100% honest. There is nothing wrong in withholding your thoughts or information from people who you don’t know that well or aren’t good friends with.

    From our example above, a more socially intelligent way to be honest in a short-term mating situation (when you just want sex) is responding indirectly to signal or code that you are looking to hookup (don’t say these exactly, use your own version):

    “Well, I’m not looking for a girlfriend right now. I’m looking to just meet new people and explore stuff.”

    Or, “I’m not looking to settle down yet. Right now, I like having fun and meeting new people.”

    Most guys tell women they are looking for a girlfriend when they are not. So when you say something similar to the above at a bar, it’s a big, bright signal that you are looking for sex and nothing more. And that honesty is attractive.


    This episode is sponsored by Dude Wipes, the first flushable wipes for men. They are much better than toilet paper, and we love using them. Check them out on Amazon for free shipping and sales this month.


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  8. Helping Joe, Episode 12 | MatingGrounds


    In this episode of Helping Joe, Tucker and Nils finally get a look at Joe’s deeper emotions after he read Daring Greatly. They talk about how the book affected him, what he learned, and how to apply the lessons to his dating life.

    Being vulnerable and exposing emotions are very difficult for Joe and many other men. It is one reason why Tucker spent so much time in therapy. But connecting with friends and girlfriends is essential to living a happy, fulfilling life. Making real connections requires vulnerability, opening yourself up and letting people in to show them who you really are. Romantic chemistry is exposing one element (you) to another element (her) to see if there’s a reaction (or spark).


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.

    Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.


    This episode is sponsored by Dude Wipes, the first flushable wipes for men. They are much better than toilet paper, and we love using them. Check them out on Amazon for free shipping and sales this month.



    Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

    Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe

    This was a tough episode for me. I was tearing up at multiple parts of this.

    I took a lot of notes because I think Tucker and Nils had a lot of great thoughts and deep stuff to say here.

    My favorite quotes from this episode:

    – “When other people are vulnerable you see that as courage, but when you are vulnerable you see that as weakness.”

    – “You don’t make an active effort to make friends so how do you expect them to come into the arena with you?” – Tucker

    “I don’t know…” – Joe

    “And what happens is that they stop trying [to be your friend]. The opposite of love isn’t hate. It’s indifference… that’s the future if you don’t work on this.” – Nils

    – “You are not alone in suffering through these issues because culturally we don’t teach our young people how to process these emotions. You don’t have the toolkit to break down these emotions or work through them. So we just put them in boxes and shove them down deep.” – Nils

    – “This is a part of that process. You are doing what all those guys never learned how to do because they were taught to keep putting one foot in front of the other, straight towards death.” – Nils

    “A lot people who you might not think of as having problems (players, studs, etc.) actually have problems. They are similar to your issues. You’re not some weak coward off alone in the corner while the rest of us are just partying and having a great time. We just have different ways of addressing or hiding our issues.” – Tucker

    – “[Talking to] other people allows us to calibrate our emotions against a standard or a cultural norm. It helps you understand that this is normal and that other people have been through this.” You aren’t alone in this pain or emotion.

    @Beginning – Nil’s email he sent after Helping Joe Episode 7

    We mention this here but don’t talk about it. See below for selected parts from his email that I thought were very insightful, smart, and helpful. It helped a lot in putting things in perspective, nailing down what exactly was going on and why, what I need to improve on. Just all this stuff he picked up on and was right about. Nils is awesome. Anyways you can read that at the end of these notes.

    Daring Greatly by Brene Brown

    Tucker gave me this book last week after the podcast ended and told me to read it. I did and it was one of top 4-5 most impactful or memorable books I’ve ever read. I might do a book notes on this some day for the blog.

    It took me a while to get this out, but I cried a few times reading this book.

    I felt uncomfortable saying this because it makes you look weak as a guy to admit that you cry. Or at least that’s what my thinking was before reading this book

    Tucker and Nils talk about crying when reading or watching movies about dogs: Where The Red Fern Grows, Old Yeller, Marley & Me). Nils cried on a flight watching this movie M&M.

    Their point was that feeling emotions and crying, even if you’re a man, is normal. Tucker is still an effective, strong dude (not a pussy) even though he’s cried while reading different books and has talked about crying.

    @5:00 – Tucker teaching me to be specific and engage this

    This is one way to know Tucker is a good teacher. Instead of yelling at me to stop characterizing (see Episode 9 for that) he breaks down how we are going to be more specific here about the things in the book and why they made me cry or feel whatever.

    @8:00 – I talk about stories from the book that made me cry

    Even just re-telling these made me choke up during this podcast. I don’t know if this is noticeable listening to this but this was not easy to get through to get through.

    The story at the end of the book especially got to me and we talk about this.

    “He survived and his friends still respected him because they are cowards. He tried.”

    One of the most important lessons I learned from this book:

    “When other people are vulnerable you see that as courage, but when you are vulnerable you see that as weakness.”

    @12:00 – Tucker talks about being vulnerable and wide open when he wrote IHTSBIH

    When he was a young nobody, came out of no where, and wrote this book that detailed all the awful stuff he did or that happened to him, but it was funny and real.

    It connected with people on a deeper level because “he showed everything… the good and the bad. The most hilarious stories are the ones where he looks the most ridiculous.” – Nils

    @13:00 – The Arena, putting yourself out there, making friends

    Theodore Roosevelt’s quote about The Man And The Arena was the inspiration for the title, Daring Greatly.

    This quote and how she weaves it into the book, being vulnerable, open to criticism, and resilient against it was so fucking important and was deep.

    It’s about who is there with you, inside the cage or the arena VS who is not, who is outside too scared to try anything great, those critics who don’t matter because they don’t put any skin in the game.

    You have to recognize who is on your side, who is there with you in whatever struggle you are trying to overcome or goal you are going after. I’m even getting choked up writing about this.

    Tucker and Nils explain how being friends with people, allowing them access, requires being vulnerable.

    “You probably don’t have as many people in the arena with you as you could, mainly because you don’t let them in. You go in alone by choice.”- Tucker

    “You don’t make an active effort to make friends so how do you expect them to come into the arena with you?” – Tucker

    “I don’t know…” – Joe

    “And what happens is that they stop trying [to be your friend]. The opposite of love isn’t hate. It’s indifference… that’s the future if you don’t work on this.” – Nils

    @16:00 – Don’t waste the prime years of your life

    Nils’s point here, and it was a great one, was about not wasting time with someone who will never love you: If you are not vulnerable or wait, how much time goes by before you figure out that you don’t love this person?

    A lot of guys get stuck in relationships where they don’t see where it’s going, or they waste time, because they were afraid to take the next step in being vulnerable.

    At least when you are being vulnerable you take that step forward, show a part of yourself and your feelings (“I love you”), and either they meet you and it’s great or they don’t and it sucks but at least you stop fucking wasting time with someone who never wanted to go anywhere with you.

    If you never take that first step, you might never find that information out.

    @18:30 – Connections with other people is one of the meanings of life

    And to have those connections you have to open yourself up to people and be vulnerable.

    The reason people don’t do this is because it’s hard and it can hurt.

    The upside is “the feeling of having people who care about you in your life supporting you, there’s nothing better than that.” – Tucker

    “Crying here is a great sign.” – Tucker

    “It means you have everything to feel this. You’re just afraid and scared. You can get over that fear.” – Tucker

    “It shows that you actually want it … You are actually are more interested in these women more than just available sex.” – Nils

    “This is the best fucking sign. It’s so great. I have seen at least 100 guys who want meaningful connections, but don’t go through the vulnerability and pain to get there… This is fucking hard to do.”

    @22:00 – Tucker’s version of going through this

    He had to go to psychoanalysis 4 days a week for 4 years. That’s 432 hours. Holy shit.

    He had a lot more issues than me, and he was wildly successful with those issues.

    He also talked about this with Charlie and I in Episode 7 and Charlie commented on the differences he saw in Tucker and that’s why he was able to meet and marry Veronica.

    Why I have problems with being vulnerable

    “If you have problems connecting and being vulnerable, it’s because in your past at some point in some way, someone has taken your vulnerability and hurt you with it.”

    Being vulnerable and open you can reach higher rewards (love) or can get hurt (rejections, humiliation).

    I don’t know what my issue is but I think at the core it’s a fear or shame of looking foolish, being humiliated, and losing friends, being disconnected from others, being ostracized or alone, being made fun of or left outside of the group because I said something stupid.

    How to get over this, be more vulnerable, let people in, and live a better life

    “Keeping people away is a defense mechanism. To break those defenses down, you have to go back to that pain and it has to come back up. That’s why you cried during that book.” – Tucker

    He’s probably right because he knows more about this stuff than me (432 hours more), but I don’t understand how this works:

    – Why do you have to go back to something that happened 1, 5, or 10 years ago?

    – Why can’t you just move forward + get better by working on what’s in front of you?

    – Why do you have to go back and dig up shitty shit that happened a long shitty time ago?

    – How the fuck do you even do this?

    His point here was that this is really fucking hard and requires a big support system. No one can do this alone.

    @25:00 – Everyone has these issues, but nobody teaches how to deal with them

    “You are not alone in suffering through these issues because culturally we don’t teach our young people how to process these emotions. You don’t have the toolkit to break down these emotions or work through them. So we just put them in boxes and shove them down deep.” – Nils

    This is kind of relief. This is a normal thing that most people go through. I’m not that weird. Also, I’m great at ignoring, distracting myself, or shoving down emotions. That’s usually how I deal with most of this stuff.

    There is a lot of shame that men have around admitting these emotions. That’s the cultural narrative we have: Men can’t be emotional or vulnerable because then you are a pussy.

    And THIS IS COMPLETELY RIDICULOUS… just look at the great action movies:

    In Die Hard and Gladiator the heroes are vulnerable, expose themselves emotionally, and we love them for it.

    “Die Hard is John McClain getting on a plane to save his marriage. He’s going to surprise Holly… That’s how that movie starts.”

    “In Gladiator, [Maximus] does everything he does (kills all those mfs) for the memory of his dead wife and child.”

    This was such a great fucking analogy because it’s crystal clear and true. These guys are men, badasses, effective killers, and they are not weak because they get emotional or cry.

    Another great example is Tony from The Sopranos. He goes to fucking therapy! And they show his sessions in the show. Yet he’s still one of the best / most memorable male leads on a TV show. That vulnerability and emotional side of him didn’t make him less cool or less effective or less of a leader.

    @28:30 – Nils’s thoughts on my hometown and the shitty mentality there

    “This is a part of that process. You are doing what all those guys never learned how to do because they were taught to keep putting one foot in front of the other, straight towards death.” – Nils

    That was a great fucking metaphor too.

    “Suppress your emotions. Show up every day. Work hard until you die. It’s weak to show vulnerability or pain or emotions.” – Tucker

    The physical and emotional consequences of suppressing these emotions

    In Daring Greatly, Brown talks about studies that prove how not talking about trauma or problems (suppressing them) causes all these shitty side effects.

    When people don’t talk about or open up about past trauma, there are physical consequences (more doctors visits, higher stress hormones) and emotional consequences (your current relationships suffer) in your life.

    @31:00 – Lewis Howes’s story of being sexually abused as a child

    Lewis opened up about this story on his podcast: What Sharing My Childhood Rape Taught Me About Being a Loving, Vulnerable, Free Man


    And go look at the comments on that post. The reaction was amazingly positive and supportive. Tucker and Nils were right about this.

    Nils talks about the emotional intelligence seminar Lewis (also from Ohio) went to (ask Nils which seminar he is talking about). Lewis admitted this happened, talked about it in public, and what that did for his life and his business.

    We all have trauma, not as bad as getting rape, but it still fucks with you. Tucker talks about his past trauma and how he had to deal with, 4 years in therapy.

    “I didn’t walk in there and discover anything new about my past that I didn’t already know. It was more about facing and understanding trauma that did have an emotional impact on you… It’s not just one thing.”

    I don’t know what past trauma or experiences or problems I had. I have a few ideas but nothing too terrible or fucked up. I don’t know where to start.

    @36:00 – “There’s going to be a lot of regret that you are going to be deal with.” – Nils

    Nils talk about how my current mindset of not being vulnerable, withdrawing, and not talking to people fucks me up.

    A lot of regret = “What if I had done this? What if I had talked to that girl? What if I I had done that?” … You have to process that too so that you can lift a weight off your shoulders that is keeping you down.

    He’s absolutely right. I have so much regret about things in my life, so many missed opportunities, especially with women. Just a lot of fucking guilt around that. So many times I didn’t make a move or didn’t talk to a girl that I liked and felt awful about it later.

    Putting things in perspective: Tucker didn’t start writing until 27. I’m 26.

    Tucker had to date fat girls so that he could eat their food. This is hilarious but only because it worked out in the end. If he was still a struggling, poor writer at 39 it would be sad. Or as Nils says, “It would be Ohio.” Ahh, that’s fucked up.

    The difference between him and I at this was age was that he went out and talked to people. I don’t. I withdraw.

    @40:30 – “Don’t live your life looking backwards about the bad things you’ve done. Think about how you can get better and improve.”

    This is so hard not to do…. I have a bad habit of thinking of dumb shit I did in past (embarrassing things that happened, dumb shit I said to people) and feeling pain or embarrassment or anxiety when I think now about those past events.

    Like in the middle of the day I’ll think of something, remember it, relive that experience for a few seconds, feel nervous or awful, and my stomach/chest will seize up or my heart will start racing. Then I’ll try to forget about it.

    This is why I hate the idea of going back and bringing that pain up and processing it. I just want to forget about it and move forward, get better with what I’m doing now. Not improve what I should have done or didn’t do years ago.

    @42:00 – Shames and just being normal or average

    Shame affects my style and choice of clothes.

    I think I wore all those weird clothes to speed dating (Episode 9) because I might have a shame-based fear of being ordinary, of not standing out, a fear of not being noticed. And that comes out in wearing goofy clothes to stand out. I wouldn’t say that I want attention, I just want to be noticed or attractive or different in a good way. But as you listen to that episode, you’ll hear how I failed miserably.

    Tucker digs into my past, school, and why I might have this fear of being ignored.

    I tell a story about a girl was into, trying to talk to me, and I was being an anti-social prick just giving her one word answers. All I wanted to do was sleep in that class. And after a few days she stopped trying to talk to me. And I can’t blame her.

    I think this is exactly what Nils was talking about earlier @13:00 about when you don’t make an effort to invite people in or at least meet them halfway, they will give up on you.

    This is a big regret I have. She was a cute girl. And a couple years later she was gorgeous and I kept thinking to myself, why the fuck didn’t I talk to her. Why wasn’t I nice to her?

    @46:30 – Being paranoid of someone exploiting you

    This was a hilarious moment, but this isn’t my problem. Some guys may have it but not me. They make a bunch of jokes and have fun with this because it’s ridiculous.

    “If it was okay for women in South America to be attracted to you, why is it NOT okay for people in the US to be attracted to you.” – Nils

    That’s a good question. I didn’t have a good answer.

    This is a recipe for Impostor Syndrome.

    There’s nothing wrong with going to these places, but “I don’t know any happy dudes going to Bangkok to find girls… when they are home alone, they hate themselves just as much as they did when they are in America.” – Nils

    @50:00 – Many long-term “players” have the same problem: They aren’t happy, but they just learned to get laid here.

    Tucker was like this… “Any extreme promiscuity (defined differently for each culture) is usually evidence of an underlying dysfunction.” He is saying if you fuck around a lot more than normal, there’s something deeper that might be fucked up about you.

    “That doesn’t make me awesome.” I disagree, along with probably many others.

    An important point that I didn’t understand or missed during the recording:

    “A lot people who you might not think of as having problems (players, studs, etc.) actually have problems. They are similar to your issues. You’re not some weak coward off alone in the corner while the rest of us are just partying and having a great time. We just have different ways of addressing or hiding our issues.” – Tucker

    Yea but god damn it sure feels like that a lot times. It feels like I’m missing out on a lot of life and being social and partying or whatever. Fuck…

    @53:00 – Moving Away VS Moving Towards VS Moving Against

    Again from Daring Greatly, these are common but awful strategies to deal with shame. I totally deal with it by moving away or withdrawing. I think Tucker was more moving against.

    We heal in groups. Nobody heals emotionally by himself or herself. This is another reason why withdrawing is so fucked up.

    Nils dives more into why this is messed up (solid stuff here)

    1. “You are the worst judge of yourself.”

    Yep, we’ve said this over and over again in this series but I still forget it when I’m feeling like shit.

    1. “Those other people allow us to calibrate our emotions against a standard or a cultural norm. It helps you understand that this is normal and that other people have been through this.” You aren’t alone in this pain or emotion.

    Nils tells another story about a guy who opened up an experience of his kid dying where he felt alone, but he wasn’t. Many others had this experience or knew someone who did. The point is, whatever emotion you are feeling you aren’t alone and you should seek out others you trust who can help put things in perspective. It helps process and get through that pain. You aren’t alone on an island.

    @56:30 – I have no confidence + a weird arrogance (maybe chauvinism)

    This was a reference to past dates in Episode 11.

    @59:00 – It’s not about logical. It’s emotion.

    “Almost everything you are going to be dealing with in meeting and dating women is about emotion. You have to get comfortable with that level, not logic which doesn’t work.” – Nils

    This is a great point about logic VS emotion and I still don’t fully understand or know how to do this. I mostly ignore emotions on dates unless it’s something really obvious like she’s bored or upset or really into me.

    This is also probably why so many guys read pickup artist stuff and get good at taht game still suck or are really unhappy. They are missing out on all the emotion because they are too stuck on the 1s and 0s, the lines, the checklist of actions, etc.

    “You don’t emotionally engage people. You keep them at such a distance that you don’t even think about them at all.” – Tucker

    Yep, I think he might be right here, really right. This is a big problem I have that I’m largely unaware of.

    @1:01:00 – How to do this and get better

    “You don’t need to learn a list of facts or everything she likes. Find a way to connect emotionally, which requires reading:” – Nils

    Her body language

    The words she uses

    The way she holds her hands

    What she’s wearing

    And all the other nonverbal cues

    And going off that, it’s a dance, remember that.

    “You have to be empathetic, and empathy require vulnerability.” – Tucker

    “This is why you can’t remember anything about conversations. You aren’t emotionally engaged. Memory is coded through the same part of the brain that regulates emotion. It’s weird but that’s the way it works. That’s why story is the best way to learn.” – Tucker

    Man, this is sad but true. How the fuck do I stop doing this?

    That’s why date goals are to find something interesting about her and have fun because those are ways to connect.

    @1:04:00 – Trust is built a little bit (of vulnerability) at a time

    Great analogies for this are

    – Filling a jar with marbles (Daring Greatly)

    – Building a house (Tucker)

    It’s a continuum (ups and downs), not binary (yes and no).

    @1:06:00 – Nils’s interesting point about Tinder:

    “On Tinder there should be an understanding of mutual trust because you both agreed (matched) that you’re attracted to each other at some level. You’ve already established a small degree of trust because you’ve actively selected one another. You’re not picking her up at the gelato shop. [She’s meeting you there because] she’s at least interested enough in you to have a conversation. That is trust. It’s small but it is some. That’s where it starts.”

    Selected parts of Nils’s email to me after Episode 7

    You kind of want women just to trust that you’re a good guy, agree to give it a shot, and then slowly over time you will connect with her by virtue of spending more time together. Unfortunately again, that’s just not how attraction is built or relationships work. You can’t just expect time to do the work for you.

    Vulnerability is the key to emotional connection and dating requires a degree of vulnerability in the beginning for a few reasons:

    1) if you aren’t at least a little bit open every date becomes about running down an obvious, observable checklist that doesn’t tell you anything about each other

    2) your goal is to get to know things about the girl to determine if you’re attracted to her or have chemistry–asking her to do that implies a degree of reciprocity. Show me yours and I’ll show you mine;

    To connect with someone emotionally is to connect with them on the levels they care about most. And to do that, you have to open yourself up to another person about those things–things that are personal, unique, and probably more/disproportionately important to you than to them. You’re saying I care about THIS, THIS, THIS, and THIS because that’s who I am. This is me, please accept and appreciate me. That is VERY hard for lots of people, especially men, and it takes a willingness to be vulnerable–to open up like that–to make that connection a reality.

    3) you’re tall and in shape, but clearly the majority of your best qualities are not external, they’re internal; and the only way to display those more attractive traits to open yourself up a little and share them (whether it’s your intelligence about travel and business; your openness and playfulness about kids or puppies; your sense of humor about yourself or the world; etc). HOW DO I DO THIS … I’m not a good story teller and uncomfortable, not good about talking about myself

    Chemistry requires a reaction, and the only way to get that reaction is to expose one element (yourself) to the other her – requires vulnerability.You’re afraid of making yourself vulnerable to them (or anyone). It is at the core of all these fears (foolish, idiot, failure, incompetent, weak) because each of those fears is presupposing a negative response to an action where the outcome is uncertain. And when you commit to an action where you don’t know the result, that is by definition being vulnerable. I’ll give you examples:

    -Fear of looking like an idiot is the result of putting yourself in the vulnerable position of contributing to a conversation with something smart or funny or insightful, but not being sure if what you are saying is either smart, funny, or insightful, OR how it will be perceived by whoever your with.

    -Fear of looking like a failure/incompetent is the result of putting yourself in the vulnerable position of trying something new or hard and not knowing how it will turn out, and worrying that the people around who witness the attempt will laugh at you.

    -Fear of looking weak is the result of putting yourself in the vulnerable position of trying to be strong or forceful and not being sure if you are strong enough and forceful enough to pull it off.


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  9. Helping Joe, Episode 11 | MatingGrounds


    This week of Helping Joe is a continuation of Episode 10 where Joe talks about recent dates with girls from episodes 7, 8, and 9 and new girls he is seeing. Tucker and Charlie break down his irrational, ineffective thoughts and explain how to replace them to get better with women. They also get into advice on texting, going back to her place, being honest and funny about your insecurities, and why you don’t need to have all your shit together before a woman will be very into you.


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.

    Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.


    This episode is sponsored by Dude Wipes, the first flushable wipes for men. They are much better than toilet paper, and we love using them. Check them out on Amazon for free shipping and sales this month.



    Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

    Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe


    What you feel is what you feel. Emotions are valid. Just try to figure out WHY.

    Share interesting stuff about yourself on a date, but learn more about her.

    How to flip an unattractive or low status area of your life (be honest and funny)

    How NOT to fuck up communication via text

    Why audio messages are better than text messages

    The difference between being a nice guy VS a doormat

    If you live in a shithole, here’s how to bring up going back to her place

    You don’t need everything for a woman to be very attracted to you

    @beginning – Reconnecting with girl I texted “Meh” to in Episode 7

    This was the chick who I had a great time with, one of best dates in Austin. But I fucked up when texting her and Tucker blew up in Episode 7.

    I followed their advice, texted her, and was able to setup a 2nd date but I felt shitty going into it because another idiot girl legit flaked and the chemistry just wasn’t there anymore even though we had a fun time earlier.

    @2:30 – Earlier, another Tinder chick that blew me off the same day

    I confirmed earlier in the day. She said yes.

    I got to Vino Vino on time. She texted she was late.

    Ok cool, I waited ~45 minutes.

    I texted her, didn’t hear back so I left.

    She texted me “I’m here” 1.5 hours after the original time we were supposed to meet.

    I didn’t text back, didn’t care anymore, and was just annoyed.

    This probably wasn’t that big a deal but I took it more personally than I should have.

    @4:00 – “Why do you have a code on your phone … it’s like putting pennies in a bank vault.”

    Tucker’s a weirdo. Everyone has codes on their phones. I’m not sure why he was giving me shit for this. Just because he’s comfortable letting people read and go through shit on his phone doesn’t mean that everybody should be.

    And Charlie reads texts in seductive Joe voice

    One of her texts: “Sounds good, you big delicious ginger.”

    @6:00 – What happened with her

    I wasn’t into her any more. I was attracted to other girls. The last 2 dates weren’t as fun as the first one, and I just lost interest.

    “If you’re not into a girl, you’re not into her… What you feel is what you feel. Your emotions are valid. We are just trying to figure out why.” – Tucker

    “If you actually think you are low status then a girl tells you that you are not, you will push yourself away from her.” – Tucker

    This might be the same thing as the former fat guy Q&A they did, where the results and evidence is staring you in the face but you still think you suck or are fat.

    “Don’t fight what you feel [with women].” – Tucker

    @10:30 – Charlie’s problem.

    He talked about being in relationships he knew weren’t going to work but sticking in them because of commitment bias (sunk cost fallacy) or he felt like it was the right thing to do and he had to do it even though he knew it wasn’t going to work.

    @11:30 – Tucker talks about Sex And The City episode

    The moral of the story is to date who you want to date, feel what you want to feel, and be cool with that, instead of doing or feeling what the cool thing or high status thing is. If you wanna date fat women, go date fat women. It’s ridiculous to date women you’re not into (skinny supermodels) as a status symbol.

    Not my problem, but many guys think, “What I like is not okay so I have to publicly be into something else.” Guys who secretly like fat women probably feel this way, especially when their friends make fun of them, which is kinda fucked up. Also this comes out in super religious guys (sometimes politicians) who are into weird things and get caught and it’s a big scandal.

    13:30 – Update on girl from Episode 8

    This was another cute Latin girl I took to get gelato. I wrote notes about her in those show notes.

    Charlie was funny here. “Hell week?! I’ll show you hell week!”

    16:00 – We talk about speed dating from Episode 9

    This is hilarious. Tucker recounts and describes my clothes / fashion leaving his apartment and Charlie makes jokes. Also funny here.

    18:30 – My crazy thoughts leaving speed dating and over-rating male competition

    This is funny, just my automatic thoughts as I was exiting this speed dating thing and looking at the people around me.

    19:30 – I matched with 1 girl, had a great date, and remembered details

    I think this was a big improvement just because I remembered the interesting stuff about her and Tucker didn’t have to yell at me to stop characterizing.

    “Share interesting stuff about yourself, but err on side of learning stuff about her, but don’t interrogate her.”

    This is a great point they bring up about balancing finding out things about her and telling her interesting stuff about yourself. Right now I tend to ask too many questions and am an interviewer instead of sharing and being vulnerable. I fill uncomfortable space in a convo by asking more questions. Getting better about this though. Their advice here was talk more about her in dates 1-2, get to know her, but also talk about yourself, not as much but still important.

    This is what Nils talked about when he said conversation was a dance, not an interview or quiz. That analogy really tied together all these things they were saying because I get dancing.

    21:30 – “There are plenty of times I’ve left a bar with a girl and we don’t have sex but I spend the night at her place, really common.”

    This is new for me. I usually don’t go back to her place, in the past it has always been mine. Yea this was confusing, probably because I’m inexperienced or we usually go back to my place.

    22:30 – Being honest and self-deprecating about your shitty living situation and low status

    They give some great tips and scripts here for how to tell a girl you live like a hobo, be funny about it, and go back to her place. Be honest about it and make a joke.

    “I would love to keep hanging out with you, but I’m super self-conscious about my place because it is kind of a disaster right now. Is there anywhere you suggest we could go?”

    “I just moved into my place and I am sleeping on a mattress on the floor like homeless person, so I’m not going to take you back there.”

    [When read to leave] “I would love to invite you back to my place but I just moved in (see above).”

    To be honest, I can’t see myself doing this. I’m still insecure about this.

    I will just have to practice and then try it out, see how it goes.

    Here’s the thing though and they are right: She probably lived like this at one point in her life and can understand and relate to it.

    From Mate: “90% of women would rather be with a funny, interesting husband than a rich boring husband.” But I’m not middle-class. I’m fucking poor.

    @24:30 – “Yes and…” for whatever situation you are in, you like it and who you are, and go with that (Improv Lesson)

    Charlie has some great advice here about how to talk about or joke about Car2Go.

    Whatever situation you are in, you like it and it is good.

    @26:30 – With this chick I feel better than her in at least 1 way, my age

    I am clueless and Tucker gets upset. Listening to this, I sound pretty stupid.

    I thought my mate value was higher because I was younger, but turns out that was totally wrong. I just had all these other things going for me.

    @29:00 – “Let her decide she’s out of your league.”

    @30:00 – “I think Joe is actually secretly arrogant in a weird way.”

    I think Tucker might be right about this. This is something weird I do where I’m arrogant about what I know.

    You’re thinking that their opinion, if it doesn’t align with yours in a negative way, is invalid:

    Her opinion is wrong VS she’s a bad judge of improv shows. I thought her opinion was wrong which was arrogant.

    @33:30 – She got sick and I texted her “Maybe I gave you gingervitis”

    Charlie reads my texts and there’s some cringe-worthy stuff here.

    Tucker makes a great joke.

    I am terrible at texting sometimes. I just took this too far, made 1 too many jokes.

    @36:30 – The context of jokes and staying consistent with you are

    This is why being like Tucker would never work for me.

    @37:30 – When women are sick or at the gym…

    They feel repulsively unattractive and anything you say to convince them otherwise is a waste of time or makes them feel worse.”

    Show empathy, concern, offer help (she won’t take it).

    38:30 – Great advice about texting. How to text, not fuck up over text

    “If you aren’t going to say it in-person, don’t text it.” – Charlie

    Follow your gut when you think it’s too risky or too much via text.

    Hard to impress over text and easy to fuck up over text. The goal is just to get to the next face to face interaction.

    “I have sold millions of books because of how I can put words on a page, but even I don’t try to woo over text … It should be just functional to you. That’s it.”

    Charlie reiterates the audio message thing he does and why girls like this:

    – There’s less room for error.

    – Removes ambiguity. She doesn’t have to read between the lines.

    – She can hear your voice and your emotion.

    @42:00 – Difference between being a nice guy and a door mat

    “You are a nice guy!” – Tucker

    “But this is different from being a doormat.” – Charlie

    I’ve misunderstood being a doormat VS being a kind person for most of my life. The idea of a Tender Defender, balancing kindness with assertiveness, that they talk a lot about on the podcast and in Mate is something I’m just learning about and need to go back and listen to.

    I have trouble accepting “being nice” and focusing on it as a strength because a lot of crap I’ve read and bad ideas I’ve picked up talk about doing the opposite: being an asshole, dick, cock & funny, guy with an edge. When someone says “you are nice and kind” I kind of feel like a pussy. I don’t why, I just do. It’s the whole “nice guys finish last” thing (or with Tucker’s book Assholes Finish First).

    It’s a part of who I am but I don’t look at it as a strength, which is stupid when looking at the empirical evidence, women like nice guys. Around the world, kindness is in the top 3 things women look for.

    On our first date, the nurse even mentioned the best thing about her best friend’s husband was that he was a good guy, an angel, haha. And she talked a lot about her sister’s boyfriend who was an asshole and how she hated him and thought her sister could do a lot better.

    @44:00 – What I should text and sending an audio message

    Tucker gives a good text idea to send. Great thing with audio is that you can re-record it if you fuck up and doesn’t get misinterpreted through text.

    @46:00 – How to bring up going back to her place.

    Next date would be the 3rd date and I want to take her dancing. The 3rd date is the sex date in American culture. So do we go back to her place or mine?

    My idea was to invite myself over to her place for dinner another time. This was quickly shut down by Tucker. Again, my instincts are wrong 9 times out of 10. Like George Constanza in Seinfeld, I should just do the opposite.

    I felt too insecure about talking about how my place sucked and I live like a bum because I haven’t bought furniture yet. I really didn’t want to have this conversation but it seems inevitable.

    “Instead of routing around a problem, why don’t you just be honest and face it head on.” – Tucker

    “Try that again but you like yourself [or situation].” – Charlie

    Tucker had this same problem when he was my age. He gave some great ideas of things to say:

    – “Look, I’d love to keep hanging out with you but the reality is my apartment is a fucking shithole. I just moved in and haven’t even bought my furniture yet because I’ve been so busy and I feel like a fucking bum.”

    – “I’d love to get out of here. Do you want to keep hanging out?”

    If she yes, then it’s your place or hers. Bring up why your place sucks and why, be honest. “Cool if we go to your place?”

    Making jokes about it are better than feeling shame about it. Millions of people are in the same situation. She has probably been in the same situation at one point or another in her life.

    @50:00 – You don’t need everything for her to be very attracted to you

    Tucker explains how you only need a few things for her to be attracted and if you are progressing upwards she will be happy. He’s explained this really well in this podcast about being young and not having your shit together.

    “I bet she already knows that you have a shitty apartment and that you’re not making a ton of money. She’s cool with that because she’s attracted to other parts of you…. If she wanted that guy [with a ton of money], she’d with that guy. She went on 2 dates with you. What more proof do you need that she likes you?” – Tucker

    “None.” – Me

    “Stop crippling yourself. Let her tell you that she’s not into you.” This was a call back to Episode 8 when I blew a great opportunity to date a cute girl who really liked me because I thought she was better than me. So stupid and arrogant but that’s what I do.

    @51:30 – Great girl that I met at improv

    I didn’t explain this that well in the podcast so I will write about it here:

    It was the 2nd or 3rd class improv class where I noticed this cute fun chick might be into me:

    – She’s really friendly.

    – I notice her staring at me or I look up and she’s looking at me (eye contact) in the middle of class.

    – During a class break, I was talking to our teacher, then went down to chill with everyone else. I was by myself and went to grab a glass of water. She was with a group by the cooler talking. 1) She roped me into the conversation saying, “… And Joe just moved here …” She had remembered when I introduced myself to the class that I had just moved here. And then I turned and I was talking with them. 2) She also said, “I’m so glad you’re here at improv with us.” She made it a point to say she was glad I was there, which was really nice and a clear signal that she liked me.

    The semi-date with her: Last Friday I went to an improv show where my whole group went out together to see our teacher. Nobody showed up. (too cold? wrong show?). Then 10 minutes before show started, she was there. She had gone and seen an earlier show. She was still there. We got to talking, she was tipsy, and had a bad day at work.

    We saw show together. It was great. When we sat down together she said something like, Because it was just us. And I was thinking wtf do I say to that and I just looked at my hands and said, “Well I need a drink right now then because I don’t know what to do with my hands.” (Ricky Bobby reference) She thought it was funny. And she was touching me a lot.

    We went to a cool cocktail bar by the improv place. I was leaving improv and she kind of rushed to follow me out or wanted to leave with me and I was like hey let’s go get a drink at this bar and talk. And we did and it was a lot of fun talking to her. Part of me wanted to make her feel better and part of me wanted to see where this is going so I took her to bar that we go to for impro and it was backed.

    She’s just a fun chick and there’s chemistry there. She was giving me compliments, “your watch is sexy” … “you are smart, Joe”

    Having fun = doing a play by play of another guy’s awful game:

    She saw her old manager hitting on this chick next to us and he looked kind of drunk so I just started making fun of him and doing a play-by-play of what this guy was saying, her reaction, etc. It was just loud enough for him not to hear it. It was fun for me, I don’t think she was laughing, but she was interested.

    After he left w/o her number, I was like “I wonder what he said to her?” And the improv girl I was with got her attention and was started a conversation then we found out she was new to Austin. And we just started talking with her.

    Found out she was from Boston and I said “You’re from Boston? Thank god you are here! That place is awful. I’ve never been but I hear so many bad things about it. A guy I work with was shitting on that city today.” Then she asked what did they say? And I just led off with “Well for 1 it’s really racist there.” And I think she got defensive after that but we still had fun with it.

    @56:00 – “Just ask her out!”

    I haven’t asked her out yet. I don’t know why, probably because I’m afraid of fucking up or it going bad then going to improv is weird.

    Next Week’s Goals

    Go out with the nurse and report back.

    Go out with the improv girl and report back.

    Keep meditating, at least 5 minutes every day

    Write in 5 minute journal (5 minutes in morning, and 5 at night)

    Read Daring Greatly


    —Huffduffed by j3p

  10. Helping Joe, Episode 10 | MatingGrounds


    In this episode of Helping Joe, Tucker and Charlie catch up with Joe on all the dates he has had in the last 2 weeks. They recognize and celebrate these wins to reinforce that Joe is on the right path and making progress. A huge part of building confidence is realizing the strides you’ve made since starting and internalizing the positive feedback from women you are dating and your friends (or coaches here).

    Later, they get into mistakes Joe made on these dates, including his funny but self-crippling texts. They also talk about why accepting who you are and being the best version of yourself is more effective than following a successful model that doesn’t fit who you are.


    You can click here (right click, then click save as) to download the episode directly.

    Click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.Click here to subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher.


    This episode is sponsored by Dude Wipes, the first flushable wipes for men. They are much better than toilet paper, and we love using them. Check them out on Amazon for free shipping and sales this month.



    Joe’s Thoughts and Takeaways From This Episode:

    Hey this is a running commentary of random thoughts, notes, and takeaways I had during or after this episode. – Joe


    Why it’s so important to recognize, celebrate, and internalize your wins

    How writing 5 minutes a day slowly changes your thinking and happiness

    One easy way to know a girl wants to kiss you.

    Charlie reads more of Joe’s odd but funny texts

    Women look into and over-analyze texts far more than you

    Being the best version of you VS the best version of someone else

    Accepting yourself for who you are, letting people in, and making good friends

    @Beginning – My dates and updates from the past 2-3 weeks.

    I run through updates of 5 girls I am dating or have gone on dates with.

    @6:00 – Charlie and Tucker compliment # of dates I’ve been on

    “Is this over the last few weeks? This is impressive.” – Charlie

    “We mostly cover the shit you do wrong… but this is fantastic.” – Tucker

    There are a lot of small wins here and positive feedback that I am doing well.

    This is cool because I usually don’t take the time to step back and realize the progress I’ve made, going from 0 dates, 0 prospects, and no plan to dating multiple girls in a week. It was cool they recognized this for me and it felt good. It’s nice to have people that congratulate you and are happy when you do well, especially for me because I don’t take the time to reflect on or celebrate wins, and even if I did I’m not sure who I would celebrate these wins with because I really don’t talk to anyone about how I suck with women and am getting better.

    @8:00 – Gym analogy

    Going to the gym every day, don’t see much progress, but after 3 months, there are big gains.

    This is a great analogy about how the process of improvement feels slow and shitty but you wake up one day a few months down the road and realize that you’re much better or farther along than when you started.

    There’s this great line they wrote in Mate about how this process of improvement can take months but in hollywood they trim it down to a 4 minute montage. Not that easy in real life, takes a lot of time.

    @11:00 – Difference between the old Joe and the new Joe

    Charlie makes a great point, and this is a great compliment, about how I am making a big effort to go out on a lot of dates. This is a lot different than how I have behaved in the past. When I was in NYC, I didn’t put in any effort at all and as a result I was pretty lonely for a while. Now, I’m taking more action, actually doing things and meeting some great women.

    @12:30 – Recognizing and celebrating the small wins

    “I asked you how you feel with your success, and you answered with all the things you’re doing wrong.”

    I think this is a prime example of disqualifying negative feedback, not internalizing small wins, and having lower confidence as a result. I don’t know why I do this, but it’s stupid. You can’t ever be happy when good things happen and you just find ways to downplay them. How do I recognize and stop this shitty mental process? (see @20:00 below)

    “You have proof of your ability, your skills, and your attraction in front of you. As a result of doing things, getting better, and getting results.” – Tucker

    He’s absolutely right but I don’t take the time to look back and recognize this. Even with these small wins, I still don’t feel that confident. Tucker and Charlie have more confidence in me than I do in myself.

    I have big problems with disqualifying positive feedback and imposter syndrome, which are other dumb ways of being self-critical.

    @18:30 – Tucker compliments

    “Your mental model [of yourself] is of someone who is far less attractive and valuable than you actually are… giving yourself permission to be confident will pull you closer to reality.”

    His point was that I should take time and give myself permission to recognize and feel good about these accomplishments, feel confident about the process and the direction you are headed in while realizing all the work you still have to do and the gains you want to make. And I don’t have to keep being down on myself. It doesn’t make sense when looking at the evidence.

    This was an awesome compliment, something I needed to hear, and I have to recognize and internalize if I want to have a happy life and a good time doing this.

    @20:00 – Charlie recommends 5 Minute Journal

    A great practice that Charlie recommended to do was the 5 Minute Journal. He said this helps to change these subconscious issues. It’s cool he talks about this because I just bought this a few days ago and have been writing in it. It’s a simple practice, 5 minutes in morning and 5 at night, but it helps slowly change your thinking and live a happier life.

    “The secret to wealth is gratitude. If you can look through that lens you have everything you need.”

    Tucker says I have to bring it in and they will read it. I really don’t want them to read this.

    @22:00 – Update with the “So did you grow up hispanic?” girl from Episode 3

    Charlie makes a great Taco Bell joke and they have fun with this.

    @23:30 – Flashback to Latin girl and the date outside in 30 degree weather from Episode 2

    It’s cool I am now able to laugh, instead of being embarrassed, when remembering this.

    Tucker’s advice here when this happens or a date is not into you is to have fun on your own and do whatever you want:

    “The point is what do you have to lose at that point. She’s not into you. It can’t get any worse. Maybe you knock something loose in yourself or in her that allows you two to see each other in a different way.” – Tucker

    I don’t know how to do this because I think I’m unconsciously afraid to take the risk of looking foolish and I probably have been afraid of looking foolish for so long that those “being funny muscles” aren’t there (improv is helping to build these).

    What is a small way to do this and build those back up? What’s a small risk or lesser version of what Tucker is talking about here that I can start with?

    @28:00 – Back to the other girl and date update

    Charlie makes another joke about dead bodies… in the moment this was funny but listening back to this it’s kind of annoying. Just one too many jokes and I can’t get through what actually happened.

    @29:30 – Girls, gum, and kissing

    I think girls do this a lot before they kiss you, ask if you want gum or they eat gum.

    Also, she was laughing here so yea this was fun playful teasing.

    @33:00 – I got insecure about taking her back to my place because I have no furniture

    Unlike in the Episode 8 about not having a car, this is actually a legitimate concern even though there are some girls who don’t even care…

    “I’ve fucked girls in closets before.” – Tucker

    “She’s called your wife!” – Charlie

    I thought this was hilarious.

    Why is a park bench so bad? It was a nice beautiful day. I can’t take her back to my place because it sucks. Where else do we go in the middle of the day? What are better places / options?

    This date was the highest point of our short relationship.

    @34:30 – Charlie reads my texts

    This was cringe-worthy. I don’t know why I send these texts. Tucker loses it and laughs.

    @37:30 – Women look into texts and over-analyze every message far more than you

    So being playful or silly or goofy is not obvious to them.

    This is a great point and something I really don’t think about when I text women.

    There is a lot of room for misinterpretation through text.

    @38:00 – This was a blown opportunity. This does not work.

    12 hour delays in text response are massive. I didn’t think it was that big a deal but I guess it is. Just shows you don’t care that much.

    This was a girl I liked and she liked me, wanted to fuck me… and instead of pursuing her, I played that game of not texting her a lot so I don’t look too into her or too desperate. Well, that didn’t work because she just found somebody who was more responsive and wanted to progress things.

    “I don’t know where you got this idea in your head, but playing it cool doesn’t work for you at all. And it doesn’t even work for the guys who you think it works for.” – Tucker

    The one time it does work is in short-term relationships between very high status guys (famous or super attractive) and a small number of emotionally damaged women.

    This isn’t even what I’m looking for! I don’t know why the fuck I do this… probably because I don’t want to look stupid or too needy/eager.

    @40:00 – Why I did this

    Same shit as last time when Tucker blew up. I was afraid of looking desperate or too eager/needy so I wanted to be cool.

    Instead she just thinks you aren’t into her and she stops caring or moves on.

    “The girls that this attracts are really insecure.”

    @44:00 – Talking about being too available and low status

    Tucker makes a great point about how this is who I am right now. “That’s who you are!” This hurt, but he’s right. And I can change this.

    The only way to not be these things is to do more cool shit. Have more things going, more friends, more stuff to do, build a network, etc.

    Started with improv, keep going!

    “If you are a guy who is low status and insecure around women because you don’t have a lot of experience and you own that, some women will find that attractive because that’s honesty. Other women won’t because they want experienced guys.” – Tucker

    Yea right now I’m afraid of being honest about this because I think it will be a turn off for most women and is really unattractive. Also being upfront with all this in the beginning is a little too much. The older I get the less attractive and more weird this is. Tucker’s point was that she will figure this out anyway.

    @47:00 – Being the best version of yourself VS the best version of somebody else

    Following successful models doesn’t work unless it fits who you really are.

    When you think of somebody who is successful, there’s all this context and other things going on.

    Tucker is a perfect example. The stories in his book show only 1 side of him and you can’t get the full context of who is he and what was attractive about him just from reading the books. If you are not like him, you should not try to be him.

    “You are acting a different way that doesn’t fit who you are.” – Tucker

    He’s right…

    @50:00 – Forcing it instead of being yourself on dates

    I do this shit a lot on first dates (and at speed dating) with chicks that are hot where I try to like the things she likes and be into what she’s into to so that she likes me and we connect … instead of being myself and connecting from that or just going our separate ways.

    Comes from a scarcity mentality I think… I gotta make it work with her because I don’t have options or a lot of women in my life.

    “You haven’t had enough people in your life that have accepted you for you who you are. So you’re not confident that anyone will accept you for who you are.” – Tucker

    @51:00 – Processing, accepting, and internalizing your wins is a big part of confidence.

    I didn’t do this well earlier in this episode. Hope that doing 5 minute journal will help with this.

    @52:00 – Tucker tells a book meeting story – How he knows he’s a good guy

    “I know I’m a good man because of the many good women I have in my life… The reason I know I’m a good person is because of the good men I have in my life.” – Tucker

    He’s right. Veronica is great and she wouldn’t put up with him if he wasn’t a great man.

    “You’re married so people will think, ‘Well at least somebody can stand the son of a bitch.’”

    – Charlie quoting a line from The Departed

    @54:00 – Accepting yourself for who you are

    “You have not accepted yourself for you who are, partly because you don’t have people in your life accepting you. I think the only reason that is is because you won’t let them in.” – Tucker

    I think he’s right. And to be honest this has been a pattern most of my life with pretty much everyone I know. I either wear masks or don’t let people in. Probably because I’m afraid of them not liking me, losing interest once they find out more about me, who I am, what I do.

    @55:00 – Making an effort to make friends with good people

    Tucker talks about this and why I might avoid people. I argued with him a bit here and I still don’t think he was right. However, he is right about the multitude of fears that I unconsciously have about being around people. He explains how there are a lot of unconscious fears or insecurities I have and that’s why I don’t go out a lot and hang out potentially great friends.

    I think I’m getting better at this, but I still have a long way to go and need to actively start planning and doing more things with people I like and who like me. He’s right about social relationships being really fucking important.

    “You don’t have to make too much of an effort. You just have to meet them.” – Tucker

    Usually I don’t do this. I withdraw and turn down opportunities to hang out. It’s a bad habit that has led me to where am I in my life, without a lot of friends.

    “As long as you can understand it, you can start to make changes.” – Tucker


    —Huffduffed by j3p

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