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Introduction to The Hot Guyde How to Become an Attractive Man

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Curious what The Hot Guyde’s all about? Here is the Introduction, free to read here.

For two years I’d had a crush on her. She was beautiful, smart, a talented dancer, and living down the street from me to boot. All of my friends—hell, most of the school—knew about my feelings. They’d been trying to get me to ask her out, and I’d decided the moment had come. It was the night of our eighth-grade end-of-the-year social, and I resolved to ask her to dance. After two hours of talking myself into it, I walked up to her and…froze. I couldn’t do it. The anxiety was too extreme. My buddy, who’d been watching, wasn’t going to let me get away with that. He snuck up, tapped her on the shoulder, and ran away, spurring her to turn and face me. I was surprised, but blurted out, “You want to dance?” Her reply was instant. “Nooooooooooooooooooooo!”

It was my first rejection—the first of hundreds. I sulked for the next couple of days, but on the third day, as I sat in art class, I made myself a promise. “This isn’t how my story’s going to end.” I know, melodramatic, huh? “From this day on, I will do everything I can to become the most attractive man I can be until I’m thirty years old.” Why thirty? I don’t know. It seemed far off at the time, and I figured I’d get married by then. (Funny to think about, now that I’m twenty-nine….)

Fortunately for me, I followed through. Every year since, I’ve done my best to learn about dating, relationships, and becoming more attractive. I asked my female friends what they liked in guys, I tried out new fashions and hobbies, and I started working out. Later on, I began studying psychology, self-help, and anything else remotely relevant I could get my hands on. Most of my early efforts were misguided, but every year, without fail, I had more success than the year before. I went from the “creepy” guy in high school to a guy who intrigued pretty much every woman he met. In recent years, I’ve never lacked sexual companions, and today, I’m in a relationship that makes me happier than I’ve ever been.

Around the age of twenty-three, I made a discovery. Trying to “be attractive” is actually a pretty damn unattractive thing to do. Attraction is something other people feel toward you, not something you do, so when you’re trying to “be attractive,” you’re looking to warp other people’s perceptions. It’s manipulative, and when women realize you’re doing it, they find it creepy. I learned that you can’t control how anyone sees you, or whether anyone likes you, and you shouldn’t try. All you can control is how you see yourself—and whether or not you ask out the women you like. Attractiveness isn’t something you can work to have; it’s something you develop as a side effect of living an interesting life. Once I understood that, the way forward became clear. I needed to learn to be direct, authentic, and comfortable with dating, and doing that was just a matter of removing the obstacles on that path. My biggest barriers were a lack of confidence in myself and a lack of social skills. If I could address those problems, I figured I’d be golden, and I was right. Of course, those weren’t exactly small problems to solve.

You’ve picked up this book looking for dating advice, and if you’re anything like I was, you’ve pored over endless volumes on this subject and found most of them to be bullshit. Perhaps you’ve delved into the seduction community, or the work of “alpha male” evangelists, or the books on achieving dating success through various spiritual movements. Maybe you’ve just had friends offering you platitudes such as “Be yourself.” You’re frustrated, and you’re probably wondering if The Hot Guyde will be more of the same.

I never expected to give dating advice. It’s something I more or less stumbled into when I started answering questions about dating on the Q&A website Quora. I began answering those questions out of boredom, but after several months, hundreds of people were telling me how my advice had changed their lives. My writing got published in the Huffington Post, Time, Lifehacker, Thought Catalog, and elsewhere. People kept asking me where to learn everything I had to say, and all I could do was give them a long reading list, each item of which was only partially applicable to their needs. I was encouraged to write a book that focused on the most important lessons, so I have. I’ve designed this book to be the resource I wish I had had when I was younger, and I’ve tried to keep it free of all the shit that annoys me most about the dating-advice industry and the self-help genre. This book is structured around problems, solutions, explanations, and exercises that put those solutions into practice. Everything I recommend is based on scientific research, mostly in the fields of cognitive therapy, social psychology, and couples therapy. You will find no misguided appeals to the “Law of Attraction,” pop evolutionary psychology, neurolinguistic programming, or any such pseudoscience. I also offer references for everything I suggest, so if you care to look into why I recommend what I do, you can read any of my sources for yourself.

Who Is This Book For?

I wrote this book for heterosexual guys who’d like to have more success in dating, though come to think of it, most of the insights I’m sharing can help anyone in any sort of relationship. Do you freak out about how women judge you? Are you depressed because you think you’ll be alone forever, and that depression keeps you from meeting women? Do you have bitter, misogynistic views? Are you stinky? This book will help with all of that and more. I also hope that when you finish this book, dating success will be the least of the benefits you enjoy. It’s not a guide to getting laid; it’s a guide to becoming an attractive man, and that entails a lot of personal changes that are incredibly beneficial in their own right. Yes, women will love you, but more important than that, you’ll love yourself.

The Hot Guyde Approach

There are no pickup lines or routines in The Hot Guyde. Since the root of most men’s dating struggles lies in our own self-limiting ways of thinking, the most important component of this book is a collection of clinically effective techniques to address self-defeating thoughts. You will learn how to deal with shame, low self-esteem, fear, laziness, and bad habits.

The next big issue most men face is a lack of social skills. We will discuss at length the mechanisms underlying social interactions as understood by psychologists. The Hot Guyde will teach you to be socially aware and adept. You will be capable of mustering confidence, sensitivity, humor, and sexuality as needed.

With these first two sections alone, you will enjoy more dating success than anyone you know, but we’re not stopping there. While looks are nowhere near so important as your self-esteem and personality, we’ll also talk about how to improve your physical appearance through hygiene, grooming, and fashion, and discuss the most clinically effective approaches to diet and exercise.

The fourth section will talk about actual dating. You’ll learn how to meet women, flirt, plan dates, kiss, cuddle, and be good in bed. We’ll talk about common problems in long-term relationships, both monogamous and casually sexual. Every chapter will have exercises to help ingrain the lessons into your personality. Some of these exercises will be one-time things, some will be ongoing, some will need to be done in specific circumstances, and some will require a partner. Only you can know what exercises will benefit you most, and you will need to design your own personal schedule and “workouts” to practice and improve. The last chapter will give you an example of how to do this, and you’re welcome to visit for additional help and support.

How to Read This Book

This book isn’t a fluffy collection of anecdotes to make you feel good while you’re taking a dump; it’s a cross between a handbook and a textbook, and it’s extensive. You’re going to have to study, practice, and take notes. Don’t try to make all your changes at once, or you’ll be overwhelmed.

Here’s how I suggest you go about the program. Read through this book once. At the end of each chapter, there are exercises labeled “Immediate.” Do these exercises as soon as you finish a chapter. Ignore the rest. After you’ve finished the book, when you have a solid idea of what your biggest issues are, look back through the exercises and focus on ones from the chapters you’re most concerned with. Start incorporating those specific “ongoing” and “responsive” exercises into your daily routine. Remember, you’re human. You’re not going to change overnight, and there are only so many changes you can make at a time. Your transformation will take months and could take a couple of years. Don’t rush. However long it takes you, The Hot Guyde will help you all along the way, and if something doesn’t make sense, you can always ask for help at

While you’re reading, you might sometimes wonder why I’m asking you to learn a particular skill. For example, in chapter 2, we’re going to talk a lot about “talking back to your inner critic.” You might be confused about how this technique applies to dating, but then, three weeks later, when you’re making your first approach and your brain starts to flood with thoughts such as “She won’t want to talk to me, she won’t find me attractive,” that’s when you’ll realize, “Oh shit, this is what he was talking about,” and you’ll know how to deal with it. Likewise, you might not know how “habit-reversal therapy” applies to dating, but when you start taking a look at your posture and you realize, “Damn, whenever I walk, I hunch my shoulders,” that’s when the tool will make sense. Every word in this book has a purpose, so if something doesn’t make sense, just keep reading; its value will become clear later on.

The Hot Guyde is a labor of love. I remember the pain and loneliness I went through, and how powerless I felt to change things. I remember my frustration when all the advice I could find was manipulative and misogynistic. I wanted to write a book that would help everyone who struggles as I did. Despite what you may have been told, you don’t have to be a “bad boy” or practice dozens of routines to date women. You just need to learn how to be the most authentic, confident version of yourself. There are women out there who will want you, eagerly. I hope this book helps you find them.


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