In this video, I share with you 3 mistakes we can fall into that have the potential to hurt desire.
These 3 insights could mean the difference between piquing someone’s interest and a situation just fizzling out.
Leave me a comment after watching; I want to know what you think.
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I wanted to talk about three mistakes we make in early stage dating that really hurt our chances of things going anywhere.
When we like someone, we all want to get them hooked, don’t we? We all want to make sure that it actually has the best possible chance of going somewhere. Well, there are three things we do that jeopardize that, that I wanted to highlight in this video. And I want to start by just making a distinction, a distinction between love and desire, connection and attraction.
Love isn’t the same as desire. What gets someone to have feelings of love for us is not the same as what makes someone want to take us home, what makes someone turned on by us. And if we want to keep someone’s attention in dating, desire is absolutely essential.
The three things that I’m going to talk about today, the mistakes we make, are not necessarily things that will hurt love, but they will have the potential to hurt desire. And if we hurt desire, we run the risk of losing someone’s energy. And when we feel like, oh, it fizzled out with someone, oh why did they lose steam? It’s not because of a lack of love. It’s because of a lack of desire. And by the way, what gets people to the point of love? Enough desire in the early stages to carry them through to a place of real deep connection and investment.
Mistake number one, showing that we are surprised someone is into us. If we say or do things that communicate to someone, “I just don’t know why someone like you would like someone like me. I’m surprised that you are into me. I’m surprised that you like me as much as you say you do. I am surprised you approached me.”, what we’re saying to someone is “someone with your value shouldn’t be into someone with my value.” And the danger of that is that we’re going to make someone feel like they got the raw end of the deal.
We all want to feel in life like we’re getting the best deal possible. So, no one wants to go into a dating scenario feeling like they’re the one being shortchanged. But when we say to someone, “I’m surprised that you’re into me.”, it’s another way of saying to someone, “You’re the one getting shortchanged in this situation because I’m of lower value and you’re of higher value.” If we do that, we run the risk of killing desire before we’ve even started.
Mistake number two, telling someone you’re afraid that they’re going to hurt you. If we continuously show, “I’m afraid that you’re going to change your mind about me. I’m afraid that you’re going to leave me. I’m afraid that you’re going to cheat on me. I’m worried you are just stringing me along.”, we are playing a kind of victim in this scenario. We are not saying that we have equal opportunity to hurt each other, that we’re both in a situation. Being in dating is to be in a situation where you can be hurt. There’s no getting around that. If you go on a date with someone and they don’t call you, we can feel that as a rejection. That’s vulnerability. You can’t be in dating without making yourself vulnerable, but that’s also true of the other person.
So, if we are acting like we are the only one who’s in danger, it’s a way of communicating that, “You have all the power and I have none. And you must have all the power because you are the one with all the cards. You’re the one who is more valuable in the situation. I’m the one who has to be afraid that they’re going to get hurt.”
We’re literally telling someone that they’re more valuable than us. We’re also making them feel a level of safety that breeds a kind of boredom. We’re saying to someone, “Hey, the dance you thought you were in, where we’re dancing together and we’re kind of feeling each other out and seeing where it goes and who knows, but let’s keep going. That dance is over. You’re in control. I’m the one who’s scared. I’m the one who could get hurt here. You’re totally safe. There’s nothing more for you to think about.”
Mistake number three, talking about parts of yourself you don’t like. This could be as simple as talking about how you really don’t like your body. Now, when we do this, the first thing we’re doing is obviously drawing someone’s attention to the very thing that we don’t like. Now, you might say, “But that’s just honest. I don’t like it, and that’s just part of my vulnerability is saying that I don’t like it.” Well, we have to ask ourselves what’s the appropriate time and place for revealing that kind of insecurity?
If you were on your way in to watch a movie that you were really excited about, you’d been anticipating this movie, you were looking forward to it. And then right before the movie was about to start, a video played of the director saying, “Hey guys, so I hope you enjoy the movie. I just want to let you know, there’s a scene in the first 10 minutes, the one in the bar that I’m really not happy with the way that it turned out. Enjoy the movie. I’m just sorry about that scene. It just didn’t go the way we wanted.”
Imagine watching that movie now. Are you going to be able to enjoy the movie or is your mind just now going to be on the bar scene? “I mean, what’s this bar scene? Let me see, let me see if it’s as bad as the director says it is. Oh, I guess I see what he means. That is a kind of, that wasn’t a great scene. I guess I can see why he didn’t like it.” You’re literally looking for reasons not to like that thing. And by the way, even if that wasn’t the best scene in the movie, your whole attention is drawn to that scene and not the rest of the movie, that might be awesome and might make that scene completely irrelevant in the context of the whole thing. You don’t get a chance, in other words, to now leave and just love that movie.
If someone says to you that they don’t like their nose, then they’re giving you their interpretation of their nose. I don’t like my nose, but they’re giving you their interpretation of it. You should be allowed to have your own interpretation of that thing.
Now, part of this we know comes from a kind of insecurity that, if I’m worried about something, if I’m worried you’re not going to like something, let me knock it before you do. Let me at least show you that I’m aware of this thing that isn’t great. That way, I don’t seem like a fool. I am acknowledging that this thing isn’t great. And now I’m disarming you. I’m 8 Mile-ing myself, that scene in 8 Mile where Eminem, he bashes himself, right? He gets up and he bashes himself. He knocks himself in all of these ways. And now he’s like, “Now, what do you have to say?”
I’m a piece of white trash. I say it proudly, this battle. I don’t want to win. I’m outy. Here, tell these people something they don’t know about me.
But dating isn’t a rap battle, friends. It’s not, “Let me just knock myself down in all of the ways that you could knock me down. Now what negative shit are you going to say about me?” The goal is not to rid them of any negative things to say, because you already said them. The goal, hopefully, is that someone comes along and is able to, not only see the parts of you that you think are wonderful, but maybe, God forbid, is able to see the parts of you that you don’t think are wonderful as wonderful.
Now, by the way, am I saying that you can never say anything insecure, that you can never point out something that makes you self conscious? Of course not. There are always going to be times in dating and relationships where a moment of being self conscious is a moment of humanity, is a moment of beautiful vulnerability that connects us to another person.
But if we bombard people with the things about ourselves that we don’t like, if we continuously tell someone, “I really don’t like how I look today. I don’t feel good in myself today.” If we keep saying that, then we’re brainwashing someone to think a certain way about us, to view us through a certain lens. And don’t think that that brainwashing will never get through.
At best, they’ll still think that you look amazing, but will start to see that you don’t think you are amazing. And therefore, that will have an impact on the way they see you. Because ultimately, long term, who wants to be with someone who doesn’t see any value in themselves? But the worst case scenario is that something they actually liked, they start to question whether they should like it, because some of those things you say about it being hideous actually get through.
Now, I know that we all in our dating lives want to be accepted for who we are. We all want someone to come along and for us to not have to play a game to get them, not have to pretend we’re more confident than we are, but instead to just be who we are and have someone accept us. But I remind everyone again, someone accepting us isn’t the same as someone desiring us.
Someone may accept you. They may think you’re wonderful. That’s not the same as desiring. People aren’t so powerful that the mechanisms, the kind of economics of value that happen to all of us reflexively are things they can just control. If we behave as someone who has no value, who isn’t desired by anybody else, hasn’t been wanted by anyone in years and who can blame them, you’ve got all these terribly unattractive features.
If we continue to paint that picture to someone, then they can be forgiven for losing desire, because we’re all going on these unconscious ways of measuring people’s value and then getting attracted or not attracted to where they end up on that scale.
Can we do some of these things I’ve said in this video and get away with it? Of course we can. Can they even be charming sometimes? Yes. Can they make us human and vulnerable in the right context? Of course. But the question we have to ask ourselves is, is the pattern of my behavior one that paints a picture of someone that has value or someone that does not? And if the answer is the latter, we have to start redressing these things that we do to sabotage ourselves with the people we like.
Now, if you want to work on the kind of confidence that will underpin the value that I’m talking about for you in dating, I’ve developed a five and a half day process that I started over 10 years ago in my Live Retreat.
We couldn’t do it for two and a half years because of the pandemic. But our first In-Person Retreat back is happening on the 30th of May until the 5th of June.
I don’t have any more of these events this year. We haven’t even decided whether we’re going to do it again next year, but there is one right now for anyone who wants to be coached by me, for anyone who’s like, “Ah, I want to work with you one to one. I want to improve my confidence or create the life I want with you, not just in dating, but in every area of my life.” This is a must event for you.
I’m going to leave a link here so that you can find out all about it. It’s MHRetreat.com. And I really hope that you and I get to transform your life together on the beach no less in Florida at the end of May.
7 Replies to ““Why Did They Stop Chasing Me??””
Great video as usual, Matthew. I’ve been in a situation where the guy has told me some of the mistakes you mention; I don’t like my body, I’m insecure… I don’t see thee negatives that he does, but ultimately I then question why I’d be interested in someone who doesn’t value himself… Because if he doesn’t value himself, he can’t truly value me.
Thank you for pointing out the distinction between love and desire in dating. Very thought provoking.
been following you for a while, more than I wish it was necessary.
In my last situationship, I didn’t do any of the mistakes you highlighted, if anytning I had read enough about you to know which video or script to think of when in need. Still, I find myself in one of those “what the fuck happened?” situation, where he cooled off and I don’t know how much it’s due to external situation (which I believe being serious and valid), and how much he’s being a douche.
So what’s for us, self confident women who didn’t undermined ourself in the first dates?
I just went on the second date with a guy who exactly did these 3 things! On paper he checked all boxes, nice enough and we had fun dates, so I didn’t know why I didn’t “desire” him AT ALL. Now I know why, thanks for clarifying, and I won’t make that mistake for next guy for sure!
I agree that people want to hook someone when they’re interested in them and want to create desire. I’ve noticed there’s a lot of psychological tricks out there that are effected to create “desire” but as all things in life sometimes the best intentions don’t matter if the outcome is negative although from a medical perspective it seems like people think that as long as your heart is beating everything is okay. This video made me realize how someone can internalize things and take them personally in dating. No matter how much we may desire to date, the reality of the situation is that if we don’t rebuild confidence we probably won’t be successful. I think everyone’s opinion on what love is might be different like romanticizing someone inflicting pain and being the remedy at the same time but I think non- codependent desire is much easier than that. Cool vid
Thanks a lot.
Mistake #1 & 2 committed… how to salvage the situation?
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