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My Journey to Love

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Hello guys,

so this is my journal for my love life. I started SU and just as PU, I am devouring it. It's da bomb so far. I understand better my failures on Tinder relating to having too much Power when women were interested in me. The result: self-rejection again and again.

In Brief, I am early forties. So far I had a troubled love life. I had a few GFs, I did the whole PUA stuff, I had an undisclosed number of lovers. Then my last relationships about 4 years ago were completely messed up. One of my GF for 4 years (on and off) I loved to make love with her but apart of that, she was sucking my energy because of her low self-esteem. So I ended the relationship twice as she was taking advantage of my difficulty to assert myself and was guilt tripping me.

I had another one and she was a narcissist manipulator and pathological liar (think Amber Heard) which did not help and I failed an important exam. That was a life lesson as I learned how much damage narcissists can do.

I've been celibate since 4 years or so. I had a few very short flings. I am now ready to go back in the game. However, now I do it as an honest man and I don't want to fall again in the PUA trap which damaged me as well as the people and relationships around me.

I will use this journal to write down the exercises from SU and my experiences and hopefully get some feed-back from you guys about my journey.

Next week I have my theoretical exam and after that, I end officially my celibacy. I did it on purpose not to be hurt emotionally and not to be distracted from my goals. Now, thanks to TPM community I have a much better life: good friends and my relationships at work are much better. I am also currently on a rotation with a normal schedule. I started working out again.

I am now in a good place to start having a love life again!

My current sticking points: I lost my sexual confidence and I lost the habit to approach and flirt with women. I'll have to expose myself again to failure, I'm now looking forward to it.

More to come!  🙂

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Lucio BuffalmanoKavalierAlex

My mind is blown away by SU. The reason is that to put all the ideas that you already presented, go deeper on them and put them in sequential order is eye-opening.

I'll be 100% honest: I'm struggling on Tinder at my location. As you know I'm dark-skinned (brown) and it took me a few years to realize that there are stigmas against people looking like me. I'm not muslim but I think people subconsciously attribute me a lower status due to my skin colour and my appearance.

I'm aware I have to break the stereotype by dressing up. I actually almost finished my dental treatment (had surgery, etc.) and am going back to the gym. As you noticed in your experience, the market is HUGE. If I put Tinder in Poland, I get lots of matches. In my current town: almost none.

I'll be 100% honest as well: I'm looking for blondes with big breasts. The most beautiful blondes (I tested with Tinder and had my feet on the ground) are in Norway. However, on Tinder in Norway I don't get matches. I get more matches in Denmark.

So, there's definitely a type I belong to since I cannot change my skin colour. I now have a beard but it's more the modern type. And I dress more modern. However, I understand that I get "typecasted" as the immigrant. It does not matter that this is my home country.

It's a bit frustrating because I haven't found the hack yet. I thought about finding a girl somewhere else and bring her here. It's true that in Poland I could get a prettier girl in a week of travel than I could here.

I'm aware I'm not going to the right places where I live. Where I live is a bit paradoxical: it's a resource-rich however semi-conservative town. It's not as liberal as bigger cities. I'm working in an industry filled with women, but that does not mean filled with hot and high quality women.

Also in my profession, reputation is everything so I don't want to hook up with a colleague and I have not met a high quality beautiful woman I would be interested in.

In my life, what I need to improve to make it more attractive:

  • My body: working out
  • My style: dressing better
  • My game: I have to get back to it and go on the playing field.
  • My hobbies: I have to get back to climbing

What I have good now is a good job, a nice place, cool friends. I can always go higher. However, I think that now I have enough social skills and power dynamics knowledge to attract quality women.

Otherwise, there is the trap of perfectionism: "I'll get into a relationship, when...."

I considered going to Poland, but the pay is way too low in field. I like the culture, food and people but the pay does not match. After having considered to move to several countries (Norway, Denmark, Netherlands), I realised that I live in one of the richest countries in the World.

Through learning from you, Lucio, and knowing better women, I started to value wealth more. Therefore, I don't think I'll move for now. So I think the trick for me is to find my niche.

As a free-thinker, I don't belong to a particular niche. My identities are: musician, traveler, philosopher, physician, thinker, nature-lover, board gamer, science-fiction lover, culture-lover (brainstorming out loud here). I love rock bars, this is where I get along naturally with people. The freedom-lovers.

What I know is that I'm part of the population that tries to think for themselves.

My previous mindset was: "I did not do all these studies and work not to be with beautiful women". That was the wrong mindset since I encountered the concept of "mating intelligence". If I'm not in this position, it's not because I deserve it (entitlement mindset) but because I have not earned it yet.

As I said, this is a beginning of a new journey for me. A journey of self-reflection and action.

As you guys can see, having read SU sparked my mind.

My problem is also that I explored a lot in my 20's and 30's, therefore I don't have much time left to maximize my ROI in dating. I considered moving to these Northern European countries but I would earn less and would have to adapt. So I'm not sure it's worth it.

However, I do not find my type of women often here. So it's a work in progress. What's important is that I'm moving forward. Previously I was also holding off because the market here did not fit me. I changed my mind otherwise nothing will happen in my dating life.

I prefer to date than not to date.

I also understood your message about not being obsessed with the white girls. It's a good point.

Edit: my niche is the international crowd and the travellers. Also my strategy was to go where girls with big tits are (Poland) and find a blond there. I now think that it's more effective to go to a place with lots of blonde girls (Norway) and look for a girl with big breasts. I do love the personality of slavic women though: strong and caring. Whereas the germanic women are more stoic I think. Food for thoughts.

Lucio Buffalmano has reacted to this post.
Lucio Buffalmano

Great stuff, John.

Just a few notes:

  • Tinder matches are a great way to get a feel about a market, but in-person can change that: once you're there in person, you can date well because being in person helps a lot to overcome stereotypes. Both in cold approaches and, even a heck more, through social circles and intros.
    Still, of course, at parity of everything else, do pick the "better market" as per average matches
  • I'd personally consider moving despite the pay: there are plenty of ways to make up for the money, despite the obvious one that money is important, but at a deeply discounted rate after a certain threshold. Somes thoughts:
    1. local costs are also lower
    2. you may do some consults in higher paying markets
    3. you get a boost just for coming from the "better health-system country", so you probably can negotiate higher rates compared to local ones, which would also make you higher status within the work community (as opposed to now where there may still exist some of that BS stigma of "he emigrated here from less developed place")
    4. you could target the foreign, higher-paying expats there (ie. "English, French-speaking doctor educated and trained in Switzerland", it's already half the higher-price sale 🙂 )
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Hello Lucio,

thank you very much for your answer!

Regarding Tinder, it's true. I think one can overcome through the in-person encounter. Tinder is a gauge but has limitations.

Regarding moving, I am pondering what you're saying. I will write in the post "Where to live in the World" about my current conclusions about my comparison of the countries I travelled to with moving in mind and also about Switzerland.

Walking in the streets, I think I now understand what is my current limitation beyond fitness. In my context, to be above the average guy you need to appear also above average. So I think it's my style that is preventing me from making a better 1st layer impression. I do not have a bad style. However, since I live in a Western country, it's a matter of dressing up (expensive clothes)

Also, regarding the investment about eye contact from PU, it totally changed my way of doing it. I was staring way too much at women and at people in general. I was doing it out of curiosity and interest but it cost me tons of power.

Today, I saw a pretty girl on an escalator. I glanced at her and when we were closer I looked at her: she was eyeing me hard! So I think that in the past I was giving my power away through eye contact only. If I would have not read SU (25% done and both excited to read more and afraid that it's going to be over at some point) I would have not been aware of that.

Just like PU gave me an access to new layers of reality, SU is doing that for me. I thought I had a pretty good understanding of women, but now I feel more and more that I'm in their head.

I also realized many of my failure came from a power dynamics issue. I think SU is what is going to bring me to the next level in terms of dating. I can feel it. I am in a new phase of self-development and my mind is all excited. Now I want to work out more, I want to buy better clothes. I am REALLY motivated because I understand now what I was not understanding. So I think that all the rest will fall into place. I'm even motivated to do cold approaches again.

So I think that with the social skills and the power dynamics skills that I worked for and acquired over the past 2 years (already!!!), I have now the proper foundation to add the dating skills on top of it. See "mindsets" for my new mindsets.

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Lucio Buffalmano

I just read the part about Online Dating in SU. I decided to start a new profile from scratch. I think I'll wait until my dental treatment is over though.

Since I started SU, it feels like I can better read what is going on in women's minds. The eye-contact, the proximity, what they say in what they don't say (AKA what they want in a man), the lies, the games, etc.

It's like I had a veil removed from my vision. I can see things I could not before.

I understand the concept of dating high-power. It's the concept I've been looking for a long time. It's the most foundational explanations of my failures and my successes.

I also understood why I did not have so much success with Tinder in Norway and Sweden but in Poland. I attributed it to my phenotype. Now I have another theory, I think it's a matter of showing in the pictures what really attracts women: status, resources, intelligence, athleticism, etc.

And it's a matter of context. Say Norway, for girls pictures of them in an exotic location is on a beach or in a warm country. My pictures on my profile are me in Norway, so it's not really exotic. Also, I am clearly not dressed up enough. So I understand now the game I'm playing.

I understand it's again WIITM, it's all about what you project. And who you are of course. But if you cannot go through the appearances, your inner value can not shine as we already discussed.

So I think dating is about being a realist. Just like other aspects in life, we are most effective when we have reality-based thinking and therefore are better able to influence reality through our actions.

Lucio Buffalmano has reacted to this post.
Lucio Buffalmano

In about 2.5 weeks, I will have my final exam. I am confident I will pass it (change of mindset and self-talk after my previous exam).

After this exam, I will FINALLY be able to focus on my love life. Here is my plan after the exam:

  1. Listen in transports books about dating, alternating with negotation books not to be bored (I listen to audible every morning)
  2. Do 1 lesson of SU every night (especially the planning part)
  3. Find events and activities with the secondary goal of meeting women
  4. Getting into the habit to talking to women I'm attracted to (I lost many opportunities in my life and lost this habit when I got out of my pick-up stage)
  5. Consider other dating markets (see below)
  6. Do sports like a madman: workout in the morning, cardio in the evening -> external layer
  7. Buy new clothes -> external layer
  8. Finish my dental treatment/whitening treatment as soon as I stopped smoking -> external layer

Lucio, to asnwer to you about your remark some time ago. I thought about what you said about still considering moving for dating purposes. I agree with you.

Since I'm not going to do an academic career and will be more of a generalist, I have way more job options/opportunities right now. There is no set plan I have to obey to to reach a certain career goal. In 9 months, I will have my degree (I need still to go to a stupid conference only happening in June to get it). From there, I will have my life back, meaning I will be able to choose where to go next.

From the 9th of September, dating will be my priority now that I have a good social life and a stable financial situation.

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Lucio Buffalmano

From the 9th of September, dating will be my priority now that I have a good social life and a stable financial situation.

Congrats John, that's a very good place to be in, lots of freedom-based power.

On moving to increase your chances (one of the hacks from PU)... I'm not so convinced. If what you want is to regain your confidence and be laid a lot it can be a good option. But if you are from the West and you go to say ASEAN or Cuba or whatever to slay... that has consequences. It's all about the price you are willing to pay for a type of relationship. And if your frame of reference is the West, it sub communicates "I really don't want to pay the price for a deep relationship, I go to where the price (for sex) is the lowest" (I'm not talking about paying for sex, but for the more complex and nuanced price you pay for every relationship in your life.)

Anecdata: A friend said to me "Everytime I'm on coke, I hook up; now I have learned that connection and when I'm sober I cannot really do approaches, I lack confidence." I thought "what a pity", but my friend is very happy using drugs and he's very successful in his life. I don't judge. Going to a 'artificially high laycount' place could have this effect on you.

Anecdata 2 : Another person I know (Indian but raised in the West), spent years in ASEAN, mostly slaying is my guess. He came back to the West eventually, and he was clearly suffering. Things were not looking so good and he was 'out of tune' for the girls (and jobs) here. He was unemployed long term, with skills (it happens the same for jobs: you see your employer as robbing you of your default freedom). He was an outsider in his own culture, and resented Western girls for being 'difficult' (they were just the same as they were before he left!)

I know you are considering places in Europe, so you are staying in the West still. It's all about what price you are willing to pay, for what kind of relationship. We all have a phase of 'slaying for slaying sake', particularly after coming out of a tunnel (in your case, 4 yrs celibate to study and have career progression, in my case coming out of a long relationship with children). I have the feeling that staying in the culture where you want to build your life partner relationship would help you be more calibrated to the culture and to the needs/wants of ladies there. Going to say Poland will distort your understanding of the constraints and 'might' (I haven 't tried this, only have a strong gut feeling) make you unhappy/unsatisfied in your next life partner relationship. Best of luck, and congrats on having time to dedicate to dating!


Hello LoF,

thank you with your answer. I can understand why you may have had this impression based on what I wrote. Here are some precisions:

I'm not looking to hook up easily with many girls (I would not mind though). My goal is to find a high quality woman. I have a mating market problem: here dating is quite hard and I'm guessing that the ratio is in favor of women. The apps made it even easier for women (the choosing sex). I am also guessing that competition is quite high and standards are high.

All of this compounds into me getting low quality women matches on Tinder for instance.

As I have already said, here is my reasoning: I worked a lot on myself, I worked a lot on my career/diploma and I should be happy with a low quality woman because the "price" of a woman in my market is overinflated. And beautiful/quality women are in high demand/rare.

Well, I don't want to. Why shall I settle for this? I won't.

So going to a place where I can choose from a larger pool of interested women seems like a smart strategy to me.

Thanks for sharing your friend's story, I don't harbour the same intentions nor the same strategy, though.

The book dateonomics is quite enlightening regarding mating markets. I recommend it if you're interested.

I'll give you an example with Ukraine. When I travelled in Ukraine, food and drinks were very cheap with my swiss salary. So I could buy whatever I wanted without thinking about it. That's when I understood how it feels like when you're rich.

I will say it like this: where I am, dating is too expensive for me.

I'll give another example: I talk to totally average 30ish girls on Tinder and it feels like I'm talking to a supermodel. I mean: she's the one who's getting a good deal as I know my value. But no, ah ah. I'm supposed to put a lot of effort for an average girl.

I'm going to meet my polish GF in september. Well, she values me and looks forward to see me. So it's a totally different feeling. That's why many men are bitter towards women in the West. Competition and standards are too high for my tastes.

I'm not saying I cannot find a GF here. I can. However, the energy and work for a low ROI is not worth it in my opinion. If I'm to be struggling, I'd rather be struggling in a country with much more beautiful women like Norway for instance. Where I live, to find a mate it's much better to be a woman.

Anyway, as written in my plan, I'll improve my external layers and we'll see what happens.

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Lucio Buffalmanoleaderoffun

If I may add something on this:

There's a certain stigma around "moving for (anything related to dating)".

In my opinion, if you think about it, it makes little sense.
People respect those who move for jobs, careers, or simply just higher salary. Basically, people who move for money.
And everyone is either cool with it, or even respects it -as in: "he uprooted himself, moved to a whole new place and started from scratch to advance in his life, respect".

Some other people move for weather, sports they prefer, environment, or a million different things.
Heck, a lot of people here in Berlin move for the "flair" of the hipster capital, to be among more virtue-signaling vegans, feminists, and dumbasses who complain about gentrification while demanding and expecting to live in the best districts, on the cheap (entitlement mentality, anyone?). Some others, come here for partying all night on drugs.
And, everyone's cool with that -as it should be-.

But you move for anything connected to love, romance, and relationships?
Heck no, that's not cool.
I find it hypocritical.

That's not what LoF was saying or meant, as his message was more based on logic, but given that cultural stigma, it's easy to feel "not OK" for moving for romance.
That's why I also made it a point to make it an emotional counter-appeal in SU: to counter that nonsense.

Moving for romance is smart: on average, relationships matter far more to people's flourishing than jobs.
And it also makes economical sense: if you can find a partner (or partners, depending on your goals) you like more easily, you can also save a lot of time and money that you can spend adding more value to the world.
More often than not, it's win-win-win.

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