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How to Eradicate 'Approach Anxiety' When You Meet New Women

Updated on September 7, 2008

Meeting and attracting new women is a pretty tricky thing for most men to do, not least because the onus is mostly on men to get the ball rolling-it's often their job to do the approaching and start the conversations.

The problem for most men is that to some degree or another they fear the ‘cold approach'. The cold approach is the action of a man walking up to a woman he has never met before and striking up a conversation with her with the intention of doing and saying the right things to make her feel sexually attracted to him. The fear of doing this and the feeling most men get when they actually attempt this social feat is called ‘approach anxiety'. And for any man who wants to meet, talk to and attract women, approach anxiety is a fairly crippling problem-it immediately makes things very difficult, if not impossible.

So what can a guy do about approach anxiety? Well, before he can know HOW to eradicate his approach anxiety he needs to know WHY it occurs. Most men never truly realize why approach anxiety exists as an emotional reaction and without knowing, those men are faced with a steep metaphorical wall to climb. All men who are oblivious to the real reasons approach anxiety exists are faced with the challenge of climbing this wall. And there's no easy up it. Check out the following picture.

This is the wall most men must climb if they want to successfully approach a woman either WITHOUT approach anxiety or with a small enough amount of anxiety to make the approach possible. Notice how the ‘hand holds' on this metaphorical wall are all spread out and difficult to reach. The hand holds are represent the reasons approach anxiety exists in the male psyche. For a man who doesn't know about the true causes of approach anxiety and the ways to get around those causes, this is the kind of situation he is in: a vertical wall, covered in difficult obstacles. The woman at the top seems very far away.

Now look at the next picture.

It shows how things are on the other side. Instead of a steep wall covered with difficult obstacles, there is a simple set of steps. These steps represent the situation a man is in when he DOES know every reason approach anxiety exists. His journey towards the woman-which represents approaching women in real life situations-is much, much easier. He still needs to get over those barriers, but doing so is a breeze compared to the reverse scenario.

So...what are these steps and hand holds? What are the REAL reasons men experience that gut-wrenching feeling of nervousness and anxiety when they approach women they don't know to talk to them? There are nine reasons. Knowing what they are puts you on the GOOD side of the metaphor just described. You'll be walking, instead of climbing. The reasons are:

Reason #1: Men know they're know they're being judged by the women they approach

Reason #2: Men are in competition with other men

Reason #3: Men feel time is against them

Reason #4: Men fear being negatively labelled

Reason #5: Men fear public embarrassment

Reason #6: Men know that it's extremely hard to undo mistakes made in front of women

Reason #7: Men want to avoid the emotional fall-out of things going badly

Reason #8: Men know that their motives for approaching and talking to women they're attracted to are mostly transparent

Reason #9: Men know that approaching women with the main intention of attracting them can highlight their past failures and inexperience

As you can see, the reasons men experience approach anxiety are numerous-it's no wonder approaching women and talking to them, with the intention of attracting them, is so difficult.

But with the right change of perspective, things suddenly become a lot easier and simpler. Here are the things you need to do to reduce your approach anxiety and make starting conversations with attractive women much, much easier.

#1: Update Your Brain

First you must realize that a lot of the reasons you experience approach anxiety are no longer applicable in this day and age. What that means is that many of the reasons have been evolutionarily programmed into your brain to help you cope with different social situations. For example, reasons 4, 5 and 6 all relate to the fact that we humans used to live in very small tribes. We're talking hundreds of thousands of years ago here. And while we lived in those tribes, which contained only a small number of women, it was VERY important we didn't mess things up, because if we men DID mess up, we could kiss our hopes of reproducing goodbye. Nowadays, though, we don't need to worry about being negatively labelled or having our reputations harmed, because we'll never meet 99.9% of the people we bump into ever again! We do not need to fear approaching women and having them judge us when their judgement, good or bad, will have no effect whatsoever on our social lives once the interaction is over. So remember: just because we feel fear during the approach doesn't mean that there is a good reason to feel that fear. Our brains are trying to protect us from things we no longer need protecting from.

#2: Prepare Yourself

Nothing calms the nerves of people who need to do important or difficult things more than being prepared. A public speaker would be committing social suicide if he didn't prepare before going on stage-the same principle applies to you when you approach and meet new women. You must know ahead of time what you're going to say, the words you're going to say it with and the ways you'll respond depending on the replies and reactions of the women you approach. So, know which ‘opener' you're going to use and practice it in your mind before you use it.

#3: Have Realistic Expectations

Don't expect yourself to feel no approach anxiety the next time you walk up to a woman or group of people containing women just because you now know the reasons approach anxiety happens. It will take time for you to adjust to behaving and thinking in the way you need to to make approaching women a stress-free act. So make sure your expectations are realistic and achievable. First aim to approach a group and get talking to them. Practice doing that until it becomes pretty easy. Then aim to integrate yourself into a new group and consciously attempt to attract one of its female members. Keep setting the bar a little higher, until you finally aim to, and succeed at, attracting a woman enough to get her phone number or arrange a date with her.

Approach anxiety is just one facet of the subject of attraction and seduction. Check out the Black Belt Seduction site to learn more about the entire subject.

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    • profile image

      Overcome Approach Anxiety 

      8 years ago

      Good article. Also, i find if that I just say "hi" to everyone that gets within about 3 feet of me, my approach anxiety lessens after a month or two of doing this..

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