Direct vs. Indirect in Dating


What’s the difference between the two approaches?  Which one is better for you? How should you about choosing what works for you?  At the end of the day, that’s all that matters.  Remember that this is not a sports league.  You’re on the Net reading tips to help you attract women.  You’re not supporting your favorite Basketball or Football team.  You want to learn to use what’s best for you.  This sounds so ultra simplistic, but it’s going to become important later as you run into dogmatic people who want to prove what “Style” or “Method” is best….

By the way, I am going to write these articles assuming the reader knows absolutely nothing about any of this stuff.  If you do have some background in it, that’s great, but if you don’t, you’re not missing out.

Part of my goal is to definitively describe this so that you’re never again confused about it, for as long as you live.  A lofty goal?  Perhaps, but it’s important to provide clarity in a field that’s prone to confusion.

  • What is the “Indirect method”?

It is being indirect about your approach.  It’s starting conversations without showing any interest in the woman you’re speaking with.

Within the “Seduction Community,” this method was popularized and championed by “Mystery.”  You may have seen him on VH-1 doing his Pick up Artist TV Show.  This method gained huge momentum due to the fact that it gave men, many who were socially a bit awkward, a way to interact with women.  To this day, Mystery will tell you that the biggest mistake a man make upon approaching a woman is showing interest.  Then he’ll sit there and argue for hours that he is right.  When you show him that being direct can work just as well, and sometimes even better, he’ll just dismiss it as having gotten lucky.  (“Fool’s mate” he’ll call it.)

Guys even took the Indirect thing to the extreme.  They’d resort to acting like they were gay just so that the woman they’re talking to would not suspect he was interested.  God forbid she found out you were actually hitting on her….  Naturally, in due time, there was an eventual backlash to the indirect style.

Does this mean that it’s a mistake to approach a woman and start a conversation that is indirect?  Not at all!  There is a time and place for this as well.  I am going to get into that when we get to the social intelligence/calibration part of the article.  We’ll get to that.

  • What is Direct Method?

Well, obviously it’s predicated upon YOU showing the woman you’re interested.  However, here is where many guys teaching this stuff take a wrong turn.

There is a difference between being Direct within your interaction versus within being Direct in your conversational “Opener.” Stay with me here.  This article might get confusing but it’ll all clear up by the time I get through all this series.

As mentioned, there was a backlash towards the highly used indirect method and a bunch of the guys started the direct camp. They, like Mystery, took things too far.  You had guys pounding their chest trying to be macho, trying to hard to act like “Alpha Males.”   They, too, started to look like goofballs with what they preached.

  • What is a Direct Opener?

A direct opener is simply you approach a woman stating your intentions immediately.  Sounds simple enough.   There are various versions of this taught on the Internet:

“Hey, I want to meet you.”

“I thought you were attractive.  I wanted to see if you’re someone I should get to know better.”

Or the ever infamous, “I like you, and I’d like to get to know you.”

(The last one, I’ve never liked personally, nor would I recommend it.)

You could come up with various forms of this yourself, but you get the gist of the idea.   You could change it around to what you think suits you personally.  Again, these were all examples of “Direct Openers.”  So then, what is being direct within the Interaction?

  • What is a Direct Interaction?

A conversation does not have to start out with you stating your intentions.  Sometimes, it’s socially awkward to start out that way due to the circumstances.  I’ll explain that later as well.  Unfortunately, statements like the one I just made may get you dubbed as a pussy or someone who makes excuses.  So be it.  Remember the goal is to be successful in dating and hence, not being socially creepy is part of that equation.

I don’t know of too many guys who are considered ladies men who are also socially creepy.  Do you?  Not likely.

Keep in mind that a good 80% of people who teach “Dating” and “Seduction” are outcasts of society and socially awkward.  They are the misfits of our society.  Actually, that could apply to a lot of self-help but let’s knock down one beast at a time.

And yes, I know I sound like a bit of an asshole saying what I just said, but if you understand that part of equation, then you also understand why they’d recommend things such as going to a nightclub or bar and sitting on the damn filthy beer soaked, piss stained, floor to show that you’re “Alpha” men.

“What?  There is no place to relax for the alpha male?  Sit on the floor and look up at the group of girls chatting with you.”  Wait, we have a demo photo. This could be you:  Sitting on the bar floor looking up, trying to chat up the crowd.

Social Creep on Bar Floor

I’d be doing you a huge injustice if I didn’t point it out.  If you follow the advice of society outcasts blindly, not only would you not achieve success in dating and attracting women, but you’d also be seen as socially retarded and creepy.  I am going to guess that’s not your goal.

I assume that if you’re reading my blog, you’re also someone who operates and conducts him/herself in normal society.  You probably have a job.  Actually, I get tons of emails from readers so I actually know that some of you have respectable jobs, run companies, and have earned respectable degrees from prestigious universities. You’re not some loner living in a cabin in the mountains of Montana with his cat, and a shotgun.  While that’d make a good James Bond Villain, it’s probably not the general readership.

So let’s talk about how you can be more Direct with your intentions in a way that is socially graceful, in a manner that will not portray you as the social equivalent of the Elephant Man.

So let’s say you’re at some social gathering, you’re talking to an attractive girl about some topic.  The mistake most guys make is that they never digress from that topic.  Let’s say you’re both attorneys or sales people.  It’s normal for people of the same occupation to start discussing the challenges, or “Stupid shit” they face on a daily basis.  People often gain rapport this way, because it’s something both parties can emotionally relate to.

At some point, you have to show interest in her beyond talking about dealing with inept clients, bosses and colleagues.  It often helps if you can communicate that you LIKE the person.   Some people call it a “Statement of Interest.”  It doesn’t need to be over the top, but a sincere compliment that you like the person, or something ABOUT them will do.

A compliment to a girl who is 21 might be:
“Wow, you’re a lot of fun to spend time with.  You’re so much fun!”

A compliment to a girl who is 29 or 30 may be:
“Ya know, you’re pretty damn smart. I am really enjoying talking to ya.”

They ought to be sincere.  If the person is boring or a fucking idiot, don’t blurt out compliments that are bullshit.  By the way, I just chose two random examples.  There are tons of ways to show interest.  Depending on the circumstances and the ARCHETYPE of woman, your comments may even turn sexual.

Here is something I might say talking to someone I like, “Wow, you got looks and personality.  Now if you tell me you could do XYZ, I’d propose to you right now!  Seriously, I’d marry you.”

It’s said in gist and fun, but throwing something like that out there shows a huge level of interest.  (and unless she is an imbecile, she is not going to take the marriage proposal seriously.)  However, it does scream “I like you a lot.”

Now, if you notice there is also a challenge in there.  “If you could do XYZ.” There is a reason for that but I don’t want to obfuscate the article with too many concepts.  I’ll talk about “Challenges” some other time in a different article, (and yes, you can always get my Audio Course for more of that.)  So back to Direct vs. Indirect.

I often try to refrain from teaching sexual compliments in these articles because the person making the comments has to have high social intelligence.   He has to realize the circumstances, the person, and the VIBE of the interaction.  Most guys who start the process do not possess that degree of refined social wherewithal.

However, one example of something that could be perceived as sexual:
“You look good enough to eat!”

And truth be told, I have said things far more sexual and blatant than that!  We are talking Plain filthy.  The timing has to be right and you have to feel the chemistry with the person you’re talking to.  Again, these are not comments I’d make to open the conversation with.  That’d be just too damn weird.  They’re things you say within the conversation once you have built up to that crescendo.   (And again I mention the latter hesitantly for reasons already stated.)

Let’s take the Direct-Interaction it one step further:

  • Direct Through Subtext:

Throughout the interaction, you can be direct with your intentions through subtext and sub-communication.  (For reference, read yesterday’s post about the subtext and the Fighters looking at you in a threatening manner.)

The way you LOOK at a woman could communicate that you have Romantic/sexual interest in her.  This part can’t be learned through dating advice.  It’s experientially gained, and developed as you gain more comfort with women and possess more sexual confidence.

  • This is one of the most fundamental missing elements in dating advice seekers and providers alike.

Visual References:

A good visual example of this, however, can be seen in early Tom Cruise films.  Despite what you may think of Tom in real life, he is very good at communicating his sexuality in his movie roles.   The classic example would be “Top Gun.”  Take a look at the way he looks at Kelly McGillis’ character “Charlie.”  It communicates everything regarding his intetions.

A lesser known but perhaps even better example is in the film “Cocktail.”  There is a scene where Tom Cruise as a bartender is looking at an older woman sitting at his bar, on some Carribean Island.  His intetnions are so blatant that it prompts the woman to say,  “Excuse me, Does it say Fuck me on my forehead?”

Must see movie for the Dating Student

Those are excellent visual examples of communicating your intentions.  Unfortunately, this is where most “Dating Gurus” often fail.   They’re so bent on the text of the conversation and that they miss the subtext.

Remember the analogy from the last post regarding the professional fighters.  The combination of Attitude, body language, and tonality is always more powerful that the words.


OK, just to summarize this post.

  • It’s too easy to get lost in dogma and doctrine.  Stay away from that.
  • Focus on what’s important here: Getting the result you want for yourself
  • There is a Direct Opener vs. an Indirect Opener.
  • There is being Direct with your intentions through the interaction.
  • There is being Direct with your sub-communication.
  • Being Direct with your intentions does not equate to being direct with your opener.
  • There is no one-way of doing things every single time.
  • Situations change, and you must adjust for that.
  • Balancing Aggression with being socially savvy.

If you find yourself confused in the future, come back and read this article again.

Stay tuned for the next article.  I’ll discuss WHEN to use direct vs. Indirect, how to apply basic social intelligence (calibration) to various scenarios and how to discern when it is the right time to push the envelpe versus pulling back.

Building Attraction with Women