The nice guy complex, which inevitably haunts well mannered guys confused by popular culture is probably caused by an illusion, in its most common form. Add to that the subjectivity many people have arising from their own roles and limited experiences, and you get a pretty distorted picture. Just to be clear, I'm talking about the phenomenon of "nice guys" having inferior sex lives.

What I offer is my own perspective, in an attempt to clear the confusion a bit. My standpoint is that of an ex loser, and by loser I mean a person unable to achieve any goals he sets before him. Today I think I may safely say I'm an achiever, and by achiever I mean a person with a very fair success rate in achieving my goals.

The Myth and the Magic

What I hated the most about being a loser was that I had no clue as to what it was I was missing - it was simply out of reach and unknown. It wasn't that I couldn't make an effort, it was that I was clueless on what to do. The minute I figured out what I needed to do, I did it, and it made the change I aimed for. And I'll get to that. But first let me tell you what being an achiever really brings you and how that relates to what your real needs probably are.

When goals become attainable, the first burden that's lifted off your shoulders is thinking about whether you'd be happy if you had X. What makes most people focus so much on any X is that they are desperate to try anything just to get out of the depressive pit they're in, and running-under-the-rainbow goals are ideal for that purpose. Ability to achieve gives you a choice of lifestyle: you won't stay a nice guy because you can't help it; you'll stay a nice guy because you choose to. And that makes a world of difference.

So you get choice, and choice is power. Though power is not what you need to actually be happy. Being happy is an entirely different art and simply becoming an achiever won't make you proficient in it. Achieving goals makes you confident and powerful, but that's as far as it goes. And that's not bad as long as you don't think it's enough to feel content.

The Girls

Whether you'd like to admit it or not, when you're sexually frustrated, and not getting any, nailing a girl becomes the center of your attention, and having a one track mind is a great way of not having a life. Plus your hands get pretty tied after a long streak of failures - you get squeamish to try anything. Plus when you talk to a girl it says "desperate" right in the middle of your forehead. These are the problems. These are the things that make a guy unattractive. And they're not your fault, whatever the popular self-help articles tell you.

To attract girls you need confidence. I bet you heard that a thousand times already. But stay tuned. To become confident, you need to have an experience of success. Unfortunately, this doesn't work across different areas: you cannot become confident in approaching girls if you succeed in World of Warcraft. So you need to be confident to succeed in something confidence is a key part of. Yikes! How the hell does one do that?

The answer is: in a very, very hard way. Sure, you can change yourself just slightly to go from being a total loser to a generally acceptable lifestyle, but that's settling for scraps. To become an achiever, you need to fix what your upbringing broke. You need to fix something that you could not have helped going wrong. You need to accept you're at a disadvantage, that it's not fair, but that you'll still bust your rear end to change your fortune. Now it's OK to be mad at those that lied to you when you were a kid.

Become a Proper Loser

You can't jump properly if you're standing on a moving surface. You need to accept who you are right now and then move from there to a better place. That means accept that your moves with ladies are a disaster, that you tend to drag any conversation to geeky topics people get bored about, that you get pushed over by morons and can't stand up for yourself, all of it. Accept you're a loser. It's not like it's going to get any worse if you do. Let it sink in. This will help you see what makes you a loser in clear light.

In practical terms, accepting that you're a loser means accepting failure as an integral part of your life. Having said that, you should not let fear of failure stop you from trying anything. How does that work? Let me illustrate with my own exercise.

I went out on the town alone. I decided I'll do whatever the people I envy usually do, like approach people I don't know. I also decided to accept the fact that I'll fail in it and accept the defeat that would make me feel in my gut. And it was horrible. First of all, the fear was so strong it felt like physical pain. The best I managed to do was to watch people, not go home and not get very depressed. But it was a step forward. You see, I've created a correct relation between my desires and my abilities. That meant I could properly set my goals.

Getting a Life

How does one get a life? Lets get the meaning of the phrase clear first. What I mean by getting a life is having fun, enjoyable and even interesting things happening to you on a more or less regular basis. The reason "nice guys" tend to not have a life is that they're trying to keep things that happen to them predictable.

First thing I did, I started going out alone to break away from the lifestyle my friends were a part of. Also, I was going out to places where I most probably wouldn't be meeting people from the same mindset I belonged to. That was setting up stage where I could try new forms of relationships and see how different people react.

I noticed not much was happening, even though going out alone has made my life more interesting. For the most part, nothing was happening because I wasn't letting things happen: I'd stop myself from pulling any stunt that would come to mind because I'd think it was stupid. And that's when I made my key decision: if it scares me, I must do it!

Do I need to tell you how immensely tough it was to stick to that decision? I'd compare it to braking your own arm slowly. Every ounce of you is investing it's strongest effort to stop you. I wish I had a coach, a friend that would reinforce my stand, encourage me, keep me going. If you want to pull something like that off and you have a zero-bull friend that would help you, you better use that privilege. I wasn't so lucky.

As a matter of fact, that's the whole recipe. Just three steps, that simple. You accept failure as a fact of life (permanently), you start moving among new people (even if it takes going to another town every weekend) and finally you do everything that scares you (and accept the consequences). That's your home run. That'll get you a life.

Burn Like a Star

The reason people can't tell you what works with women, or any group of other people, is that they're not all the same. The reason achievers succeed is because they dare to try, and the reason nice guys fail is that they're scared of offending someone. Here's an easy exercise:

Step 1: You spotted an attractive girl at the bar.
Step 2: You approach her. Just sit, stand, or whatever anywhere close to her and say "Hi!". Oh, alright, I get it, it would turn out clumsy, 'cose there's, like, no room next to her and she'd have to twist her neck to talk to you etc. which brings us to
Step 2a: Bring a chair. Ask her to move to make you room. Ask someone else to move. Just solve the problem.
Step 3: She thinks you're embarrassing her and asks you to leave her alone in a more or less polite way.
Step 4: You say "Fine.", leave the place and go to another bar.

OK, so you crashed and burned. But was there any actual damage? Was it that bad? Tell you what. The first time you pull this stunt without caring about the outcome, the girl you're approaching will smell that as certainly as they smell your fear now. Congratulations, you've just built confidence! Then consider the following slight modifications:

Step 4: You sit next to someone friendly looking and not avoiding eye contact with you and start a conversation with "Did you see that? Must've caught her on a bad day...". Or,
Step 4: You tell her "Sorry if I've offended you. Here's my cell phone number so you can text me about the kind of jerk I am."

Of course, any of these can go terribly wrong. And that's alright. What I learned is that these things going wrong start to be fun once you take the humiliation out of them.

Once you're there

Actually, one more thing before you get there, and you probably won't do this, but here it goes anyway. Stop lying. Completely. This includes white lies like "I don't think you're fat". Just cease and desist. It's tough but it'll liberate you and improve your self respect. Become honest and respect that quality once you attain it. Soon, others will respect you for it too.

Oh, alright, you think you already are honest. Let me ask you this: when you talk to a girl you've just met, and you're really eager to get into her pants, and she asks you about your intentions, what will you say? Will you tell her the truth? Here's a surprise: I do, and no girl ever told me to go away for telling her that.

There's more to being the proverbial nice guy than losing chicks to morons. I mean more of the bad, chick related stuff. Because pretty much everything else simply improves just by being an achiever.

Your confidence and all the perks of being an achiever will, if you manage to get there, act as a very powerful chick magnet, so if you're out to score, you'll score, no worries. But eventually you'll get tired of that and find yourself stuck to just one pair of favorite panties. And that's fine. Though if you go the way I went, you're in for another surprise. This time not a pleasant one.

Another Thing They Lied About

One thing you don't have for girls you're hunting is trust. And the thing they don't find in you is reliability. And that's bad for a relationship, but it's good for sexual tension. Since I am a nice guy after all, when I trust someone I trust them honestly. That means, in the most simple example, that I'll be there when she needs me first, and ask questions about it later. They all find it romantic. They all love it. And they all find me as attractive as a door mat when they see me do that. The trouble is, that's the part of being a nice guy that I can't help. Or don't know how to. Or don't know if I should.

Don't get me wrong, I'm no pushover. I don't back away from what I stand for, I don't agree with everything she says and I don't take any abuse. In fact, we get along wonderfully. But for me the rascal she would've done anything, whereas for me the nice guy everything is a drag, if at all possible. And I haven't changed, because other chicks still find me hot for the same reasons.

It's not like her behavior is unexpected. Happened to me in my previous relationship, it's just happening to my current relationship, and I've heard similar stories from friends, including lady friends. Seems like girls just can't help it - they want a guy who's trustworthy, but not one who would trust them. So again, down in my bones, I suffer from the nice guy complex. Damn.

Coping with imperfection

Alright, so after all this I'm telling you I'm back at having the same problem as the one I began with? Well, not exactly. I'm an achiever now, remember? That's a hell of a lot better as a starting point.

What an achiever needs in order to go from problem to no problem is to set a goal. And once I do figure out what that goal exactly is, and accept both the gains and the losses that come with it, I've no doubt I'll get there. And once I do get there, again it won't be perfect. But it'll be even further away from terrible and even closer to pretty damn good.

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