A typical Nice Guy writes:
"In one of your previous podcasts you stated how many of us ‘Nice Guys’ believe that women can see our flaws at a distance. I used to believe this of just about everyone -- they only had to look at me to see how inept and flawed I was.
I've read that women are generally far ahead of men in reading body language and are constantly tuned to ‘what you are thinking.’
With this in mind, what is your experience of this female ability, are women as good at this as we are led to believe or is it mostly a myth?"
This question is a good example of a common belief pattern I see in a lot of Nice Guys and inexperienced daters. These men see women as having magical powers of intuition that enable them to make split-second decisions about a man’s worthiness.
Here is where the story begins for the typical Nice Guy.
Around 14 years old, he spends weeks or months developing a crush on a girl in his class. When he finally builds up the nerve to anxiously and awkwardly approach her and tell her she is pretty, she shows low interest, for whatever reason. He assumes her lack of interest is the result of her ability to see what a loser he is.
Or perhaps he spends months and years becoming a girl’s friend, listening to her talk about her problems, hoping that some day she will see what a great guy he is. She is happy to use him as an emotional tampon, but of course she never falls in love with him. Again, he assumes it is because there must be something fundamentally wrong with him -- and she can see it.
From adolescence on, he assumes that all women have the power to instantly see whatever disqualifying flaws he possesses. Over time, if he occasionally gets up the nerve to approach women and gets additional low interest responses, it validates his belief that all women have the ability to instantly recognize his inherent undesirability.
Men with this kind of dating experience have a hard time seeing that a woman’s low interest response can be the result of a number of factors:
She isn’t available
He isn’t her type (we all have types)
She is distracted or preoccupied
He approached her clumsily, anxiously, or passively
He did nothing to create positive emotional tension for her
He was waiting for her to be the decider and take action
These men use a few low interest responses and a few awkward advances (or months or years of being “nice” to a woman) as proof and support of their deeply held self-limiting beliefs. These self-limiting beliefs might include:
I am inherently flawed and undesirable
All women can instantly see I am undesirable
All women want a guy who is different from me
This will never change