Myths I Learned from the Pick Up Artist Community: Part 1

Pick Up Artist Switch
Women… amirite?!

Of all the gurus in the pick up artist community, one of the most well known has to be David DeAngelo. In many of his ebooks, CDs and seminars he asserts authoritatively that “attraction isn’t a choice” for women. You push the right buttons and she’s yours. She can’t help it. After all, she’s wired that way.

But here’s the problem with that… it’s a myth. 

From 2002-2008 I was knee deep in that mythology. I never got to know David DeAngelo (Eben Pagan IRL) but I did hang out with Neil Strauss, Mystery, Papa, Tyler Durden, Sickboy and others during its heyday. We learned a lot together that was groundbreaking and much of it found its way into The Game. And while many of the techniques and gambits developed back then worked surprisingly well for the pick up artist community, there was some dangerous doctrine that took hold. 

How do I know? Because I didn’t just follow the dogma. I learned the mindset and then I continued to learn, on my own. And what I learned is that in the pick up world dating is a science. But in real life, relationship is an art. 

Being deeply involved in the pick up artist community back then brought me some benefits. For aspiring lotharios aged 18 to 24, stories of conquest written about in The Game have turned the characters in the book into something like folk heroes of seduction. But for me, there’s no mystique to them. No hero worship.

They were my friends and I knew their flaws. And I also got to see the many flaws in their relationships as they devolved from that movie perfect beginning to a normal – or most often dysfunctional – dynamic. 

So when I say “attraction isn’t a choice” is my favorite myth to debunk, it’s not because I think I’m above it all. It’s because I witnessed its birth. And I’m living proof how easy it is to believe something so strongly and for so long… even though its fallacy is so obvious that when I look back on it today, I laugh.

Pick Up Artist Myths

All you have to do is look at history.

In the early Renaissance Botticelli painted what was considered the ideal feminine figure. Venus’ hourglass figure and wide hips showed she was obviously healthy, wealthy enough to eat generously and could bare children. Men craved these women.

In the early Renaissance Botticelli painted what was considered the ideal feminine figure. Venus’ hourglass figure and wide hips showed she was obviously healthy, wealthy enough to eat generously and could bare children. Men craved these women.

What about today? Just look at other countries like Africa where “chicken thighs” is so coveted some women resort to stuffing bullion cubes up their backsides in the belief it will thicken their legs and hips. In Tibet, when Cindy Crawford was introduced to monks as “the most beautiful woman in the world,” they laughed at her and said she looked like an alien.

What about when it comes to women’s attraction?

I have two words for you: dad bods. The ideal man has gone from fat and healthy to skinny rocker to meat head to lean athlete to paunch belly with a muscular chest and shoulders. What’s considered physically attractive changes over every generation and within generations.

What’s considered attractive character traits also changes according to the generation, geography and culture. What’s true about the “attraction switches” that DeAngelo teaches is that most of us appreciate confidence and humor. But there are infinite ways to present confidence and humor and equally infinite ways that confidence and humor can be interpreted by her.

As shocking as it may be, some girls think the “cocky funny” attitude is a turn-off…does that mean they lack the hard wiring that supposedly lives in the “lizard brain” area of all women?

How many times have women said, “I didn’t see him that way” before she eventually fell in love with and married her once male friend over the millennia? How many times has this happened with men who fell in love with their once female friend? What about in your own life? And yet, on average, many of them are not wanting of any love or attraction.

Was that not a choice?

From an evolutionary point, we’re born with only a handful of involuntary instincts and the rest is learned. All our desires are the result of judgment and conditioning. All of them.

Even our physical arousal can be influenced more by desire than evolution. That’s why the brain is called the most powerful sex organ in the body. Because the brain dictates biology, not the other way around. 

Animals don’t have foot fetishes, enjoy phone sex or need negging in order to procreate. These are human preferences and there are many.

Sexual function and arousal overlap but aren’t mutually necessary. You can have sexual function without arousal and you can have arousal without sexual function.

Our arousal preferences can change several times within a generation. Evolution happens over millions of years… tens of thousands at best. But it can’t be used to explain Steaming Clevelands.

 Fears & Desires > Emotions > Judgement > Decisions > Actions >>> Fears & Desires

The hierarchy of our actions starts with our fears and desires. Those fears and desires rule our emotions. With enough conditioning, they become habitual. Many of our choices seem out of our control because they’re made instantaneously. And while we can act rationally in spite of our emotions, most of our decisions are made emotionally. This is human nature.

On the surface, attraction also seems out of our control. But we’re already predisposed through conditioning. Or maybe something triggers our desire and suddenly we have a toe fetish. Thankfully our brain – just like much of our sexuality – is plastic and we have some control over this process.

So how does this help us in the dating world?

If you strongly believe “hot girls go for jerks” and you decide to be a jerk, chances are you’ll find some good looking girls that go for you.

If you strongly believe “hot girls go for nice guys” and decide to be a nice guy, then chances are you’ll ALSO find some good looking girls that go for you.

Either way, it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.

But the bottom line is: don’t be a jerk just to get the girl. Don’t be a nice guy just to get the girl. It leads to cynicism. And we’ve all seen a lot of that in the pick up artist community. This is part of the reason why. Whatever you’re most attractive qualities are, be confident in them and find the girls who like you for them. 

Yes, always work on being your best self and improving your faults… but don’t do it for validation.

David DeAngelo Pick Up Artist
Audience Attraction Is NOT a Choice!

Women are attracted in a variety of ways. Buying blindly into the “cocky funny” dogma is dangerous because it leads to over-reliance of one approach. It ignores the reality that women and their tastes can be – and always will be – subject to change.

So don’t try to sell apples to someone who likes oranges. Be open minded to the women you meet and their differences.

If you decide you only want the “hot girls” who like you for it that’s fine too. But if what you’re attracted to isn’t working well long-term, then at least expand your box a little bit. Many relationships began unexpectedly and leaving space for that can only benefit you. Especially if you haven’t dated much.

Yes, some of the best pick up lines will absolutely work on women, but DeAngelo will be the first to tell you that who you are is what really matters afterward. And then her attraction is up for grabs again.

Because attraction is fluid. It always has been and always will be.

This can be a hard truth to swallow because many of us have ended relationships with the conclusion “I can’t help it, I’m just not attracted him” or her. 

For others, it brings a freedom because it means we don’t have to keep chasing the same men or women that we know deep down are just damaged or unhealthy for us.

Attraction for men and women is a choice. And if we’re attracted to the wrong people, it’s in our power to change that. Again, I’m not saying it’s easy but it’s true.

Just like some of us grew up hating the taste of fish then grew to love it. Our tastes in men and women have changed since we first started dating. Except now we can decide what’s best for us and take control of the process.

For women, the next time you say “I just can’t see myself with him”, you’re not just talking about something that’s outside of your control. And for men, the next time you think “attraction isn’t a choice” that’s also an internal choice you’re making.

You can’t un-know that now.

The good news is you probably already know the people you should be dating. The bad news is you now have to stop dating the people you already know aren’t good for you. Or if you don’t know, then you’ll just have the fun task of figuring out who those people are.

As the title would indicate, there are other hard truths I learned after I left the pick up artist community which I’ll cover in Part II. While some myths were spread from INSIDE the pick up artist community, they’re principles many men around the world believe from outside of the community.

These are general myths about how to attract women that were often used successfully at first – but proved to be destructive long term.

Aren’t you lucky I was the guinea pig for you?