I’ve struggled with social anxiety, depression, and self-esteem issues my whole life, up until my mid 20s. I fixed it (wasn’t easy but worth the effort) and became a dating coach for men (7 years ago). That’s how drastic the transformation was.
What I’m going to say here was a HUGE KEY to that change.
Affirmations, theory, anything that starts with “You just have to realize/understand/believe” etc is usually useless. Not because it’s wrong, but it’s not actionable.
Here’s what works, NOW.
Find out where and how you can give your time to those less fortunate than you, or those more lonely than you. Help out in after-school programs in low-income neighborhoods (churches, schools, community centers). See if you can volunteer in a nursing home, or center for people with special needs. If you have the heart, try a children’s hospital (may have to go through a tough screening process).
Neuroticism and low-self esteem come from focusing on yourself too much, which usually turns negative. Your problems become huge monsters in your mind and you lose perspective. You forget your blessings.
The most common thing I see with guys who struggle socially is that they don’t really do much for anyone else. They are often very self-centered (even though call themselves “nice guys”). They want to “get” validation from others, trying to use “game” to “seduce” women or be more “alpha” in status.
When a student starts telling me all the things wrong in his life, here is my response.
What do you do for others? What aspect of your life helps other people? Who is important to you? Do they know it? If you can’t show people you love that they are special to you, how can you give good feelings to someone you just met?
You don’t connect with people by using them to fulfill your perceived “needs” (i.e. the illusion that you are not enough).
Change happens through action. To change for the better, take good action. But start small if you are an introvert, so you don’t overwhelm yourself. Volunteer one day a week, in ADDITION to other social activities.
When you volunteer, you feel proud of yourself. And your problems don’t seem as big a deal. You meet with people who are REALLY struggling, and you connect with them because you are GIVING, not taking.
This is the fastest, most effective way to develop REAL, long-term High Self Esteem.
What’s really sad is that I never here any PUA dudes or any seduction/dating advice sites talking about this. It’s all about how to trick people into liking you. Sad, small-minded thinking IMO.
Oh and a bonus: a lot of cute single women volunteer, with the hope of possibly meeting a guy in the back of their minds. I’m saying this from experience.
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