What Went Wrong: Six Dumb Reasons Smart Guys Don’t Get the Girl

So, you’re a reasonably smart guy. Okay, admit it. You know you’re a really smart guy. Not the sort of Wall Street suit shark kinda guy. More like the philosophy and coffee house thinker kinda guy.

As a side note, that is such a dead stereotype. Who really sits around and thinks in coffee houses? Everyone I ever see in coffee houses just gets their coffee, hangs out with friends for about half an hour, and then goes home. Most people don’t even bring their laptops.

But, I digress. You’re more this thinker type that if you could afford to, would spend the majority of your adulthood in graduate school thinking about life. You spend so much time in your head, you make your own self sick sometimes. (No hate, it takes one to know one!) Now you’ve met some girl who similarly walks into trees because she is thinking about Kierkegaard and Nietzsche, and actually knows about the two different stages of Heidegger’s philosophical writings. You’re perfect for each other. Only you can’t convince her.

Why? Because while you were supposed to be in the bar taking How to Pick Up Women 101, you were in the classroom taking (and liking) Advanced Victorian Literature: Doyle, Dickens and Wilde. So now your closest romantic relationship has been Emily Dickinson. So, if this describes you, here are six reasons why you could be striking out with your real life Emily.

  1. Be Into What She’s Into.

It might sound obvious, but I can’t tell you how often guys (and girls) get this wrong. They see someone that is nice looking, available, the right age/walk of life, and a decent personality, and they think…hey, let’s hook up.

There’s something to be said about dating someone you can have a real conversation with. Make an effort to find out what she’s into—really into, what makes her world tick and then find out about it. I guarantee you, she will look twice.

This is especially true of artistic types. For example, I have a criterion that I won’t date a guy who isn’t totally into my writing. This isn’t for narcissistic reasons, but more of knowing myself and knowing what will work. My writing is my passion, my heart, the center of what I’m doing and where I am going in life.

Early on in a relationship, I will show a guy some of my writing as sort of a “test.” If he’s not into it, or thinks it’s just “okay,” or worse, if I can tell he didn’t even read it, I’ll end the relationship before it begins. This is because I know if he can’t appreciate my writing, he can’t truly appreciate me. Many artistic types have similar criteria. Be careful, however. I have had guys overdo this, and end up getting “fan-zoned.”

  1. Get off the Screen.

In our very digital age, it’s easy to have a relationship conducted over text/social media.  There is some good to this. You are attracted to her mind and personality first, not necessarily her body. She will appreciate this. For the shy types, it may seem safer too. After every text or Facebook message, you can consult five different friends who are better daters than you to help craft the perfectly balanced witty and flirty response. The problem is…the girl isn’t dating you, she is dating all your friends’ perceptions of what she wants to hear.

Being with someone in the flesh creates an entirely different dynamic than on screen. A three-dimensional person who laughs too loud and has a bit of a muffin top, but smells wonderful and bites her lip in a the sexiest way, doesn’t come across on screen. There is a time and place for the screen, but at some point, you’ve got to either make it real or end it.

  1. If You Make Her Feel Special, Make Sure She Is.

This is for all of you flirts out there. Maybe you’re a friendly guy, and you talk to lots of girls. But this comes off as flirting. Excessive flirting is a mark of insecurity and immaturity. Girls are like guys in that they want a guy that other girls can’t have. If you’re into a girl, don’t flirt with the other girls.

Likewise, if you’re not into her, don’t make her think she hung the moon, when you don’t really feel that way about her. Especially if you’re telling five other girls the same stuff. This is such a cheap trick. While every girl wants to feel special, she doesn’t want to know that such compliments are cheap to you, randomly passed out to any girl whom you desire. She may get this idea that instead of being a princess, she is #3 or #4 in a “line of girls” waiting for the girls ahead of her to screw up. That’s just degrading and embarrassing.

If you do manage to fool her into thinking she’s your “wonderwall,” beware. She will eventually find out you are a serial flirt and won’t trust a word you say after that.

Further, it is understood, especially in the early phases of a relationship, that you can and may be pursuing other partners. But don’t tell her that. It’s just bad manners. There is a time for disclosing this information, but it should be directly followed by, “Let’s make this exclusive.” And, certainly not thrown in the middle of an argument, as a way to gain leverage.

  1. Put YOURSELF out there, Not Just Her.

It’s important to make a girl feel special. But, you can’t build a relationship based on the worship of one partner.

Some smart guys run the risk of being perceived as bland. This isn’t because they are, but just they don’t know how to put themselves out there. The guy can compliment the girl until she’s weak in the knees, but in the end, she may wonder if he has any substance. Don’t be that guy.

If you feel bland, examine your interests. Enhance them to put out your best qualities. Were you into French film way back in the day? Get back in the scene and find out what’s going on, and then share it with her in a movie night. Do you like to jog? Consider training for a marathon, and invite her to train with you. Love poetry? Gather all of your original pieces together, then self-publish your own anthology.After all, any guy can say, “I love poetry.” And believe me, the do. In fact, I’ve never met a guy who doesn’t “love” Keats, but half of them don’t know his first name. 

But, telling a smart girl, “I have a book of poetry,” can get you laid faster than All-State football star on prom night.

  1. If You’re Not Serious About A Girl, Don’t Constantly Text and Message Her.

Numerous texts and messages are a signal to a girl that you are ready to move to the next level. Especially if you are sending several a day…all day. If you are not serious, then leave her alone. If she is one of five, then give her room to make you one of five. Don’t be all up on her phone, and then when she tries to take it to the next level, say, “Oh, I was just messing around.” You come off as either a real player, or super insecure.

  1. Watch When Harry Met Sally.

The premise of this movie is that guys and girls can’t be friends. At least not really. The sex thing always gets in the way. In the modern world, close guy-girl friendships can work, but they take a lot of time and work to build. They usually do not even balance out until the dating option has been thoroughly explored and abandoned. Some shy guys, however, like to hide in the friend-zone until it’s safe to come out. Don’t do this. It doesn’t work and it’s a lie you’ll constantly both be telling yourselves. The expectations will eventually turn on you, and the relationship may even get ugly.

Numerous books have been written about romancing a girl and how to win her heart. There is a lot to that, and much of that advice is good. But it all boils down to being the best version of yourself.  Don’t lie to her, try to manipulate her, and all these other tricks guys try to use. That’s just cheap. Be honest with her, and most of all be honest with yourself. What do you want? What are you looking for? Most importantly, who are you? If you don’t know even that, how can you explain it to someone else?


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