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Why Most Dating Advice Does Not Work, Part II: A New Model for Dating & Relationship Coaching

Part I of this article Why most dating advice does not work.

“Be really whole and all things will come to you.” – The Tao

I want to go a little deeper into why most dating advice doesn’t work … and indeed why the traditional concept of “dating advice” is fundamentally flawed.

Here is a word that gets bandied around a lot: CONGRUENCE.

In the seduction community, people talk a lot about guys being “congruent” when they approach women.

But what the heck does congruence actually mean? And even if we understand what it means, how do we get people to be congruent?

To me, congruence means unified intent and action. It means that all the voices in our head are integrated, so that our intention and our thoughts about ourselves are fully consistent with our chosen words or actions. Congruence is also a feeling. I know when I am “congruent” because I feel a sense of ease, confidence, and spontaneity. When I am congruent, I speak and act without hesitation. There is no “thinking” beforehand, and there is no “emotional hangover” where I beat myself up or analyze what I did afterwards.

To take a really basic example, say that I want a cappuccino in the morning but I’m out of coffee beans. As soon as I realize that I don’t have a key ingredient, I’ll instantly form the intention to drive down to Starbucks and get a cappuccino, and to pick up a pound of Verona beans while I’m there. I’ll then do this. I don’t sit there and bang my head against the wall worrying that Starbucks might not serve me. I don’t worry about what I’m going to say to the barista to get this task accomplished. I just go and do it, and after my mission is complete, unless something really unusual happened, I don’t think about Starbucks again until the next time I need coffee.

The problem for many people who are seeking dating advice is that something that is as normal and natural as breathing (social interactions) has become fraught with “thinking” and “analysis.” I can no longer strike up a conversation with a stranger at Whole Foods on impulse because, if I’m a woman for example, I have been told always to let men approach me. I’m convinced that if I ever open my mouth around a man who didn’t speak to me first, then I’ve become the “masculine energy” in the relationship. Wow, I’m way up in my head and haven’t even opened my mouth yet. The guy has disappeared, an opportunity to connect with my world is gone forever, and I’m still spinning in my head. At least I didn’t become the “masculine energy” in the relationship because … well, now there is no relationship. Egads!

Whereas if I can lightly breeze through my life, doing whatever comes to me spontaneously, I may strike up a conversation over the tomatoes, go about my business, have forgotten all about the guy by the time I’m finished shopping, and then as I’m on my way out the exit, he stops me and asks me out. Do I feel like the “masculine energy” then? No, I’ve opened up the possibility of connection, and I still get to be a girl.

Why is dating advice often part of the problem? If you think about it, most dating advice — there are exceptions, which I’ll get to later — is problematic because of what it is. Instead of going within and consulting the infinite wisdom of our intuition, advice seekers are going outside of themselves and hoping to find answers. Advice seekers don’t have access to their own intuition, or don’t trust it, for a variety of reasons, usually relating to internal fragmentation. They have a bunch of internal voices yapping at them, and they don’t know which one to follow. I call this “the inner committee.” The inner committee goes something like this:

Voice #1: You should go approach that girl. Why are you just sitting here like a numbskull?

Voice #2: Yeah, but I can’t. She’d never be attracted to me.

Voice #3: You’re probably right. Look what happened when you tried to approach that girl last night. Wow, you made a real idiot out of yourself.

Voice #4: You are such a coward. Do you think anything is ever going to change for you if you sit here all night looking stupid? You need to man up.

And so forth. I don’t know how anyone would be able to hear their intuition with this cacophony going on.

So, with such internal chaos, this person goes to a guru for answers. This person asks for advice. The guru gives advice, and it’s advice that would probably work for the guru. But it won’t work for the advice seeker, nine times out of ten. Why? Because the guru’s voice will just be added to the inner committee, in an unintegrated way, and there will only be further chaos in the advice seeker’s mind.

To give an extreme example, I have worked with guys in the community who have already been to see every single guru. And yet, their love lives have not improved. These guys are drowning in internal chaos. Each guru’s advice, standing alone, in an integrated mind, might work very well. But in the minds of these students, they now have 20 different gurus talking at them, and each guru is advising something slightly different. So then the internal “inner committee” conversation goes like this:

Voice #1: You should approach that girl. You’ve already waited too long. Guru #1 said to approach within three seconds.

Voice #2: Yeah, but Guru #2 said to approach only when I really feel something authentic toward a girl, and right now I don’t see anything I’m authentically interested in about this girl.

Voice #3: Wow, you are a stupid f*cker. Don’t you remember that Guru #3 said, if you can’t find something to appreciate about every woman you see, you have a serious problem? Man, you are a loser.

And so forth. Okay, this guy is going to get nowhere. He’s going to be stuck, forever, in emotional and analytical gridlock, unless someone can help him integrate all the advice he has received from a thousand different sources, into ONE UNIFIED CONGRUENT VOICE.

How do I know all this? Because this is what happened to me. Yes, my love life was not working six years ago, and yes, I did need help. But unfortunately, the help I found at the beginning, in the form of dating advice, did not help. It made things much worse because my internal belief system only became more fragmented. None of the advice books really agreed with each other, so after each action I took, I was second-guessing myself … and third-guessing myself … and fourth-guessing myself.

And it is that very second-guessing and analyzing THAT IS THE PROBLEM. Even if we’ve already sent a perfectly fine e-mail, the moment that we go up in our head second-guessing ourselves, we have DISCONNECTED from ourselves and from the other person. And the other person will feel it and will also feel disconnected.

Now we come to the worst advice of all. If I were to leave you with this advice, I would only be adding to your problems. The advisor recognizes that second-guessing is the problem, and says “You have to stop second-guessing yourself.”

Oh really? How? You’ve just given me advice that is going to make me analyze and judge myself EVEN MORE.

See how this only compounds the problem? We have a new member of the inner committee, folks. Now we have an additional voice that beats us up and says: “Damn you. Guru #4 said to stop second-guessing yourself. Why can’t you do anything right?”

Are you ready to step off the hamster wheel? Are you ready to do something that actually works?

This is why I use What Is Holistic Belief Reprogramming? with my clients. I’m not interested in piling on more advice, except in rare instances when my intuition speaks up and says it’s the right thing to do in the moment.

What I do with my clients is a completely different process. I find out what are all the unaligned voices in his or her head by interviewing him or her. My job is to listen, and to notice connections where I see them. And then I use What Is Holistic Belief Reprogramming? to go through each of the voices, make sure they all get heard, and follow intuition where that leads us.

In the process, the many voices become the One Voice. This is how you become congruent. I don’t give advice in the traditional sense. I help my clients reconnect to their own intuition. And this is how they will start knowing what to say and do in every situation without having to think about it beforehand, and without second-guessing themselves afterwards.

My role is as a Guide. I help guide you back to yourself, which is where the answers were all along.

If you’re interested in working with me, Erika Awakening Coaching Page.

Happy Tuesday, everyone.

xoxo,
Erika


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About the Author:

Erika Awakening is a Harvard Law School graduate and former practicing attorney. She left the rat race to become a location-independent entrepreneur, holistic life coach, blogger, speaker, healer, and Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT tapping) expert. Erika Awakening is one of the world's foremost experts on eradicating limiting beliefs and lifestyle design on your own terms. Learn more about Erika Awakening

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Comments

  1. Erika says:

    Hi Tinque,

    Thanks for the comments today. I appreciate them.

    I actually don't think there are too many experts out there, goodness knows we need more great teachers. And you're right there is some awesome stuff out there, and our hearts eventually guide us to the right places.

    Re EFT, thus far, every person who has come to me and said "EFT didn&#

  2. tinque says:

    I agree that there are far too many "experts" out there, and it can become enormously confusing, but there is also some AWESOME stuff out there, and if you follow your heart and not the voice in your head, you will know which way is the right one for you.
    EFT may work brilliantly for you, but it's not for everyone.

  3. Daria says:

    Erika :

    If he's attractive:

    1. Oh no my mom wouldn't approve of him =(

    2. He doesn't like me (reminds me of the "cool" guys in middle school I had a crush on

    3. If I look at him I'm making a commitment that expresses desire and what if he's NOT what I thought on first sight not perfect enough, sounds stupid, etc etc and

  4. Erika says:

    Daria, what thoughts come into your mind when you imagine looking a guy in the eye?

  5. Erika says:

    Thanks for the great comments.

    Kismet, I love that you're following what you want instead off what people tell you is the right thing to do.

    It's funny, I once was an advice junkie, and now you can't get me to read advice under almost any circumstances — except when my intuition for whatever reason magnetizes me to something.

    Daria, I'm with you

  6. Daria says:

    Dammit Erika… I feel all triggered. I was doing so well with leaning back and now I'm questioning myself… urger burger.

    I will go back to leaning back now, it was making me feel good.

    Kismet I feel surprised Rori would tell u that, unless this guy was totally toxic for you? Rori usually tells us to do the "third way" which means that we can date other men

  7. kismet says:

    This is great! :)

    I know that what works for me, is following MY OWN thoughts and wants and needs. I do something because I want to, not because someone told me to or not because I feel I need to because of someone else. Thats being genuine and authentic. Doing and saying exactly what YOU want out of your OWN wants/needs.

    I think the dating exceptions are AMP because it

  8. Daria says:

    Erika this post was absolutely awesome. I laughed at loud several times. This is so clear and true and real.

    Thank you for this post. BTW help with feeling ok to approach guys… I still feel scared even looking them in the eye…

  9. Anonymous says:

    That was beautiful…

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