BECOME THE MAN WOMEN WANT
1st of December 2014

How To Be Attractive To Women, Pt. 9: Get Your Life Together (Willpower & Conscientiousness)

Introduction:

Increasing your willpower and conscientiousness is one of the best ways to become more attractive to women. This means being ambitious, reliable, a hard worker, planning ahead, having self-control, and being able to get things done. In this episode, Tucker and Geoff explain why willpower and conscientiousness are so attractive, how to increase them, and how to display them in ways that attract women.

Podcast:


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Key takeaways:

  • Willpower and intelligence are the two major predictors of educational success, career success, and relationship success.
  • Conscientiousness is not very correlated with intelligence. You can be bright and flaky. You can be super hardworking, but not that bright. It’s cultivated separately from intelligence.
  • If you can increase your willpower and become more conscientious, you will become more attractive to women.
  • Strong willpower is signaled by your health. Are you slim or are you fat? If you’re fat, it shows that you lack the willpower to stop eating bad foods. It’s also signaled by cleanliness. Take showers, wash your hands, make sure you don’t smell bad. Are you well groomed? Are you dressing clean and stylish? These all signal willpower.
  • A good first step to eating healthy is making sure there’s no junk food in your house. If there’s junk food, you’ll think about it, and if you’re thinking about it, it will wear out your willpower.
  • Another signal of willpower is keeping your things clean. Your car, your apartment, your furniture. Especially your kitchen and bathroom.
  • While being a slacker is unattractive, so is being someone who does nothing but work. You want to be a hard worker, but you don’t want to work all the time.
  • If you are an addict to anything – junk food, porn, alcoholism, drug addiction, video games – that shows lack of willpower, and women won’t be attracted to it.
  • Sexual restraint is another way to show willpower. If a woman doesn’t want to sleep with you, or wants to take things slow, don’t get upset. Just be calm and respect her decision. If you can do this, it will increase your success with women immensely.
  • Be on time when you’re going on a date with a woman.
  • Willpower is like a muscle that you can build. You can increase your willpower and conscientiousness if you practice stuff that requires it, like eating well, exercising, keeping your car clean. Even just little, tiny things like shaving regularly everyday, keeping good posture, anything that requires willpower can build it up.

Links from this episode

Podcast Audio Transcription:

Tucker:
We might have to cut that. We should cut it because it’s Koreans who eat dogs. Not Chinese. If we’re gonna be racist, let’s be racist against the right people.

Tucker:
Alright, so this episode is about willpower and, to a slightly smaller extent, conscientiousness. Basically, how good are you at making decisions, doing the right thing in your life, despite setbacks or other obstacles? Dr. Miller, I’m a 19-year-old frat bro. I don’t give a shit about willpower. I want to willpower my dick in her pussy. Why should I care about this?

Geoff:
Because she cares about it.

Tucker:
Alright. That’s the answer to all of these! You care because it matters to women, exactly right. In theory, I get that, but why, exactly, do women? Even for me, when I first saw the outline of the book, I was like, “Willpower? Really?” Then, I read it and it made total sense. But explain in clear, direct terms why willpower is so attractive and so important to women.

Geoff:
Willpower is a trait that varies across guys. Some guys have a lot of willpower, which means conscientiousness, ambition, they plan ahead, they follow through on their promises, they can control and inhibit their own behavior, they’re tidy, clean, reliable. Those things don’t sound very sexy to guys, right?

Tucker:
Hold on. Let’s explain conscientiousness real quick. Conscientiousness, because that’s one of those words that a lot of people hear and they don’t actually know what it means. I interpret conscientious as a suite of traits that’s willpower, self-control, reliability, hard work, diligence. Basically, can you get shit done and are you going to do the things you say you’re going to do?

Geoff:
Right. Do you follow through despite setbacks and challenges?

Tucker:
So, that’s being conscientious, right? If you’re a shitbird who flakes on everything, you’re not conscientious. If your word means something, then you’re conscientious, right?

Geoff:
Remember, being trustworthy and reliable and not flaky makes women feel safe, and safe feels sexy to women.

Tucker:
Yes.

Geoff:
So, the more reliable the guy is – even if you’re not in a long-term relationship, the more reliable you are, the more she can trust your word, the more drawn to you she feels.

Tucker:
Right. So, you’re very sexy if a guy is who he says he is. If she can trust him and his word, which is conscientiousness – it’s not just trusting what I say, but it’s does what you say actually mean anything, right? We kind of talked about this with signaling. Words are cheap. Actions are not. Being conscientious is a signal of a lot of very attractive traits to women. Also, you’re very well-versed in the literature; you’ve done some of the research. There’s a great book out that Roy Baumeister and John Tierney did – I think we’re gonna get Baumeister on the podcast at some point – called Willpower that really goes into this. But as I understand, nothing predicts life success as well as conscientiousness, right? Willpower?

Geoff:
It’s kind of an equal toss-up between intelligence and willpower. But jointly, those are the two major predictors, not just of educational and career success, but also things like does your marriage succeed or do you get divorced because you become an addict and you have impulsive affairs and stuff like that? It also predicts how good of a parent you’re gonna be. Do you show up to get your kid from school? Do you remember to take them to the doctor? Do you watch them when they’re playing near a pool?

Tucker:
And it predicts how well you’re gonna do at life. The three big areas that women are measuring you: how good are you going to be at life – your status, how good of a partner are you going to be for me, how good are you going to be as a father, even if they’re looking for short-term relationships. What you just said tracks exactly those three things. Conscientiousness and willpower predict life success, partner success, and parenthood success.

Geoff:
Yeah. And we should also note that previously in the podcast we’ve talked about physical health, mental health, intelligence. Conscientiousness is the first of the so-called big five personality traits. These are the five traits that vary across both men and women, and they’re all sexually attractive in different ways. So, conscientiousness is not very correlated with intelligence. You can be bright and flaky. You can be super hardworking, but not that bright. It’s actually kind of statistically fairly independent from intelligence. So, it’s a trait you can think about separately. You can cultivate it separately. Women have their own kind of disctinctive attraction to it. They feel that this guy’s safe, trustworthy, reliable. That’s a real turn-on.

Tucker:
I know a lot of women who will say things like, “Well, he’s not that smart, but…” They won’t say he works hard. The way that they describe it is different, right? It’s just more like, “I trust him. He’s such a good guy. He’s so reliable.” Whatever. Now, if you’re just reliable with nothing else going for you, like that’s better than nothing. I’m not gonna sit here and say that’s the sexiest trait and women are all over reliable guys. There are a lot of things that rank above reliability. So, let’s not pretend this is the biggest thing on earth. But I think what’s important is that reliability, conscientiousness is – especially if you’re not that smart – this is something that you can change in your life. You can get better at it and that will make you successful and get you a lot of things that not being smart, you think can hold you back from. Correct?

Geoff:
This is a big leverage point, especially for young men. So few young men really think about willpower, conscientiousness as something to cultivate, and they don’t understand why it’s attractive to women or how to display it in a way that’s romantically compelling. So, that’s what we’re gonna focus on the rest of the podcast.

Tucker:
Yeah. Here’s a good example of this. I went to high school in Kentucky a few years before I went to Blair for boarding school, and a lot of my friends – you know, this is Kentucky and this is a relatively poor area of Kentucky, so not a lot of super bright people there. It’s funny, I go back every now and then. I try not to go back too much. I go back and some of the guys I still keep in contact with or whatever, there’s very few who are smart and most of the smart ones left, actually. The ones who are left, the ones who are doing well are the ones who run their own businesses. I have a buddy who runs a car repair shop. Listen, this guy doesn’t have a jet or anything but he has a really nice business. He probably makes 120 grand a year, which in Kentucky, is like making half a million dollars a year in New York, right? This dude has a really nice house, a bunch of redneck ridiculous trucks that he spent way too much money on. He has two wives, two kids a piece, divorced both of them. He’s forty or something, banging 22-year-olds. I’m not saying that’s a perfect life, but if you look at it from the perspective of most guys, he’s been extremely successful with women. He’s not stupid, but this dude is not smart at all. What he is is a hardass fucking worker. When people say hard worker, a lot of what they mean is do you have willpower? Do you have conscientiousness? Can you do shit? He can do shit. You don’t have to be really smart to do shit. You just have to be willing to put in the work, right? That’s an example of a guy who’s not very smart but did shit and it’s very attractive to a lot of women, whereas I know a lot of dudes from high school, same sort of situation. Not so conscientious. Maybe even smarter, right? They’re the manager of a Verizon store in Lexington. They’re kind of lazy. They’re kind of flaky. They might have married a girl, might have not. I actually know a dude who actually is a cell phone store manager, and he did get married and they got divorced pretty quick, and now he’s like forty – I’m thirty-eight, so all my friends from high school are in the 36-40 range. He’s kind of overweight. Not a fatty, but thirty pounds overweight. I still look like I’m young, and it’s not because I have some amazing skin or whatever. It’s because I’m not fat. That’s what most people equate to getting old, is getting fucking fat. I look at him and I’m like, “This dude’s put on forty pounds since high school.” You wouldn’t call him a beast, but 26-year-old girls are not looking at this guy like, “Oh, wow, this is a great dude,” whereas I can still od that easily. He doesn’t even have 34-year-old attractive women looking at him, ‘cause what is he offering? What’s he offering to a woman? He has a pretty crap job. Whatever. He has a crappy car. He’s not that interesting. He’s not that reliable. What is it that he brings to the table, right? I’m not trying to criticize the guy, but he’s not that smart. He’s smart, but he’s not really smart, and look at his life. At forty years old, if you’re doing all those things, there’s no shame in being a cell phone store manager, but you can do that and be really interesting and really fun and a really great dude that women are really into. But he’s not really any of those things, you know? I think it’s because this dude doesn’t have a lot of conscientiousness.

Geoff:
And if you ask women, “Why did you break up with your last boyfriend?” or “Why did you divorce your husband?” a lot of what women will complain about is lack of willpower as it plays out in things like, “He kept cheating on me through impulsive sex,” or, “He had an addiction to whatever.” Alcohol, video games. He couldn’t keep a job. He wasn’t reliable or little things like, “He kept forgetting my birthday,” right?

Tucker:
He’s got nothing going for him. He couldn’t remember my birthday, right.

Geoff:
In other words, he was a slacker. And that’s a big turn-off, except to women who are super slackers themselves. But honestly, women, on average, have higher conscientiousness than guys. They had to because they evolved to look after kids, and you can’t forget, “Oh, yeah. I’ve got a kid. Where is it?” So, women’s standards for willpower are a little higher than men’s standards, and if you just get your game together in this area, it’s a big win, especially in keeping a good girlfriend.

Tucker:
So, let’s talk about very specific ways guys can signal willpower. A lot of these things we’re going to talk about in these podcasts overlap with each other, so you’re gonna hear us repeating the same things. Guys, I’m gonna say this over and over. I’m gonna say it now. There is not a lot of fancy shit you have to do to be good with women. Most of it is fundamentals, so if you keep waiting for a magic bullet, you’re gonna wait the rest of your life and not get one. There’s no magic bullet. Get your fucking shit together and do the fundamentals and you’re gonna do way better than you are if you’re not doing the fundamentals. If you are doing the fundamentals, then there’s maybe some extended things you can do if you’re still not being successful with girls. There’s probably either one big thing you’re doing wrong or there’s something else. But we’re talking about fundamentals right now. So, strong willpower is signaled by your fucking health, obviously. Are you slim or are you fat? If you’re a fucking fatass, it means you can’t stop cramming Doritos in your goddamn piehole. Right? It kind of fucking boils down to that. It’s basically that simple, and if you want to yell and whine and complain, you’re welcome to do it. Do it in your room, alone, jacking off while the rest of us are out, not fat, getting girls. Is it more complicated than that, Dr. Miller?

Geoff:
It’s pretty straightforward, but two things I’ll add to that. Number one is if you’re overweight now, don’t beat yourself up because you’ve probably been given bad nutritional advice. It’s really hard to lose weight if you take the standard FDA, American Medical Association recommendations, “eat a lot of carbs, don’t eat fat.” You can have all the willpower in the world. If you get bad advice and try to implement that diet, it will not work. So, one key thing is if you take our advice and eat plenty of saturated fat, cut out the grains and sugar, it’s easy to lose weight. You don’t actually need that much willpower.

Tucker:
Yep. Just to interrupt you for one second. Go back to our health podcast. Listen to that, and more importantly, go to TheMatingGrounds.com, the page that is associated with the health podcast. We have links to every resource you could ever fucking need to lose weight, but trust me, it doesn’t require a lot of information. It just requires not eating sugar, not eating grain. Eat everything else. Animal meat, animal flesh, animal fat, vegetables, that’s about it.

Geoff:
Yeah. And the second thing about willpower and nutrition is just deploy your willpower with a little bit of intelligence. So, eat before you go to the grocery store so you’re full and then you only have to use willpower that half hour you’re at the grocery store in terms of what you buy.

Tucker:
Let’s split this up, because I want to tell guys how to signal willpower and then how to actually change their bad habits separately. But your point is really good. If you have problems going to the grocery store and buying shit, if you eat a bunch of food before you go to the grocery store, you won’t buy as much shit. That’s actually a super good point. Alright. Next thing you can do to signal willlpower. Do you fucking clean yourself? I bet some of you are laughing right now, being like, “Oh, this is fucking basic advice.” And I bet you 50% of the dudes saying that have greasy fucking hair, have dirt under their fingernails, they fucking smell, their breath smells, something. I’m not saying you need to be perfectly clean and wonderful all the time, but my god, dude. Take showers, wash your hands, basic shit. And if you’re not sure if you’re clean, find some woman in your life that you trust who will be honest with you and say, “Hey, look. This is sensitive and a difficult thing to say. Do I smell? Does my breath smell? Do I look clean? Am I presentable?” Don’t ask your fucking mom ‘cause your mom’s probably gonna lie to you. Either she’s gonna lie to you or she’s gonna be an awful, criticizing harpy. Either one is wrong, right? You want someone who’s compassionate, but honest. Alright. So, is there any other grooming things that I’m not thinking about, like going to the dentist, maybe? Things like that?

Geoff:
Yeah. This is all about visual impressions. A woman looks at you and she can tell a lot about your conscientiousness just from your grooming, your shaving. When’s the last time you had a haircut?

Tucker:
Hold on. By the way, stubble is sexy. What you mean is don’t look like you just crawled out of a sewer grate.

Geoff:
Yeah. And it’s the same with animals.

Tucker:
Like, beards are okay, but have a beard. Have it trimmed. Don’t be that in-between or like one of those Asian dudes with four hairs sticking out of your face and they’re three inches long and you look like a crazy person.

Geoff:
Yeah. You’ve got to have some kind of grooming that indicates “I’m making an effort.” So, you can be Brooklyn hipster dude with a big, bushy beard, but tight, groomed haircut.

Tucker:
Hipsters are usually groomed pretty well.

Geoff:
Yeah. You can tell they’re making an effort and they did something in the morning that required getting up and exercising self control and…same with your clothing.

Tucker:
That’s the next one. Dressing clean and stylish.

Geoff:
Yeah. Clean, stylish. When’s the last time you washed it? Is your shirt ironed if it’s an ironable shirt?

Tucker:
Wait. Hold on. That applies to divorced guys and older men. If you are twenty-two and in college, you don’t need to iron your fucking shirt. Make sure you adjust our advice for your age group, because there are certain things…the more detailed we get, the less applicable it will be across age ranges. So, Dr. Miller’s talking about stuff that really matters in the circles he moves in. Everyday, I wear a grey t-shirt, right? Doesn’t need to be fucking ironed. I have no problem getting girls. The larger point is whatever clothes you wear, make sure they make sense in the social groups that you move in and that they are appropriately cleaned and cared for for the social group, right? So, if you’re a fucking heavy metal headbanger, you should have ratty, nasty jeans. That’s actually a status signal in your group. If you’re a professor, that looks like you just crawled out of a fucking homeless shelter, right? So, don’t do that.

Geoff:
And bear in mind, women are reacting to these cues of high or low conscientiousness not consciously, not rationally. The way that women experience you being slovenly or a slacker, the way they experience it in their body is they feel sexual disgust. Their vagina kind of dries up a little bit.

Tucker:
Hold on. You’re right, but let me explain why you’re saying that. So, Dr. Miller just got done reading Naomi Wolf’s book, Vagina, which is really great. And listen, Naomi Wolf is about as feminist as it gets, so this is not some sort of misogynist, sexist position where he’s like, “Oh, her pussy dried up.” This is a real, physical response that is as medically established as it gets. He’s not just talking out of his ass here. By the way, Naomi Wolf’s book, Vagina, is very good. I want to try and get her on the podcast. She probably wouldn’t come on for me, but for you to interview might be good. Because that book’s really good. Anyway, so when he says the vagina contracts, he’s actually being literally correct in a medical sense, and this is not like some weird dude logic.

Geoff:
The same thing is true when women evaluate, “Does this guy keep his car clean?”

Tucker:
That’s the next one. Do you keep your shit clean?

Geoff:
Yeah. Your car, your apartment, your furniture, your kitchen. Especially your kitchen and your bathroom.

Tucker:
Yes. Let’s go back to car for a second, because I cannot tell you how many times – I’m rich and famous now. I was, believe it or not, poor for a large part of my life. it’s so funny. Some people read my books like, “Oh, if I was a rich kid, I would’ve been able to do all that stuff.” Like, motherfucker, I was so poor, I had to fuck fat girls so they’d bring me food at points in my life. I don’t know where this idea that I was a rich kid came from, right? My dad had money. He didn’t give any of that shit to me. That’s still a point of contention with me and my dad, but whatever. So, that’s a long way to get to the point. When I had a car, there were points in my life I was driving a Saturn, a ten-year-old Saturn. I don’t know if there’s a more low-status car. Maybe a Moped would be a more low-status car, right? Or driving a Chevy Malibu. I’ve been really poor in my life. Those are really shitty. And I’m talking about the old-school Malibus, like the rental car Malibus, the shitty ones. I kept them relatively clean. I wasn’t washing them everyday, putting them on dubs or something like a fucking idiot. I just kept them clean and neat. Here’s the thing: one of the greatest men of all time, greatest leaders, greates orators, Pericles, who basically ran Athens during the Golden Age, if you’ve ever read The History of the Peloponnesian War, you know the funeral oration. He said there’s no shame in poverty. There is only shame in not doing anything to raise yourself above that station. So, a girl who sees you with a bad car immediately might think a little bit less of you, but if it’s relatively clean and neat, she’s gonna be like, “Okay. He’s young. He’s gonna get better. This shit’s changing.” In fact, there’s a great line in a Kanye West song about this. In Gold Digger, actually, she’s like, “This guy’s got ambition. It’s in his eyes. Even though he drives a beat up car” or something like that. I can’t even remember the fucking line because why would I memorize a rap song. But that’s the point of the song. Kanye’s right, man. He’s exactly right. The fact that you keep your shit together – car is just a great example. I can think of many times I picked up girls in my shitty car and the fact that it was clean, they weren’t necessarily attracted to me, but it wasn’t a point against me. A lot of the things we tell you guys are things not to do, and I know we’ve gotten some feedback where guys are like, “Look, you keep telling us things not to do but you don’t tell us things to do.” Most of the reason you guys aren’t getting ass is because you’re doing everything wrong. If you’d just stop doing shit wrong, you’re automatically gonna look better, right? This is one of those things where, if you stop doing it wrong, girls won’t be unattrracted to you so the other things you’re doing right can then shine.

Geoff:
Yeah. A lot of women would honestly rather be driven in a clean Saturn to a mid-priced coffee date than driven in a really messy, disgusting BMW to an expensive restaurant. ‘Cause from the woman’s point of view, clean and tidy equals sexy. That’s really hard to wrap your head around—

Tucker:
Hold on. Not OCD. You spent ten minutes cleaning your car out because you cared what she thought of you. That’s it. That’s all you have to do. Ten minutes.

Geoff:
Yeah. Because women, if they have a sexual fantasy about having sex in a guy’s car, they never think, “It would be awesome if there were Burger King wrappers in the backseat and dog hair.”

Tucker:
Do girls actually have sexual fantasies about having sex in cars? I think that’s dudes.

Geoff:
I’ve met a few who have that, but it’s always a pretty—

Tucker:
We move in different circles.

Geoff:
Also, even car maintenance. I’ve already talked in the podcast about the shitty 1982 Pontiac I drove in grad school, but it actually counteracted the shittiness of the car to be able to say, “Yeah, I changed its oil last weekend. I maintain it. I take care of it.”

Tucker:
Yeah. That’s conscientiousness and skill also. That goes back to intelligence. I want you to go back to bathroom ‘cause that’s another really big one that women talk about all the time, but they never talk about it to guys.

Geoff:
Yeah. Well, think of a spectrum where one extreme is sexual arousal. The other extreme is sexual disgust. Women’s lives and relations to you basically are always moving between those two points somehow. A huge point of sexual disgust is what does your bathroom look like? If she comes home with you and there’s pee all around the toilet and your pubic hair’s all over the sink and stuff like that, it is a massive turn-off.

Tucker:
I cannot tell you how many women have told me they decide to fuck – some women, not all of them, of course – but there have been plenty of women who have told me “I went home with this guy and his bathroom was so gross, I left.” I’m like, “Was he trying to fuck you in the bathroom?” She’s like, “No, but why would I fuck some guy who has pubes all over his sink?” For real, I’ve legitimately heard that from women.

Geoff:
Now, if a woman’s really drunk or tired, she might not notice, but there are no conditions under which—

Tucker:
It’s never attractive.

Geoff:
It’s never a plus, right? You can only handicap yourself with this.

Tucker:
Right. And it doesn’t take much. Listen, we’re not sitting here saying you need to be able to fucking run a q-tip around the base of your toilet and nothing comes up. This is not Martha Stewart doing an inspection of your house. Can you go into the bathroom and not be revolted by it? Not you as a dude, but can a normal woman be like, “Okay, it’s not clean, but it’s not disgusting.” That’s the minimum, and if you do that, you’re probably going to be okay. Right?

Geoff:
Yeah. Women are kind of instinctively evaluating, to some degree…

Tucker:
Not kind of. They are.

Geoff:
…“If there was a baby crawling around on this floor, would they get sick if the baby licked the floor?” That’s the kind of stuff that goes through women’s minds.

Tucker:
That’s unconscious, very much. Without even worrying about that, you can just be like look, if the woman is disgusted by anything about you or your possessions, that is a major sexual turn off. Listen, there’s a lot of situations where you can be on a date or out with a girl, and she’s into you a little bit. The female decision to have sex with you is not a binary thing. It’s not on/off, right? It fluctuates and changes, basically, up until the point where you two are naked together and she’s like, “Yes, I want to have sex with him.” Then, once you start having sex, then the decision’s made. But until then, it’s not just binary. She doesn’t just decide at some point that she’s going to have sex and that’s it. Some women do with some guys, of course, but there are a lot of situations where she kind of takes everything you do into account. Almost think of it like scales or a ledger or something. I can think of a lot of times where a girl was really into me and then I did something and she was, like, not into me anymore at all, and I was super confused. This is even before I get to bed or whatever. I was super confused. I didn’t understand. As I matured and got more experience, I realized when I fucking picked my nose and rubbed it on the bar, she was disgusted. None of my friends care about that, but I’m not fucking my friends. I’m fucking a girl. It’s different. Maybe I’m just a stupid 23-year-old, but that’s the way…it took me a long time to understand some of these things.

Geoff:
Yeah. Women are more prone to disgust than guys are, generally. And there are all kinds of reasons for that. Guys had to hunt and butcher game animals and deal with blood and guts, and women just pick berries, and that’s not as disgusting. Women’s babies are much more vulnerable to infection, so if your little cave or camp site is full of gross stuff, their babies could literally die from that and they have to watch that.

Tucker:
Well, they usually have to pay a higher price for STDs, too. There’s a lot of people, like, John Durant, actually, is one of our podcast guests. He didn’t really talk about this much on our podcast, but he’s big into the research in sexual disgust. Him and some other people, but there’s a lot of people out there that think that sexual disgust evolved after civilization started as a way of defending against STDs or whatever.

Geoff:
Yeah. And also bare in mind why do women love having sex on vacation and in hotel rooms? A major reason is not just novelty, but it’s also because hotel rooms are clean and tidy and it’s a huge relief to women to be able to go from their houses or a boyfriend’s apartment to a hotel room where an actual maid cleaned everything. Again, guys, this might not make sense to you, but…

Tucker:
Ask your sister. Ask a woman you know that you have no sexual relationship with and never will. Ask her about this. She will tell you the same shit we’re telling you. We’re telling you this because the research is clear as day about it and because we both have a lot of experience with women in talking about this and listening to this. This is not an intuitive thing. You never think about this as a guy. I didn’t when I was twenty-four or eighteen or hardly even at twenty-eight. There are a lot of things that are really important to women that aren’t important to us, and conscientiousness as reflected by cleanliness is one of the big things for women. Alright. Another good thing you can do to signal conscientiousness to women, taking care of a pet if you have a dog. God forbid, don’t fucking go out and get a dog because you think it’s gonna get you laid. That’s fucking terrible. Dogs are creatures who have independent needs and desires and if you don’t fucking take care of it, if you just use it as a prop to get pussy, I’m gonna come fucking stab you. Obviously, I’m a dog owner. I love dogs and whatever. If you like dogs and you wanna take care of a dog, that’s awesome. I have had many dogs in my life. My dogs have helped me get laid a bunch, but at the same time, I love my dogs and I take care of them and I’m an amazing dog owner. It’s okay to use your dogs to display good things about you – empathy, conscientiousness, etc. It’s not okay to get a dog just to get laid. I can’t be clearer about this.

Geoff:
This actually brings up a great point point about indicators of willpower that are romantically attractive vs. not. Now, in modern society, a really powerful, statistically strong indicator of willpower is your credit score, okay? Credit score is the way the financial system tracks your literal willingness to repay your debts. Okay.

Tucker:
Right. No pussy’s getting loose over a credit score.

Geoff:
Yeah. Women don’t get aroused by a credit score, even though it’s such a powerful willpower indicator. But, they will get romantically compelled by “his dog is so cute, he takes such good care of his dog.”

Tucker:
He loves his dog. His dog’s well-behaved.

Geoff:
He feeds it, he takes it to the vet, he gets it groomed, he walks it everyday. Why is that appealing to women? Think about it. That means you’ll be a good dad. You’ll be the kind of reliable partner and dad who can take care of a high-maintenance dependent.

Tucker:
You care about something besides yourself! You show empathy. You’re not a fucking sociopath.

Geoff:
Also, you’re not a sociopath or a narcissist.

Tucker:
Right. Exactly.

Geoff:
Sociopaths don’t have dogs, or the dogs don’t last very long.

Tucker:
Right. Unless they’re Chinese and they become dinner. We might have to cut that. We should cut it because it’s Koreans who eat dogs. Not Chinese. If we’re gonna be racist, let’s be racist against the right people. It’s actually true. Koreans do eat dogs in Korea. That’s not racist at all. That’s just a fact. Anyway, so you actually brought up a really good point. We’re not telling you to be conscientious because we have some moral agenda or we want you to act this way. We’re telling you the things that matter to women, and a lot of these things are going to help you at your life, which is a super good benefit, too. But these are all things that women care about. Let’s talk about…obviously, hard work, clearly. We talked about that before. Should we talk about balance? I think a good sign of conscientiousness is understanding that working hard is great, but if all you do is ever work, that’s actually unattractive. It’s sort of like a u-shape. If you don’t work at all, you’re not attractive in most situations. There are definitely situations with younger guys and girls in certain social contexts where being a slacker actually works. It generally stops working somewhere in college and definitely after college, it’s pretty worthless unless you’re a drug dealer. Then, obviously, you’re getting girls with coke and that’s a different thing. So, then it kind of goes in a u-shape. So, slacker is zero attraction. Hard worker is a lot of attraction. Nothing but work is back to zero attraction. Correct?

Geoff:
Yeah. One thing is if you’re a workaholic, it doesn’t actually take that much willpower to just get in a rut of working inefficiently, all day, everyday. True willpower means you can step back and prioritize and do what needs to be done and not do everything else.

Tucker:
And then you have time for women.

Geoff:
Yeah. Time for women and to cultivate yourself and develop passionate leisure interests that are hugely attractive to women.

Tucker:
Right. And also have sex with women.

Geoff:
Yeah.

Tucker:
Let’s not leave that out. So, obviously, hard work. I just want to make sure guys understand if you do nothing but work, don’t expect women to just find you because you are so conscientious. That’s actually not conscientious because you’re not balancing your life in a way that’s attractive to them. This might seem obvious, but let’s go over this ‘cause it won’t be to a lot of guys. Not being a fucking addict.

Geoff:
Yeah.

Tucker:
Right? If you are an addict to anything – junk food, porn, alcoholism, drug addiction, video games – that’s not attractive, right?

Geoff:
Yeah. If you have any habits where you’re doing something for hours on end kind of compulsively and it’s not something that’s attractive to women, that’s an addiction and it’s gonna undercut your mate value and your attractiveness. It signals low willpower because it is easy to get stuck in those ruts. It was easier when I was growing up and when Tucker was growing up because media was less addictive. The first time I played Doom back in the early nineties, it’s like, “Oh, my god. I’m glad this didn’t exist when I was a teenager.”

Tucker:
I lost three days of my life. I’ve fallen down those rabbit holes.

Geoff:
Internet porn? Awesome. Drugs? Great, whatever. There’s so many things that can derail you now that you need to step back and have a good, hard look at what are my addictions? Because no doubt, you have some, and no doubt, they are undercutting what women think of you and how attractive you are.

Tucker:
Exactly. So, let’s actually talk – this might seem a little counterintuitive, but I think it’s important to talk about. Sexual restraint. We’re not gonna get into an awful, ridiculous rape culture discussion. This is actually about real shit that real men and women interacting care about. So, let’s talk about this because this has happened to me a lot. First off, you talk about what sexual restraint in a willpower context, and I’ll give examples.

Geoff:
Yeah. So, sexual restraint is just yeah, you have a passionate attraction to a woman, you want to have sex with her, but you have a forebrain that says, “No, not yet. Keep it in check. Control it. Don’t make a move on her yet.”

Tucker:
I’m going to respect her limits and her decisions.

Geoff:
Respect her power of female choice. That makes women feel safe with you that you’re not going to push your agenda. You’re going to let them make the choice. You can be sexually assertive and still show restraint. You can show arousal and attraction, but she has to feel like you’re not gonna lose control with her or you’re only gonna lose control when she wants you to.

Tucker:
Exactly, which is not really losing control. That’s a different thing. Alright. This took me a while to learn. I think I learned it in my mid-twenties. There were a lot of times in my early law school years where, when I was dating or fucking UNC undegrads, I’d pick them up, we’d go back to their dorm or sorority – usualy not the sorority house because I usually you’re not allowed in there but wherever they lived. And they’d be all into me in the bar and then we’d get back and then it’s like, they didn’t get cold, but, “I don’t want to do this yet. I don’t want to have sex.” And I remember I used to get really frustrated and pissed off, not because the girl said no, but because everything she had done at the bar early, before we had gotten alone, was like, “Of course she wants to sleep with me. This is awesome. I’m gonna fuck this girl,” and then she’s like, “No.” I would get pissed. It’s not like I would do anything. I would just fume and I’d get pissed off and sometimes, I’d leave or be cold. I would react in some sort of immature way. Then, I’ll never forget this. One time, I had one of those days where I fucked like three girls in a day. I hooked up with a girl the night before, then I hooked up with her that morning again. Then, some other girl that I kind of knew, we had a nooner or something right before we went out. Then, I went out and picked up another girl. So, it was like batting practice, hitting home runs over and over. And that girl played the same game. Almost sucking my dick at the bar, we go back to her place, and all of a sudden, she doesn’t want to fuck, right? I remember because I’d already fucked twice that day. I was just like, cool. No problem. I didn’t have that anxious energy, and I just totally let it go. I was legitimately genuinely not concerned with it. Also, I kind of liked her. She was fun. So, it wasn’t a big deal. I remember when I did that, something changed in her and she kind of poked me one more time to see if I was serious and because I really was not caring, we fucked like goddamn rabbits all night. I learned something very important that night. Most of those other women who were turning me down were not turning me down. They were testing me. I didn’t realize it and I failed the test because I reacted like a petulent little child. “If I don’t get to play, then I’m taking my toy and going home.” That’s what fucking children do and I acted like a fucking child. After that, I would say 80% of the time I go home with a girl and she plays the “I don’t want to have sex” game after being very clear that she did, I react the same way every time and 80% of the time we have sex. To be very clear, in case there’s some idiot 16-year-old listening to this, I’m not manipulating the girl into saying yes or something like that. I’m having a genuine reaction. “I don’t want to have sex.” “Okay, cool. Let’s not have sex.” I’m totally relaxed and cool about it. And sometimes, we don’t have sex. 80% of the time, the girl does want to have sex or maybe does, maybe doesn’t. She hasn’t decided and she’s basing her decision on your reaction. The fact that I’m so cool about it and so conscientious and I respect her decision…I can show that I’m very emotionally stable and whatever, that makes me substantially more attractive. And then she wants to fuck me.

Geoff:
Yeah. And what women actually like to see, and you’ll realize this completely if you read romance novels, is they like you to be aroused. They want you to want them, but they also want you to be the kind of guy who can keep that in check for a while. If you have zero passion and you don’t have a sexual bone in your body, then sexual restraint means nothing, because it doesn’t indicate your willpower at all. If you don’t even want them, then the fact that you’re not making a move on them means nothing. So, they want the passion, but they also want a mature, masculine will that keeps that passion in check.

Tucker:
If you take nothing else from this podcast, take that. It took me so long to learn that. I was twenty-three, twenty-four when I learned that. And that was one of those things where it was like…there was a period in my life, I was going home with girls three, four, five nights a week, but only fucking half of them, and I couldn’t figure out why. I think part of it might have been that at the time, I was giving off a very aggressive vibe. When you’re a 23-year-old, sometimes that’s just who you are, right? It’s not like I was trying to manhandle women. That vibe can be offputting. I learned that the hard way, but once I learned it, it was awesome. Should we talk about planning ahead in relationships? I think that’s more romantic proof. Or should that be willpower discussion?

Geoff:
I think we should give a couple examples of how conscientiousness kind of plays out in terms of showing up on time for dates and giving appropriate gifts and being thoughtful and stuff like that.

Tucker:
Right. So, a big part of conscientiousness…it’s not really willpower, but that’s thinking of others. That’s more empathy and romantic stuff, right? That’s more tender defender or what?

Geoff:
I think, for example, if a woman’s waiting for you at the coffee shop and you promised you’d be there at 2:00 and it’s 2:30 and she’s been there half an hour by herself, her first thought is not, “He lacks a little empathy.” It’s, “He’s fucking flaky. He’s a flake and he’s not conscientious and I resent the hell out of that.”

Tucker:
Yes. By the way, guys. I’m just gonna tell you this from experience. I have no idea if there’s any study on this or empirical stuff, so you can fill me in. If you’re one of those dudes who likes being on time and you should be because that benefits you in business and life, then that’s great. If you expect women to follow the same clock as you, you will be let down. Don’t expect it. I don’t mean that to be sexist because there are plenty of women who are super punctual and amazing, and whenever I meet a woman like that, I’m like that’s awesome. But for the most part, women operate on a different clock. Fifteen minutes to me – fifteen minutes in women time is like dealing with Brazilians. If you tell a Brazilian 2:00, you have a three-hour window on either side. Those motherfuckers just do whatever they want, okay? That’s not racist against Brazilians. It’s not sexist against women. That’s just the way they operate, fifteen minutes on either side. I wouldn’t necessarily hold that against them. That doesn’t mean you should operate the same way, because here’s the thing – if the woman’s like that and, “Oh, fifteen minutes on either side is no problem for a guy,” then it’s nothing lost, no big deal, right? But you’re gonna deal with women who don’t like that and think that’s bullshit, and they’re right. So, there’s no downside to being on time and there’s a lot of upside. So, just be on time.

Geoff:
And generally, for dates especially, you should make sure you’re arriving before the woman 90% of the time because women don’t feel safe in a dating context if there are other men around and they’re alone and they’re waiting for you. You’re failing as their tender defender.

Tucker:
Unless she’s already really into you, making her wait a little bit can make her more into you, but that’s an advanced discussion. And that’s playing a little bit of games or whatever. So, let’s say the guy’s like, “Alright, I get why willpower’s important. I get what I can do to show willpower. What if I’m just a flaky piece of shit? What do I do?” Dr. Miller, what do I do? I’m a 17-year-old and I don’t give a shit. How do I become someone who fucking does shit?

Geoff:
Well, there’s a lot of cool research on willpower in the last ten years that shows it’s kind of like a muscle that you can build. You can actually increase your willpower and conscientiousness if you practice stuff that requires it, like eating well, exercising, keeping your car clean. Even just little, tiny things like shaving regularly everyday, keeping good posture, anything that requires willpower can build it up. But the second thing to do is deploy your willpower, which is kind of a limited resource, in ways that are effective and have leverage.

Tucker:
Let’s talk about that willpower is a limited resource, because I think most people don’t understand this and the research on this is very clear and very effective. There’s a bunch of books that have come out over the past few years like Habit by Charles Duhigg and Willpower by Baumeister that really describe very clearly how to build good habits. We’re actually gonna do, I think eventually, a course on habit building for young guys because I think there’s a lot of guys that – it’s not gonna be one of the first ones we do ‘cause a lot of young guys don’t understand how important it is, but once they kind of realize, “I should get my shit together,” at least in a dating context. Let’s start with food, ‘cause food’s the easiest example. If you are a fucking fatass and you know you’re a fatass and it’s because you’ve been eating Twinkies and Cheetos and fucking cupcakes and Snickers bars, and you’re like, “Alright, I get it. I was lazy. I ate this terrible shit. I don’t want to do it anymore. What do I do?” Okay, great. Every person who knows anything about food and diet will tell you the first thing you need to do is clear your house of all shit you don’t want to eat, because if there’s a Snicker bar in your house, you will think about it. And it will work on your willpower and it will wear your willpower out, okay? If it’s not there, then you don’t have to think about it. Then, it becomes if I want a Snickers, I’ve got to get my car, drive to 7-11. Most of the time you’re not gonna do that. That’s where your laziness pays off, actually! You’re too lazy to go get a Snickers bar. That’s fantastic! So, you’ve now designed your life so that there are no Snickers bars within reach. Use that as a metaphor. If you’re making bad decisions, say, “How can I design my life so that the Snickers bars are not in my house anymore?” Here’s a great example. President Obama and I and Steve Jobs all do the same thing with clothes. Do you know what that is?

Geoff:
What is that, Tucker?

Tucker:
You know what it is, motherfucker. This isn’t like a fucking Laurel Hardy routine where I’m setting you up. What it is is we basically wear the same shit everyday or we have someone else pick out our clothes, because that’s a decision. It doesn’t matter how smart or big your brain is. You essentially have a limited amount of decisions you can make a day, at least effective ones, because trust us – we’ll link to these books so you can read Willpower. It’s all the neurochemicals. It describes everything in there. But basically, if you don’t care about reading all of the literature, just trust me, there’s a limited amount of capacity for your brain to make decisions, right?

Geoff:
Yeah.

Tucker:
So, the more decisions you make – little ones – the harder it is to make big ones. So, I’m not saying you have to wear the same fucking Lululemon t-shirt everyday like I do, but I’m saying don’t spend your time making a bunch of stupid little decisions. So, if you eat the same thing everyday for breakfast, that actually makes your life way easier. If you wear the same thing or you have a set way that you pick out your clothes that’s super simple for you, that’s one less decision. If you set up your life so that the only decisions you’re making are difficult ones, then you’ll make good difficult decisions. Another example you gave, let’s go back to. If you go to the grocery store when you’re hungry, you buy a lot more food, right?

Geoff:
Bad food. Yeah.

Tucker:
Exactly. Think about it. You’re at a restaurant, you’re starving. You look at the menu and you want to order everything. You order a bunch of food, you finish it all, and you feel like shit, right? The check comes and you’re like, “God, who ordered all this food?! This is ridiculous!” If you actually had to pay the check first, you would order way less food and probably more appropriate food and then you’d eat right. That’s why restaurants do it the order they do it in! They’re not fucking stupid. They don’t make you pay ahead of time because they know you’re gonna order more shit if you don’t have to fucking pay for it when you eat it.

Geoff:
Paying for stuff is aversive, and the neuroimaging says a lot of the same areas that light up with physical pain light up if you’re paying for something with cash or credit.

Tucker:
Exactly.

Geoff:
Like, if I go to Costco, I realized, I can literally save $100 on my shopping trip if I just go first and eat a couple of their little polish hot dogs or whatever, right? The weird thing is, before I developed the habit of just eat some food there at their little takeaway place, I thought I was being rational about my choices. Then, after I was actually full and I bought $100 less per trip, I was like, oh, my god, I am so influenced by my bodily state. Even just carrying around a handful of nuts, something with some saturated fat before you shop, is a huge help.

Tucker:
Those are just some examples. We’re gonna link the books on willpower. If you really care about this and want to read about this in depth, you can. This is only a one-hour podcast. I don’t want to get crazy about this stuff. So, here’s the thing. I think the takeaway is you don’t have to have an iron will. You should not spend your life denying yourself stuff you like. You should set up your life so that making the right decisions is easy, and then you can display willpower. You have willpower. It’s displayed by all these decisions you make like keeping your car clean, being sexually respectful, etc., and that makes you far more sexually attractive to women. I’ll tell you, Tim Ferriss’s podcast is great for this. He is the master at cutting out decisions in his life and simplifying stuff. 4-Hour Workweek’s really good. 4-Hour Body’s really good. You can listen to his podcast or read some of his stuff. We’ll link to that. There’s a lot of ways to make good decisions, but understand, this is not just – we’re not moralizing or rationalizing with you. This shit matters.

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