This story is so common that it’s actually the secret origin of half the most notorious PUAs on the net1. It’s a variation on the same story: while they were waiting for the right moment, somebody else swooped in and snatched their crush out from under them.
And of course, this just means that they themselves decide to treat women with disrespect because hey, assholes right?
Ironically enough, this can often result in more dating success. Not, mind you, because being an asshole is attractive but because they didn’t hesitate.
The problem for so many nice guys (and Nice Guys, for that matter) is that they are afraid of rejection. They refuse to make an approach unless they are 110% sure that they’ll succeed.
Related: Why Nice Guys Stay Single
They will dress it up in any number of excuses – they want to wait until the moment’s right, they don’t want to make it weird – but it all comes down to the same problem: they don’t want to take the risk of getting hurt.
As a result, they freeze themselves in place. They dither and wait. Shy guys will convince themselves of the nobility of loving from afar. Nice Guys will spend time trying to collect Friend Tokens in order to pay for the Platonic Best Friend Back Door Gambit.
Meanwhile, some asshole whose interest starts at her cleavage and ends at her crotch rolls up on her. And while the asshole may well not be as good of a match for her as the dogged nice guy, he still is the one who actually asked.
Because he wasn’t as worried about “making it awkward” or whether or not she’d want to be friends afterward, he felt confident enough to actually ask her out.
Even if the woman in question liked the nice guy, she isn’t going to wait forever for him to make up his mind.
If you like someone, then you want to be the guy who actually makes his move. The asshole may not like her as much, but he actually took his shot.
The nice guy doesn’t get a chance because, frankly, he never gets in the game in the first place.
Remember: he who hesitates, loses out.
Know How To Present Yourself
One of the most famous studies on the appeal of men with high levels of narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism focused on the halo effect – the way that one’s appearance affects how others perceive you.
Narcissists, in particular, tend to be perceived as more attractive than other people. In fact, narcissists are often seen as being nicer, funnier, and more appealing overall than others.
They are, in short, taking full advantage of the halo effect; because they look good, they’re seen as being better than they are in real life.
To some, this seems like yet another unfair advantage, something that dark triad men have that leaves nice guys in the lurch. In reality, however, genuinely good guys have the upper hand.
See, the key isn’t that narcissism isn’t an inherent charisma buff, it’s that narcissists put more effort into their appearance.
Narcissists spend more time grooming, working out, and otherwise showing themselves off to their best effect. Their egos won’t let them look anything other than their best.
This is something that literally anyone can do; getting fit and dressing sharp are very easy ways to upgrade your looks in short order.
And by doing so, you actually gain a greater advantage over narcissistic bad boys. See, while narcissists seem more attractive at first, that overall effect fades very quickly. In fact, over time, people see narcissists as unpleasant, hostile dicks.
Meanwhile, legitimately good guys – people that others like to spend time around – become more appealing over time. In fact, they become more attractive regardless of their physical appearance.
So if you want to get the advantage over an asshole, take a page from their book – spend more time on your presentation and the first impressions you make.
The bonuses of “well put together” and “fun to be around” stack, while the charisma boost from narcissism alone fades, giving you the net advantage.