Real stories about dating and relationships in New York City. Truth is more interesting than fiction.

Making Yourself Beautiful Takes Way More Than Just a Shiny Coat of Paint

Today’s guest post is written by Dennis Hong.

A few years ago, I got sick of driving my thirteen-year-old car, but didn’t have the money to buy a new one. So, I took the $1,000 I had saved up and spent it on a brand new paint job, figuring that at least my old car would now look new on the outside.

This only prompted my friend Doug to ask, “Why would you want to gift-wrap a turd?”

Now, as much as I wanted to protest that my car still ran great, he did have a point. If something is beat up and run down on the inside, does making it look good on the outside actually improve it?

You may have heard of a book called . You may also have heard of a book called . Both have spawned countless imitations at this point, but they all tackle the same basic premise: How to manipulate the opposite sex into being attracted to you.

Among the tips offered by the Rules, the woman should make the man work to win her affection: don’t call him back right away; don’t be so readily available; be aloof and reveal very little personal information. In short, make the man feel that he would be lucky to get her.

According to the Game, the man should demonstrate to the woman that he has something of value to offer her: perform a mind-reading trick to wow her; be the center of attention in the group; impress her with insight, intellect, and charm. In short, make the woman feel that she would be lucky to get him.

See the parallels here?

But, wait. If you’re a woman abiding by the Rules, how long will you have to adhere to them? If you employ a strategy designed to make men “chase” you, can you ever let them “catch” you? Or will you have to continue the chase for the rest of your life?

On the flip side, if you’re a man playing the Game, what happens when the woman wants to have a real conversation and actually get to know you? What happens when she discovers that you’ve simply been performing rehearsed routines? What kind of “material” are you going to use then?

The problem is that rules and game don’t address the underlying issues that make people unattractive in the first place. They teach desperate singles to imitate the natural behaviors of attractive people. But that’s it. They imitate.

Could it be that men are attracted to women who are confident and independent, who have their own lives, and who will not cling to them and base the meaning of their existence on a new relationship? And could it be that the behaviors dictated by the Rules simply mimic the behaviors of a woman who possesses these qualities?

At the other end, could it be that women are attracted to men who truly have something valuable to offer, be it intelligence, talent, charisma, or ambition? And could it be that the lines and routines directed by the Game simply mimic the behaviors of a man who possesses these qualities?

The woman makes herself seem unavailable, but in reality, she sits at home, hoping he’ll call. The man impresses her with supposed wit and charm, but in reality, those are memorized lines he’s spouting. Are these people really making themselves more beautiful? Or is this the behavioral equivalent of the thousand-dollar paint job on a piece-of-shit car?

So what if, instead of blindly obeying an arbitrary set of Rules, the woman actually works to attain those qualities that will make her attractive to men? And what if, instead of performing a well-rehearsed Game, the man actually works to attain those qualities that will make him attractive to women?

To be truly attractive in both a physical and mental sense takes and hard work. You can’t just read a book and shed a lifetime of self-esteem issues overnight. And you’re definitely not going to get any answers from a blog rant. You have to figure them out yourself, perhaps over years of introspection and self-reflection.

Either way, you can’t just slap a shiny new coat of paint on your dilapidated jalopy of a personality, when what’s needed is a complete engine overhaul. The paint job may be a , but you’ll only incite Doug’s neverending mockery.

And still end up having to shell out the money on a new car a few years later.

Looking for real dating advice? Then check out the group advice site, LemonVibe!

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3 to “Making Yourself Beautiful Takes Way More Than Just a Shiny Coat of Paint”

  1. Yes one day of trying to make yourself pretty does not help how you feel inside. Therre needs to be a ongoing maintenance to make yourself pretty inside and out.
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  2. Emily says:

    Couldn’t agree more. Everyone needs more than just a shiny new coat to actually improve themselves.

  3. Kat Karn says:

    Oh hell yes, well said! I recently started doing a serious inventory of myself, my past relationships, mistakes, the works. It has been exhausting, but at the same time very rewarding. Will be enjoying my own company for a while now before I get back into the dating world.

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