Why do people stay stuck in spite of a stated desire to achieve a certain goal? Here are a few reasons I have found when people keep getting stuck on the same sticking points. These reasons apply not just to relationships with women, but to all kinds of bad habits or unproductive behaviors and beliefs. Here are a few reasons people stay stuck.
1) Positive reasons for not changing. This is when at a subconscious level a person perceives that they have more to gain by staying stuck doing the same behaviors that are ultimately unhealthy and destructive.
“Positive” reasons include:
• Protecting themselves from perceived harm. The “problem” they are getting stuck on is a way to avoid identifying and confronting another problem. For example being nervous about approaching women could be a way of avoiding fear of intimacy or insecurities about their own sexual ability.
• Getting attention by playing the victim. They fear a loss of attention from friends, mentors and others will no longer be around to help them if they are not a victim and are successful at achieving their stated goal. They do not believe that there is an alternative way to meet their emotional needs to be loved and to feel important. This can actually include reinforcement from other guy friends and wingmen that are stuck.
• Fear of personal responsibility in general. Being a victim that is taken care of means they can avoid taking responsibility. “It’s not my fault,” rather than how they could more effectively behave in specific situation.
2) Success anxiety
• Not getting what they want in one area of life, with women, is an excuse to not make other changes or to not have successes in their lives that involve change. Change is scary, and remaining in a situation where you are not getting what you want can prevent you from confronting and dealing with the uncertainty of what comes after success.
• Being successful is in conflict with their self image and is therefore threatening. See Maxwell Maltz: Psycho Cybernetics for more about self-image. This can be the case for someone who says they just are the “nice” guy, or that they are just “not good with women” and they can’t change. Or that they are not the kind of person that can get what they want.
• Limiting beliefs in general, similar to self image and self talk. In the following chapters we discuss this in some detail complete with ways to change limiting beliefs.
3) Bad neuro-associations
• Some people have associated pleasure to being a victim and pain to actually being successful. Need to change it so that a person not getting the results they want is not pleasurable while getting the results they want is pleasurable. An example of this would be someone who gets injured or sick frequently and is then “rewarded” with kind words, food, gifts, etc. This is one scenario where someone can become a “hypochondriac” that gets attention for being sick, or getting injured which reinforces a desire to get sick or become injured. While taking your mind off of a negative situation is a good way of coping, the problem is if there is a pattern that is perceived to be a positive reward.
• Rehearsing failure or less than successful behavior in your mind, instead of rehearsing success. Be careful what you are thinking about as you set out to do a certain task. Imagine success not what you fear could happen.