Step Away From The Fish

Give a man a fish, they say, and he’ll hold it up in a profile photo, thinking it’ll make women swoon. It won’t. 

So no fish for you. Instead, fishing lessons.

I know whereof I speak. I wrote a book called Spouse Hunting: Using The Rules Of Real Estate To Find The Love Of Your Life. A book that makes the audacious claim that the same process you use to find a house also works when it comes to finding a life partner. 

That makes me an expert. And here’s my expert advice:

Lesson 1: Buy my goddam book. I went to the trouble of writing it. The least you could do is read it. (Here’s a link to make purchasing oh so easy). Read this first, though, because I’m about to tantalize you with some of the notions it contains:

Lesson 2: Put down the fish. I know, there’s something macho about deceiving a creature with a brain the size of a pea, fooling it into thinking death doesn’t masquerade as a tasty morsel dangling in the water. 

I’m not here to tell you that you need to confront a mightier foe than a fish to attract a partner. I’m here to tell you that you need to confront a mightier foe than the other guy holding a fish. You want to stand out? Hold a kitten. Or a Malaysian tapir. 

Oh, what the heck. Hold a peace conference. Hold onto your principles. Hold two conflicting beliefs simultaneously. 

My point is not that you need to be  better than you are. You need to be more clearly who you are. Houses are boxes on bits of land. What makes one more attractive than another? No, it’s not that it holds fish. It’s that it feels unique and authentic at the same time. 

Is that so hard? Well, yeah, it can be. 

In order to come across as authentically unique, you actually need to be authentically unique. Good news. You are. You just might not have figured out how. 

How do you figure out how? There are lots of ways. Introspection is good. It’s also free. So are meditation, reading, and asking your friends and family. Hey, there’s even psychotherapy. That might work, too. 

Or maybe not. 

You’ve heard of Sigmund Freud, right? He wrote 22 books about wish fulfillment, dream interpretation, sexuality, and all sorts of other stuff. 

You know what else he did? He asked, “What do women want?” Father of psychotherapy and he can’t figure out 50% of the population.

In his OKCupid profile, there’s a picture of him holding a fish. 

Sigmund Freud holding a fish. He deleted his profile because it wasn't working. Notice that the fish he's holding is bigger than the one you're holding in your profile photo.

What’s my point? Find the way that works for you. It’s going to be different from the way that works for other guys and you know why? Because… wait for it… you’re authentically unique.

Lesson 3: Think. This covers a lot of the rules that I put into the book –– rules about marketing and negotiating and making offers and accepting offers –– and really what they come down to is that if you pay attention to what you’re doing, who you’re sending your message out to, and what the message communicates, you’re way ahead of the guy holding the fish.

I’m a big believer in common sense. What does common sense tell you a picture of you holding a fish is going to accomplish? It tells you that the women who are attracted to you are going to be attracted to you at least in part because you’re holding a fish.

If you’re good with that –– and really, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be –– then make sure that the picture of you holding a fish expresses your fish holdingness in a way that’s more attractive than the millions of other guys out there holding millions of other fish.

No, I don’t know how to do that exactly, but remember what I said Lesson 3 was? It was THINK.

I never said this was easy. It’s not. Is fishing?

If the answer is yes, then why are you holding the fish so proudly? And if the answer is no, then how come so many guys seem to do it so successfully?


Lesson 4: Get help. This is a big thing you want to do, finding a life partner. And if you succeed, you’re going to share your life with that partner. Meaning your friends and family are going to get to know that person. Why not bring them into the process early? Ask them to help.

If you want to step it up, call in a professional. A lot of guys think that’s cheating. Guys who fish with lures, some of them. Who gives a crap? What’s important is the result. That you find the person who’s perfectly right for you. If hiring a dating coach helps you achieve that goal, why is that any different from having a football coach help you get better at running a play?

It isn’t.

Also, buy the book. Here’s that link again.

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