Introverts, Masterminds, and Inner Game



The Price of Introversion

As might be readily apparent by now, I am an (off-the-charts) introvert. I am never happier and more comfortable than when I am alone- indeed, without alone time to recharge in a refuge from the rest of the world, I become downright ornery. There are many powerful benefits to introversion, as documented in this article by Jonathan Rauch, this book by Susan Cain, this Forbes follow-up article on Cain's book, and this most excellent website:
  • Immense capacity for concentration on difficult or challenging tasks
  • The ability to absorb knowledge like a sponge about all manner of esoteric subjects
  • The ability to analyse complex problems quickly and efficiently
  • The ability to tune out "noise" and focus on the task at hand
  • Great capacity for self-analysis and self-improvement
  • The ability to listen first and ask questions second
  • The ability to quickly see and understand the "big picture"
  • The ability to say things simply and concisely
  • A natural aloofness that comes from concentrating on what interests US first
  • Natural hypersensitivity to emotion and outside stimulus
This list of strengths is reinforced and significantly amplified if you happen to be an INTJ-type introvert. I am one. I routinely score off the charts on tests for my Myers-Briggs personality type, being very inwardly focused and extremely introverted. I am being neither boastful nor modest when I state that it is because of my introversion that I can do things which very few other men can even dream of.

Unfortunately, this impressive list of strengths comes with serious and glaring weaknesses. As Koanic Soul once put it (that's one hell of a spaced-out website, by the way, so if you visit it be prepared to wonder what dafuq is going on), "as an introvert, you have the capacity to move mountains- but only if YOU decide to do it". Those weaknesses are most readily apparent when you stick an introvert, especially one like me who has a healthy dislike of other people, in social situations. We tend to fall apart very quickly unless we exert tremendous effort to fit in, and that effort is extremely taxing. All of our immense knowledge and learning becomes useless when confronted with the incredibly painful task of simply starting a conversation that involves small talk along the lines of, "so what do you do?".

I know this better than most. A little under two years ago, I watched a woman that I loved marry another man in Hawaii. I had promised the bride that I would be there, and I am a man of my word. I actually had a pretty good time at that wedding- I happen to get along well with the groom, and the bride is one of my best friends from college- but the reception after the ceremony was torture. I didn't know anyone there and was literally incapable of walking up to anybody and saying, "Hi, my name is Didact, nice to meet you". I was reduced to skulking around the bar, hoping that we'd get to dinner ASAP so that I could focus on one-on-one conversations with people- something that I happen to be very good at.

That two-hour stretch was one of the most painful things I have ever experienced. And it's like that every time I go out and have to meet people that I don't know. This also makes cold approaches very difficult, much more so than the average male will ever experience. The natural aloofness of the introvert, coupled with the overwhelming sensory stimulus of a loud club or bar, completely destroys the composure and confidence that is so much a part of the Mastermind-type's makeup. It's not so much "approach anxiety" as "failure to launch".

Introvert Game

If you are an introvert, especially if you are an INTJ-style severe introvert who finds people to be more than just a little irritating, the following points may help you. I'm not going to pretend that I'm some sort of expert on overcoming approach anxiety. I'm not. Fact is, I'm a complete novice at cold approaches. That will have to change, and soon, but what I can do is pass on some techniques and ideas that I've noticed popping up all over the Manosphere to help guys like me.
  1. Play to your strengths as an introvert. You are not, and will never be, the heart and soul of the party. Well, so bloody what? You are, however, significantly smarter than the average bear. You know more because you've spent a lifetime reading good books and absorbing great ideas. You have the ability to speak on a wide range of subjects because your brain is constantly casting about for new ideas. Use these things to open with women. For instance, there's an excellent article over at Return of Kings about using women's natural solipsism to discuss psychology with them. If you're anything like me, you already know quite a bit about MBTI personality types- use that knowledge to execute a Roosh-style cold read of someone and automatically demonstrate high value.
  2. Approach women that you can feel comfortable with. Fact is that most of the women in the bars that I go to are not women I actually want to talk to. But, there are a few who might be interesting- and not necessarily because they're the hottest women there. Koanic Soul came up with a neat idea about approaching women who look or conform to a certain type, because that is the type with whom you feel most comfortable. I already know that I feel very comfortable around intelligent, articulate women who are not afraid to express opinions and have them challenged. Unfortunately, this is a very rare breed of woman, so be prepared to do some hunting. It's not easy to spot these types at first glance, but it can be done.
  3. Your mission comes first. And don't ever forget it. Don't go out feeling the pressure to approach women, as though approaching is something that defines you. It's not. Your mission is to improve yourself, not just to get laid. Another good one from Return of Kings points out a pretty neat idea: be Bruce Wayne. Be charming, be mysterious, be aloof, and then when it all gets to be a bit much, GET THE F*** OUT and go someplace quiet to recharge.
  4. Night game will not work well for you. Day game is what you need. Night game, which requires you to go to clubs and bars to approach women, is literally going to cause your genetic programming to crash. As an introvert, you are programmed to prefer quiet environments and intimate conversations to loud and crowded public places. This is something I've discovered for myself while reading Roosh's Bang- I constantly find myself thinking, "well that's a great idea, but I just cannot see myself in that environment". (It's even worse in my case because I'm one of those "morning people" that everyone at the office hates because I'm so damn chirpy at like 8am, without the help of coffee.) His book Day Bang, however, is an entirely different story.
  5. Get past the initial small talk, however painful. It's not going to be easy. I hate that part of a conversation more than any other- the "Hi, how do you do" introductions are beyond annoying. Find a conversational "hook" or opener that you can use to quickly segue onto a topic that is of actual interest to you, whether it be backpacking through Honduras or the finer points of Hegelian metaphysics.
  6. Confidence through strength. Work on slowing down your movements and controlling your facial expressions. Deepen your tone of voice. Build up your confidence by building up your strength- as far as I can tell, the game is EXACTLY like powerlifting in the sense that there are no shortcuts. You get good at something through constant practice, but you're never going to be good at every single thing. And that's fine. Find the things that you ARE good at, such as talking to women at the library or the gun range, and build upon them, slowly but surely. Practise is indeed your friend. For instance, I almost never get nervous before giving a speech or a lecture- and that's because I know my material really well before I even step on stage. But when it comes time to meet people afterwards, I can't wait to get the hell out of there- and that's because I haven't practised or built up that skill anywhere near as much as I should have.
  7. Use details in your conversations. Ever notice how the most interesting conversations you've ever had with people are the ones that go deep into the details? This is even more important when talking with women. This article (again from RoK) shows you exactly how to do it. Don't just narrate- describe. Or, as one of Roissy's 16 Commandments says:
IX. Connect with her emotions
Set yourself apart from other men and connect with a woman’s emotional landscape. Her mind is an alien world that requires deft navigation to reach your rendevous. Frolic in the surf of emotions rather than the arid desert of logic. Be playful. Employ all your senses. Describe in lush detail scenarios to set her heart afire. Give your feelings freedom to roam. ROAM. Yes, that is a good word. You’re not on a linear path with her. You are ROAMING all over, taking her on an adventure. In this world, there is no need to finish thoughts or draw conclusions. There is only need to EXPERIENCE. You’re grabbing her hand and running with her down an infinite, labyrinthine alleyway with no end, laughing and letting your fingers glide on the cobblestone walls along the way.

Inner Game



Everything I've described here can be summarised in the concept known as inner game- the state of mind that comes from stillness and self-confidence. This is something that comes almost without thought to deep introverts. The challenge is to convert that aloofness, that desire for solitude, into something that acts as an attractant to women. It's not easy. Lord knows I have plenty of work to do on my own game- part of the reason I started this blog is to chronicle and document that work over time, and to help others learn from my victories and my defeats. It is sure to be an interesting journey. I hope you'll join me on it.

Comments

  1. Excellent post sir, and this is coming from a guy who scores either INTP/INTJ on those tests.

    You are correct about night game, but there is one thin that helps. Make yourself standout. Get a look. I shave my head, have a small bit of muscle, have a beard and dress head to toe in black. Black v neck, jeans, etc. You'll have more women so as long as its not a complete sausage fest approach you. You want to be Bruce Wayne, Ryan Gosling from Drive, not fucken Casonova. Go for the quiet, brooding, alpha thing if you can. Muscle helps tremendously. I'd wager it's more important to introverted people than extroverts.

    Also, I think the connect with the emotions is a big one. I managed to get a makeout by talking passionately about the Austrian School of Economics, a subject boring to 99.9 percent of people, but when you go on about "inflation robs people, the elites screwing people over", the fate of the world, it can work, hilariously enough.

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    1. Thank you sir. In my case, building inner game is something that I really have to do. I realised not too long ago that my life is missing something very important (i.e. game) and I'm running out of time to correct that flaw. That's part of the reason why I wrote that post.

      Your points regarding the quiet brooding Alpha are spot-on. This is a natural state for me- detached, quiet, and thoughtful. The question is, how does one convert from passive outer game to strong inner game? It's a question that can only be answered by direct application of the ideas to the real world.

      I like your point about expounding on Austrian economics. I've found that whenever I've gone full-throttle into subjects like economics or global warming, it can go one of two ways. Either you completely lose your audience- if you do it wrong- or you take them along for an emotional ride- if you do it right. The challenge is to get it right.

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  2. I'm an INTJ/Rational Mastermind, and crowds are agony for me. I've also found that going out at nights never worked, but days do.

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    1. Same. The only time I ever actually enjoy being in a big crowd is at a concert, and even then, it's not the crowd that interests me.

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  3. I recommend Happy Hour Game. Either at a coffeehouse or quiet pub.

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    1. Which is probably the way I'm going to go. Nightclub game is very unlikely to work for me.

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    2. You can find them at nightclubs if you can stand the (sub)humanity, lol. Every gaggle of girls has a narcissistic extrovert leader with the rest of the girls not quite so outgoing or good looking (the Queen Bee must NOT be overshadowed). Look for the one in the group always smiling but rarely talking, or if she is talking, she's talking to one person, not loudly to the entire group.

      I highly recommend Dannyfrom504's approach of catching her eye & then sticking your tongue out. Frankly, just read his site, he is an INTJ that knows what the hell he's doing.

      http://dannyfrom504.wordpress.com/

      Sometimes if you approach, the group will literally throw the introvert at you. They feel sorry for her because she never goes home with guys like everyone else does. The females think this is a character flaw.

      A good way to bounce her to another place is to play on her introversion & ask if you can go somewhere quieter & less crowded to talk like for coffee or something.

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    3. Thanks for stopping by. Your post on meeting other introverts was quite interesting.

      Yes, there's a reason why I just flatly gave up on the nightclub scene in college. I really hated it- could never see the point. I'm only now beginning to get comfortable with going out in groups- and then only when I have an extroverted buddy along to do all the talking.

      Danny's blog is definitely worth the trip. I just wish he'd clean up the formatting slightly. But that's a minor quibble. He has some good stuff there.

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