How to Stop Being Socially Awkward

February 18th, 2015 by Mark Belden 8 Comments

Man Woman Talking Naturally at a Bar


This is a guest post by Mark Belden, the founder of The New Man Within.

As soon as I decided to talk to her, my heart started pounding. We were running around the track in our high school gym class. I had been gearing myself up for weeks to say hi to her.

I ran up next to her and said, “Hey, aren’t you dating Cole?” (I knew she was dating Cole.)

Her: “Yeah, how did you know?”

Me: “I’m friends with him and he told me.”

Her: “Oh… cool.”

She looked over at me wondering if I was going to say anything else. I didn’t. She pulled ahead while I slowed down and wondered if I would be awkward forever.

This wasn’t the only interaction that went like this. I have a journal filled with conversations that I wrote down and tried to decipher why I kept feeling so out of place. I had developed a skill of starting a conversation and then immediately ruining it.

All of these negative experiences led to low self esteem and labeling myself as socially awkward.

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Why You Shouldn’t Just Settle For Anyone

February 10th, 2015 by Nick Notas 15 Comments

Low Expectations Keep Everyone Happy

People give more thought to choosing their next Amazon purchase than to choosing their next relationship.

When it comes to romance, everyone is in such a hurry. You jump into a relationship with the first person who shows you interest. You commit to being exclusive before you’ve even gotten a chance to really know each other.

I think that’s insane! You’re playing Russian roulette and hoping that this person is going to be a good match for you.

I know you’re eager to find love, but being in an unhappy relationship is much worse than being alone. Especially if you’re trying to find someone you plan to be with forever, you shouldn’t just settle for anyone. Choosing the wrong person will affect your entire life.

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How to Break Free From Feeling Helpless

January 29th, 2015 by Nick Notas 17 Comments

Helpless Man


When I began coaching, I expected people to come to me with all sorts of problems. 

But I never expected so many to tell me, “Nick, I feel totally stuck. I’ve tried everything but I just don’t have what it takes. My life is hopeless, so why should I bother trying?”

These people feel completely helpless in their lives. They feel like they have no control over achieving their goals or finding fulfillment.

The first time I heard this, it hit me hard. Because I remember how trapped and powerless I felt years ago. 

In the span of months, my dad had a heart attack and was forced to close our family restaurant. I had to drop out of college to support my family. My friends all moved to colleges out of state and my social circle disappeared. Then my girlfriend of two years dumped me.

It seemed like there was nothing I could do to stop the shit storm. I believed I was destined for unhappiness.

So I blamed myself. I blamed others. I wallowed in self-pity. For a long time, I did nothing and nothing changed.

I was experiencing a mindset called learned helplessness. And it kept me miserable and from getting what I wanted out of life.

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18 Exercises to Overcome Your Fear of Meeting People

January 21st, 2015 by Nick Notas 19 Comments

Nervous man approach anxiety

Everybody wants the ability to introduce themselves to someone they find attractive. Yet many of us struggle with this endlessly.

We have “approach anxiety” so deeply rooted that no one else can help us conquer it. Because the only proven way to crush our fears are through our own experiences.

You need to show your brain that…

  • You’re fully capable of approaching new people.
  • Many of them will respond positively and want to meet you. Even when some aren’t interested, they’re often flattered and polite.
  • Whatever happens, you will be just fine and stronger because of it.

A lot of people never learn to overcome approach anxiety because they believe they have to start with full approaches and full conversations. However, anything that pushes your comfort zone and gets you in front of new people is progress.

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The Cultural Movement That’s Destroying Dating For Everyone

January 14th, 2015 by Nick Notas 41 Comments

Anti Flirt Club

A client recently told me, “I’m scared, Nick. I’m scared that if I say ‘Hi’ to a new girl I’ll be a labeled as a predator.”

“C’mon man, that’s not going to happen.” I replied.

“Really? One of my female friends said that if a random guy even smiles at her, it’s sexual assault.”

I was speechless! But mostly, I was angry.

There’s a rapidly growing culture that promotes safe sex, consent, and healthier relationships for women. It seeks to empower women and I’m all for it.

However, this message is being misinterpreted and taken to extremes. It unintentionally condones complete female control while subtly shaming men for their natural sexual desires.

It’s really becoming an anti-flirting movement. 

And both men and women are perpetuating it and suffering because of it.

If we don’t put a stop to this school of thought, I worry it’ll be the death of healthy relationships.

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How to Save a Girl From a Bad Relationship

December 30th, 2014 by Nick Notas 11 Comments

Saving This Girl

I’ve heard the story dozens of times.

You like a girl who constantly complains about her horrible boyfriend. He does everything wrong.

He doesn’t listen. He doesn’t pay enough attention. He’s rude and can be a real jerk. 

You’re different, though. She tells you that you’re the perfect guy. You’re the one who’s always there for her. Sometimes, you may even be her cuddle buddy and take her out when her boyfriend doesn’t.

The answer is so obvious — she should be with you instead! You’re the guy who will treat her right, if only she could see that.

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9 Holiday Gifts That Make Life Better

December 17th, 2014 by Nick Notas 0 Comments

Every holiday season, we all have to accept gifts that we know we’ll never use. We smile, say thank you, but inside we’re really thinking, “What the hell am I going to do with this?”


But I believe with a bit of thought, the right gift can be thought-provoking and invaluable.

You can give someone a useful gift that they never knew they needed. You can give them something that improves their day-to-day routine. You can even change their life.

Here are my suggestions for holiday gifts that make our lives better.

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Do’s and Don’ts For Your Online Dating Profile

December 12th, 2014 by Nick Notas 5 Comments


When most men write their online dating profile, they go about it the wrong way.

They pen a factual biography that details their life story. They create a resume that only focuses on their skills and accomplishments. Or they write a sales pitch trying to convince women why they should choose them.

All three of these methods fail spectacularly. Instead, you have to understand that the real purpose of your online profile is…

Marketing yourself. Therefore, your goals should be to…

  1. Build interest. We all want the best for ourselves and women are no different. They’re looking for a guy who’s going to improve the quality of their life – whether that’s through adventure, emotional / sexual fulfillment, or status.

    Show your value. You don’t need to brag or prove yourself, but give her an engaging inside scoop. Detail your quirky hobbies, tell your hilarious stories, and talk about your passions.

  2. Make her feel good. A woman’s #1 fear about online dating is having to endure an intense meet-up with a jerk or a stalker. So if you can make a woman smile, laugh, or even relax — you’ll put her mind at ease.

    Embody the emotions you want her to feel, we are reciprocative by nature. Have a positive attitude. Don’t be judgmental. Be playful  and don’t take yourself so seriously.

I know that doesn’t always come naturally. So to help you hit these goals, here’s a list of do’s and don’ts to help evaluate your own profile. 

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Should You Even Try? (For That Girl or Guy)

December 3rd, 2014 by Nick Notas 8 Comments

Crystal Ball Man

When Hamlet contemplated life, he needed to answer the question, “to be or not to be?” But in romantic pursuit, we all struggle to answer, “to try or not to try?”

That is the question.

Every week you tell me about all kinds of situations…

“There’s a girl at my gym that I always see. Sometimes she even smiles at me. Should I approach her and introduce myself?”

“I’m friends with a guy that I’ve developed feelings for. Should I see if something’s there?”

“I’m 26 and there’s this 19 year old girl who seems into me. Should I invite her to hang out?”

“The barista at the coffee shop is always extra nice to me but he might just be friendly. Should I ask for his number?”

To you I say…

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Physical Attraction is Not Shallow

November 19th, 2014 by Nick Notas 16 Comments

Shallow Attraction

Why is there so much judgement towards the physical preferences of others?

We’re all guilty of it one time or another. Think about these scenarios…

  • A girl who has specific height requirements for suitors in her online dating profiles
  • A guy you like who always chooses blonde girls with big breasts instead
  • A girl who dates a perfect guy and breaks up with him because of his small penis size
  • A guy who only flirts with fit, athletic girls

What do you think of these people? How do their actions make you feel?

Are you angry that they could be so shallow? Do you feel disgusted with how superficial they are? Do they make you want to throw your hands up and say, “That’s why I think dating is such bullshit”?


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