Lots of guys get labeled as a “player” because they date around, use pick-up lines and techniques or simply talk a big game. But these dudes are obvious and easily identified. What you really need to learn is how to spot the ones who are so masterful that “player” won’t even enter your vocabulary.
Everything about him seems legit and honest and intriguing. There will be no lame moves, and you will feel like the only woman in his world. There are a few key giveaways that he’s not the Mr. Right you’re looking for. How do I know? I’ve seen these guys in action, talked strategy with them and maybe even borrowed a few of their tricks.
They are a rare breed. I equate the numbers of true ninja-level players with serious female gold diggers. There are not that many of them, but enough to give the rest of us a bad name. Earnest, thoughtful men suffer in the same way that independent, generous women do thanks to these, um, standouts.
These guys play the dirtiest game because they study us and tap into our deepest subliminal triggers. We have to put our ego and wishful thinking on the shelf to figure out how to get past one of these guys.
Here are four surefire clues that he’s a ninja-level player:
- He plays with your insecurities. This is a dirty — and highly successful — play. If he’s just met you, he’ll compliment something that’s not your best feature … something you’ve got a complex about. You hear all the time that your eyes are beautiful, but it’s rare to hear that he’s taken by your crooked smile or large, lumpy nose. Chances are, he’s been watching you cover your mouth with your hand when you laugh or check your makeup in the mirror to be sure your concealer is still well in place. He’s picked up on it, and he’s going to make you feel good about what you feel bad about. If he knows you well — for instance, you work together — he’ll compliment work that you feel shaky about. I’m not suggesting that you should question every compliment that comes your way (after all, your crooked smile is actually pretty cute), just tune in to whether someone’s feeding your desire for acceptance.
- He compels you to make the first move. Here’s the thing about ninja-level players — it’s all about control and manipulation. Sex is the frosting. Getting you to cross the line is the molten hot fudge filling inside … and it’s so satisfying. When getting worked by a true player, you’ll be given signs of his undeniable interest, the flirtiest of double entendres and perhaps a glimpse at his availability. But he won’t break the seal. You’ll be incredibly enticed to ask him out, proposition him or heck, even plant a sexy kiss. And once you do, he has all the power.
- He gains your sympathy with heartbreaking tales about his recent ex or current mate. This may start innocently over a friendly, commiserating cup of coffee in the break room. It should be a huge red flag. But you’ll want to console him and tell him how much better he deserves … and before you know it, you’ve convinced yourself that you’re the one to give him that. That’s not by accident. He’s already given you enough praise and indication that you — rather than she — are the type of woman he wants. And just to be sure we’ve covered all the bases, if he’s not a player and just bitches about his woman all the time, it’s likely he’ll do the same to you.
- He’s really really good in bed. If you pair up any of the previous three items with this, he’s pretty much won. Of course he’s good in bed … he’s a Jedi master at getting women there. One of two things will likely happen next: 1. He’ll leave you in a sweaty, dizzy heap at the end of your bed and never call you again, or 2. He’ll play you again and again, stringing you along with hints at a future but never a real commitment … until you finally get sick of waiting and dump him. Then he’ll just walk away and not look back.
Yes, it’s really that cold. So if you bad-mouth your man easily, stop and think: Is he doing things on this level or just disappointingly not matching you in your goals for the relationship? Learn to identify truly bad behavior before demonizing all the guys out there.