Saying the Same Thing… Two Different Ways
I have a friend who is reviled by most people that meet him. The guy is one of the most naturally disliked people I know. It never fails that after inviting him to a social situation… someone will later comment what an asshole he is. And when I ask what he did or said to annoy them… no one can explain exactly why they didn’t like him.
No matter what he is saying to you, it always sounds like he’s talking down to you. Any question he asks… always appears to be a subtle insult on your intelligence. And any joke he makes is met with resentment rather than laughter.
But the truth is… the guy is one of the most decent people I know. He just does a horrible job of matching his voice tone to the statement he is making.
One of the most overlooked aspects of gaming women is tone of voice. Sure, there is some focus on tonality… but much of what has been written about it relates to making you sound more alpha and loud. There is very little written about doing a reality check on yourself in regards to how other people perceive you.
I experienced this battle first hand when I really started implementing cocky funny humor into my game. I would go out armed with quick witted responses to standard situations… but instead of getting laughs I was getting eyes rolled at me. I had a very dry sarcastic tone of voice that went over most girls’ heads. And I don’t believe it was the content of my jokes… it was my delivery.
Controlling your tone of voice can be as simple as the way you end a sentence.
Take this sentence for example:
“So you work as a bartender?”
That sentence can have many different meaning depending on how you state the question. If you’re not careful, that simple question… could be perceived as an insult on the career of the recipient.
If you’re asking a question… you need to make sure you question doesn’t come off as a judgment.
I remember a conversation that “unlikeable” friend and I were having with a girl who had just published a book of poems. My friend simply asked her, “What made you want to write poetry?” The girl later came up to me and asked me, “Why does your friend think he’s better than everyone?”
The most ironic thing is that my friend has no clue that he comes off this way to people. He is inquisitive and likes to ask questions… and walks away from most conversations thinking he made a new friend.
There is no simple advice that I can give you on how to always project yourself the right away. The only real way you’ll know how people perceive you is to ask your friends for honest feedback. If you are having this problem your friends are probably waiting for the right opportunity to expose it to you. Give them that opportunity by asking for the feedback. Even though the truth can be cruel sometimes… you’re a lot better off recognizing this failure, and making the necessary corrections.
When I realized that my cocky funny humor was coming off more arrogant than funny… I took two steps that made a world of difference in improving my game.
The main thing that I noticed was that my more successful friends were giving off playful vibe with their tone of voice… similar to Vince Vaughn. My tone of voice was more dryly sarcastic… similar to David Spade.
Eventually I’m going to write a whole post on the art of sarcasm… but for now all I want to say is that the less you know a person… the more likely your sarcasm will be taken the wrong way.
If this is an area that you’re having problems with the best advice I can give you is to experiment with the tonality of your voice and the projections of your sentences. Make mental notes of what is working and what isn’t, and then adjust your style to match the more successful approaches.
If you really want to perfect this I suggest taking out a voice recorder w/microphone and listening to your conversations later. This will not only help you improve your tonality… but it will also give you a clearer indication of what is and isn’t working in your game.
And if you’re still unsure what constitutes cocky/funny as opposed to arrogant… you need to reread Double Your Dating. Cocky/funny is a wonderful tool… if used correctly.
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About Bobby Rio I'm Bobby Rio, one of the founders of TSB. I tend to write about what is on my mind so you'll find a mix of self development, social dynamics and dating articles/experiences. For a collection of some of my favorite articles check them out.