“How do I get out of the friend zone…?”
“How do you get out of this horrible, sexless, purgatory-like place?”
“I’ve fallen in love with my best friend, professed my loyalty to her, and she condemned me to the friend zone.”
“Is it always going to be this way for nice guys? Are women always going to be attracted to those jackasses while we suffer here quietly in the friend zone?”
The friend zone is one of my favorite and most frequently asked topics to cover, next to dealing with approach anxiety and how to secure and transition a date into something more sexual and intimate.
Here at Craft of Charisma, besides our students that we consult and coach, we frequently get emails on how to get out of the friend zone. That’s why I’ve decided to write a comprehensive article about it, which will cover everything from:
- What the “Friend Zone” is
- Why men get put into the “Friend Zone”
- Constructive tips to get out of the “Friend Zone”
- A healthy mindset for dealing with the “Friend Zone” and how to prevent yourself from falling into it in the first place.
What is the “Friend Zone”?
For the dating novice or anyone who’s never heard of the term, “friend zone” refers to a situation where one individual in an intimate friendship with another individual develops intense feelings and wants to move the relationship to something more romantic and sexual.
More often than not, the other individual is unaware of the friend’s intentions and desires and doesn’t want to risk the friendship after finding out. As a result, the person who has the intense feelings is categorized into the “friend zone” and will not be able to transition out of that status and into the desired “girlfriend or boyfriend” status.
This is a very frustrating position for most men who are trying to transition into a romantic relationship with a woman they’re attracted to. A lot of times the frustration is sexually-motivated, with one friend desiring a more intimate and physical relationship. On some rare occasions, the friends had already become sexually involved, but there was a mutual understanding at some point in the relationship that it would not progress into anything more than friends with benefits.
But there is a motivation on one side to transition into a romantic relationship as a committed boyfriend or girlfriend. Sometimes both of the previous two situations I mentioned can overlap and become a catalyst to why they got friend zoned. In a nutshell, wanting more than you’re currently getting is an emotionally frustrating hellhole for men and women. The friend zone is not an easy place to be.
Why People Get “Friend Zoned”
Before I jump into the solutions for dealing with this emotionally draining phenomenon that most men struggle with at some point in their dating lives, we need to discuss why people get categorized and condemned to the friend zone in the first place.
All relationships, whether it’s your friends, family, work, and even romantic relationships, are social exchanges that requires a give and take for both parties. This means people set up give-and-take agreements to get what they want from the other person and give what they’re willing to give.
One of the reasons why the friend zone phenomenon happens to a lot of men is because the social exchange balance is thrown off when the man is trying to display as much obedience and affection for a girl he’s attracted to without ever asking for anything in return.
The “nice guy” phenomenon usually comes into play here. Men show only their nice guy traits, like acting overly chivalrous by bending to the girl’s every whim even if it’s completely inconvenient and illogical to the guy, being an emotional support sponge when she’s gotten into a fight with one of her boyfriends or friends, and filtering their intentions, sexuality, and personality for fear of either offending her or getting rejected by her.
In a nutshell, when someone gets “friend zoned,” they have entered a social exchange and relationship that’s completely lopsided. The other person is getting everything he or she wants, usually more than what they ask for, but the person who’s been condemned into the friend zone isn’t getting anything in return from all the exchanges.
How to Deal with the “Friend Zone”
Now that you understand the why, let’s get onto some healthy and constructive mindsets for dealing with the friend zone, and what to do to avoid getting into it in the first place. One of the most common questions I get from my students is how to get out of the friend zone. While it’s not impossible, the work invested into trying to get out of it is a complete waste of time, energy, and an emotional hell for both parties involved.
That’s why at Craft of Charisma, besides honing your dating skills, we make it our mission to help you develop yourself into a well-rounded man with a healthy mindset. Our goal is to help you become the best version of yourself.
Here are seven quick fixes to reorient your mindset and your attitude about the friend zone.
1. Be transparent.
A lot of men lack the ability to be brutally honest with themselves and the world around them. The point I’m trying to drive home here is to not have an ulterior motive when it comes to a girl you’re attracted to. One of the common reasons men get friend zoned is due to the fact that they cannot be honest about their attraction to the girl.
When you first meet a girl or if you’ve been friends with a girl for a long time but have trouble showing your true self, ask yourself “Am I happy? Am I being brutally honest with what I want for myself?” You’d be surprised how your life starts to come together when you start being honest with yourself. It’s important to have mental and emotional clarity when understanding and going for what you want in life, whether it’s your career goals, relationships, health, etc.
2. Focus on self-improvement.
Nobody is perfect, and we’re not all dealt the best cards all the time whether it’s our looks, finances, or anything else in life. Understand that while you cannot change your height, it’s important to take ownership of what you can change whether it’s going to the gym regularly, dressing better, doing things that interest you and make you happy, reading, traveling, and essentially investing in yourself.
3. Have a life and a purpose.
To build on the previous point, it’s surprising how a lot of men will drop their priorities or something that is important to them to entertain a girl they really like. The worst thing you can do is to stop growing and evolving as a person.
Women love a man who lives with conviction and has a purpose in life, and getting lost in your purpose and passions is a very attractive thing. Never stop being curious, develop your life, and pursue the hobbies that interest you, whether it’s salsa dancing, cooking, or anything else. It’s important to have a life other than making her the center of it.
4. Don’t neglect your friends and family; hang out with other people.
She might not actually be all that you make her out to be. Have other female friends, don’t neglect your bros, and spend time with your family and strengthening those ties, because they were there way before she ever came into the picture. Through a combination of hanging out with more people besides her and just putting yourself out there, you can open up more opportunities to meet other women that you’d most likely have better chemistry with.
5. Don’t be afraid to flirt.
Society has created this social construct for men to hide their sexuality and attraction towards women. Never ever forget that if you want to move a relationship forward, you have to develop some sexual tension between you and her. Don’t be afraid to be playful, tease her, reward her with some compliments, and touch her.
That doesn’t mean jumping straight to touching her in an overly intimate or sexual way. It’s important to develop your emotional intelligence and read her comfort level. You can start off by touching her shoulder or her elbow, giving her a high-five or fist bump, and playing with her hair. Imagine the times when you’d give your sisters and brothers noogies or mess up their hair. It’s basically the same concept.
For additional resources on flirting and how to touch a girl, check out the following articles:
6. Make yourself scarce and create some competition.
Spend some time away from her and do less for her. Remember, it’s a give and take relationship and it’s important that she understands your boundaries and what you stand for. If she truly appreciates you, then your absence will make her miss you and want to be in your presence. The “scarcity principle” comes into play here, where people value what is rare or what they’ve lost. When you don’t make her your top priority, she’ll most likely feel that absence.
As I mentioned before, start making other female friends; it’s a bonus if they’re really attractive. Competition and a little jealousy never really hurt anyone. People have a tendency to value more what they think they might lose or can’t have. If you’re busy with other people or hanging out with your new female friends, she might just start being a little more eager for your time and attention. If you don’t sense a hint of jealousy, then move on.
7. Give and take.
Ask her to start doing things for you and get her to invest in the relationship a little bit more. It’s a bizarre phenomenon, but people like you more when they do favors for you, rather when you do a favor for them. The more you get her to invest in the relationship, the more you’ll mean to her. Stop bending over backwards and doing her favors all the time, and don’t be afraid to ask her for small things.
Ask her for a ride, to workout with you, or to run errands with you. But, don’t be a complete asshole and freeloader here. After she does something for you, remember to be appreciative and affectionate with her only when she does what you like. Reward good behavior, not bad behavior. Remember to treat her as your equal, and not as someone above you or below you.
So there you have it, a comprehensive guide on the “friend zone,” how to avoid getting into the “friend zone” in the first place, and constructive tips and mindsets for dealing with it.
‘Til Next Time,