How to get a girlfriend

How to get a girlfriend

« Hey Jean-Baptiste, I have watched your videos where you pick girls up in the street. Your advice is good but I don’t think it would be relevant for me. I live in New York, I'm reasonably succesful in my career. I’m looking for a girlfriend, not some random hookup with a girl I know nothing about. I’m 33 and I don’t want to waste time with girls if it’s not serious. Do you also give advice on how to meet someone for a long-term relationship?”   Ric, Amsterdam, NL

Dear Ric,

Thanks for your interest in my articles and videos. Your question brings an interesting point that will probably resonate with many readers.

A study conducted in 2009 by researchers of Stanford University revealed that 32 percent of the respondents had met their romantic partner through common friends. The second most popular option for couples to meet was through the Internet. More recently, the Oxford Internet Institute published a study in which researchers conclude that couples meet primarily in the following places:



Although, this may not be universally true or applicable to younger crowds (respondents average age was 40,7 years) it is wildly informative: Only 20% met their partner in a bar or on the public space.


Statistically, you’re more likely to find your next girlfriend at work, on an online-dating website or through some sort of blind date.  


Why should you continue reading?


Just because MOST people do it, doesn’t mean it is the RIGHT thing to do


Statistics don’t tell us the whole story. They are here to tell us what most people do.


And yes, most people are conformists afraid to expose themselves to potential social rejection. So they go the easy route and try to minimize that risk. That’s how they shoot themselves in the foot when it comes to seduction.


Tales of love: How and where you meet her DOES matter


Initial encounters are the Founding Myths of romantic relationships

My point here is not to embark on an essay on the social role of etiology. I will simply point at the fact that most social alliances rely on some sort of narrative which bond people together. Nations and corporations have their own narratives and derive a sense of identity from their foundational stories. Think for instance of the French Revolution and how the events still shape the identity of a Nation. Think of the personal story of Steve Jobs and how Apple has integrated this individual narrative into its corporate identity.


Romantic encounters aren’t much different in that regard.


I remember meeting up for a drink with a girl I had met a couple of weeks before. She came accompanied by a couple of female friends. We sat at a table and it wasn’t long before they started asking me questions about my job. As I explained how thrilling it can be to flirt with a stranger on the street, I got their full attention.

Someone was doing something they had only seen in Romantic Comedies. The mere idea of meeting a charming stranger on their way to the office seemed like the most exciting thing. At this point in the conversation, a handsome fella joined in. He was the new prospective boyfriend of one of the girls and had been delayed by some traffic jam on his way to the bar.


-       How did you meet Sophie by the way? I inquired.

-       We met on


All eyes turned to him for a brief second. Were they going to ask more about this online dating story? No.

They just smiled politely and resumed our chat about meeting strangers on the street. So much more entertaining and emotional that a recounting of how two people shot emails back and forth for three weeks before agreeing to meet. Where’s the passion and audacity in that?


It doesn’t have to be a tale of a knight in shining armor.

Simply stepping out of the box to recognize an opportunity and let the magic happen goes a long way. This shouldn’t come as a surprise. We’ve been raised to believe through fairy tales and cinematographic love stories that there is something mysterious, untamable and wild about meeting your significant other. Online dating is at best a cheap version of the romantic dream.


The same goes with meeting your partner through friends. They are going to take pride in being the matchmakers and rob you off of the feeling that YOU made it happen.


The best opportunities are the ones YOU create


We like to think of ourselves as unique beautiful snowflakes. However, we’ve learnt and internalized social norms. We act out of conformism in many situations of our daily lives:



If there was one aspect of your life to remain untouched by the plague of conformism, let it be your love life. This is a great place to be unique, rebellious, different, exciting. This actually is the very etymology of the word seduction: from Latin seducere (“to lead apart or astray”)


So when you meet your future girlfriend, you will have to seduce her. It will be because you both created these exciting moments together that attraction will grow and become irresistible causing you to throw all caution to the wind and make love all night...  NOT because it is the right thing to do according to some Grand 5 Year Life plan you concocted. NOT because you match each other criteria as stated on your online application form. How Orwellian would THAT be?


So in order to meet and seduce your next long-term partner, you owe it to yourself to develop your ability to break out of social conventions just enough to dare and create a romantic / erotic moment. That’s what flirting is all about. Otherwise you’ll make every date sound like a freaking job interview (and you won’t get the job either).


Love is a journey, not a destination


The problem a lot of men need to solve is their inability to really enjoy the dating process. They approach it with productivity and efficiency on their minds.


“I don’t want to waste time with girls if it’s not serious.” You wrote.   

First, you start off the wrong foot if you want to start a loving relationship with this frame of mind. It appears, you're only interested in what other can bring to you. The rest is a waste of time. You might want to broaden your views. 


I’ll quote the late Alan Watts to say we tend to make an extremely rigid division between work and play. These two are often seen as mutually exclusive: work produces results whereas playing is merely for fun. In reality, anybody who achieves some level of greatness in whatever activity got there because he or she enjoyed doing it. It is only through playing that you’ll get rid of parasitic interferences that block the expression of your innate talents. 


Hence, whether you see your quest for a long-term relationship as work or play will condition the results you will get.


If you see it as work, you will soon find it tedious. You will be prone to frustration and even misplaced anger and misogyny.


If you see it as play you’ll multiply experiences and learn a great deal about yourself and others.


The latter is a much better way of finding love as it doesn’t put so much pressure on the outcome. It therefore allows self-expression, empathy and creativity. You’re also more likely to meet many girls on your journey which will give you valuable insights into female psychology and seduction. In doing that, your views on love and relationships will shift from scarcity to abundance mentality.


Focus on the Outcome: Fear and scarcity

Focus on the the Process: Fun and abundance


The luxury of choice


The main benefit of which is that you will no longer live in fear when you’re in a relationship. The fear of having to be celibate again is a powerful driver of jealousy and frustration in relationships. By giving yourself the freedom to experiment and enjoy dating for the game that it is, with no even as much as a thought for the outcome, you will therefore have a much better shot at love.


If you’re able to create YOUR opportunities autonomously i.e. without relying on your social circle or some online dating service, you will have the luxury of choice. Your choice of partner will not be a choice by default dictated by a lack of options.

You have a girlfriend: What Then?

Congratulations, you have arrived!

Or have you?


"Having" a girlfriend is not some kind of achievement supposed to fill a gaping hole in your existence. It is a wonderful bonus and an adventure.

Things do not gel and become static because you too have decided to be a couple. You will hopefully keep developping, so will she, and so will your relationship.

"Life is a process of becoming. A combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death." -Anais Nin

As for me, I met my beautiful, clever and loving girlfriend on a rainy afternoon. I was chatting with a friend in a café and couldn’t resist the urge to go and initiate contact with the blonde girl sitting at the nearest table.


-       What was the last book you read? I simply asked.


Did I know this was the starting point of my most fulfilling relationship to date?


As a matter of fact I wasn’t even looking for a long-term relationship at the time.

Go out there, create opportunities and let life surprise you.

Jean-Baptiste Trannoy




Comments (10)

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Kelu said (28.06.2012 15:59):

Very Rich. Very Inspiring.

lourdes said (07.05.2012 03:10):

You can go out on a date for any number of reaonss. All a date really is is to enjoy the time and event and company of the person you're with. No strings have to be attached. Being in a boy/girl relationship becase you enjoy each other and have feelings for each other is not just simply dating. You have more or less made a commitment to each other of sorts. It may or may not involve actual love for one another, esecially if the two are so young. But it does mean the two think they have an attraction for each other at least beyond a basic friendship. Being in love involves feelings dee for each other's company, trust in each other and a devotion to one another, wanting to share two lives together as one.

Rahmad said (06.05.2012 08:14):

Dating is when you and the other person are going out to get to know each other. It's the same thing as you are seieng someone . The two of you go out to dinner or a movie to just get to know one another better. When you start calling the other person your boyfriend/girlfriend then that means you know each other well enough to take things to the next level. Your relationship becomes more intimate.Now, in love means you have a very strong connection with a person. Every time you are with them you start feeling a chill or excitement overtaking your body. In love, like the word, is a strong feeling of emotion. It's stronger then the feeling you get when you are around a family member. Loving somone is like another way of saying you care about that person. I Love my best friend a lot, but not the way I love my husband. I care about them both a lot, I don't know what I would do if one of them ever got hurt. However, when it comes to sharing special moments of my life with someone, I enjoy sharing it with my husband. When it comes to my friend, we just sit there, laugh, and gossip. When it comes to my husband, we like to cuddle, hold each other, and be close. Hope this helps.

Blusher said (06.04.2012 13:16):

Thanks Ariel!Good to hear from you

Ariel said (06.04.2012 03:42):

Hey Jean-Baptiste,
I remember you talking about this stuff (in particular your opinions on online dating).. I can connect with it more now after accumulating more experiences. Really awesome article

Anonymous said (05.04.2012 17:30):

What a stunning and inspiring article. True romantic spirit in here. Wow!

KennethMGT said (11.01.2012 10:52):

theres so much in this article iread it a few times already. are you writing a book:ebook?

Oh Oh said (10.01.2012 14:55):

It sounds like Ric pissed you off with his question :)

Bas said (10.01.2012 14:43):

Some pua sell ebooks with less content than this article. I like that you dont think seduction stops when someone has a girlfriend. Very interesting

Linda said (10.01.2012 14:04):

This is golden!