December 09, 2014 / Understanding Comfort
She's attracted to you. She's comfortable with you. She's yours.
Today I want to talk to you about comfort.
Comfort is a very underrated part of the theory behind attraction. Once you’ve approached a woman, your initial goal is to build as much sexual attraction as possible. But at a certain point you need to shift to building comfort. When it comes to escalating, attraction is what opens the door, but it’s comfort that determines how far you walk through that door. You may meet a girl and she’ll be attracted enough to give you her number and make out with you on the dance floor. But whether she’s willing to go back to your place (or invites you back to hers) will be purely based on comfort.
So, What is Comfort?
Comfort really has two main components.
This is what women mean when they say, “I just want a guy who GETS me.” They want to feel like you understand them in a way that most people don’t. The most extreme of these women are what Josh calls butterfliers, but the intent is the same. These women are looking for an “emotional connection,” even if they don’t all define it the same way.
Both on a literal and emotional level. Basically, she needs to feel like you won’t hurt her. Both in the literal “is this guy an axe murderer?” way, and the emotional “is this guy going to hurt me emotionally if I open up to him?” way.
That’s really it. Comfort equals connection plus trust.
The Good News: You’re Probably Already Good at Building Comfort
If you recall the Attraction Triangle, then consider this: comfort is the outcome of Companionship. Think about your good friends. You probably have similar hobbies and interests. You can make corny jokes that they’ll still find hilarious. You can tell them a personal secret and they’ll keep private. In other words, you’re comfortable with them.
If you’ve ended up in the Friend Zone with a girl, she’s probably said something like, “I feel like I can talk to you about anything.” This means she has a high degree of comfort with you. You don’t project yourself as someone that would ever hurt her or violate her trust. She feels a connection to you, and she trusts you.
Unfortunately, she has zero attraction to you, which is why you’re in the friend zone. But that also means you have the qualities to be an empathetic and trusting person. These aren’t bad qualities; they’re only bad if you demonstrate them at the exclusion of demonstrating anything that would build attraction.
Build Attraction, Then Build Comfort
The Friend Zone is what happens when you have all comfort and zero attraction. But even if you look like Ryan Gosling or Ryan Reynolds, you’re not going to go far if you walk up to a woman and say, “hey, wanna fuck?” She will be very attracted to you, but you still won’t get anywhere with her because she’ll feel zero comfort.
So you need both. The good news is, there’s a large overlap between behavior that builds attraction and builds comfort. For example, imagine as part of your first date routine, you take a girl to a bar where you’re friendly with the staff and they all know your name. Your status with the staff is a DHV, and that’s attractive. But she will also think, “well, he must be a good guy and tip well if they’re so friendly with him.” That’s comforting.
So you may be wondering: when talking to a woman, when should I consider emphasizing comfort? And as a general rule of thumb my answer is this: don’t worry about it until you’ve established some sort of physical escalation. In other words, continue to focus on building sexual attraction until you’ve at least kissed her. Until that point, you shouldn’t even worry about comfort. Your sole goal should be to build as much attraction as possible.
But once you’ve reached that point, you should then start thinking about how you can make her feel comfortable with you, and emphasize the connection and trust you’ve developed. Women generally won’t kiss guys they’re not attracted to, but they also usually have sex with guys they’re not comfortable with.
You still want to continue to build attraction and periodically escalate. You aren’t toggling from "building attraction mode" to "building comfort "mode. That’s absurd. You still want to stoke her sexual interest, you just also want to alternate with conversations and actions that emphasize comfort, or even better, conversations and actions that emphasize both attraction and comfort.
In practical terms, you can see this play out in a common sequence of: meet – kiss – date – sex. You meet the girl, you build attraction, you kiss her, you take her out on a couple dates, and that leads to enough comfort between you two to have sex. If it sounds intuitive, that’s because it is.
So if comfort is pretty much an intuitive concept, and most readers of JoshSway.com are empathetic and trustworthy guys, why am I even talking about this subject all?
That’s because I still see guys make mistakes with comfort all the time, even when they’ve done the much harder work of building sufficient attraction. The "meet – kiss – date – sex" sequence isn’t the only possible one, and it could very easily be meet – kiss – sex if only they had built a little bit of comfort and not been so focused on attraction. Conversely, there are those mistakes that overemphasize comfort, and get guys placed in the friend zone. By prioritizing a woman’s comfort over everything else, they’ve failed to generate enough attraction. In fact, prioritizing a woman’s comfort over everything else is often a very unattractive behavior!
The good news is that you’re having problems with comfort because you’re making those mistakes, it’s much easier to fix than almost anything else. So what are those mistakes, and how do you fix them? I discuss that in my next article.