Of Lifestyles and Limitations

The red pill sphere has a major focus on self-improvement, which is one of the reasons why I enjoy being part of it. Men all sharing knowledge, encouraging improvement and driving each other forward is probably one of the things that we’re missing when raising boys today. However, it can be a bit of a double-edged sword at times. I had lunch with a childhood friend of mine earlier this week, and as conversations among men often do, it included his lamentations about not being able to get laid enough. This is hardly a rare topic topic in conversation for me, and I’ve developed a bit of a diagnostic model for rapidly diagnosing the problem the man I’m talking to is having in his relationship with women, that I call the PIECE model, short for Populate – Initiate – Escalate – Close – Enduring.

I came up with this model because I concluded that just about every issue men have with getting laid falls into one of the following areas:

Populate – How many women populate the man’s immediate area of activity. If you work in a male-dominated field, all your hobbies are either things you do alone, or activities that largely involve couples or just other men. You will have few interactions with women as a natural part of living your life, this means that unless you specifically set off time to go out to places where you meet women, engage in online dating or go out and do day game, you’ll probably not interact with many women.

Initiate – How often does the man initiate interactions with women. If you never really initiate interactions with women, you will never be in a position to reach the escalation stage. Some MGTOWs may work in female dominated environments, but advocate a position where you never initiate or interact with women unless the women initiate.

Escalate – How often is the man able to escalate the interactions. You can be surrounded by women at work, in your hobbies, and initiate interactions all the time, if you never escalate the interaction in some manner, you will not get laid a lot. One could go into details of kino escalation, topic escalation and so on, however from the big picture perspective the role of escalation is to signal interest. The most classical form of escalation is simply asking a women for coffee or drinks.

Close – How often and capable is the man of closing. Once the escalation has run the course, how capable is the man of isolating the women in an environment where the final escalation to sex can take place. The work done in the preceding stages lead up to this point in the interaction a man who is incapable of doing this will never get laid.

Enduring – How capable is the man at transitioning the interaction from a one-night stand to a longer term relationship. The reason for including this point in the model is that it’s always more cost-effective to sleep with a woman more than once. Consider that you have already done the work in the preceding phases, thus for most men it will be easier to sleep with a woman again than it will be to find a new target, initiate the interaction, escalate and then close.

The power in this model comes from the fact that it allows me to rapidly diagnose what area of a man’s lifestyle is presenting the major problem for him. The funny thing about my childhood friend is that he’s in many ways the exact guy men think of when they think of Chad. He works as a fitness model, 6 ft 2, about 200 lbs, generally stays 6-pack lean for most of the year, and does a lot of traveling.  He’s never really had a problem with women, since he’s been this way more or less since he was a teenager.

His problem is squarely in the population aspect of the PIECE model. He travels a lot for work and on top of that he has to stay muscular and ripped most of the year as part of his job. For a lot of men this seems like a great situation to be in, he’s in the top 1% of men for appearance, he gets to travel around the world, does photo-shoots with beautiful women, and he gets paid for it. However, in order to stay in the top 1% of men for appearance he trains 5 – 6 days a week, he is more or less constantly monitoring his diet so that he maintains muscle, and doesn’t put on more fat than he will be able to drop in max 4 weeks of dieting. He also has the same problems as most people who travel a lot of work do, namely spending a lot of time in hotels, airports, and on public transit, late night arrivals, and red-eye flights.

Lifestyle Design and Barriers

Rollo wrote a great article some years ago entitled “Buffers” [1] that I’ve referenced a few times on the blog, that deals with various methods men use to avoid rejection, I’m not going to repeat that essay here, but I do recommend that everyone who hasn’t read it, and those who have read it, read it again. Buffers are methods men use to interact with women without actually having to risk rejection. Barriers as I’m going to talk about them here represent those things that create problems with various parts of the PIECE model. In the case of my buddy, his problem is that due to his schedule, and the required lifestyle, he does not have a huge population of women where he can initiate, escalate, close and create an enduring supply.

This is the case with many men I come across in my day to day life as well, they can be men with an SMV between 7 and 9, who are not realizing above average returns in the sexual market place because their lifestyle rather than enable it, actively prohibits it. It could be bodybuilders who despite their appearance never leave their house except to go to the gym. Busy executives who work 80 – 90 hour workweeks, then go home and collapse for 4 hours in bed, only to repeat the cycle the next day. It can be men so focused on increasing their sexual market value that they ignore obvious indicators of interest from women they interact with. It can be men who only interact with women in situations where escalation would represent a risk, such being surrounded by and interacting with female co-workers 8 – 10 hours a day, 5 – 6 days a week in the age of MeToo. It can be men who find themselves unable to close because they have roommates, live out in the sticks or spend their life as a “digital nomad” and are currently living out of a backpack in a hostel.

If one looks at men who rack up very high notch counts, they have designed their life around the PIECE model.  The main reason why I’m blatantly stealing Donovan’s [2] “Kevin from Sales” for this example is that Kevin has control over his own schedule (as long as he delivers), his job is to initiate with his customers, escalate them until they are ready to buy, then close, and ideally turn them into a return customer. His lifestyle naturally makes him good at game. However, if he’s selling pipe-fittings for oil-fields, he may be great at game, but it won’t really matter if there are no women for him to run game on.

This is what I told my buddy, yes he interacts with beautiful women for a living for a photo-shoot, then he leaves the location, eats his meal, gets to the gym hammers out a workout with headphones on, showers, eats a post-workout meal on his way to the airport, goes through security and then to his next location, arrives in the early morning or late evening, has a meal, goes to sleep, has breakfast, hits the gym, goes to the shoot, and repeat. Where would he meet women? His lifestyle isn’t designed to populate his sphere with women, with whom he can interact, escalate, close and create an enduring supply. It’s designed to maintain his physique so that he can get work.

Summary and Conclusion

The self-improvement focus of The Red Pill is one of the major value propositions of the philosophy, it gives men the knowledge, motivation and support they need in order to make themselves into better men. However, most men do not come to the red pill in order to become better men, they come to the red pill to improve their sex-lives. Whether they are 18 year old boys wanting step up their game in college after a 4 year dry-spell in high-school or a 48 year old man who is in a dead bedroom situation and as tried everything from couples counseling to choreplay, they want to get laid. Becoming a better, more valuable man is a means to this end, it is not an end in itself.

I’m a big advocate of increasing your sexual market value, but understand that the reason for increasing your sexual market value is in order to improve your movement through the PIECE model. If your sexual market value is higher, then women will be more receptive towards your initiations, escalations and less hesitant when you move in for the close. However, if your investment in self-improvement becomes such that it creates a barrier against being  able to populate your sphere with eligible women, then your increase in value is not real. Money has value because it can be traded for other things. If I have $100, and you have a bottle of nice scotch, I value that bottle of scotch more than $100, you value $100 more than the bottle of scotch, then we can trade and both be better off. If I have $100, but no use for that $100 it has no real value. This is why preppers stock medicine, food, ammunition, and to some extent precious metals instead of currency, because the former will have value in the situation they prep for, a suitcase full of cash won’t.

This is perhaps a danger of the Red Pill, with the breadth of men contributing an astounding depth and volume of great content every week, it’s very easy to be swallowed whole in the “build sexual market value” phase of a red pill awakening. Between the weekly content on intersexual dynamics, style, weight-lifting, nutrition, intellectual development, artistic development, travel, psychology, and many others, you can quickly find yourself not having much time left to talk to girls. It’s very easy to go “accidental monk-mode” simply because you can always find something else to improve, tweak or fix, self-improvement becomes both a barrier and a buffer.

If I were to play armchair psychologist for a minute, I think this stems from perhaps the most discussed topic in the manosphere, namely putting pussy on a pedestal. It hasn’t received as much focus as it used to as of late, but it stems from the fact that men have an inherent tendency to view women as more valuable than them. This leads to a never-ending circle of self-improvement where they have to fix just one more thing to be perfect, but perfect doesn’t exist. This is simply subjective value theory in practice, in order for a trade (or sexual liason) to take place, both parties must value what the other party can give them, more than what they are willing to give to the other party.

A note:

I recently launched a Patreon page where I will be posting additional content every month for those who support me and I will do a Google Hangout for the highest tier Patrons (limited to 10 people).

I’ve also had some requests for consults, which I’ve declined up until now, but due to demand I’ve chosen to open up for doing some consults on request. For details please check out my Consulting and Patreon Page

As always you can buy my book Gendernomics at Amazon.com as both paperback and Kindle


[1] https://therationalmale.com/2011/08/26/buffers/

[2] https://www.donovansharpe.com/


This entry was posted in Logic.

8 comments on “Of Lifestyles and Limitations

  1. lurker says:

    PIECE is a reliable shorthand I can use provided I don’t let it rot in the same bog wherein sank all the other manosphere acronyms I thought were life-changing gems when I first discovered them. My sticking point is right at the starting gun with P. I think I fell into the well-descibed-here trap of selfimprovement for its own sake and have reverted to Monk Mode as my default state, becoming an inarticulate hermit in the process and undermining its utility. I don’t even feel like clicking that link to Buffers because I know it won’t exactly be fun reading. Your blog is interesting and written in an accessible yet unique point of view, almost a conversational style, and one can learn something here. Keep writing and plugging it, there’s real quality here.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Rebel Yells says:

    Carl, this is a very powerful piece. It took a while for this to sit in my head and mix with some other red pill material but it is the middle of the night and I had to get up a review your model again. Something finally just clicked.

    You seem to be a very cerebral guy like myself and when I looked at my life I only really had any luck at dating in college where I was forced to interact with lots of random women in a cerebral setting all the time. Unfortunately, I did not maximize my time as I was an engineer, constantly studying and surrounded by men but I had minimal success.

    Since then I have been a disaster as I do not make time for this or invest in areas with low returns like male space activities. Online dating helped a little but the women were low quality so I avoid it entirely now. The office space is so regulated that this is problematic and there are few new faces to refresh the pool. Being cerebral, I hated bars and dance clubs.

    I recently attended a 10 week training course with average citizens (a mix of all ages) and I had more positive interaction with women there than I have had in years. You have made your point. I need to actively manage this area of my life so that I am meeting 20 or so new female faces a week… like a sales funnel or I stand no shot at being successful.

    Your article has motivated me to sit down and brainstorm this. I have several interests but they are no good as they are typical male space areas that I use to bolster my masculinity (add more value) but there are few opportunities with girls.

    I need better opportunities to meet 20 something girls in a setting that allows for longer opportunities for interaction than coffee shops and bars as my PUA skills are minimal. It takes me longer to open up then traditional dating methods allow. This workshop worked well as I was interacting with new faces for weeks for four hours at a time which allowed more casual interaction without feeling forced to move fast before her latte was ready! LOL

    Thanks for this article!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You have two options really, either set up your life so that you have an opportunity to interact with more women in a cerebral setting as you did with the training course or expand the number of settings in which you are comfortable. You should probably work a bit on your “elevator pitch” as well, you don’t need to open up and create a deep connection before contact information closing, the old PUA had this right, come up with a script in advance with enough wiggle-room to make it work in context and work from there.


      • Rebel Yells says:

        This is solid advice. I have chosen the expanded setting approach that you advocated and thus far it is a great improvement. As part of my work to make myself into a better and more masculine figure I am now actively sitting down and planning my social calendar. I work in an office so I try to find as many activities outdoors to push me out of my comfort zone. It wasn’t a far stretch to do the same thing for female activities as well. I live in my head way too much so I started a daily practice of Tai Chi and Qigong which helps me tremendously especially with relaxing in social settings. I figured yoga would be a good fit as an experiment to put myself in high female settings. It would allow me to work on grounding myself which is a personal goal while combining it with the opportunity to meet women.

        There is something to be said about guys invading traditional female spaces as we always hear of the reverse on Red Pill forums. It is a blast and full of potential. I have had two basic yoga classes and I have been the only male in both… absolutely no competition. The women always look a little freaked to begin as I am heavily bearded and fairly muscular but they settle right down and I am enjoying the interaction. Physical activity seems to make my nerves minimal and keeps me out of my head.

        I even went for a manicure and pedicure. Again, no men, no competition, which is a real plus. The women all light up as I walk in the door as I do not think they see it often but everyone settles in after a bit. I am not oogling or anything like that. I do have a purpose in being there besides chasing poon which I think is sensed and appreciated… these hands and feet definitely need work… and since women are so observant of such details it can only improve my image. I will keep this up along with the yoga classes.

        This PIECE model is a great help. It is straight forward and actionable. I continue to brainstorm opportunities to increase the “populate’ step as this is a big problem for me but as I do so I know what step I will have to work next once I am regularly meeting new females and then work through the steps.

        Thank you again.


  3. […] to tailor advice to the particular person or company. The gentleman who was my example in “Of Lifestyles and Limitations” is an example of someone who gets paid for maintaining his physique and thus he has a […]


  4. […] how labor intensive day game is, and quite frankly most forms of game are somewhat labor intensive. To populate, initiate, escalate, close and create enduring relationships takes time, and effort on the part of the man. Which part takes the most time and […]


  5. […] “Of Lifestyles and Limitations” I introduced my P.I.E.C.E model, this stands for Populate – Initiate – Escalate […]


  6. BLL, excellent piece. It went around Twitter this week, and I’ll give it another bump. This is one of the cleanest looks at mens dating “funnel” I’ve seen. Really well done.

    I’m not officially a coach, but lots of men ask me questions as they know I run a lot of game… and I’m almost always giving them advice about your first two stages.

    I emphasize VOLUME of interactions with girls, which is better expressed by you saying find a POPULATION of women and then INITIATE. Most men I know suffer in those areas… so they can never move on to high-quality problems of escalation, etc.

    I am in the daygame crowd and I am writing this from Tokyo. This is a perfect place for me, as I like the girls, and there are so many of them. I am very comfortable approaching… doing about 20 approaches a day this week. You can see how I have POPULATE and INITIATE covered. And because of that… I get to spend a lot of time at ESCALATE (I believe I’ll have another girl over tonight).

    But moving on from there… I like that you include the ENDURE section. I always respect a man that can not only take a notch, but can get the girl to stick around. MagnumLiveLarge is a guy I really respect… closes a lot of girls, but has high retention rate (his girls really like him, and that says a lot about his game). That is a special aspect of having game. I call it recurring revenue. And yeah, that is an important section in the “arch of game” for me.

    Excellent piece, man. Well done.


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