12.12.2005posted by Donovan at 4:13 PM
Taken from an Art of Approaching email.
Neil's big seminar was this past weekend, and I thought I'd share my seminar-recap with you, so those of you who couldn't attend could still get a taste of what Neil's first (and most likely only) seminar ever was like.
It was a rainy day in the Hollywood Hills the morning of December 2nd when I arrived and Neil's house.
The normally hip-pad had already been converted into "seminar mode" by the time I had gotten there. Two plush white couches were set up on the tiered stone floor, with a seat in the middle of the living room for Neil to run the seminar, backed by a fireplace and a collection of his best-selling books.
The thing that struck me right away was that this was not going to be your typical seminar. The setting was in Neil's actual home, so it felt very warm and intimate, as opposed to other workshops or seminars where everything seems cold, distant, and business-like.
It kind-of reminded me of the set-up the ancient Greek philosophers had when teaching their students via a dialogue. I don't know if this was Neil's intention or not, but that was definitely the vibe I was getting.
The night before, all five of the seminar attendees had been flown in. Neil had arranged for limousines to pick them up from the airport and drive them to the Standard Hotel in Hollywood, where their rooms had already been reserved.
That night, the five met Neil (and each other) for the first time, and their flagship outing was to have dinner at Miyagi's, a trendy Asian-themed club/sushi restaurant on the Sunset Strip. The first surprise Neil had in store for his new apprentices was a special dinner guest...
Now, I was not present at this dinner, so I can only report on what I was told later. The five attendees told me Ross came off exactly like he did in Neil's book, with lots of bashing of Mystery Method, and the touting of Speed Seduction as the one true religion of choice.
To Ross's credit, he apparently was in top form. The guy's reported he number closed two women that night. I guess he's been practicing. (Just kidding Ross, you know I love you!)
Anyway, I was very eager to meet the "Final Five," as I'd come to call them since their selection in October. After all, these were the men who were going to be "passed the torch" from the most powerful of the Jedi (and arguably one of the greatest pick up artists alive). So right away, they had a big standard to live up
When they first walked in to Neil's home (chauffeured by limo from their hotel), I was under-whelmed to say the least.
It seemed a motley crew, made up of guys from all walks of life.
There was the good-looking, young hot-shot doctor from Pittsburgh, who instantly displayed the most "alpha" qualities of the bunch. At 27, he was the youngest of the bunch, and still in med school. This was "Wiseguy."
There was the aging professional gambler, ranking in at over 6'2, but despite his height, had a quiet and gentle way about him. He was mostly quiet and shy, and kept to himself for the most part. This was "Outback."
There was the Hispanic real estate developer from Chicago. Somewhat short and rotund, he looked like a college frat boy who'd been enjoying the party life-style a bit too much. This was "Rourke."
There was the professional journalist, with his thinning widow's peak of jet-black hair, and voice so quiet and meek you could barely hear him when he spoke. This was "Zone."
And finally, there was the software engineer from Buffalo, who struck me as the most anti-social of the bunch. He was a fairly good-looking guy, with an unassuming New York accent. Turns out he is a recovering "weight-aholic" who used to weigh over 300 lbs, though you'd never know it to look at the guy, who was pretty decent looking now. This was "Indiana."
It was at that point that I started to wonder what Neil had gotten himself into. Surely there were more deserving guys than that? After all, Neil went through over 300 applications and had hand-picked these guys himself.
As I greeted them and started trying to engage them, I found the Final Five fairly stand-offish and distant. I could feel their energy was low. Perhaps it was from staying out late for dinner the night before, perhaps it was a bit of jet lag, or perhaps they just had no charisma to begin with. I didn't know.
But when Neil came downstairs to greet the guys (wearing a quite spiffy manga t-shirt over a pink dress shirt), the guys seemed to perk up. Neil's personal energy seemed to light a spark that kindled a small flame in the eyes of his students.
At that point, I had a small glimpse of what was to come throughout the day.
As the Final Five took their seats, Neil began by telling them a bit about himself, and about his experiences in the seduction community.
He talked about how he spent two years hanging out with pick-up artists, and say some improve rapidly, and others flounder and go nowhere. He talked about the biggest mistakes guys make when trying to learn seduction. He pointed out that the two biggest mistakes are:
Just be yourself
He explained that you shouldn't just "be yourself," you should be your best self. He elaborated that who we are is often a poor representation of who we really are or who we want to be.
He also said that just "being confident" is impossible without success. Success breeds confidence, and he wants to teach how to have success so his students can gain REAL confidence.
Thus, the Annihilation Method was introduced.
Neil described the Annihilation Method as a workout program for every single muscle that makes you up. It's a means of training yourself to fire on every cylinder. This means when you meet a woman, as when you are going in for a job interview, a family reunion, or trying to get upgraded to fist class on an airline - everything counts.
The Annihilation Method is broken down into three elements:
1. Who you are
2. What you do
3. When and how you do it
This is the foundation upon which Neil has built his method. He calls it the "Annihilation Method" because he sees it as a way to annihilate all fear, doubt, failure, and competition from your life.
Neil then went through the process of how the Final Five should go about learning what he had to teach. He quoted Arnold Schwarzenegger about his method to being successful in the learning process that will make you a champion. The quote went:
"This last two or three or four repetitions, that's what makes the muscles grow. That's what divides one from a champion and one from not being a champion. If you can go through the pain period, you make it to be a champion. If you can't go through it, forget it. And that's what most people lack: having the guts - the guts to go in and just say... "I don't care what happens." I have no fear of fainting in the gym... I threw up many times when I was working out. But it doesn't matter, because it's all worth it."
That's basically Neil's philosophy on becoming a master pick up artist. Dealing with challenges when they arise, working out problems in real life first, then in your head (not the other way around). And when things get painful, you push through it and learn from it.
At this point, Neil had each of the Final Five introduce themselves. Then he asked them why they were at the seminar.
Everyone had a different reason for wanting to be there. Some wanted more choice and power with women. Some wanted to overcome their fears and limiting beliefs. Some didn't want to just "settle" for a woman like their friends were doing.
And each guy had a different sticking point he wanted to conquer.
That's when Neil unleashed his "Las Vegas" system, which is the first phase of the Annihilation Method. I'm sworn to secrecy about this system, but Neil had all five guys participate in it, and it gave them an entirely new perspective on who they were, and what they needed to improve.
The stage had been set, and the groundwork for Annihilation had been laid.
This alone was something that really amazed me. One of the biggest problem guys have is not having a clear picture of what they need to improve. They just get hung up on what they feel is wrong with them (like being fat, bald, ugly, etc.), but not at what REALLY is keeping them back.
The Las Vegas system changed that, and now the Final Five had a clear picture of where they needed to go next.
Neil then unveiled the Annihilation Method's 4-step model of attraction. It is:
2. Demonstrate Value
3. Create An Emotional Connection
4. Create A Physical Connection
Simple enough, right?
But when Neil actually started breaking down what made up each phase, things got more in-depth than even I could imagine.
The rest of the first day of seminar material was spent entirely on how to open. You could really see Neil light up as he started talking about this subject, and his enthusiasm for the material was infectious. I could literally start to see the student's eyes widen at the knowledge they were getting.
Seriously, light bulbs were going off over their heads as Neil explained the intricacies of opening women.
The coolest thing he talked about was his method of "calibration." This is about reading the dynamic of the group or the women you're approaching, and knowing what you have to do next - even if it's something you've never done before.
Now I realize why Neil is so good. It's his calibration skills. It's his ability to size up a situation, figure out where the girl is mentally and emotionally, and then adjust his game to that specific girl in order to get her.
And the cool thing is: HE TAUGHT EXACTLY HOW TO DO THIS!
Step-by-step. He broke it down by telling you the three responses to look for in a woman that will tell you how to adjust your game, and the tactics you can use to seduce her.
He also talked about how to figure out who the woman is and what she's about, quickly, so you can adjust your game accordingly.
By teaching this set of calibration skills, Neil was giving the Final Five the exact method they needed to seduce ANY WOMAN they want - consistently and effectively.
I was in awe.
I had never seen seduction or pick up taught like this before, and neither had the Final Five, who were as busy scribbling notes as I was.
And the really cool thing is, Neil shared his secret on how to get feedback from the women you pick-up so you know what you did that works and what doesn't!
Through this learning method, anyone could become phenomenal in the field.
Neil then went in depth on different types of openers, how to deliver them, and 16 general principles of opening.
A lot of this stuff I already knew, but Neil actually took the time to train his students on how to properly do an opener (which is different from most other workshops, who just throw you right out into the field from the start).
Each guy was nervous as he demonstrated his opener for Neil, and a few fumbled with it. But Neil gave them feedback that got them back on track and made them comfortable with their delivery.
He then went over these concepts:
1. What to do after the opener
2. Wingman rules
Now for those of you wondering what the hell "Pebbles" are, it's an awesome new concept Neil has that's a big part of the Annihilation Method. They're similar to "NEGs" in a way, but they're used to amp up fun, excitement, and interest in your pick-up.
Basically, the concept is that when things start dragging during a set (or when you want to amp things up), you toss these "pebbles" to hit your target in the head and get their attention. It's a strategy that's brilliant in it's simplicity, and highly effective.
The seminar portion ended with Neil and the Final Five going over 22 different Pebbles Neil had invented.
After the seminar ended, the group prepared for the workshop portion of the day. Neil's girlfriend Lisa took Zone and did a quick make-over with him. His long black hair with the thinning widow's peak made him look greasy and old. She gave him a quick haircut so he had a nice, short, trimmed head of hair, and the difference was remarkable. The guy looked 10 times better than he had before, all with a simple hair cut.
Then the Final Five were whisked back to the Standard to change for a night of clubbing.
The first stop was a trendy nightclub in the Highlands complex on Hollywood Boulevard called "Lucky Strike," which claim to fame was the fact that in addition to being a cool restaurant/bar, it was also a freakin' BOWLING ALLEY.
(Seriously, Hollywood has this weird thing about turning strange businesses into nightclubs. There's a beauty salon and shoe store that moonlight as nightclubs too.)
This is where the Final Five got their first taste of cold approaching Annihilation Method-style.
I was along on the ride as a co-instructor for the workshop. One of the reasons there were only five people allowed in the seminar is because Neil wanted to give all the guys a lot of personal attention. But he asked me to help out since this is one of my areas of expertise.
At Lucky Strike, I started pushing guys into sets. Basically, I'd ask them what their opener was, pick a set for them, send them in, then give them feedback on how to improve.
My first "victim" was Indiana. He had three false-starts before he had the courage to open his first set. Lucky for him, Neil came by to wing for him.
I did the same for Rourke, Outback, Zone, and Wiseguy (though Wiseguy seemed to be more of a natural than the others).
Neil had started a bet on the limo ride to the club that the first guy to get a number would win $100. So as the guys got more into approaching, the competition started heating up.
Lucky Strike was pretty dead for a Friday night, though. So there weren't that many good sets available. Most guys ended up opening sets some other student had opened earlier.
But the response of the Final Five was remarkable.
Shy old Outback was approaching some great sets, and he even pulled off probably the hardest opener of the night by opening a two-set of girls who were eating, and then joining them at their table!
Rourke and Zone were also getting in the groove of things, and each approached three sets.
Indiana was the most remarkable change. He was grinning ear-to-ear and walked with a new-found confidence. I joked with him about his sudden change, and he burst out "I never knew it was so easy to meet women!"
But the best was yet to come.
The next stop was at a place called Spider Club, which is a club above another club called Avalon, which is on Vine Street.
This is one of the hippest clubs in LA, and now I know why. The women here were GORGEOUS.
Seriously, we're talking L.A. quality 10s here.
Neil had arranged a VIP table at the club, along with bottle service. So even though we had a large group of guys around us, we had some super-high status going in (seriously, we just bypassed everyone waiting in line to get in. It was awesome).
Once we got situated at our table, all hell broke loose.
And I mean that in a good way!
The meek guys who I had met that morning had suddenly transformed into APPROACH MACHINES.
Something just seemed to click in all five guys. It was amazing. I had never seen anything like it happen in a workshop before.
Guys who earlier in the day could not talk to women or do a single cold approach were now using the Annihilation Method to meet some of the hottest women in LA.
Rourke opened a three-set of Latina girls who he brought to our table. Others went off to open some more sets, while a few took Rourke's lead and started merging sets and bringing girls over.
Things started getting wild. The Final Five were having a blast, dancing, sarging, laughing. Neil and I were amazed at how fast everyone was coming along.
Before we knew it, these guys were isolating targets and pawning groups off of groups. Each guy approached 12-15 sets over the course of a night.
The final count at the end of the night was:
Rourke - 1 phone number (he won the $100 because he was the first to get one), had a girl grinding on his lap most of the night.
Indiana - 1 phone number
Zone - 15 sets opened, and was dirty dancing most of the night
(turns out he didn't get a number because he wasn't sure on how to
ask for one, but he could have gotten many if he knew to ask)
Outback - 2 numbers
Wiseguy - An in-club make-out, also got 2 phone numbers
Every single one of them were beaming with a newfound confidence that can only come with success. Neil had achieved his goal. Each guy had tasted success with women for the first time, and their confidence had grown.
Neil and I were impressed. I'd never been to a workshop that had that much success in one night. All my fears about these guys had vanished, and I knew Neil had picked the right ones to pass his knowledge onto.
The funny thing was, Neil had only revealed a FRACTION of his Annihilation Method that day. If these guys were able to take that and have this kind of success in one night, I couldn't imagine what they'd do with the WHOLE system.
But I was soon to find out...
(To be continued...)
posted by Donovan at 4:13 PM Dating Advice for Men