Welcome. If you are reading this I may have some answers for you.
Not too long ago I was a socially awkward guy.
Even at 23, I didn't read social cues well and this hurt my professional and romantic life.
In dating, I was a virgin at 23 and totally clueless with women.
At work, I had to put in more hours and effort than my peers because I misread my managers and I made many enemies because I couldn't understand people's true feelings.
How was I so naive and socially inept at 23?
You see... up until my college graduation my 3 goals in life were: study hard, listen to my parents and don't get in trouble.
I was the studious Asian kid who tried to follow all the rules:
Go to a good school.
Get good grades.
Get a job.
I was playing life by trying to meet other people's expectations.
Everyone's except my own.
So when I graduated and went into the real world I was paralyzed by fear and I let my pride and ego to hide my insecurities. This meme exemplifies me at 20 on my graduation day:
Here I am, my final year in college visiting my friend on the Harvard campus:
The Beginning: Total Social Failure
From 20 to 23, I worked a a high profile management consulting job in New York. I thought I had all the tools I needed: a great job, apartment, and car. Where were all the happiness that were promised to me if I followed all of society’s rules?!?
I was never a pessimistic person, but I started to feel dejected as I faced challenges at work and more and more girls rejected me for no apparent reason (so I thought at the time). The few instances where I mustered up enough courage to say something... I would go up to a girl and say hello, and she would tell me she has a boyfriend. I realized that this was a problem I needed to fix, ASAP.
I remember the first number I ever got from a girl I didn’t know from any social circle. I was on a client assignment in Texas. She was a beautiful Texas blonde that worked at the hotel store. I complimented her on her hair and asked for a number. She was nice enough to give it to me.
When I called her the next day, there was no reply. I left 3 voicemails in a week. Finally she called back, and I picked up with excitement. It was a guy on the line, “hey man, you are creeping her out. Please stop“.
I remember sitting on my living room couch during this call. My roommate was with his girlfriend in his room, and I sat there for 20 minutes.
I realized something needed to change, I just didn’t know how to go about it.
I also felt very alone.
Besides my handful of friends from college, I had no idea how to navigate my new world in NYC.
The Hero's Journey
I make a fateful decision after the Texas girl incident to do something about my life.
What started out as a journey to just get better with my dating life turned into an everlasting path to self development.
I didn't realize it at the time, but it wasn't about getting the girl. It was about becoming the man I needed to be to attract the type of people I really wanted in my life.
I began to devote my non-work hours into learning about social dynamics, self improvement, dating and fashion advice. I read everything I could get my hands on. Tony Robbins. Jim Rohn. David Ogilvy. Anna Wintour. Neil Strauss. David Buss. David Deida. And hundreds more.
I had to get this handled.
To me, there was no other choice. My pain threshold hit its limit.
Here I am being a studious Asian kid in college:
Climbing The Mountain
At first it was extremely difficult. I had to find people that knew about social dynamic and convince them to teach me.
I would finish my job at Google and drive for an hour into San Francisco to hangout with these guys.
One introduction led to another.
Luckily, the self development community we had back then was different than today's social media culture.
Back in 2007, it was just guys who were excited that this thing even existed and the art form was pure. The money has not flooded into the self development/dating industry yet and people shared knowledge freely. We enjoyed the gift of learning and teaching new things.
I learned from the best. From Zan to Eric to Erika - these mentors welcomed me as a family member and took me under their wings.
During one of our meetings we had a group of female coaches that helped couples with their sexuality and intimacy. They shared their experiences with us on the issues men and women face in sex and intimate situations. They talked about their work with their clients and how sexual intimacy and expression is a big problem for a lot of couples.
In another meeting, we talked to guests from Europe about their interactions with men and women in their countries and how the American and European dating cultures stemmed from core values in the country's cultural norms.
It was an amazing experience that lasted a couple of years and I am forever grateful to my mentors.
You could call these few years my "training years".
I learned the foundations of conversational jujitsu from Wayne. How to speak to someone you just met on the street and make a real connection from Erik. How to find my core values from Erika. How to express myself fully from Owen. Magic tricks from Jordan. How to speak in front of a crowd from Toast Masters. How to improve my style and image and walk and about the modeling industry from Maria, Clara and Zavan.
It wasn't always easy, but it was always fun.
After a few years... I sold all my Google shares and traveled. I wanted to learn more about the world.
One of my goals was to be able to go to a new city, not know anyone, and start to build a social circle and have a great life. I was able to accomplish this in the next 6 years in 2 major cities.
I made lifelong friends and I was able to use my understanding of social dynamics to befriend key players in the fashion industry that kicked off a modeling career for 2 years.
I was also able to get into exclusive social circles and meet really cool people that I previously would be too nervous to say hi to.
For me, being able to social hack my way into a fashion show was really a tipping point. Just a couple of years ago in high school kids were calling me "rat face" because I had terrible acne and I was a skinny Asian kid. This kid Chris would always bully me and pin me to the lockers. I remember everyone, even all the cute girls laughing at me. (I know. Thinking back, the kids in my high school were not very nice)
Needless to say, I don't keep in touch with anyone I knew from high school.
But the important thing is that I chose my own path instead of living to please or accommodate other people's expectations.
Here I am in my high school year book. If a dork like me could do it, I think you can too:
Not bad for a kid who used to be called "rat face", right?
Asking the right questions
Growing up in a diplomatic family my brother and I were bullied at different occasions.
Going from one country to another wasn't easy - sometimes we met cool kids, other times, we did not.
Because we didn't grow up there, we faced many obstacles with the bully kids.
The experience of being bullied, and how social interactions can change from one country to another, made me very obsessed with understanding social interactions at an early age.
How could we be so cool in one country, then complete losers in another?
What conditions are in place to make this judgement of "social status"?
How does social value really work within a social circle of kids, or adults for that matter?
Later on after college, I started asking myself the same questions:
"Why did people behave this way at work?"
"Why do most people seem like they are half dead and not living?"
"Why are people afraid to go after what they want?"
"How do I rally others to my side, while helping them win too?"
Because of these questions I kept asking myself, I was able to find the answers in my journey to improve my social skills.
Skills like negotiating. Preparing for an interview. Understanding the subtext of a situation. Reading nonverbal cues. Communicating clearly. Understanding the "honesty curve" and when to be brutally honest and when to be open but not reveal everything.
High Integrity Skills
My experience growing up, combined with my desire to form real connections gave me a unique perspective in this industry. Having mastered social interactions, I still felt like something was missing. I had the tricks, tactics and processes for getting a job and meeting women, but it still felt like living someone else's template.
Thus, in my 30s I began to obsess over how to achieve these goals while being authentic to one's true self. This led to the development of the Authentic Communications Model.
I wanted to combine the tactics and processes into a system that allowed me to explore who the client really was. To find those innate qualities, bring them out, and display and tell their story in a way that was attractive or charismatic, that got them the results they wanted. More importantly, to get those social results by being MORE themselves rather than emulating someone else.
The blueprint of the Authentic Communications Model (ACM) is still a pillar framework for my coaching clients to this day. Here is the light version of ACM:
Since 2008, I've coached hundreds of guys through our partnerships and programs in their style, dating and professional lives. It is the most rewarding experience even though I made more money in my corporate career.
I've helped students get girlfriends, clients get job offers at Fortune 500 companies and professionals of all ages find love and experience rewarding intimate relationships.
I've helped single men and women go on their hero's journey - however that adventure looks like for them. I've helped clients develop an abundance mentality as well as provided the practical tools for them to date their ideal matches.
Being a performance coach gives me an unlimited energy source and I strive to become better every single day.
Your success is now my mission.
Are you ready for your transformation?
P.S.If you enjoyed what you've read, setup a call with me here. I look forward to working with you.