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For over a decade, David Tian, Ph.D. — a uniquely qualified therapist, life coach, and former university professor — has coached tens of thousands of people from over 87 countries to achieve happiness and success in their relationships, dating, psychology, and lifestyle.

Dr. Tian has been featured in international media, as well as co-hosting a radio show on national radio and a weekly dating advice column in a national newspaper in Singapore.

The show, “Man Up: Masculinity for the Intelligent Man” (, is David’s way of helping as many people as possible enjoy empowering and fulfilling lives, while contributing to the global understanding of masculinity in modern times. In the show, he takes your questions posed in the Man Up private Facebook group ( and answers based on his experience coaching tens of thousands of students around the world for over a decade.

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“The Man Up Show” Ep.95 – Should You Change Yourself To Please A Girl?

Should You Change Yourself To Please A Girl?

  • David Tian Ph.D. shares that the majority of people that you are associating with will not be comfortable with you as you grow and progress going forward.
  • When you change for the wrong reasons. David Tian Ph.D. discusses what happens.
  • In this Man Up episode, David Tian Ph.D. explains that the change you want should be an an expression of who you are, your values, your personality that you’ve determined ahead of time.

David Tian: Boom! Stop. In episode 95 of Man Up, I answer the question of why you shouldn’t always listen to what girls say.


Masculinity for the intelligent man. I’m David Tian, Ph.D. and this is Man Up!

Hi, I’m David Tian, Ph.D. and this is Episode 95 of Man Up. I’m here at my suite in the W. Nice view from the balcony of the yachts around here, hope you can see that. It’s pretty humid out here so it was a little tricky clearing the lens and everything. It looks like I’m actually wearing underwear but I’m not. Okay, this is like a proper tank. Anyway, so I’m not wearing underwear on this. Actually, I’m wearing underwear, this is not underwear.

It’s a little bit foggy and it rained a bit earlier but it’s all good now. So, let’s dive into it. Getting ready for a little party over here at the suite, a lot of people coming so I can only shoot this one episode here but anyway let’s do it and it is humid out here.

The question is coming from Vic and he says, “Hey men, I was using this technique of screening and qualifying and girls said I was getting personal, too quickly because I didn’t know them yet. The technique is a twist and works like a charm but how do I avoid getting personal too quickly?”

I picked that one not only because it was asked but also because it’s a theme that appears in a lot of different questions that I get and this is something that’s really important for guys as they’re learning how to improve with their social skills. They don’t know which feedback to actually take into account. It’s like life – if you take feedback from the wrong sources, it can really screw you up.

One of the reasons I choice this question was because of an incident that happened just a few days ago. I was doing a fight camp, an MMA fight camp. In fact I did this incredible wrestling class, my first real wrestling class just yesterday and it was the toughest workout that I’ve done in forever and end of the workout is an hour long, it’s only four guys in the class, we’re being instructed by a world champion MMA, a guy named Eddie Ng and evolved in Singapore and I twisted my torso.

So anyway, I messed up my rib cage, so hopefully I would still be able to shoot in the next couple of days and when I went to dinner I was standing very straight because I had to keep this whole area extended because at that time I couldn’t crunch or it would feel like the ligaments are coming off and stuff.

So I was out at dinner and standing quite straight and what I teach anyway is to have good posture and good posture in life is just a good thing but it’s also attractive to people. People will subconsciously or unconsciously associate power and confidence to good posture and it’s just good for health and fitness and everything.

So anyway, standing in posture I wasn’t even paying attention to it. I wasn’t doing anything special and I was paying for my meal and I heard from behind me this girl say to a guy, “Why are you standing straight?” and then I looked to see what was going on and there was a tall guy. I’m not super tall but taller than average in Singapore and he was quite thin and quite young, late teens, early 20s and he was standing straight and his answer was like, “Because it’s good. I’m standing straight. I want to stand straight.”

And then I looked at her and she looked kind of like, “What are you doing? What weird thing are you doing standing straight?” She didn’t say, why are you standing so straight or extra straight or that weird? She just said, “Why are you standing straight?” That question sort of like, “Why are you walking well?” So clearly, he looked at me and then he started to stand straight. That’s another example of how the people around you unconsciously influence the way you are but she mentions it as if it’s like a bad thing and this is something that is very dangerous.

So that guy had a bad girlfriend.

So she does not have his best interest in mind and this is a common dynamic in couples who don’t want their partner to improve, to better himself or herself because out of their own insecurity they don’t want their partner to get better in terms of the social value of the world because that would threaten the fact that they’re together like they match at that value.

So that’s a bad girlfriend and there are a lot of people, I would say you should assume that the majority of people that you are associating with will not be comfortable with you as you grow and progress going forward. It’s just an unfortunate fact of life and it’s great because as you progressed those people come out of the woodwork and they identify themselves and that’s great because now you know who to spend a lot less time with.

I would say cut out but you don’t have to be ruthless just spend less time with them. If they message you just take a lot longer to respond. They will get the message and another great example of this is these sorts of questions where the guys like, “I did this thing. It works awesome.”

But then this one random girl out of seven billion people in the world said, “You’re getting personal too quickly.” “Who fucking cares?” Like, you’re getting too personal too quickly, so it could be anything. I don’t know any other things here but maybe you’re screening question was too private.

Personal and private are different things. So if you’re asking things about her childhood and it had to do with her dad beating her or something, yeah that’s like pretty heavy when you first meet somebody but if you’re doing the technique correctly which is screening. You’re just looking for people who have mutual interests or interests that are the same as yours then if one out of seven billion people don’t like that well that’s not a good gauge for anything.

And this is what a lot of guys do, they try something out and then the girl says, “I don’t like that. I like white on you not black.” And he goes, “Oh fuck.” So then he changes this whole wardrobe and wears white. Like guys who change their shit because girls don’t like it or like it, that’s the problem. Guys who change their shit, guys who change who they are and the way they present themselves just for girls.

Now, obviously the whole PUA industry is based on that. Obviously a lot of life is based on that and that’s why those guys lose in the end because their self-esteem is based on getting certain result from a moving target, trying to hit the moving target and it’s not even a representative sample size.

So do what the fuck what you want to do. Figure out from your values and you’re greater purposes in life at this current time because your purposes will evolve as you evolve, what type of people you want to have around you and then screen for that. This is the natural part of the conversation.

This is just like a person who has standards and just stick with those standards and don’t let people throw you off, I mean, if you did that question correctly and all these other people that you like are totally cool with that and then this one girl says you’re getting too personal, too quickly, well she’s got a problem then. It’s her problem.

So I wouldn’t just on the basis of one person’s response to you I would never change what you’re doing if it’s something that you want to do and it’s an expression of who you are, your values, your personality that you’ve determined ahead of time. So that’s why values are so important and that’s why guys who engage in the PUA industry are going backwards.

In other words, they’re saying, “Okay, what do girls want? How can I be like that?” and they will always have their self-esteem with the mercy of things outside their control and another thing just to point out is, maybe I’ll just title this talk, “Don’t Always Listen to What Girls Say” because the research has shown especially in the area of sexuality that women confabulate.

They don’t even know why they prefer something, so they make up a reason because there’s another reason that they’re unaware of. This is just standard behavioral economics and if you haven’t read the nobel-prize winning of Daniel Kahneman in his book, Thinking, Fast and Slow, that’s a great introduction to it. It’s quite big but it’s a great introduction to it. I can’t think of a better introduction. Dan Ariely’s books will be more accessible just to learn about that sort of dynamic.

The other thing is a lot of people don’t know what they really prefer like here’s an example that I’m thinking of, when I was 11 years old. Everyone I know likes sushi but I know that there are a lot of people in like, say America who never even tried it. I don’t know what these people are like. I can’t even get inside their heads. That’s like talking to an alien but I know they exist but I’m going to use this example.

When I was 11 years old having grown up mostly like half that time in North America, 11 years old I had never tried sushi and my family, we flew to Japan with my uncles and I had sashimi for the first time and I thought it was gross. It was slimy, cold, raw fish that was like I can envision it just like just shaking around like jelly and it was pretty bad. So we played with the wasabi and that was it but then by the time I was 19, it was my favorite food.

Do you see how this works? Like the thing that you thought you didn’t want turns out because it’s an acquired taste to be your favorite thing. So when a girl says, “I don’t like X, Y, Z that you’re doing.” If you don’t have a proper sample size just take that as a point of data and put that into your analysis but it is not the end-all and be-all, understand?

Don’t always change who you are because of feedback from one or two or even three girls unless you know and trust them at a deep level or unless they’re professionals because then they would be drawing on over 10 years of experience working with tens of thousands of clients around the work. So take everything you’ve got, especially the words that you get from people about what they prefer in dating with a grain of salt.

So that’s Episode 95 and in the meantime, join the private Facebook group. Click on the link. Join the group. I will see you inside the group. Until then, Man up!