Ask your private questions and get access to exclusive bonuses and coaching through our private Facebook Group. Join now:

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.

Connect with David Tian here:

Man Up Show Facebook Group:
DTPHD Podcast Facebook Group:
Apple Podcast:
Google Podcast:
Google Podcast:
DTPHD Podcast:
Tune In:
Invincible Reviews:
“The Man Up Show” Ep.76 – How To Break Out Of The Friend Zone

How To Break Out Of The Friend Zone

  • David Tian Ph.D. emphasizes on the role of qualifications when working with somebody that you like to be more than friends with.

  • David Tian Ph.D. reveals why some women might think you are a creep.

  • In this Man Up episode, David Tian Ph.D. tells us to prioritize personality, then physicality.

David Tian: Boom! Stop. In episode 76 of Man Up, I answer the question of, how to get a girl to think of you as more than just friends?

[Intro Music]

Masculinity for the Intelligent Man. I am David Tian, Ph.D., and this is: Man Up!

[Music Fades]

Hey, this is David Tian, Ph.D. This is episode 76 of Man Up. Hopefully this is picking up on this microphone here. I’m on the slopes, as you can see. I’ll give you a little shot of what it is. It’s 12 noon, it’s lunch time, people are all coming down, probably not a great time to be shooting. Let me know if the production quality really bothers you. Let me know in the private Facebook group, so join the private Facebook group. Let me know and then I won’t do this anymore.

I’ll wait until I have the full equipment. But I thought it would be better because I’m on the road and its Chinese New Year, Lunar New Year, so Happy New Year to people who celebrate it. I’ll be on the road so I wasn’t going to be shooting originally during that whole two and a half weeks but I figured it’s better to do it on the fly like this than it is to not do it at all. So let me know if that does bother you or if you like it.

Okay, so it’s my first day of skiing in 22 years. I usually snowboard. And man, my quads are… it’s not like the strength workout like a squat. You’re doing these isometric hold for a long time. Anyway, so the question comes from Luke in the private Facebook group. I’m using my iPhone so I can’t actually read the question off here but we’re going by memory.

It is about the fact that he works in news centers and NGOs, he’s really good at empathizing, building rapport but he says he has trouble because people think he’s just being friendly and that he’d prefer not to be the shoulder that they all come and cry on. I’m assuming them, based on this question, that you’re trying to flirt with the girls, Luke. It’s a girl that you like sexually or romantically because you don’t normally say that around if it’s just platonic friends.

The problem isn’t that your friendlier, the shoulder to cry on. The problem is you’re friendlier, the shoulder to cry on with girls that you want to get sexual with or that you want to get romantic with. That’s a totally different issue. I think it’s great to be a friend. I think it’s great to be friendly. And that’s a good start. So a great way to meet a girl, a woman that you like and to start a conversation, especially in, you know if you’re at youth centers or NGO’s that you stay friendly and platonic.

You don’t want to screw up or sacrifice or compromise the work setting or the charity setting or whatever it is there… just to flirt with a girl.

If it’s worth that much to you, you should be much more direct about it. But anyway, going back to the situation where you’re working with somebody that you like to be more than friends, then when you do your qualifications – you should know how to do qualifications by now – google believability, David Tian.

You can also get an e-book I wrote called “Dating Decoded on Social Charms Systems” and – there’s a class going on behind me – I cover that in detail how to do qualifications. Qualifications are basically when the girl or the person you are talking to is showing something that you like about the person, you just say it. “I like ‘x’ about you”. You have to actually listen and find something that you like about them and then say that. “I like ‘x’ about you”.

So there are some announcements. I think the winds are really strong and they’re closing one of the mountains and the announcement echoes quite a lot. This is just one of many mountains here in Niseko and I’ve got to boot my way over to meet my friends for lunch on the other end there. Um… distracted.

Okay, I’m going to try to keep this video short. There’s too many distractions here. So you say, “I like ‘x’ about you” and that keeps it personal, “I” and “you” must be in those sentences. Don’t just say something like that you’re appreciating something objective third party about her.

It must be that “you” like something about “her”. “I like ‘x’ about you”. The “I” and “you” are extremely important. And then from there you just throw in… what I would do if I were you, is to do it very subtly to take it to the next level to get more… a little bit more showing sexual interest instead of just saying “I like ‘x’ about you”.

After you’ve done that, maybe 2 or 3 times, so that now you’re personal and not just a work colleague or a volunteer. Then you want to say, not just “I like ‘x’ about you” but also like throwing in a bet is. So just before saying “I like ‘x’ about you,” you say, “Not only are you cute but you’re also ‘x’”. You’re not just a cute face but your also ‘x’. Or you’re not just a pretty face but you’re also ‘x’. Oh, you’re not just a cute face but you’re also ‘x’. Or you’re not just a pretty face but you’re also ‘x’. You’re not just a hot girl, you’re also this, right?

So that’s very easy if you appreciate her intelligence, oh you got a brain on you. You’re not just a smart girl or I’m sorry…you got a brain on you, or you’re smart not just a pretty girl. Which is a pretty face or whatever. So, shows her that you appreciate her physicality and as well as her personality traits.

For the guys who are creeps, the reason why you’re a creep because you show too much interest in her physicality before showing any interest in her personality. So go personality, then physicality and embed it so it’s not like, “oh you’re hot”. Silence… right, that’s weird. That’s heavy.

You can do that in a bar club in those very sexualized settings but you don’t want to do that like in an NGO. So you just say, “I like that you appreciate art, that’s really cool, something I look for in all my friends”.

That’s your first stab at it and then later on you say, let’s say you find out she’s adventurous too, you say, “oh, not only are you a pretty girl but you’re adventurous too. Cool!”. Just like really subtle like that, very easy to do.

Okay, so it’s the end of that video, five minutes and a half. Episode 76 and over and out. Oh and by the way, join the private Facebook group that’s where Luke asked his question, where you can interact with me. Alright man, until next time.