Have you ever been to a party where you met someone new and couldn’t stop talking about them after you left? Like the person just “got you” on such a level where time kinda stood still while you talked, laughed and vibed together? We’ve all had experiences where we ‘hit it off’ really well with another person because it felt so effortless to communicate. This is often how great relationships start as you’ll always remember how someone made you feel.
However for the slightly shy or introverted amongst us, this can feel like a truly daunting task to navigate conversations so that you actually ‘create’ this type of feeling inside someone else. It’s one thing to feel this way about someone you’ve just met, but would you say they feel the same after meeting you? Building out an authentic level of rapport with someone can only be built when it’s developed consciously by finding common ground and being empathetic.
Rapport is just a subset of attraction. However it’s essentially one of the core foundations of emotional connection so it’s important to understand how this affinity works in people. For the modern man to be able to traverse the egoist personalities in the office, dinner parties with people you don’t know, or even the sexual market place, the ability to create rapport demonstrates your value.
And it’s no secret women love this quality in a man. It’s always a nice trip for her when another person comments on how socially fun her man is. Women want to be with a man, that other men want to be, and women want to be with. This is social proof and one of the cornerstones of attraction.
I’m going to step though some actionable ways you can radically improve your ability to generate authentic rapport. Deep rapport is important in our professional and personal lives because relationships are a whole lot easier and more enjoyable when there is a close connection and understanding between two people. Not only can you further advance your career with these skills, but you’ll also develop far deeper intimate relationships with the women in your life.
Let’s get back to that party for a moment. How often do you think someone who met you left and then said, “Well, he’s nice, but I don’t think we really had anything in common”. If they did, then it’s your fault for not FINDING something in common to share.
As a man of value, leading an interaction and finding commonalities to build rapport around is your job. Don’t expect that this will just magically happen for you and people will walk away thinking how amazing you are. It happens because you make it happen.
Ultimately, what a woman wants is a man who can create a connection FOR her. You must make a direct emotional transfer from yourself to a woman you’re interested in for attraction to move beyond aesthetics alone. For this to be truly powerful, you need to become vulnerable during this moment. This is not an appropriate time to banter and be light-hearted. It’s a serious stage, and if you fake it, the only one you’ll be screwing is yourself.
Being great with women means understanding how to control and draw out your own natural rapport at the right time.
To explain, I’m going to teardown a field report from a date I went on a few years back. This ended up going really well and I actually dated this girl for about 4 months afterwards. It was just one of those nights where I felt the flow of the conversation move effortlessly from topic to topic and I could literally say nothing wrong. It wasn’t until I got home and remembered the things I riffed on that it all came together why it went so well.
The message for you here is simple. The way to build rapport needs to be natural and part of who you are. If you treat this like an interview process where you’re regurgitating canned lines and she’ll see right through you. Instead, make a real attempt to form a connection. If you don’t, her attraction for you is left to chance and at best you’ll be left in the friend zone.
To set the scene, the story starts out like this…
I had recently become single and started back on the dating carousel. Tonight was from originally meeting a woman in real life so there was already more of a connection than from the vagueness of the online world. I had used my social circle to get the details of a single friend of a friend I had heard was pretty damn hot. Smokin’ hot in fact and probably around a 9.
Fairly simple and straightforward conversion, initial meetup over coffee, exchange details, text game banter for a few days, setup a drink for a Saturday night. But if this was going to go anywhere I knew I needed tight ‘all-round A Game’ as I was almost batting out of my crease. Between a mix of push and pull, borderline overconfidence and humor, I knew that to escalate she’d need to feel something different and bold. Dating 9’s is tricky as they’re constantly pressure testing your mettle.
I did the logistics as usual, picking my favourite place and making for a late-ish booking. Lounge bar upstairs for pre-meal drinks, super tasty tapas style food downstairs with a funky vibe and amazing tunes. Wait staff are quick and engaging and always up for banter. They really enhance the night as when you can show depth in your ability to vibe with everyone, you show so much more value.
I don’t like a ‘dinner date’ for a number of reasons. First you’re sitting ‘a distance’ away from the girl on the other side of the table separated by food so it makes it harder to touch and escalate. And you’re going to slip into a food coma and look tired if you’ve downed a large meal and drinks so keep it light.
We met a block or two away from the venue, kiss on the cheek and light embrace, quick riff on the colour of her shoes to give her mixed emotions. Don’t ever be afraid to show your interest. Remember, you’re a confident man of value.
As we walked into the venue I got us some drinks and moved us both to the end of the bar. Great spot to talk, lighting was perfect and there was enough privacy to chat and be heard, while still being part of the energy in the space.
For some reason it was the first opener that I remembered the best from that night, which was strange, as it was really just starting out with some light rapport and asking basic questions. But what I think it was for her was making ‘something out of a normal conversation’, and picking the best part of her answers to build rapport around.
I asked “What did you do after you got up this morning?”
Her answer was actually really detailed as she stepped me through the whole day right up until we met half an hour earlier on the street corner. She had a lazy breakfast at home on the back veranda, played with her two cats, then got herself off to a game of tennis with a friend before getting a bite to eat with her parents for lunch and finished off with some clothes shopping for what she’s wearing right now.
“Sounds like a really cruisy day, that’s actually a really awesome morning”
All I was really doing here was letting her know that I was actively listening to her. If I had jumped straight into a deeper response without acknowledging what she said, it would have seemed like I was simply waiting for my turn to talk. That’s an instant red flag for a woman, because it will make her feel like she can’t trust you. What you want is for her to acknowledge you’ve accepted what she’s said.
Once that acceptance is solidified, you can keep rolling with the convo.
“Tell me how you met your tennis partner?”
However a word of caution for you. Most guys speak from what’s called the “You frame” and it’s totally the wrong approach. Instead of probing further and getting her to talk more about herself, you jump in with something that sounds like this –
“You know when you’re out with your parents and they don’t wanna eat out……
so you get some take away instead because they couldn’t be bothered.
You know what that’s like?”
A lot of guys speak that way because it’s comfortable to assume similarities. Right off the mark you’re making the assumption that she has the same emotional feeling from a similar experience. What it does, is attempt to force the woman to open up and be vulnerable first, while they get to sit back and wait to be accepted before making themselves vulnerable. This approach doesn’t work, because it’s not a powerful rapport perspective. When you use the ‘You’ perspective, you’re asking a woman to put down her shield before you put down yours.
This shows a lack of confidence. Understand that there are some rules that you cannot break, and this is one of them. You might not like it, but that’s the reality – you must lower your shield before you expect a woman to lower hers. Let’s go back a step.
“Tell me how you met your tennis partner?”
Her answer went something along the lines of:
“Well we’ve been playing since we were kids in primary school,
“I joined the local junior competition when we moved there and we met at a Saturday comp,
“We were always super competitive against each other, which I guess we still are now too, <laughs>
“We became friends that year and have tried to keep playing on Saturdays when we have time” <smiles>
It’s no secret that you need to ask open questions where you allow the conversation to flow from her end. Anytime she answers with one to two words she’s immediately going to think of how boring the conversation is so allow her the opportunity to keep talking.
You want to ask questions that provoke an emotional response. That’s exactly what I did by hooking further into her first answer around playing tennis with her friend. A far better way to create rapport than “How long have you been playing tennis?”
Now is the time when you’re going to use your skills as a man of real value and create some real attraction with your response. Now is not the time to be responding with, “wow – that sounds awesome”. Do that and you’ll just sound like a dick that can’t talk to women.
Knowing that I’d picked something which had an emotional connection with her, I knew I needed to respond in kind.
“I don’t know how it is for you, but for me…when I catch up and surf with my oldest friends, the competition between us for the best waves is still just as strong as it was when we were kids. It’s always a friendly rivalry to see who can catch the very first wave of the session”
In hindsight this was an easy way to respond as it was something special to me and a way of drawing her into my world. I remember delivering this with the enthusiasm of actually feeling like a kid and my entire face just lit up because it was true!
In order to make an emotional connection, you can’t have constant objections and distractions entering the conversation, even if they are entirely subconscious. As long as you’re stating how you feel about something there’s no way someone can argue about it, so instead of continuously asking themselves “Is that true about me?” they will accept what you’re saying and stay in the moment. This is crucial for building rapport.
Another thing to watch for is staying far away from using emotional expressive words like happy, sad, angry, etc, as they don’t actually have any meaning to anyone other than us. You might as well not say anything at all. If you want to build an emotional association with someone, you can’t rely on using emotional words because people tune them out as their only to your emotional state.
Plenty of guys make this mistake because they think that saying “Oh yeah, I love tennis too” will build rapport when in fact it’s only pointing out a commonality and is weak rapport. It doesn’t transfer any kind of emotion because we don’t process emotions in terms of the words we use for them. Words are used for communication ABOUT emotions, not for experiencing them.
What’s really important are the events that are linked to emotions, like catching the first wave of a session. That means that you need to describe the event that makes you feel a specific way, and shouldn’t try to explain the emotion itself. I described the event to allow her to paint a version of the picture in her mind while I’m telling the story. It’s my state and enthusiasm that describes the emotion and not my words.
When I looked back on this moment after I got home I knew that I had struck gold with the surfing thread. I remember her sitting with anticipation as the story evolved because we had shared a moment of connection. We both love sharing time with our friends doing things that we love.
In fact, a highly effective, go-to rapport topic is anything that happened to you when you were a child. Whenever we hear someone telling stories about being a little kid, we begin to think back to our own childhoods and start to feel all the emotions that we associate with that period in our lives. It automatically makes us feel closer to other people.
However I remember going even deeper again and linking it to how I feel about it now.
“…..and you know, ever since that first summer we all surfed together as kids, that first wave I catch when I paddle out now, makes me feel like I still know what it’s like to be a kid competing for the very first set wave with my buddies.”
I think I even got a bit emotional retelling that feeling as it was really genuine.
Linking the story from your childhood to the present is so immensely powerful. I could see her light up when I told it as she shared the same type of feeling doing her tennis thing on a Saturday with her friend.
Connecting the old experience to your experience now and allowing a woman to see the changes you have gone through makes her feel like she was part of that process with you. This is particularly effective if you’ve learned a lesson in the moment too. Going through the process of making the association for the first time in front of a woman makes her feel like she has a better understanding of you.
Just don’t bullshit a woman in this stage. She is going to make a connection with you based on what you say so if you lie, she will make a connection with a person who doesn’t really exist. Why lie when it’s counterproductive, and when the truth is just as good?
“Does that make any kind of sense to you whatsoever?”
I think this was the final thing I said on that topic. It was like the final step to check the confirmation with her understanding.
The beauty of this question is that it’s completely open. If what you said made any sense to her whatsoever, even if it was very little, she is going to say yes and the phase of rapport has ended.
What the question is really asking is “Did you get that emotional transfer?” so if she says “yes,” you should see a noticeable difference in the way she’s acting. You should also feel different, because rapport is a two-way street. Even though you are in control of the entire situation, you won’t be able to help feeling something for her at the same time as you are making her fall for you.
This is certainly what was happening to me at the time.
A few final tips while your building this deeper level connection.
Make sure you’re also aware of your body language during this part of the interaction. Make sure she is leaning into you. During the initial phase of attraction you should never lean in, but during this part of rapport, it’s beneficial to show more interest and open up your positive body language. This is a whole other topic for another day but something you need to be conscious of.
Access your emotions with your eyes as well. If you cannot draw out an emotion about something, try looking down and thinking about it. Remember that leading your body will lead your mind. When you are not looking down, it is important to maintain solid eye contact to aid the flow of emotion. We receive a great deal of emotion via the eyes, so if you’re constantly looking in multiple different directions a woman will not receive that emotion from you.
Assume familiarity. You really need to treat her as if you’ve known her your entire life as this makes you more relaxed and consequently she’ll be relaxed too. I told the story of surfing as a kid assuming that she already knew about catching waves so I didn’t bother elaborating unnecessarily. This basic assumption creates rapport.
Half the battle of knowing what to build rapport on the right things is having the right ‘Emotional State’ to start with. I knew I was already having a great time from the start where I didn’t care about the outcome of the evening so I was totally relaxed and comfortable. When your frame (perception of reality) was strong like mine then women will just accept it.
Lastly, when she talks, then listen attentively. Hopefully you’ve understood that the key is to pay attention to the topics that she is most passionate about. Be in the present moment and pay attention to what is happening right in front of you as the roadmap is right there. Stop overthinking in your head and allow the conversation to flow on your feelings instead.
Be a man of value and practice building deep rapport by getting out there and having fun!