For a long time, there was a particular self-inflicted handicap that plagued my game, my results, and my overall experience when going out to the bars in hopes of meeting girls – drinking too much alcohol.
It’s common knowledge to avoid getting too drunk or it will make you sloppy and keep you from getting laid. But for some reason most guys continue to do it anyways.
Getting overly drunk is something you get out of your system while in college, but if you’re consistently getting wasted when you go out, then I would venture to bet that you’re also consistently not getting laid.
The reason is a lack of self-awareness. Getting overly drunk, or sometimes even just a little too buzzed can wreck your self-awareness and put you on a kind of drunken autopilot.
While drunk in a noisy bar, you don’t use your brain to think, you don’t actively listen to what’s being said to you, you have no thought process, you just react.
You’re not creating any kind of memorable experience. You’re not doing anything that you can learn from. You’re probably not even having that much fun. You’re just another barfly contributing to the mindless collective chatter.
If you’re just reacting to your environment and not thinking things through then going out and getting drunk can almost become like a weekly chore.
We’ve all been there.
I’ve had dozens and dozens of nights out where I put no real thought into my mental state. I just boozed up and mindlessly reacted to whatever environment I was in.
I’d wake up the next morning lamenting my poor results and ask myself – Did I make the most of what last night had to offer me?
Did I take advantage of opportunities? Did I approach interesting strangers or did I stand around with a drink in my hand next to my friends all night where it felt comfortable and safe?
If you ask yourself these and the answer keeps coming up no, then it’s time to make some changes.
There are two important elements to keep you in the zone. Mood and Mantra.
Getting into a social, amped up mood is crucial. Do this by finding a crew in which the group dynamic gets you into a laughing, good-times mood and start off with a pregame or happy hour with friends whose company you enjoy.
Watch comedy routines or skits from the Tonight Show or some other funny program that makes you laugh in the early evening before going out.
The other important aspect is having a mantra to repeat to yourself throughout the night. Mine is as simple as repeating “Be self-aware” a few times throughout the night.
Taking a second to stop what I’m doing, observe my environment, and repeat my mantra helps me take a step back from all the stimuli around me and gets me back into a thinking state instead of just being reactionary.
If you have to, set a reminder on your phone at every hour from 10PM-2AM to remind you to stay cognizant and not lose your head as you have a few drinks. This way you can enjoy the night and remember it the next day.
You don’t want to be the guy sitting on the ground eating an entire pizza by himself at 3 in the morning. That guy isn’t getting the most potential out of his night. And yes, I’ve been there.
But now when I’m in the midst of a loud and crazy bar, I always make it a point to take a step back and tell myself to be self-aware. Just saying those words triggers something in my mind to start being observant again and start to think things through. This simple practice is what keeps me sharp under the numbing effects of alcohol.
One final thought is that you might want to introduce the element of scarcity into your going out routine. If going out has become a bland experience then try cutting back on the nights you go out and start seeing them as special occasions. When I was going through periods where I’d go out every single weekend, I was approaching less, I was listening/talking less, and I was having less fun. When I go out once or twice a month, I have more appreciation for the experience.
Psych yourself up before you go out and remember that there are people in less fortunate parts of the world who would love to have just one night out on the town drinking and talking to cute girls.
The art of maintaining a buzz and solid mental state is a delicate one, but if you master it and stop getting too drunk every time you go out, you’ll have a lot more success and much quicker learning curve to making the nights count.