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Episode #6

How To Be a Confident Man

Featuring Coach Shana James
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Learn How To Be a Confident Man in this podcast featuring Shana James

Would you love to be a LOT more confident when you see an attractive you want to talk to …but the fear of rejection holds you back? Or maybe there’s a girl you know who you’d love to ask out, but you don’t want to get turned down, or be seen as creepy.

The fear of rejection is one of the biggest problems that today’s men face, which is why in this episode of the Dating Transformation podcast, we turn to the renowned coach Shana James to help you become rejection-proof… and learn how to be a confident man.

Shana has coached hundreds of men in all areas of life, from dating to business to mindfulness. She also shares her wisdom every week on her Man Alive podcast. (More than 300 5-star reviews!)

Today, Shana and Connell have a lively conversation that’s jam-packed with funny stories and practical advice, so that you can…

  • Get EXCITED about your dating life, instead of seeing it as a drag.
  • Bring true authenticity and vulnerability to your dates
  • Take those romantic risks—like approaching and asking out your crush—with total confidence, and no fear of rejection.
  • PLUS: Shana shares one of the best tips from her Rejection Proof coaching program.

Listen now, so that Shana can help you go from anxiousness and fear of rejection, to authentic confidence and becoming rejection-proof! It’s time to learn how to approach women.

Is confidence attractive in a man? It sure is. So, if you want to learn how to be a mature confident man, you’re in the right place!


Man Alive Podcast


"We want the men to feel alive and lit up and turned on and not this toxic masculinity that we see out there." - Shana

"I'm so grateful that there are men out there teaching that authenticity is awesome and sexy. It warms my heart." - Shana

Special mentions in the episode:

What 1000 Men's Tears Reveal
Ted Talk by Shana James
Check it here:

Featured in the episode:

Shana James
Love and Leadership Coach, Facilitator, Author

Connell Barrett

Founder and Executive Coach of Dating Transformation
Connell Barrett is a NYC dating coach who's helped thousands of men all over the world find their soulmates while dating with integrity and authenticity. His Dating Transformation podcast gives valuable tools and tips from industry experts on how to get a girlfriend. You can find Connell’s book, Dating Sucks But You Don’t, in bookstores nationwide.


00:00 Intro
02:21 Shana's Ted Talk
05:50 Why did Shana start coaching?
08:36 How to approach women with confidence
10:30 How Shana helps people achieve a successful dating life
13:11 How to be rejection-proof
17:24 Game-changer tips from Shana
39:09 Advice for introverts
41:48 Conclusion

Produced by Heartcast Media.

Related Episodes:

What Women Want in Men

How To Talk To Women

How To Be An Attractive Man

How To Be A Better Man


Connell Barrett: Okay. Welcome back. And I am psyched to have with me a very special guest here during the launch week of the Dating Transformation Podcast. Her name is Shana James. For nearly 20 years, Shana James has coached more than a thousand men and women leaders, CEOs, and those with big visions to find love, rekindle that spark, create a legacy, and be personally inspired and fulfilled. Sign me up for that. With a master's in psychology and more than a decade running workshops on man and woman dynamics and authentic communication as well as mindfulness, Shana has a range of skills, supports all areas of life, and she's also the host of a great podcast called The Man Alive Podcast, which has 317 five star ratings and counting. I can only hope to get there years from now. To find out more, go to that's s-h-a-n-a James Shana, thank you so much for being here.

Shana James: I'm so happy to be here and congratulations on launching your podcast. This is so exciting.

Connell Barrett: I am very psyched. I wanted to have you here during the very first week, so thank you for being here because you have a lot to say and a lot of wisdom to share with men. And I'm going to ask you about your journey in a second. We're going to get to that for sure. But first, I want to start with something that I just saw. I watched your TEDx talk. I know you have a TED Talk called What a Thousand Men's Tears Reveal about the Crisis Between Men and Women. And you said something in that TED talk that just hit me right in the gut as a dating coach. He's always trying to help men sort of find what I call the higher self. You said essentially your TED talk is about the power of vulnerability and how it can help sort of unlock a man's kingliness. You said, quote, You can rest in your sovereignty as a man. You become kingly. And I just love that metaphor, that image. Can you share a little bit more about that talk and what you meant by that?

Shana James: Yeah, I'm just going back to that moment. Well, I think a lot of men have an idea that if they're vulnerable, it makes them weaker versus it makes them, you know, sovereign. Strong. Yeah. Like that idea of kingly to me is like, you know, centered in myself, completely in love with myself. I mean, we all waver, of course. So it's not, you know, every single moment. I'm feeling confident that to me feels like a, you know, a false aspiration. But ultimately, like, I trust myself. I trust myself to handle whatever comes my way. I trust myself to be loving and kind and supportive. I trust myself to receive the love that's coming toward me. You know, those are some of the things that I think of when I think of kingly and sovereign.

Connell Barrett: Beautiful. And there was also another moment from that podcast, a podcast for Give Me Your TEDx Talk that struck me. You told the story about being at a workshop with 20 or so men and women, and a man got teary-eyed and said, When I came here, I didn't want to be here. I felt like I was in a lot of pain. I didn't even know if I wanted to go on. And then his vulnerability seemed to transform him at that moment. Can you again can you tell us why that moment was so powerful for you to put that in your talk?

Shana James: Yeah. I mean, it just tore my heart open because he had said, I, I was at a point in my life where I didn't even know if I wanted to be alive anymore. And the love and support that we all, but especially the women brought to him, he said, brought him back. You know, it was like I recognized, oh, my God, the power of my love, especially related to men. You know, sometimes I think of it like a man in the olden days, or I think it's in the myths where men go off to war and then they come back and there are these women who welcome them back into society. But there's a transition point, you know, it's like they get to be loved and held and released. Some of that is just awful pain and everything they're going through, you know, like from their body, from their souls, so that they can go back into life with their partners and their families and not be carrying around as we know. You know, a lot of our veterans are just carrying around this anguish and pain and the suicide rate is incredibly high. So something. It was like a zing, like a soul calling in that moment of love. I could love men in ways that they don't often get and that could, you know, open them to want to be alive and want to be generous and to receive more love. Like, it just. Yeah, it was amazing.

Connell Barrett: Fantastic. Uh, okay. I want to go a little bit back in time to the Shana James Marvel movie, The Shana James story. And I want to learn a bit about your origin story. Okay. What was the moment or the period of your life when you said, I need to become a coach and I'm going to help men be more vulnerable, help men and women connect, as you call yourself, a translator between men and women. We all need that. Take us back to your origin story. How did you begin?

Shana James: Well, there are a couple. One is in my childhood and, you know, continuing the relationship that I see between my parents is painful. And my dad takes a lot of heat from my mom. You know, she's what I can say about the dynamic that I have learned, right? Is like the more women, the more because it can start either way. What came first? The chicken or the egg? Right. But it's like, okay, if a man starts to lose himself or just become less present, less awake, less aware, women get angrier and vice versa. If a woman gets angrier and bitching at Nagi, then men start to fade away. So I watched that dynamic my whole life, and as I look back, I'm like, Oh, that's the origin story, right? You know, how can I save my dad? Or How can I support men to not have to fade away to survive but thrive? And I look back to high school and I was all middle school and high school. I was always friends with all the boys who everyone thought were super nerdy and they just wouldn't talk to them. And somehow I was like, I don't know. I just loved them. But the moment that I started coaching men was that moment that you just asked about. You know, I was part of an intentional community at that point in my twenties. I talked about this in the TEDx talk. We were making lots of messes, but, you know, we're talking about attraction and frustration. And when we got upset with each other and jealousy and the men who started this workshop where that moment happened that you asked me about, you know, that was the moment where I was intending to go on and work with women and coach women or be a therapist for women. And at that moment, it was like, okay, I'm doing this with men. And I, you know, I subsequently created programs for women, too. But eventually, at some point, I was just like, oh, my God, my soul's calling is to work with men.

Connell Barrett: I love how you gave a shout-out to nerds. Cause I'm a card-carrying nerd. So many men. Most of my clients are, quote, unquote, and nerds. And I mean nerds with love, by the way. Awesome. Now we were not the quarterback of the football team in college or high school. We were not going on lots of dates. Or, in my case, zero dates in high school and college. But we have a lot to offer. What do you say to the, quote, nerd, the introvert, the nice guy who just isn't really in touch with his worthiness to women? What would you say to that guy to give him a pat on the back? Help me out.

Shana James: I would say I love your heart and I think you're amazing. And thank you for being so respectful and trying to do it right and trying to be kind and loving and not be, you know, that asshole version of toxic masculine that you see out there. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Hmm. And, you know, we also want you to feel alive and lit up and turned on. And I don't want you to have to hide or stuff any of that. I want you to get to experience it and have the full range of you and to get to play with that. So let's, you know, turn, turn those parts on.

Connell Barrett: So in my book, Shana, I, I have a sort of a love letter to nerds because a client named Ken, who I used to work with, came to me, and he had just never had any dates. He did some dates, but he'd never even kissed a woman and hadn't had a girlfriend. And we worked together throughout a long weekend, where I taught him about being more authentic and being vulnerable and sort of letting his nerd flag fly high. He ended up just having an incredible weekend of going out to socialize with women and even got his very first kiss. We were standing on a rooftop and he walked over to a really attractive woman. And I look over and all of a sudden they're making out and he's standing on his toes, standing on his tiptoes, 'cause she's about three inches taller than he loves it. And I remember thinking, Oh, my God, I'm looking at a man having the very first kiss of his life. And it's something I've never knowingly seen. Anyway, that's a favorite success story from back in the day for me. What about you? When you think back to clients you've helped, really helped have a great change in their relationships or their dating life. What's a success story that just makes you smile?

Shana James: I love those moments. And first of all, I'm just so grateful that you are a man out there teaching that, you know, authenticity is awesome and sexy and that just warms my heart. So, yeah, you know, similarly watching men who have been turned down and have been seen as a friend and, you know, all of that, like I had a guy who went to the grocery store with his son and his son was like, Dad, I think that woman's following you around, you know, and another one who's like another one with a kid who was like, dad, that woman staring at you from across the restaurant, like, what is happening? And, you know, another man who had never been picked up by a woman before, like he was always the one to, you know, ask her like he was married for a long time. And so he hadn't even dated for 20 years. And women hadn't been paying attention to him for years and he was trying to date it wasn't working. And then this woman approached him on the dance floor and started dancing with him and then, you know, was like, Do you want to have sex with me? And she was gorgeous. Like, just amazing to see. Oh, especially men who feel a little more quiet or introverted or unsure of themselves to have them kind of pop. Right. And it's not like they don't have to become assholes. I think a lot of it's just sinking deeper into themselves and, you know, finding that place of clarity and confidence. And I matter and, you know and then watching women just respond in a completely different way. It's amazing.

Connell Barrett: I've I've I've had a lot of dating experiences. I've never had a woman straight up say that to me. And I'm a dating coach. So. So well done. Well done. Yeah. Uh, I would love anyone to say that to me. I want to have sex with you. I don't care who says I mean a guy on the street. I'll be like, hey, I'm. I'm flattered, but I'm flattered. Thanks to you, right? Yeah. Um, okay. I want to ask you for some good free tips here, okay? Because you have a lot of great advice you have. Of course, it's forgiven if I don't get the name perfect, but it's basically how to become rejection-proof. As a man, I love that title because the big bad wolf for so many men I work with and for the guy listening to this is fear of rejection. Yeah. So you have a course all about becoming rejection proof, if you would, off the top of your head. What are a couple of tips about becoming more, quote, rejection proof? How do you define rejection and how do you become rejection-proof as a single man?

Shana James: Yeah, well, my sense of rejection, you know, it's not just about somebody saying no to you. Right? Because someone could say no to you and you'd be like, oh, fine, whatever. Rejection is what happens when we make it mean something. Oh, I'm not good enough or I'm not good enough. Smart enough, attractive enough. There's something wrong with me. Right? And so one of the things that I say a lot to men is just because you like if you want something or you like something and someone else doesn't, let's say a woman doesn't. That doesn't mean you're wrong. It just may mean there's not a fit there. Right. And so the tendency is to go making it like, oh, I am less than or I'm weird or I am perverted or any of those things. And the reality is it just may be different. And so one of the tips that I often give men, especially those who are dating and starting to date, is that instead of going out there and looking for is she the one you know, is this the one to shift to? Oh, I wonder if we are a match. And I wonder what the highest good is for each of us here and that that wording might be a little funny to some people. So you can change the wording, right? But it's like, Huh, who could I be to you and who could you be to me? Like, we might be lovers, we might be partners, we might be, you know, artist friends, we might play tennis, we might share parenting tips like there's no there's not one way that this date has to go and one track that we have to be on. And when we're trying to force it into that, we lose a lot of that freedom and it becomes more awkward and nervous. And I've got to prove something and I've got to, you know, make this go a certain way. And so really that shift too, oh, are we a match or what's the highest good here for each of us? Takes a lot of that nervousness away and that sense of rejection away.

Connell Barrett: I love that. It's not. It changes the frame. Will I get rejected? Are we just a good fit as two people? Yeah. And that latter question is such a much more empowering question than will she like me? Am I good enough? Yeah. It's so it's such that it's an understandable question for men to ask, of course, out in the dating world. I get it. I used to ask that question myself.

Shana James: I mean, to write about it. So we do have comments also.

Connell Barrett: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. To paraphrase. Well, not to quote Tony Robbins. Ask a shitty question. Get a shitty answer. Yeah. So let's ask a better question. Yeah, I love that. Are we a match? Yeah. The question I like to have guys ask on dates is how can? How can I connect with her in whatever way? Maybe it's friends. Yeah, maybe it's. How can I make her smile? How can I enjoy expressing myself? And that takes it away. Take away the frame of, is she going to like me or not? Yes. And that's a bad question to ask, because if she likes you, great. But if she doesn't, you're setting yourself up for pain.

Shana James: Totally.

Connell Barrett: I love that. Yeah, my. My feeling is it's not rejection. Look, if your girlfriend of five years comes down the stairs one morning and says, I've never loved you, you have a small penis. I'm cheating on you with Fabio. Okay, that's rejection. I'll see you at the bar and I'll talk to you. But a couple of dates that don't go just means you're not a good match. I think we're on the same page. Excellent. Okay, let's get into some more fun dating tips stuff because I think we all love a good tip. So I'm going to ask you three or four quick kinds of short questions. Short answer. Give us your best game. Are you game? And let's do it. Okay. One of the questions I want to ask you is, what would it take for a man to gain attention from a woman? Without doing anything even before he says a word?

Shana James: Yeah. That's one of my favorite things that I often say to men. Right. How to be noticed. You know, when you walk in the room before you even say a word to me, a lot of that is about embodiment. And what I mean by that is not just like I'm athletic, you know, and I play sports, but I'm living in the world, not just through my mind and my interpretations, but I'm experiencing the world through my body. So, you know, when I walk into a room, I'm not just scanning in like, oh, who's over there? That person has, you know, made these interpretations like, I feel life and I feel turned on or I feel turned off or I feel like my heart opens or my heart closes. Like all you know. And it's paradoxical because all of these things are happening. So it's not like only the good ones should be happening, right? We have to embrace that. Both sides of the spectrum are all of this spectrum is going to happen. But for me, what I've seen is that as I support men to know what's happening in their bodies and their emotions and they become more present, and then also that allows them to notice more what's happening with a woman. You know, so it's like, oh, there's a whole universe over there that now that I can feel her through my whole body instead of just thinking about her through my mind, it has this wild impact because we're like tuning forks. And so then a woman starts to feel her body, right? Nothing even needs to be said at this point. But she's starting to feel her body open and her heart open as he's feeling that. So, yeah, that's one of my favorite things to work with men is like, okay, let's try it. You know, let's, let's make it happen now.

Connell Barrett: Presence. The key word I got there was a presence. Yeah. A lot of men come to me, and I'm sure you hear this. What should I say? Yeah. What's the line?

Shana James: What do I say? When do I say, woman? Yeah.

Connell Barrett: Right. And they want that one size fits all. And yes, there's a quote. You said this on your podcast recently, and that might be the podcast that just dropped. You said, I'm going to misquote you, but I can't give you an all-purpose line. It's like giving a tall guy, short chubby guy pants, and or a short guy tall man pants. Take that from there, would you? I love it.

Shana James: That. Yeah, that's funny. I think I said that like ten or 15 years ago, but I have probably said it a lot since then. Right. That using someone else's lines is like giving a tall man a short, stocky man's pants, or vice versa. Because if you're trying to be someone you're not, it's not going to fit for you and you're not going to be present and you're not going to be, you know, aware of the women in front of you. You're kind of reading a script from inside your mind and therefore you're not there with her. So that's what women are longing for. I mean, you know, from coaching women and from having many, many girlfriends and having these conversations as we women do. Right. Women are longing for a man who can be present and connected and loving and also passionate and okay with all of his fire and desire and all of that.

Connell Barrett: I just came up with the perfect backup plan. Ready? I'm wearing the wrong size pants. I'm wearing another man's pan. Come on. What woman wouldn't at least respond to that?

Shana James: That's funny.

Connell Barrett: Hey, I'm like, I'm tall, but I'm wearing a fat man's marrow.

Shana James: Greg, you said it about the words. You know you can say, I just love the simplicity of, like, how are you? Or, you know, how's your day going? Because if you actually say that with presence and she looks into your eyes and she feels you there with her, that's a show stopper, right?

Connell Barrett: Last week. So I do in-field in-person training here in New York City where I take guys out in the town and approach women and socialize. And I did a drill last week where I showed my client the power of that, how the words don't matter as long as you're present and in a good, solid, confident state. I said, okay, name? We're at a rooftop bar. I said, What's the first word that comes into your mind? He said, Pop Tarts. I said, Great, go over to her and walk up and say Pop Tarts. That's your pickup line. He starts laughing. He smiles. It was so, so frickin stupid. He thought it was hilarious. He walks over. He's got a smile on his face. He's kind of laughing. Taps her on the shoulder. She turns around. He says, Pop-Tarts. I'm laughing as I say it. And she breaks out in laughter like you're doing. She's like, Well, had he said Pop-Tarts? She's like, What are you talking about? I like Pop-Tarts. She said, Oh my God, I love Pop-Tarts. And all of a sudden they were hitting it off. That's the coolest line in the world. Isn't going to work if you're in your head if you're stuck if you're wearing the wrong pants. But you can say Pop-Tarts if you get into that good zone because I think it's a sense of presence and a sense of overall authentic energy. Yeah.

Shana James: Yeah.

Connell Barrett: Are you hungry for Pop-Tarts now? Because I really am.

Shana James: Funny that my kid came home from camp yesterday and there was a Pop-Tarts package in the lunch and I was like, You had a Pop-Tart because I don't I used to eat them, but I do not give them to my child because I think they're just disgustingly, you know, sugary, whatever. I give other sugar. But those I was just like, oh, but they were so good. I remember, like, those strawberry ones with the pink frosting. Right. And that, you know, that's kind of amazing to me. You can go deep from anything, any one question. You get to go deeper. And I talk about it as like following the route down instead of leaping from lily pad to lily pad like you like Pop-Tarts. Oh, where did you grow up? Oh, how many sisters do you have? Right. Like that's so different than, oh, Pop-Tarts. What was your favorite memory from your childhood of a Pop-Tart? And who were you with? Right, right. Like you could just go deeper and deeper into a more meaningful conversation.

Connell Barrett: Right? Absolutely. But it can start with something light and silly. Yeah. Instead of thinking like that, you have to come up with some cool line that does not fit all people. No. Okay. Next question for you. What are some of the fundamentals? What are some of the fundamentals of authentic attraction that most men never learn?

Shana James: Well, I would say that embracing awkwardness dissolves awkwardness. And so I think one fundamental, you know, like that awkwardness is a human experience. Most of us are feeling it. And often. And so a lot of men I've worked with try to hide that. Like, I'm cool. Got it together. There's nothing awkward over here. Meanwhile, it's, like, stilted or stunted or, you know, that kind of frozen. And so I love to say, you know, you can always say, hey, I'm feeling a little awkward at this moment. How about you? Right. There's a place that you can say like we were just talking about. There's a place you can say anything from that it's not awkward, right? It's not awkward to say you're feeling awkward from a place of recognizing, oh, I'm an awesome human being and there's a part of me that's awkward versus, oh, shit, I'm awkward. There's something wrong with me. She's going to find out. I've got to hide this. Right. So that's the kind of that sovereign place where it's like, Oh, there's nothing wrong with me for being awkward. I could talk about it. I could just take some deep breaths and, you know, not mention it. I have to mention it. I could go to the bathroom and, you know, take a little break and just take some breaths, whatever. You can do many different things with it. But the first key is not making it as though something's wrong with you.

Connell Barrett: Right? Yeah, I like the idea of leaning into how you're feeling and owning it, even if it's awkward. Yeah. Or shy? Yeah. A big aha moment I had was one of the first times I ever just went up to a really attractive woman at a nightclub and approached her. I was very nervous. Yeah. And I. And my coach said, What's the most honest, the deepest thing you're feeling right now? And I said to him that I'm shy, but I love to meet her. She seems to like my type. And he said, Great, there is your opening line. And I walked over to her and I said, Hi, I'm really shy, but I had to meet you. And she had a little bit and said, Oh yeah, right. You're really shy. Hi, I'm Amy. And she thought it was a line. It was right in a sense. But she thought it was me being confident. Yeah. Even though I was not confident. So just being congruent with that shyness and awkwardness can give you the appearance of owning how you're feeling and you'll come across as a lot more confident. So that makes sense.

Shana James: Totally. Totally. Right. Because you're not shying away from it. Here's a peek into it.

Connell Barrett: Yeah, exactly. Okay, here's a good one. This is a big one. The dreaded friend zone. Yeah, we get that a lot. Right. So my question for you is, how can a man overcome those, quote, nice guy tendencies and be seen as more than a friend? Yeah. To women.

Shana James: Well, I think a lot of it is what we've been talking about, you know, that it's okay and awesome to be excited and turned on. And I always like to say to men, you can be as turned on. You know, I want you to be as turned on as you can be. There is nothing offensive about that. What you do with it could be offensive, but you don't have to shut down an ounce of that in your body. And I think that's what happens with a lot of nice guys. It's like, oh, all right, I'm trying to be, you know, the kind I'm trying to be respectful. So I'm going to shut down my internal experience so that women feel safe with me. And then women just feel this kind of deadened, you know, feeling they don't feel safe. They just feel kind of like you're their friend or you're their child or something like that. So I think one of the best ways is to expand, right? Breathe, feel like let yourself be the embodiment of peace. The more you're aware. I don't know how this happens. Somebody will tell me this someday. But if you're feeling all this energy in your body, but it's like centered in your chest and your belly, if you start to pay attention to your arms and your legs in your back, that energy will spread out through you. And you can expand like a balloon as opposed to, you know, shrink and try to get rid of it. So I would say, especially for guys who have been friends, expand like let yourself feel all that energy and breathe it in and enjoy it and then, you know, have a conversation from that place as opposed to, like, being more puckered and trying to shove it away.

Connell Barrett: Okay. This reminds me of something that I hear from men as I have a new client. I'll call him Ted, not his name. Your TED talk must be on my mind. Ted? His last name is Talk. Ted Talk is his name? No. My client, Ted. My client, Ted. He had one before he came to me. He's been on 150 dates.

Shana James: Wow.

Connell Barrett: And he said last week he had another date. His first date while working with me. Yeah. And he went for the kiss on the first date for the first time. He's never gone for a first-date kiss before. And this gets in a lot of men's heads as a coach and as a woman. Yeah. What's your take on how to go for the first kiss? Do's and don'ts. What do you do?

Shana James: Mean? That's such a great question. Well. Where do I want to start with that one? I think I would say if I back up. Right. The more you are. At least a little bit sensual. And by that, I don't mean sexual, but just like, you know, in your body, whether it's touching her hand or looking into her eyes or again, it's like not just relating from the intellect. So if the whole time you're experiencing each other, you're on this date and you're, you know, you're feeling like you're emotional, you're laughing, you're present with her, you're touching her a little bit. Then the first kiss isn't going to feel like a whole stop-change start. Right? Like, I remember a guy who I went on a date with years ago and, you know, he was very, very heady. And then at the end, he, like, went in for a kiss and I was like, Oh, it just felt awkward. And then I was like, Oh, I don't get a kiss. And I was like, Oh, that's even worse. Like, that feels just it just did not feel connected. All right. And so.

Connell Barrett: Give me what belongs to me.

Shana James: God. So, you know, I don't have a script or a way that it should go, but I even think that asking or just saying, like, I would love to kiss you or kind of feeling it out. Like even that can be sexy. So, you know, if someone is really scared, I don't. Think that you have to just go for it. It's like you can kind of build that rapport and even ask and say like, Wow, I just imagine kissing you. How do you think that would feel for you? And that can be the start of this sexy conversation. And you know that you can build that together instead of thinking, I had to do it over here on my own.

Connell Barrett: Right. I love it. That's a great answer. I've gotten into it. I love a first kiss that more or less feels like it just happened for both of you. Especially for her. I feel like women tend to like that. It just happens. But that window might not always be there. So I'm okay with my client, With a man looking at his date and the right moment and saying, I want to kiss you. Hmm. In the right way. I think there's something attractive about a man saying what he wants. Do you agree? Is that sexy when said the right way? Yeah. Done the right way.


Shana James: Yeah. And again, like the right way is a little bit of a tricky wording, but when done, present, connected, not feeling like, you know, this is mine and I get to have it. But right, just right in that flow of we're here together and this is amazing and this is delicious and I want you that I think is awesome.

Connell Barrett: And I have to say that I want yeah, yeah you have to want. Yeah. It's also the way you say it, right? Yeah. The way I would say on a first date I want to kiss you is different from the way I would say I want chicken nachos. I hope it's different.

Shana James: Right. So like some chicken nachos I'd like.

Connell Barrett: Although I've had some chicken nachos. I've had some chicken nachos. I'm like, Oh, man, I want those chicken nuggets. So maybe they're similar. But I think it's that to your point, you said something before that I loved about getting away from the intellect and more into a sensual, emotional place. And the words don't matter as much when it's the emotion and the mutual feeling there. And then you could say, Hey, I want to kiss you. And that could be the sexiest thing in the world.

Shana James: So totally. I'm getting turned on just thinking about that.

Connell Barrett: Well, I'm getting excited for Navajos. Just thinking about this. No, but I'm wearing pants that don't fit me, so I can't eat nachos today. Okay. Let's move toward the wrap-up. I ask every guest this and I want to ask you right now, what if you had to put three game-changing dating tips in a time capsule? Yeah, the pantheon of tips and luck changing your love life is about more than just quick tips. But hey, if you had to say these are the three biggest game-changing tips, you've seen success with men. You know, your clients. What are those? Three tips? Fire way.

Shana James: Okay. So the first one is to know yourself and know the role you've played in any unsatisfying moments or dynamics you've had in past relationships. Right. So if you don't know the part you played in it, you're just destined to keep repeating those same things over and over. So really. Consciousness and humility, you know, of. Of knowing yourself. Is one. I'm going to go with all three.

Connell Barrett: Very attractive. Great. Number one, knowing yourself and having some humility and confidence in that. Very attractive. Yes. Number two, please.

Shana James: Number two, I would say that you talked about this, too, like being real is sexy. And yes, it takes some practice. It's funny that it takes practice to be real because so many of us are so practiced in being false or trying to be who we think somebody wants us to be. But I would say being sexy and it's the only way that you get to be to receive love and feel loved for who you are. Because if you're not being real and you have some kind of facade, the love doesn't get in, and then you don't get to experience it. And that just breaks my heart.

Connell Barrett: Well said. Okay, that's number two. Let's finish strong. Game-changing. Two.

Shana James: Three. Okay. I think I gave it before. So the one I had was that shift from, you know, am I good enough or is she going to want me to? Is she a match? Let's see if I can come up with even a different one. Oh, I would say that attraction builds in the space between or in silence. Right. So we talked about this a little bit, but it's not the words, right? It's that underlying I call them the invisible influences often. And so it's like, you know, how you think about women is being conveyed between the kind of music or the space in between how you feel about women is being conveyed in that space, between the words you use, I mean, also the words you use. But so like these underlying invisible forces are happening and that's where that consciousness comes in and supports that because you can be silent with a woman and you can just be curious and absorbed and in awe and wonder, or you can be in silence and you can be like a nervous wreck and wondering if you're saying the right thing or doing the right thing and kind of going through your scripts. And, you know, we both know it's much better if you're silent and you're just in awe and delight and curiosity of a woman.

Connell Barrett: I love that last one as well. One of the things I stumbled on when I was single and dating and I've been on hundreds of dates, was I realized how fun it is to have a staring contest on a first date where you just look at your date and say, Hey, you know what? Let's pause all this. Get to know your stuff. I challenge you to a staring contest. You know, no blinking is allowed, but you're not allowed. No laughing and no looking away. And of course, once you can't laugh, all you want to do is laugh. And you're also staring into this person's eyes. And you now have permission to be silent because it's a staring contest where it makes sense and it just creates a combined connection and also just fun, childlike playfulness, which is nice first date energy, too, to let bubble up. Yeah. And it's also fun to look at a beautiful person's eyes. Yes.

Shana James: It is. And it's funny because I do a lot of eye contact and I even practice it with men, even over Zoom where I'm like, okay, let's just take a minute and just be silent and look at each other. And then you get to see what are the fears that arise. You know, what is getting in the way when you're with a woman whatever is going to happen here. And so getting familiar with that and then recognizing that you don't have to believe it all is important.

Connell Barrett: Amazing. Just in case I forgot to ask you something. Or do you have just a parting thought, word of wisdom? Or is there any question I didn't ask you that you just like to share an answer with our listeners today?

Shana James: God, you asked great questions and I feel like we covered so much. The thing that's coming to mind, I would say. You are very good. I was talking to someone who is considering working with me this morning. He, you know, felt like giving up. And I just don't want men to give up. You know, I. I want men, especially if you've been seen as a nice guy or a friend. Like, I want you to know that it's possible and that it's ultimately, in the end, you're going to get way more of what you want. You're going to have relationships that are deep and, you know, sensual and fascinating and have the potential to last because you already have access to your heart and you know you're going to be opening up likely your the freedom you give yourself and the capacity to feel more and get turned on and be okay with that. But for a lot of men who don't have open hearts and they protect themselves, you know, that it takes longer to crack that. So I think I just don't want you to give up. I want you to know that it's possible for women to be blown away by you and that you get to receive amazing love.

Connell Barrett: It's worth it. You're right. I teach men about the value and the concept of resilience. Yeah, almost all of us have some night of the soul in our dating lives. At least one important thing if you go through a slump. Yeah, I've had months of these nights. And if you're in a slump or if you are just dejected or down, maybe take a break, maybe take a Schlitz, but don't give up on your target.

Shana James: Is in Schmidt's sweat.

Connell Barrett: A Schmidt's a sweat yeah, sweat. A sweat. It's 97 degrees here in New York is probably what you're sweating. Take a sweat, take a break, but don't give up. Don't stay resilient because there's a lot of reward waiting on the other side of smashing through an obstacle. It makes you grow as a man. Yeah. And you will find that right? Woman For you. Yeah. Thank you so much. Shana James is her name. She has a class. It's called How to Be Rejected Proof. Is that right?

Shana James: Yeah. How to be rejection proof. And to that, yeah. Close to that. Three ways to be rejection proof after divorce or breakup, I would say. But, you know, any man can do this. And it's all about having relationships where you have a renewed sense of self-respect and sexual confidence. And so yeah, you can find that one at Shannon James coaching dot com slash rejection dash proof, and I don't know when this is coming out so that was happening at the end of August. And if that's not happening, if you're listening later, you can always go to Shana James coach income slash three ways and that one is a guide about how women lose influence at work and with women and how to gain it back.

Connell Barrett: Fantastic. And if you loved Shana, I'm sure you did. She has her Man Alive podcast and her TEDx talk and just so much great wisdom to share. Shana, thank you so much for being a guest here during launch week. I'm really happy to have you.

Shana James: Thank you so much. This is fun. And I feel again grateful for you being in the world and supporting men to be real and not have to learn lines and games and you know. All that fake stuff is because we want real stuff.

Connell Barrett: Well said. Thank you. All right, let's go. Pop Tarts. All right. All right. Bye, everybody. 

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Dating Tranformation with Connell Barrett

Welcome to the Dating Transformation podcast. I'm coach Connell Barrett, and I help men build confidence + connect with women by being their own authentic selves.

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NYC Dating Coach Connell Barrett

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