Great question, and a simple answer you probably don’t want to hear.
If you get a “No”, whether that be a verbalised answer, or a non-verbal behaviour indicating a “No”, you should move on.
In order to do this, you need to develop two skill sets:
- Understand when you are getting a “No”.
- Deal with the rejection appropriately.
Understand when you are getting a “No”
Your ego is a tricky thing. Sometimes it will convince you things are terrible when they aren’t, other times it will make you think things are going extremely well when they aren’t.
1. Analyse the situation objectively
If you ask her out and she says “No”, you need to assess the situation free from the interruptions of your ego. Analyse any contact with the woman objectively, and don’t be blinded by your emotions or feelings.
- Be factual. Take time to go over the interactions with the other person in your mind. Stick to facts where you can, although you will have to use your own interpretation of body language in some instances. Re-read text messages and recognise sentiment is not always obvious in the written word.
- Talk it through. Talk the situation through with friend who is good at being objective.
- Remain calm. Don’t be pulled into rash action you may regret later.
2. Determine the type of “No”
A “No” can either be hard or soft.
- Hard No. A Hard No is definitive. It means she does not want to go out with you.
- Soft No. Less concrete and subject to change. She doesn’t want to go out with your right now, but there is potential in the future. The future may be tomorrow, or it may be in a years time.
You must determine what type of “No” you are being given when you ask a woman out.
Note: These two definitions are also subjective. Some Hard Nos are obvious, whilst others border on Soft Nos. If you are on the fence, save yourself the emotional heartache and classify it as a Hard No.
Examples of Hard Nos
- You approach a woman on the street, and after ten minutes of talking ask for her number. She politely declines and walks off.
- You often have drinks with a female colleague after work. One day you start flirting with her, and notice her body language closes off, and she doesn’t respond positively. She says you are making feel uncomfortable.
- You text a woman after a first date to suggest a second and she doesn’t respond. You text her again a few days later, and still receive no response.
You might get a Hard No because:
- She had a boyfriend
- She doesn’t find you attractive
- She likes you as a friend and nothing more
- She is dating someone
- She is not looking for a boyfriend or lover at the moment
Examples of Soft Nos
- You talk to a woman for an hour at a party. She touches you on the arm a couple of times and laughs at your jokes. You ask her if she wants a drink sometime and she smiles and says “No thanks”.
You might get a Soft No because:
- She was with her friends and wanted to maintain her social standing
- She is already dating someone but may want to see you if it ends
- You asked in a poor way
- She was on the fence about you, and she saw you more as a friend rather than Lover or Provider.
- You asked her out on a specific day and she was busy
- She was in the middle of something when you asked her
- She was just having a bad day and experiencing negative emotions
- She’s playing hard to get and she wants to be pursued
3. Determine if she’s worth it
After classifying the response, and it turns out to be a Soft No, you need to do decide if the woman is is worth pursuing.
Again, I implore you to set aside as much of your ego as possible and engage your logical brain. Ask yourself the following questions, and answer honestly.
- What is it about this women that you really like?
- What are you trying to achieve by asking her out?
We tend to get wrapped up in the moment, or ‘hung up’ on a single person, even when our friends are telling us they are no good for us.
Do you know this woman well, or are you projecting your fantasies on to her? What does she have another women does not? Are you just trying to ‘get her’ to validate yourself, and give your self-worth a boost?
None of these are good reasons to continue pursuing her. I would encourage you to re-classify her as a Hard No, and move on. Soft Nos are rare!
4. Deal with a Soft No
You should rarely get to this step. If you are here, you believe she is interested but has given you a Soft No.
There is potential for much heartache and wasted time in this category, so I encourage you to look again at step 3, just to make sure you really want to pursue this.
If she is, then:
- Accept it may take time. You may have to wait for her to be ready. I strongly encourage you to continue dating other women until this happens, rather than wallowing in your own pain. I also encourage you to set a time limit, after which you are no longer prepared to wait for her. It may be a week or a year. It’s up to you to do what feels right. But, if you are thinking in terms of years, I urge you to once again examine your beliefs about yourself and why the woman is so special to you.
- Accept it may turn into a Hard No. Despite your patience, she may never be ready, or you may have misclassified her response. You may never get her.
Deal with the rejection appropriately
Once you get a Hard No response from her, it’s time to deal with the rejection in an adult way. A way that won’t damage your psyche moving forward.
1. Let her go
Men often get attached and needy, rather than accepting and moving on. You must let her go, otherwise you will become more obsessive, and likely damage yourself emotionally.
- Acknowledge you didn’t really know her. Most likely you only met this woman briefly, and were basing your desire to date her on looks, or first impressions. Nothing wrong with that, but understand this doesn’t mean it would have blossomed into an amazing relationship. In reality, you barely knew her.
- Don’t get weird. Do not become a stalker. Do not attempt to add her on all social media channels in the hope she will change her mind. Do not text and call her repeatedly. This never works and will not make her attracted to you.
- Delete her number. Remove her from your address book, otherwise it will serve as a constant reminder of “the one that got away”.
2. Analyse what went wrong
It’s time to analyse what went wrong. Reading the articles on this website should help you with that.
- If you asked her out via text, make sure you followed the process outlined here?
- If you asked her out in person, did you have a good level of rapport?
- If you went on a first date but she didn’t want a second, did you prepare for the date correctly, follow the first date blueprint?
Also understand you may not have done anything wrong, it just wasn’t meant to be.
3. Record the event as a positive one
You need to ensure the “No” response does not affect your future attempts to date or build a relationship, and also ensure it doesn’t dent your confidence or self-belief.
Do this by:
- Reframe the event. View it as a learning experience and one you can improve from, not as a negative memory to compound your belief you are unattractive and hopeless with women.
- Play the numbers game. Understand dating is a numbers game, and you will get rejected far more than you get accepted. That’s OK. It happens to all of us.
4. Resume dating
Get back on the horse. Immediately resume your process of finding and asking dates out. Because you will find someone just as amazing who says “Hell yeah!” rather than “No”.
You will find someone better suited to you, and someone who you will have amazing dates with. Cement this belief into your brain.