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REVIEW BY

Diogo P.

You decided to do it? Congratz. I won’t guarantee that you won’t be disappointed because that isn’t my place, but I can say that no one in my class was anywhere close to disappointed. Everyone left somewhere between “my perspective on life has changed a lot” to “holy shit, my perspective on life has changed A LOT”. My advice for you would be: 1. be open-minded 2. trust yourself and 3. give it your all.

FULL REVIEW

LET’S START WITH THE IMPORTANT STUFF: I thought that it was amazing in the moment, and 2 weeks later, my life is on a completely different path than it was at the beginning. It also felt like it made a huge difference to the other people in the program. I couldn’t recommend it more highly. I did have a few minor issues with it though.

Other than that, I’ll answer the questions that I’d recommend my past self to ask.

DO I RECOMMEND IT?
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If you are open-minded about your blind spots (the things you don’t know that you don’t know) and are genuinely committed to self-improvement, I wholeheartedly do, and have to several of my friends. The program is so much more than just pick-up. My best friend’s fiance is even insisting that he do it after I described the changes that I’ve felt.

HOW IS THIS DIFFERENT THAN A 3-DAY?
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First off, I wouldn’t knock my experience on my 3-day bootcamp. It was amazing for me, but it was completely different. From a content level, it’s completely different: the 3-day felt like there was only time for a random grab bag of techniques (not that this was an issue – it was what I needed if I only had a few days of instruction before going out), while the 10-day had a much more core focus on the inner issues: why is this kind of thing hard for some guys and how can they get to point where they can genuinely enjoy it. From a feeling level, the 3-day forced me to face my fears, while the 10-day taught me how to go to the root belief of those fears and change it. From an impact level of life, the 3-day’s was much less impactful: I did the bootcamp, and managed to have a great time with the instructors pushing me to do stuff, but that was just not sustainable for me. The impact of the 10-day was huge: not only did it show me that this can be fun, it also showed me many other aspects of myself to work out.

ARE THE INSTRUCTORS CLOWNS?
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They’re surprisingly awesome. They knew their shit, and much more importantly, were genuinely concerned for us as people and it showed. This showed through many many aspects throughout the 10 days – we went through a lot and their support through some of it was crucial. I’d actually think that their level of genuine care was much more important than any of the material or activities, because the care massively amplified the effectiveness of those activities. There were parts that requires some serious levels of vulnerability – everyone talked about some VERY VERY hard but important things to talk about – and I don’t think we could have gotten there without the instructors just setting the context for that to happen.

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE MATERIAL?
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Honestly, there was less of it than I had originally hoped. I’m relatively inexperienced with pick-up, and I guess I had hoped for something extremely comprehensive. This wasn’t it, and majority of the time was spent on inner issues, which I’m more than happy with. Time was just limited, and I both understand and support the trade-off made.

WILL I GO OUT 47 TIMES IN THE 10 DAYS?
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No. This was another area which was less than expected, but similar to above, I definitely understand the time was limited. Every day and night was used to great effect, and some of the other participants were down to go out a little extra too, which was quite excellent and great time to practice just enjoying the process.

ENJOYING THE PROCESS?
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Yes, this was one of the biggest things to click for me. Going out went from this scary experience that I’d have to summon all my willpower to do (in theory – in practice I never did it) to something I looked forward to doing, because with the right mindset, it was just fun. I wasn’t the only one sad when the bars closed down, and it felt like everyone had the energy to just keep going. Something that the instructors stressed, which I 100% agree with, is (roughly paraphrased) that the only way to get good at this is to keep going and the only way to keep going is to enjoy it.

LASTING CHANGE? COLOR ME SKEPTICAL
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To be honest, I’m still skeptical, as we all should be. Getting people to change is infamously hard, and it’s still a little bit early to say, but it genuinely feels like it. There have been some mindset shifts that I’ve gone through already that definitely will last (like above about enjoying the process). Life has been so different the last 2 weeks as a direct effect of the program: I’ve been able to do things I could never do and see myself in ways that I never have, and as a result of that, I’ve found so many blind spots in the way I live my life that I’m so excited.

TOP 3 FAVORITE THINGS
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Favorite thing number 1: Mental tools. There was so much of a focus on this for very good reason. It’s a skillset not commonly taught, and extremely relevant. We learned ways of interacting with the voice in our heads that like to panic and get us into a state of fear. By digging deep into our mind’s needs, we learned to work with those primal desires instead of fighting them. This alone has sent me on a path of self-discovery.

Favorite thing number 2: Connection with both other participants and instructors. Shit got deep and it was beautiful. You start to see a little bit of yourself in everyone, and that just makes it so that you want to help everyone like you’d help yourself, and also feel comfortable asking people much further along than yourself for advice (because you can see that they’ve faced and surpassed similar struggles to yourself).

Favorite thing number 3: The community. These guys are part of a group of people devoting their lives to self-development, and are constantly changing and evolving to the best knowledge they have possible, and getting to know people like that, in my opinion, is worth the cost of the program on it’s own. This is a life-long journey for all of us, and we’re going to keep learning more about how to live. It’s clearly better to do it with like-minded individuals than alone.

LEAST FAVORITE THINGS
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Ok, I can’t ruin the surprise, but there was stuff that falls under the category of type 2 fun (miserable while it’s happening, but fun in retrospect). I’ll be vague and mysterious about it, but I’ll say that there are some parts of it that were straight up uncomfortable, but amazing in hindsight. I see it as more evidence that they genuinely want to help us instead of just putting us through some feel-good program that makes us think all our problems are solved without actually solving them.

I’M KIND OF EMBARASSED TO ASK THIS, BUT WHO IS STERLING?
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You know, it was never explicitly addressed. I think it was Andrew.

COOL, WHAT’S YOUR CODENAME?
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I didn’t get one. :'(

WHAT ABOUT THE COST?!?!
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It can definitely cost a significant amount for some people. Whether or not it’s worth it for you really depends on your financial situation. Despite the cost, I consider it one of my better investments (including compared to the 3-day, which I thought was very beneficial in a very different way). The larger cost to me seems like now that my mind has been opened to all of these new things, I’m going to be exploring a lot more different aspects of my own mind.

HOOK A BROTHER UP WITH ADVICE
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You decided to do it? Congratz. I won’t guarantee that you won’t be disappointed because that isn’t my place, but I can say that no one in my class was anywhere close to disappointed. Everyone left somewhere between “my perspective on life has changed a lot” to “holy shit, my perspective on life has changed A LOT”. My advice for you would be: 1. be open-minded 2. trust yourself and 3. give it your all.

WHAT’S LIFE LIKE ON THE OTHER SIDE?
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Just ask the chicken. For real though, their emphasis on lasting change and the real work happening in the next 8 months definitely resonated with me. I feel more in touch with my masculinity, and I’m more excited than ever to go out (and have been, while having a great time). Pick-up doesn’t feel weird/sleezy to me at all anymore. In fact, I have a healthier views on sex/relationships than I ever have. Like I said, it’s too early to say how good the path I’m on is, but it feels awesome, powerful, and full of life.

TL;DR
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– I highly recommend it.
– 3- vs 10-day: the 3-day forced me to face my fears, while the 10-day taught me how to go to the root belief of those fears and change it.
– The instructors are genuinely nice people.
– Not as much pick-up material and going out as I had hoped, but I understand and support the trade-off.
– It’s somewhat early to claim the change is lasting, but 2 weeks after, all evidence points to it.
– No cool codename.
– If you do it, be open-minded, trust yourself, and give it your all.
– Things are going pretty great thanks to it.