The Art of Using Pickup Products Effectively

There are two main areas of pickup:

  1. Practical Experience: Experience gained from going out and building time in the field.
  2. Knowledge: The intellectual understanding of all the concepts of pick up.
This post will focus on the latter.

I believe that the most efficient way to become good at pickup is to develop both areas. However, I think that most people entering the community drop the ball when it comes to the intellectual side of pickup.

The key to building a strong foundation of knowledge in pickup is to TAKE NOTES, and to take lots of them!

If you do not take good notes, then you are relying on your memory to remember a significant amount of information. This is extremely inefficient. You need to not only take notes, but integrate notes from different sources and organize those notes into a coherent whole with a beginning middle and an end, somewhat like the Pickup E-books you may have encountered while in the community.

When I update my PUA Handbook (which is now a massive book of my own notes which is over 150 pages single spaced and efficiently organized), I also footnote all information I am using. That means if I am watching a Pickup 101 product and on the third DVD, and 27 minutes in something is said or demonstrated that I feel I should know and remember, then I incorporate it into my PUA Handbook, along with a footnote after the sentence(s) that detail all that information. Generally it would be in this format: FN # [Video] Pickup 101. Product Name. DVD 3. 27m. In this way I have hundreds upon hundreds (if not over a thousand at this point) of footnotes in my handbook, but this allows me to go back to the source if I am every confused, every receive conflicting information, or if I ever just want to know where I got my information from.

Having an organized notebook allows you to quickly review information rather than trying to figure out where it came from and it also allows you to cut down the information to leave out all the useless filler information in many products. It is imporant to try to also put all the notes you take in your own words, which in itself will increase your ability to retain and understand the material.

That is how I input information into my PUA Handbook, but where are the sources I get my information from, and how do I maximize the potential of each source?

There are three categories of sources that are broken down into subcategories:

  1. Reading

  2. Audio

  3. Video

  1. Newsletters: You can subscribe to newsletters of almost every PUA Guru out there. Some e-mail more frequently than others, and some have better content than others. I have learned a lot from newsletters, but more and more frequently a lot of the newsletters are merely product advertisements. A positive aspect of newsletters is that they generally address one topic, however, do not always expect for the newsletters to discuss that topic in a tremendous amount of detail. One of the major downsides of newsletters is that it can be time consuming to go through. I delete all newsletters that have titles that do not interest me and then go from there. I retain all newsletters that I find relevant both on my computer and on my e-mail account for future reference.

  2. Blogs: Blogs can be great. If you look to the left hand side of this page, I list all blogs I subscribe to. Go to a blog reader, such as from Google and if you subscribe to the blogs you can read all the entries in one interface fairly quickly. I generally go to the Google Reader once a week and skim through all the new posts and star the ones that seem relevant and I want to go back to and discard the rest.

  3. E-Books: Reading E-books can be very time consuming. I have read many great E-books, but I have also read many crappy ones. Even though E-books require lots of time, I do find that they present most pickup systems from beginning to end in a very easily understood format and it gives the reader an opportunity to take wonderful notes and to really expand their knowledge base.

  1. Podcasts: Podcasts generally take the form of an online radio show covering specific topics or the host(s) interview different figures in the community. I find podcasts are great to listen to in the car or during a commute. They require very little note taking. I have found the best way to take notes while driving and listening to a podcast is to leave a notebook in the car and in the notebook I will put the title of the podcast and below it anytime something relevant is said I will write the time that is said on my IPOD. So for instance, in a pickup podcast episode the guest speaker is discussing something I find relevant on opening, I will look at the time code on the IPOD and then mark in my notebook while driving, “26m opening.” When I am in front of my computer I will go back to that time and input any relevant information said into my PUA Handbook. I have found that over time, and after consuming so many community products, I now very infrequently need to take any notes whatsoever when listening to podcasts because they are covering information I have already incorporated into my PUA Handbook and which I am very familiar with. One of the greatest benefits of podcasts is that they allow someone unfamiliar with many of the figures in the community to get to know who is who through different interviews. I think that has been the greatest strength of podcasts.

  2. Products: Products generally have a greater wealth of information than the podcasts do. Products are meant to be sold and they contain much less fluff talk than do the podcasts. It is because of this that I will only listen to the audio products when I am in front of my computer so I can take thorough notes and incorporate all that I learn into my PUA Handbook.

  1. Online (Google, YouTube, etc.): Generally speaking, online videos contain very little practical information. However, every now and then there is an interesting video or videos can be used to see a trailer of an upcoming product. Since very few of the gurus release videos regularly on the video sites, it is actually fairly easy to determine who generally gives worthwhile information and who doesn’t.

  2. Products: I love video products. I do feel that a person should start out by reading at least one E-book to get a good overview and understanding of what is involved in pickup, but video products are a nice break from reading and contain tons of information and have the added benefit of giving you the ability to see certain skills demonstrated.


Chris L

July 3, 2008 at 11:28 PM

However, I think that most people entering the community drop the ball when it comes to the intellectual side of pickup.

I wish it were true. Keyboard Jockey's are very common. I don't think there is even a word for people who go to the field too much and don't read enough forums/posts.

Not that your method isn't good for tracking the stuff, but I don't think a lack of organization is most guys problems.

Off to try and get away from the "intellectual stuff".

Love your stuff. Keep up the good fight


July 4, 2008 at 2:03 AM

Keyboard Jockies, lol, they are nothing more than know-it-alls that really know nothing who troll the forums dispensing advice. There is a difference between fully comprehending what you are doing in field and trying to give advice when you really know little to nothing. They don't have too much knowledge or too much organization, they actually have very little and absolutely no field experience. That is why I spend very little time on the forums.