Steve Santagati Interview – A True Bad Boy Explains How Men Think, Date and Mate
“A True Bad Boy Explains How Men Think, Date and Mate”
Jasbina Ahluwalia interviews Steve Santagati
Steve Santagati is the NY Times bestselling Author of The Manual: A True Bad Boy Explains How Men Think, Date and Mate and What Women Can Do to Come Out on Top.
He embodies a rare combination of television savvy and real-life relationship experience. Television producers, newspapers and magazines gravitate toward his no nonsense approach to relationship advice.
He has frequently appeared on The Today Show, OPRAH, Dr. Phil, Rachael Ray, Tyra, NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX, CNN, 20/20, MTV and VH1.
His on-camera television experience also extends to a long history of appearing in countless TV commercials and hosting numerous shows including weekend anchor/producer on Extra, reporter on American Journal, and host of Bachelorettes in Alaska, Man vs. Beast, World Gone Wild, Drive Shaft on Fox and many others.
Steve was an editor-at-large for Men’s Journal magazine and a contributor to Jane magazine.
(1:03): Hello everyone and welcome to Intersections Match’s Talk Radio, a monthly holistic lifestyle show focused on the continual evolution into the best versions of our authentic selves. We and our guests discuss relationships and health and wellness, each of which contributes to meaningful and fulfilling lives.
This is Jasbina, your host. I’m a former practicing lawyer and the Founder of Intersections Match, the only elite national personalized matchmaking company focused on singles of South Asian descent nationwide in the US.
I’m very excited to welcome Steve Santagati, author of The Manual: A True Bad Boy Explains How Men Think, Date and Mate and What Women Can Do to Come Out on Top.
Steve has appeared as a relationship expert on Today, Racheal Ray, Fox News, CNBC, VH1, The View and the Tyra Banks Show. He’s been a contributor to Men’s Journal and Jane and has written or been quoted in numerous magazine and newspaper articles on dating and relationships. Welcome, Steve.
(2:17): Hi. Thank you very much for having me.
(2:19): It’s a pleasure to have you on. As a professional dating coach and matchmaker, I’m fascinated by insights and perspectives regarding male and female dynamics.
I’ve really enjoyed reading your book and would love to explore some of the insights shared in your book. What led you to write this book in the first place?
(2:39): I had always been very private. I never kissed and told. I kept my head down. Ninety percent of my friends were women over the years. Then I started paying attention to relationship experts and psychologists. I thought, “They don’t really know what’s going on out there.” This is not all of them. I’m speaking in general. Some of them do, of course. For the most part, you either live it or you read about it. People who live it have nuances that other people don’t have. They would bash guys on television about being this, that or the other thing. I said, “I’m going to write a book.
I’m going to tell them what’s really going on out there and how guys really think, especially in terms of bad boys.” Every time I looked at relationship advice articles, whether it was in Cosmo or on The Today Show or in romantic comedies, whenever they described a guy like me, the closest they got was this term “bad boy.” More specifically, the bad boy is a guy who is unapologetically male. My definition of a bad boy is a good guy.
I define it very specifically as any guy who openly flouts convention, institutions, government, society, religion and parents in an effort to remain the free person he was born to be. A bad boy is responsible, brave, moral, good-hearted but happily mischievous. It’s a blast. Imagine if you didn’t listen to what everyone told you that life had to be.
I’m not talking about stealing and being lascivious, pernicious or mean. I’m talking about living free. Your parents, institutions and everyone tell you that you have to get married. You have to act this way. You have to do this or you’re not good. Well, I’m happy being bad if that’s the way they define it. It’s very free. It’s a very happy way of existence.
(04:44): I love how you define that. Tell me how a bad boy is different from a player. I know you talk about that in your book. I think it’s an important distinction. Tell us about that.
(4:56): A player has sex on a woman. A bad boy has sex with a woman. A bad boy loves women. Players are acting on fear. They’re afraid that they’re not going to be smart enough, good looking enough, popular enough or young enough. They don’t care about women. All you are is a number. All you are is a way to alleviate and feed their fear. They are afraid that they are not powerful.
Bad boys don’t need to show how powerful they are to anyone. They just are. It’s like a lion doesn’t wake up in the morning and say, “Hey, look at me. I’m a lion.” He just is. It’s the way he walks, his eye contact and his presence. That is enough.
(5:48): It’s a way of being and it’s enough. A player doesn’t feel enough so his actions reflect that.
(5:54): That’s right.
(5:56): Your book does a great job of taking the readers inside the male mind. One of the many things you share is about how to leverage the way men think. You say, “Bait us with your bodies and keep us with your brain.” Tell our listeners about that.
(6:16): For example, last night I was watching one of the final episodes of Game of Thrones. It’s very crude but it’s very honest. We never talk about this stuff in society because it’s a big no-no. The queen said, “Men have a sword. They fight and have fear. But women have one of the most powerful things and it’s right between your legs.” She said this. Honestly, it’s a very crude expression.
The fact of the matter is that women have incredible sensual and sexual power. Plus, you have what’s called intuition, and you don’t use it. My job as a man, if I want to control the relationship, if I want to control how you think and feel, my job is to get you to doubt yourself, the femininity that you were born with, that power, that sexuality. Fortunately, time is changing.
Now, there are smart PhDs who know how to show cleavage. There are women who are CEOs of companies that are not only beautiful and sexy but they are extremely successful. You can, in fact, have it all. That’s what I want. I want women to be strong, proactive and be true to who they are, not care and not worry about or take personally what other people say about them. Just go out there and live your life. It’s happening fast. It’s happening now. Have fun.
(7:54): You talk about being proactive in relationships. I’m a big fan about that. I found it interesting that you mention the grocery store. You mention top five places for guys to meet women. Tell us about that.
(8:20): The grocery store is a very simple way for you to think about the dating world. There are two things happening right now, one of which I call techno-temptation. That is social media and dating websites that lead us to be tempted to think that we can have relationships with people overseas, across borders or great distances. It’s called techno-temptation.
The fact of the matter is, you need to live in close proximity to someone to make it happen. When you go to the grocery store, what I’m really saying is that you need to take advantage of everyday situations that we are constantly in. If you act as a woman in such a way and think, “I will get dressed up to go on a date. I will get dressed up when I go to a party or restaurant,” you’re missing the point.
You want to monetize your sexuality. You want to monetize, or take advantage of, your looks in opportunities to meet great people every day, every time you step out of your apartment, house, cottage or condo. We’re always looking. I can be in the drive-thru line. I can be in the grocery store or the hardware store.
I also tell women about something I call hunting at the zoo. You want to put yourself in the position where you have the best chance for success. Go to where the boys are. If I want to meet a girl, where are they? You’re in shoe stores. You’re in lingerie shops. You’re in the carbohydrate section of the grocery store.
(10:14): You want to go to a target-rich environment. You have a lot of great concepts here. There is another one that I want you to speak to. It is the concept of dating on the clock. What is that?
(10:35): I talk about several aspects of that. There is one thing that I want to note. My whole website, Bad Boys Finish First, is a place where I have people come so that they can not only give relationship advice, but now people can come onto my website and be relationship experts themselves. They can share stories. They can also start to understand the way of life.
This is dating on the clock. When you meet someone, it’s like someone clicks a timer. The decisions you make over the next few days, specifically in the first three months, will lay the foundation for that relationship. I don’t care if you’ve been married for 20 years. I don’t care if you’ve been dating for three years.
In the first year of that relationship, all boundaries are set. That’s what I’m an expert at. I would humbly say that. I have a lot to learn. Dating on the clock is, I can look at a girl and, in the first few weeks of being with her, I know how long the relationship is going to last. It’s based on her confidence.
Here is the point. People make grave errors when they make decisions based on fear. There is so much fear in our world. We are encouraged by the media, institutions, government and the news to be afraid. I’m saying not to be afraid. I wrote a new book called The Code of Honor, which is like the Ten Commandments for bad boys and girls.
I say that a bad girl will have fear in her life, but fear will never have her. When you’re dating on the clock, women who are afraid, anxious or have an agenda are making decisions based on fear. That will never lead to anything positive.
(12:51): Your book discusses the concept of an anti-date as an antidote to everything that’s wrong with first dates. It also discusses tips for how a woman can conduct herself during this anti-date. Please share the anti-date with our listeners.
(13:25): Listeners, everything that I talk about is not conceptual. If you’ve seen the success of the paleo diet, my advice is based on paleo information. It’s the way that human beings have always mated and responded to each other. At the end of the day, we are still animals. We still have those certain traits.
What is the anti-date? Do you think that cavemen asked a girl out? Do you think that 200 years ago, a man asked a girl out on a date? There was a courting process defined by institutions, religion and government. In our most primal urge and simplistic state, we spend time with one another. We find out, “Do I like her? Does she like me? Am I physically attracted to her?
Is she physically attracted to me? Do we laugh together? Do I feel a sense of companionship when I’m with her?” The anti-date is my solution to the notions of fear and anxiety that have been placed on the dating world. How many dates do you get? When was the last time you were on a date? I have to wear this on a date. I have to act like this on a date.
If that’s all the information that is coming in at you and inadvertently making you fearful, nervous or anxious, I say to remove that. Don’t go on dates. Just go and spend time with this guy. Just go and spend time with this girl. I don’t go on dates but I have plenty of women and plenty of situations where I get to know people. It’s fantastic. It takes all the pressure off.
(15:25): In your book, you go into more detail. I love the way of being that you describe with the anti-date. Your book mentions four dooming behaviors. I’d like for you to share one with our listeners. They are dooming behaviors that set off alarm bells in a guy’s head.
(16:17): The number one thing that sets an alarm bell off in a guy’s head is when a woman sits down with you and she starts interviewing you. Many guys might not understand why it’s affecting them the way that it is. Truth be told, if a woman is interviewing you, we feel like you’re coming to the situation and saying, “What can you give me, Steve?”
It’s not, “What can I bring to the relationship” or “How can we make this happen?” It’s, “What can you do for me? I have a very specific agenda. If you’re not going to fulfill that agenda, I don’t need you for anything.” I just talked about this with some close friends. A relationship is like a business transaction. No one wants to go into a business transaction and feel like they’re being molested, manipulated or ripped off. In a perfect business relationship, I’m giving you something and you’re giving me something in return. We’re both mutually benefiting from the situation.
When a girl comes in, sits down and starts interviewing me, I can see it. She’s looking for the money. She wants to know about your car. She wants to know your lifestyle. She’s thinking about marriage. Hold on, honey. I have ideas, dreams and goals, too. Maybe we can come to some sort of balance. We’re never going to come to balance if you’re coming to the situation and saying, “Hey, Steve. What can you do for me?” I know what I have to bring to the table.
I just came up with something for a TV show that’s going out. This will be up on my website soon. It’s called a dating score. Your dating score is just like your credit score. You’re rated on a scale from 100 to 800, obviously with 800 being perfect. There are very few people out there who are 800s. Women are always saying to me, “I want a guy to love me for my inside, for who I am.”
Well, who the hell are you? Do you play sports? What kind of shape are you in? Are you educated? Do you read books? Do you have hobbies? Can you cook? Are you great in bed? Are you a good kisser? How old are you? All of these things go into your score. I have a statistical formula that I’m using so that people get an accurate ballpark.
Whenever you do a quiz or any kind of scoring system, especially credit scores, they’re not completely accurate. My credit score is horrible and I’m the best person you’d ever want to lend money to. I pay in full every month. You get my point.
You want to know what your value is. You don’t want to go out there blind. People either undervalue themselves or overvalue themselves. That’s why I did the dating score. It has a lot to do with turn-offs in the beginning of a relationship.
(19:32): You said that will be available on your website. Mention your website to our listeners one more time.
(19:41): I love having you come and visit. The best way to get a hold of me is by going to BadBoysFinishFirst.com. You can come say hi at Steve Santagati on Facebook or Twitter. We have a lot of fun on Facebook. It’s much timelier. I update it every day. I go on there and say hi to people. We’ll have discussions.
(20:08): I really appreciate you sharing your insights with us, Steve. They’ve been really interesting. Is there any last thought or take-home message that you’d like to leave our listeners with?
(20:17): Your biggest challenge in life is going to be waking up every single morning and working on your self-esteem. If I can tell you anything, you were born free on this planet. Listen to your heart and your instincts. Do not follow institutions, government, religion or anyone unless something that they say makes sense to you.
Fear is the culprit. Fear is what’s inside of everyone. If you can control that and come to grips with that, you will have the happiest, freest life ever. That’s all I want for you.
(20:54): I love that. That is a really empowering way to end. Thank you for joining us today, Steve. It’s been a real pleasure.
In case you joined us late or would like to share this show with people in your life, I’d like to remind you that today’s radio show will be archived and available as a podcast on Intersections Match’s website, which is www.IntersectionsMatch.com. I can be reached at email@example.com. I appreciate you hanging out with us. Do email me with topics you’d like discussed in future shows. Make sure to join us for next month’s show. Take care, everyone.
What do you think?
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