The Art of Manliness Podcast Episode #21: No More Mr. Nice Guy with Dr. Robert Glover

by Brett on April 26, 2010 · 19 comments

in Podcast

We’ve all heard the phrase “Nice guys finish last,” right? Why is that? Why do the men whose female friends tell them they’re a great catch never have a date come Friday night? Why does the guy who never rocks the boat at work get passed over for the promotion? To answer these questions, we talked to Dr. Robert Glover, author of the book No More Mr. Nice Guy: A Proven Plan For Getting What You Want In Love, Sex, and Life.

We discuss the attributes of these Nice Guys, why there’s been a proliferation of Nice Guys during the past 30 years, and what men can do to beat the Nice Guy Syndrome and get more out of life.

For more info about Dr. Glover’s book and his work, check out

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

1 David @ Super Awesome Dating April 26, 2010 at 9:58 pm

Loved this, I wrote about this a few months ago on my site why you have to kill the mr nice guy inside you if you ever want to attract the right kind of woman. I found the dishonest nature of nice guys not being nice due to a passive aggressiveness a very clever insight. Good interview Brett. -David

2 Bob B April 26, 2010 at 10:05 pm

Very Good Podcast. I have this problem, as do most others. Its a complex issue that has no clear solution, and I think society will continue largely this way.

3 Chris Mower April 26, 2010 at 11:36 pm

This was a great podcast. Thanks for sharing. I think it’s still possible to be ‘a nice guy’ without being a push over or without always putting yourself last. I think it takes learning to be sincere and genuine with others, but understanding that you can’t wait for things to happen for you.

4 Steve April 27, 2010 at 2:17 am

Without having heard the podcast, I can already tell you that his book helped me a lot.

This is one of the few self-help books that really worked for me, although it is probably time for me to read it again in order to refresh the lessons.

5 Richard | April 27, 2010 at 3:34 am

This is a principle that many men need to learn to follow. The truly honorable man may appear an idiot at first as he breaks societies regulations but he speaks to peoples hearts, not their minds and people will eventually love him.

6 The Renaissance Wife April 27, 2010 at 7:46 am

Women (most of us, anyway) are drawn to men who are in control – of themselves and their surroundings. That’s just the way we are wired, and makes perfect sense if you look at human evolution. A strong man was vital for the survival of his woman and their children.

We may not be threatened by saber-toothed cats and mammoths anymore nowadays, but subconsciously, we still long for the man who makes us feel safe and protected. It’s hardwired in our genome.

That being said, it’s essential to understand that you don’t need to be an asshole to attract women. We all know that jerks can get a lot of women, but take a closer look: These guys are not truely self-confident, they are not truely in control of themselves or their surroundings – they just project an image of confidence by bossing people around and trying to control everyone. Deep down they are frightened little boys, scared that someone will find them out. They’re a fraud. And that’s why their “bravado” (as the author put it) only works on women who are broken themselves. A grown woman wil see right through this masquerade and will never permit to be treated disrespectfully. The jerk persona is as loaded with anxiety from having to put up an act 24/7 as any nice guy is.

That’s why the jerk has no more chance to attract a good woman than the nice guy. The jerk is just lucky to have so many insecure women at his disposal who fall for his mind games, but he will never be able to enter a loving, long-term relationship with a good woman either, because such a relationship is based on mutual respect, honesty and trust. So if you’re a nice guy trying to empower yourself, this is the wrong role model!

Like I said in the beginning, grown men are truely in control. First and foremost this means to be in control of yourself and knowing yourself. What are your strengths and weaknesses? What are your fears and dreams? What do you want? What are your principles and core values? In my experience most people don’t know the answers to these questions. If you do, and if you live by them, everything will fall into place. You will project an aura of natural authority, and people will bend to your will without the need of force or threats. Simply because they have faith in you and trust you to be able to handle yourself. Success in your career is inevitable with this attitude. Women, too, will see you in a different light, and finding the One is just a matter of time.

Men often have warped perceptions of what women want. We are no mythical supernatural beings. Yes, we may think and communicate differently, but our goals and dreams are not that different from yours. Put yourself in our shoes.

Would you want a doormat as a partner? Someone you can order around? Is there anything less challenging and more boring than this? How can you respect such a person, and how can you genuinely love someone you don’t respect? So why should we be interested in Mr nice guy?

Would you want a tyrant as a partner? Someone who orders you around? Someone who is a control freak? Someone who treats you disrespectful and puts you down to lift himself up? So why should be be interested in the jerk?

Grown women like challenges as much as grown men. We want to feel safe in a relationship, but we don’t want a play it safe relationship. Sometimes we want to be chased, sometimes we are the ones who want to chase. At times we want to lead, but never all the time. We are not babysitters in our relationships. We want men who are able to say No if they disagree and who are not afraid to speak their mind.

When I think of my husband and I, I strongly believe in growing old together. Have you ever noticed why it’s called *growing* old together instead of just *getting* old together? Because both partners grow in a healthy relationship. You become stronger, wiser, more experienced, more self-confident and comfortable in your skin, if you have someone who challenges you, who supports and inspires you.

But you can only grow if you truely know yourself and what you want. If not, you remain stuck in your personal hell of a status quo, you will never leave your comfort zone and never reach your full potential. That is a sad, sad waste of precious lifetime. So if you are a Mr nice guy, you owe it to yourself to break out of this vicious circle. Every day you wait to make a change is a day you will never get back again.

William Henley summed this up in his famous poem “Invictus”:

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

Have a great day, Gentlemen.


7 Seth April 27, 2010 at 10:07 am

I have an idea. How about being genuinely nice instead of doing it to “get a date on Friday night”?

8 Steve April 27, 2010 at 10:51 am


There’s a sharp distinction between being genuinely nice, and being the above mentioned “nice guy”.

You can be a nice all you want, but you shouldn’t betray your principles or your personality. As I understand it, it is about self respect and the courage to overcome your fears.
The “nice guy” gets shoved around by people because he is afraid to say “no”, for whatever reasons. He tries to make it right for everybody, and that’s why he appears to be nice on the inside. But on the inside the anger builds up in him, and his behavior will grow more and more passive aggressive, because he now he let’s people cross his borders, but is afraid to stop them. This aggression will probably show in inappropriate ways, like having an affair or withdrawing his affection.

For me, this means I can be nice as much as I like, as long as it is on my own terms. That you become more attractive to women is, in my opinion, just a side effect because you are happier with yourself, more content with life and more self assured.

9 Joe A. April 27, 2010 at 11:59 am

Good Podcast. A lot of what is discussed, however, is rooted in the much bigger issue of co-dependency, which actually occurs in both men and women. This is nothing exclusive to men. The willingness for a person to allow another to cross his (or her) personal boundaries for the purpose of needing to be validated (by pleasing others for example), can occur irrespective of sex. What a person gives up by engaging in this potentially destructive behavior is one’s self-worth, self identity, integrity,and the reality of one’s truth: “how empty of me to be so full of you.” Another motto that I live by is, “What you think of me is none of my business!”

10 Steve April 27, 2010 at 12:43 pm

Really enjoyed the podcast. I definitely fall into the nice guy trap. I’m intrigued enough to pick up Dr. Glover’s book.

11 Ahmed April 27, 2010 at 1:14 pm

Good to see you back Brett, and on form too with this great podcast. I’ve only been a frequenter of the site for about a month now, but already no other site comes close. I look forward to becoming a better man with the support of the work that yourself and Kate do. Thank you so much for pursuing such a great idea.

Anna-Sophia: Truly wonderful comment. It went hand-in-hand with the podcast and the poem at the end was the icing on the cake.


12 Cody Gal April 27, 2010 at 1:29 pm

Renaissance Wife is spot-on. Great podcast, article and as always, I enjoy the comments. Special kudos to RW for articulating my shared beliefs and insights as a woman.

13 kevinheadford April 27, 2010 at 2:23 pm

Victimpuke….I’m gonna use this. also, I’m installing a victimpuke relief valve…i will paint it grey.Thankyou.

14 George April 27, 2010 at 3:03 pm

Hey Brett, is it normal that I can hear the entire podcast? Every time I try to listen to it, it ends at around 8 mins or so.

15 Gerald April 27, 2010 at 3:40 pm

Really enjoyed this, it took me a good portion of my life to figure this out myself, I think I’ve been able to accomplish a healthy balance between the two personality types he talks about!

Thanks for this!

16 James April 29, 2010 at 12:13 pm

After my fiancée left me and “all I did was be nice to her”, I realized that I was a Nice Guy. I’ve bought this book and I’m on the road to recovery.

Thanks, Dr. Glover.

17 Mike April 30, 2010 at 7:03 am

I hope every man in Northern California listens to this.. the West Coast seems a lot more prone to this than Texas where I live and was raised.. the cultural difference can be frustrating having to deal with in one’s work in high tech. Do what you think is right, say what you mean and mean what you say, is a very Texan approach to life.

18 Kash May 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm

Great podcast! I definetely suffer from the ‘nice guy’ syndrome in a lot areas in my life, especially my relationship. I’m what you say the ‘people pleaser’. After listening to this, I immediately ordered Dr Glovers book.

Thanks Brett for an awesome site to talk about what’s really important to men – Keep it up!

19 Steven May 4, 2010 at 5:15 pm

Men need to be assertive. However, I take umbrage whenever people suggest that men need to give up the “nice guy” image.

I’m sorry, but I disagree. What’s wrong with being nice?

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