How To Soft Next: Step-By-Step
My flowchart has sparked a discussion about soft nexting, both on how to do it, and if to do it. Soft nexting is a big topic so I will only summarize here, but I will try to cover all the areas guys ask the most questions about.
I have made this post in the poly forum primarily because guys in monogamous relationships are going to find soft nexting very difficult emotionally, if not impossible. I rarely expect a guy in a monogamous relationship to actually soft next his gal. This is because of the neediness, oneitis, and scarcity frame the system of monogamy tends to create. Threaten a soft next, perhaps, but not actually do it. That being said, soft nexting can and should be done in monogamous relationships. It will help immensely.
One last point before I get into the specifics. Soft nexting is impossible if you live with a woman. That’s right. It’s impossible. Even if the relationship is a poly one, it will be impossible to properly execute a soft next if you both live full-time in the same home. (I have addressed complicated workarounds elsewhere, when I talk about the various types of live-in OLTRs.) Yeah, you could leave and get a hotel room for a night or two, but that’s not a soft next, that's just pouting. She’s knows you’ll have to come back, thus the removal of attention is not as powerful. This is why if you live with a woman you’re just going to have to put up with more drama than normal, even if the relationship is an OLTR. (Notice I have not moved in with a woman yet, even though it’s been almost six years since my divorce. This is the reason.)
Soft nexts work because it is removal of attention. Women crave attention from you more than anything else. Yelling at them, arguing with them, threatening them is all ATTENTION, thus these things will do very little to actually improve her behavior. Worse, these things usually just encourage a woman to give you even more drama. Soft nexting them is removing their attention, which is very powerful.
Okay, here’s how you soft next:
1. As soon as she starts giving you drama, give her about 20 to 30 seconds to say what’s bothering her. After that, if she keeps giving you drama (yelling, complaining, crying, refusing sex, demanding, whatever), immediately execute the soft next. Do this IMMEDIATELY. Do not argue with her for 20 minutes then soft next. No, no, no. A soft next must be done immediately or else it just looks like you’re pouting because you “didn’t get your way”.
2. STAY CALM. DON'T GET MAD. SAY NOTHING. DON’T TALK. SHUT UP.
3. Simply get up, grab your coat, walk out, get in your car, and drive away. If she screams something like "Where are you going?" or "Don't walk away from me!" or "If you walk out that door don't ever call me ever again!", JUST IGNORE HER and LEAVE. BE A MAN AND CONTROL YOURSELF.
4. As you’re driving away, turn off your cell phone so she can’t call or text you. Because believe me, she will.
5. If you’re at a location where she doesn't have her own car, grab your keys and calmly say "let's go". Then drive her directly to her home, drop her off, and leave. If it's a more minor offense, or a first offense, I might say something like "would you like to go home?" That either shuts her up, in which case I'll relent, or she'll continue the drama or answer "yes", in which case we get into my car and I drive her home.
6. While you drive her home, DON’T TALK TO HER. Turn the car radio to your favorite station and listen to music during the drive. If she really pesters you, just calmly answer, “I’m not discussing this.”
7. I’ll say it again. DON’T TALK. DON’T ARGUE. DON’T GET MAD. DON’T EXPLAIN YOUR ACTIONS. With some of you more emotional or talkative guys, the urge to yell back at her or defend yourself is going to be overwhelming. Fight it. Be a man, and stay the course.
8. Once you’re gone from her, do not communicate with her in any way for 3 to 7 days (depending on the severity of the drama she gave you). If she contacts you, calls you, emails you, texts you, IGNORE IT AND DON’T RESPOND. I don’t care if she calls you 30 times in a row. If she does this, turn off your cell phone and wait two hours.
9. This step isn't mandatory, but I strongly recommend it. Any email, text, or voice mail she sends you during the soft next period, DELETE IT WITHOUT READING IT (or listening to it). I'm serious. It's just going to be full of angry irrational chick-logic BS that she's going to completely forget about in a few days. Reading this shit will just upset you for NO REASON. Just delete it and move on with your life. Quoting Tub: "Treat her words like the inane babble of a small child." At this point in the game, that's all it is.
10.Very important: During the soft next you should either go fuck other women or refocus on your MISSION. Ideally, you should do both (though if you’re in a monogamous relationship I guess you can’t fuck other women…yuck). I've made it a habit of immediately fucking another woman as soon as I soft next a chick, like that evening (unless it really is too late in the evening.) This does wonders for your abundance mentality and outcome independence. The last thing you want to be doing during a soft next is moping around and pining away for her.
11. Contact her 3 to 7 days later LIKE NOTHING EVER HAPPENED. Just send her a text and say “Damn it’s cold today!” or “Hey that movie is coming out on Friday! Let’s go see it.” LITERALLY like NOTHING HAPPENED. If you executed the soft next correctly, she’ll resume the conversation and the relationship like nothing ever happened. Then proceed with your relationship. When you meet up with her again, you'll find her shockingly nice, happy, fun, and thankful. Try it and you'll see.
Now for objections / questions:
These aren't "issues". This is DRAMA. A NEEDY man confronts stupid drama. A real man DOESN’T TOLERATE drama. If she throws drama at you and you throw it back at her, you are NEEDY. If instead you roll your eyes and leave her and go fuck someone else, you’re a MAN.“This sounds like a pussy move. A real man confronts these issues.”
A woman is more than welcome to discuss a problem in your relationship as long as she remains civil and calm. If a woman calmly comes to me and says “Hey, Blackdragon, there’s something that’s really bothering me. Can we talk about <whatever>?” That’s totally fine, and of course I’ll talk to her and get as deep as she likes. I have done this many times. But if she’s bitching at me, or raising her voice at me, or crying “at” me, or threatening me, or barking orders at me, INSTANT SOFT NEXT! And I DON'T CARE IF SHE HAS A GOOD POINT. As I always say, THE REASON FOR THE DRAMA IS IRRELEVANT. DRAMA IS CHILDISH AND UNACCEPTABLE and I don't have time for it. If she really wants to discuss the issue calmly with me, she’s more than welcome to do that WHEN THE SOFT NEXT IS OVER.“What if she has a legitimate problem to discuss? How can you ever discuss it if you next her all the time?”
Again, that’s fine, as long as she remains calm and adult this time. However once you start soft-nexting women, you’ll find that 95% of the time, the cause of the drama was stupid, irrational, irrelevant shit, and she knows it. Post-next she won’t want to talk about it, because she knows she was acting like a childish bitch.“What if after you resume with her she still wants to argue about that same issue?”
This is a common thing I hear from mono-dudes. Well, that’s your decision. I don’t ever want to hear you complaining about all the drama in your relationship then. The longer you wait to next, A) the less effective the next is and B) the more future drama you encourage from her, because she knows she’ll have your ATTENTION for much longer stretches.“20 or 30 seconds sounds a little harsh. I don’t mind if she goes longer than that.”
Think about it. Is the goal to shorten spurts of drama when they happen, or is it to have LESS DRAMA OVERALL? If your goal is less drama, you need to soft next FAST.
Then you have oneitis, and you REALLY need to next her and GFTOW. Right now.“I don’t know if I want to do this. She might not come back after the soft next.”
<logistical excuse> could be anything from “I rent my apartment from her dad” to “We live together” to “we have a baby together” to “her roommate is my best friend” to whatever. These are complex topics well beyond the scope of this post, and I discuss these situations in my ebooks and other places. Just remember that any time you put yourself in a situation with a woman where soft nexting is going to be difficult or impossible, you’ll have to learn to put up with more drama and betaization and expect some of it in advance. It’s part of the deal. If you don't like it, don't get yourself in those situations in the first place.“Well I can’t soft next her because <insert logistical excuse here>.”
Whenever I hear this excuse I know I’m talking to someone who’s never soft nexted a woman before, because that almost never happens. Stop being a pussy KJ and give it a shot. You’ll see how well it works.“Oh this is bullshit. Women won’t want to just ‘pick up like nothing happened’. They’ll still be mad and now they'll be really pissed at you!”
That is a very, very serious offense, worthy of a hard next or a very long (many weeks) soft next. If she physically refuses to be moved no matter what you tell her, just get away from her and as soon as she calms down, get her in the car and get her home. Then HARD next that bitch. Or at a minimum give her a very, very long soft next. (Years ago I had an MLTR do this to me. I nexted her for three months and she hated it. I finally resumed with her but, over her objections, I locked her forevermore into the distant FB-only category. Most men don't have the balls to do this kind of thing and should probably just HARD next if a woman pulls this kind of shit. A woman physically refusing to leave when asked is serious business.)"What if you're both somewhere, you try to drive her home, and she won't leave?"