What is Scarcity in Dating and Attraction? Well, It Depends…

What is scarcity in dating?

When you ask, “What is scarcity?” – you’re really asking a question about economics. Scarcity is an economic principle that basically says there aren’t enough resources to go around. In economics, the law of scarcity is like gravity – there’s no getting away from it. Scarcity influences everything equally, across the entire planet, for all of history. It’s kind of a big deal. But the real implications for us as young single men are not about global resources.

Marketers have used the principle of scarcity as long as marketing has existed. If something is in limited supply, it is worth more, and you can charge more for it. But over the years they learned that actual supply is less important than perceived supply. So – if you can make someone believe that something is in limited supply – they will pay more for it.

When a car salesman tells you, “OK, I’ll try to hold it for you, but there’s another couple coming to see this exact car in one hour,” he is using perceived scarcity to influence your decision-making. When an infomercial on TV tells you that the special offer is only available for the next 100 callers, they are using perceived scarcity too.

So that answers the question about what is scarcity. But why does scarcity matter in dating and attraction?

What is Scarcity in Attraction and Dating?

If you can see how a salesman uses scarcity to get someone to buy a car, then it shouldn’t be too hard to see how a pickup artist uses scarcity to get a girl to sleep with him. It’s exactly the same approach. But instead of standing on a parking lot, he’s sitting on a barstool. “I’m only here for one night. This is all the time we have.” Used car stuff.

If using pressure car sales techniques to pick up women is your thing – go for it. Good luck to ya. But you won’t find much of that on this site.

Life is beautiful. Women are wonderful creatures who deserve to be treated with respect as much as you and I do. What is scarcity, really? The only real scarcity you should worry about is time. There’s only so much time, and if you’re like me, you want to spend as much of that time as possible enjoying the company of a beautiful, intelligent girl.

If you can get on board with that, then read on. There is an appropriate use for scarcity in dating and attraction. And you can use it to your advantage without acting like a douchebag.

What is scarcity in attraction?

Two Different Types of Scarcity

The basic idea is that the value a woman assigns to you depends partly on your availability. This is true, but it can be interpreted in different ways because there are different types of availability. So, instead of just asking, “What is scarcity?” – let’s ask, “What are the different types of scarcity?”

Your physical availability is how easy it is to get in touch with you. Are you always available to meet up on short notice? Do you always answer your phone? Do you reply to texts right away? If so, your physical availability, or supply, is high. The resource in this case is you – your presence, your ears, your voice… and your package. And the laws of economics tell us that if your supply is high, your perceived value is low.

The other side of this coin is emotional availability. This is much trickier, and it is extremely important if you ever want to develop any meaningful sort of relationship with a girl. When she talks, do you listen? Really listen. When you talk, do you talk about your emotions and your emotional experience? Or are you just reciting football statistics that you have memorized? Is a girl able to connect with you emotionally?

Physical availability is a big factor in getting dates and attracting women. That’s why dudes can use it to manipulate women into sleeping with them. Emotional availability is different. You can get laid without it, but you won’t ever truly enjoy the company of a woman if you’re not emotionally available.

More Advice About Attraction and Dating:

When Scarcity is Appropriate, and When It’s Not

You can manipulate your perceived value by throttling your availability. This is pretty straightforward, and I’m going to write another post up about the best ways to throttle your availability. When I talk about throttling availability, I am only talking about your physical availability.

In my opinion, you should never throttle your emotional availability. You should always be developing your emotional experience so that you live as rich and rewarding a life as possible. And trust me, if you offer a rich emotional experience to girls, they will definitely be attracted to that.

But no matter how emotionally complex you are, the law of scarcity still applies to you and your time. Here’s how your perceived value can be affected by your availability in a ongoing dating situation:

Physical Availability Emotional Availability Your Perceived Value
High Low Decreased. You’re a flop.
High High Decreased. You’re a friend.
Low Low Increased. You’re a fuck buddy.
Low High Increased. You’re a flame.

Next up, we’ll take a look at some of the specifics around throttling your availability to make sure you end up in one of the last two rows in that table.

There are plenty of ways you can manipulate your perceived value without acting like a douche or using any high-pressure car sales techniques.

Matthew Clark

Matt Clark loves football, live music, and the beautiful girls of Austin, TX. After spending a decade of his life in a tiny gray cubicle, he set out on his own as an entrepreneur and a marketing consultant. These days he can be found out and about, working in whichever coffee shop or courtyard catches his eye. Some of his favorite spots are Jo's, Caffe Medici, and Strange Brew.