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The Best Time to Workout If You Work a Night Shift

Working nontraditional hours may wreak havoc on your sleep, diet and exercise routine. If you work the night shift, it is important to find the workout time that fits into your schedule. For some, that may mean exercising right before work while for others it may mean working out before going to bed. It is also possible to workout during your shift. Try out all three to determine the time of day that is best for you.

Before Work
If you feel tired, moody or drained before the night shift, exercise may do you more good than that large coffee or energy drink. According to MayoClinic.com, exercise fights stress and anxiety, improves your endurance, concentration and focus and boosts your energy and mood. Before you head to work, spend 30 minutes performing some form of cardiovascular activity such as swimming, bike riding or playing a sport. Ride your bike to work or take the stairs. You may notice improved alertness while on the job.

During Work
With family responsibilities, appointments, sleep, eating and other activities to care for first, it may be difficult to find the time to workout before the night shift. Instead of cruising the Internet or hanging out by the water cooler during breaks, spend that time on exercise. Keep a pair of light weights, a stability ball or resistance bands at your desk. Perform weight-bearing exercises like pushups or go for a walk around the facility. If your office provides a fitness center, use the recumbent stationary bike or lift weights for 10 minutes or so.

After Work
For some people, exercise increases their energy while for others it helps put them to sleep. If your shift ends around 6 a.m. or 7 a.m., wait until everyone is at school or at work before going to sleep. According to ConsumerHealthDigest.com, you reach the deepest, most restful stage of sleep within the first three hours of laying down. Spend some time working out or performing light stretches or yoga to help ease stress and tension from your work day then, once the house is quiet, head to bed.

Best Time
The best time of day to workout for night-shift workers is largely dependent on the preference of the individual. Spend one week working out before, during and after your shift and see which one is the best fit for you. No matter which time of day you choose, treat exercise as if it’s an important appointment you cannot miss. Team up with a fellow late-night coworker to keep you motivated. In addition to exercise, eat a healthy, well-balanced diet and get plenty of sleep.

Tips on Adjusting to a Night Shift

Medical professionals, police officers, firefighters, factory workers and delivery drivers are just some of the people who are called on to work night shifts. Whether you are required to work the night shift on a regular basis or because your shifts rotate, adjusting to a schedule that requires you to sleep during the day is difficult. Lack of sleep can lead to health problems caused by increased stress and decreased immunity. Use some proven strategies to adjust to working the night shift.

Consistency
Maintain a regular sleep schedule even on days when you aren’t working to help your body adjust to working nights. Turn off your phone and other distractions. Ask your family or roommates to support you by staying quiet during your sleeping hours.

Lighting
Your body works on a circadian rhythm, a pattern that tells your body when to sleep and when to be awake. Sunlight plays a large role in this rhythm. Use dark, heavy curtains when you sleep to block out as much sunlight as possible. If possible, keep your workplace brightly lit to help your body stay awake.

Diet
Avoid caffeine, nicotine and other stimulants before it is time to sleep. Avoid sugar and processed foods and eat more fruits and vegetables to increase and maintain energy levels. Sugars and stimulants provide only temporary energy surges and eventually cause you to crash.

Exercise
Regular exercise, along with diet, improves your overall health, increases your energy levels and promotes healthy sleep. Try working out before your shift and after your shift to see which feels better and gives you more energy.

Naps
Sleeping during the day makes it difficult to get a full eight hours of sleep. To stay alert on your shift, take a short nap before leaving for work. Don’t sleep for so long that you are groggy when it is time to go to work.

Diet for Diabetics on the Night Shift

Diabetes

Diabetes is a group of diseases that is characterized by the body’s inability to produce or use insulin. According to the American Diabetes Association, 25.8 million Americans had diabetes in 2011. Common complications of diabetes include cardiovascular disease, blindness, kidney disease, nervous system diseases and amputation. The ADA states that adopting a healthy diet, increasing physical activity and maintaining a healthy weight are positive steps toward reducing the risk of developing diabetes.

Night-Shift Work

According to a report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in May of 2004, 27 million full-time workers had flexible work schedules, and 14.8 percent of all full-time wage workers worked a shift other than daytime, and 4.7 percent worked an evening shift, 3.2 percent worked the night shift, and the remaining percentage worked irregular or rotating shifts. Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston have investigated the health risks of shift work and found that shift work is associated with an increased risk of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. The increased risk is possibly related to the adverse metabolic and cardiovascular effects of chronic misalignment of the circadian rhythm. The circadian rhythm is the body’s internal regulatory center linked to the day’s light-dark cycle.

Considerations — Type 1 & Type 2

A Type 1 diabetic who requires insulin injections must adjust his injections to accommodate changes in his work schedule. It may be easier to take a long-acting insulin and then cover meals with a rapid-acting insulin to allow for irregular meal times. A physician or diabetes educator can assist with meal planning and adopting a successful insulin regimen.

Type 2 diabetics who take oral medications to control blood glucose will also need to adjust the timing of these doses, especially those medications that stimulate insulin release, such as sulfonylureas. These can be given before beginning the night shift, when the person is awake and having meals. It is a good idea to monitor blood sugars more often with a portable meter when starting new working hours.

Diet Plan
The Americans with Disabilities Act requires that employers accommodate people with diabetes by providing reasonable adjustments for the individual, such as a private area to test blood sugars, or regular breaks for snacks.

Overall
Regardless of the duration or schedule of work hours, a healthy, balanced diet is the best choice for a diabetic. Special consideration should be given to the amount of carbohydrates at each meal, and snacks with the goal of keeping blood glucose levels within the goal range established by a physician.

Sleep Tips for the Night Shift

Overview

When you agree to work the night shift, you expect to change your lifestyle only slightly to match the need to sleep during the day in order to sleep at night. But that change of schedule can be easier said than done, warns the National Sleep Foundation. Night shift workers might find themselves tossing and turning when it comes time to hit the hay early in the morning, resulting in insomnia and fatigue. Break the cycle by using sleep tips for the night shift that will get you into bed and prepped for a restful day of sleep.

Sleep Aids
Invest in a few sleep aids that will improve the quality of your sleep in the daytime. Ear plugs may be necessary to block out normal daytime sounds, like passing cars, barking dogs and your family moving around the house. Purchase a large package, and discard after each use.

Blackout drapes can help you block out the daylight so you fall into an easier and more restful sleep. Install them directly over your present window coverings and pull them tight before you go to sleep. A sleep mask may also help to block the light from disrupting your sleep.

Decompression Time
Emergency Nursing World recommends having a decompressing time after work instead of heading home and going straight to bed. Just like someone working the day shift, it’s important to take time to relax and unwind, especially after a particularly stressful night. Give yourself 90 minutes to two hours of time to eat something, watch a favorite show or spend time with family before you go to sleep for the day.

Avoid Stimulants
Drinking coffee might help you stay alert while on the job, but it can seriously interfere with your sleep schedule when you drink it less than three or four hours before you’re due to go to bed, says the Mayo Clinic. Instead of turning to stimulants to help you stay awake, try ice water or a brisk walk during your break time. Then, when it comes time to go to sleep, you can fall asleep quickly without feeling jittery or hyper.

Keep Your Schedule
One large mistake you can make while on the night shift is switching your schedule on the weekends, says the National Sleep Foundation. While it may be tempting to sleep at night and be awake during the day, it can severely interfere with your internal clock. When Monday arrives, you’ll likely find yourself tired throughout work and alert when you should be sleeping. Maintain your schedule so that your body and mind can regulate your sleeping habits. If you need to adjust your schedule because of a new shift, do so gradually, starting several days in advance so you can be awake and aware while at work.

Top Night Photography Tips to Bring Photos to Life

There’s nothing more beautiful than a professionally taken photo which was shot at dusk or nighttime. The problem here is that people usually think that it’s hard to take breathtaking photos after dark, or that you need to be a professional photographer with years of experience, but this is very far from the truth. Today you’ll learn some basic night photography tips that will bring your night photos to life, like never before, if you have the right camera and features, you’ll be a pro in no time.

First of all I’d like to discuss some things you will need if you’re looking to make a career out of photography, or simply add some spice to your personal hobby. If you want to take stunning photos at night, none of these night photography tips should be ignored. Primarily, you need to have a tripod if you don’t own one already. It doesn’t matter how steady you think your hand is, if it’s top-quality you’re after, you definitely want to get one of these.

Secondly, look for a camera which has a fast shutter speed setting, as well as an exposure compensation setting. The shutter will greatly improve the quality of your photos, a low ISO setting is also recommended for better quality. The exposure compensation is sometimes automatically controlled by the shutter, which will typically lighten and darken your photos and allow you to capture mind-blowing photos. You can also switch the aperture mode to the “on” position, which will control the shutter speed for you. Manually you’ll be looking for a 1-3 second shutter speed, no more.

Thirdly, it’s recommended that you get a camera that has a remote control, or start using it if you’re the same as me when I just started out, thinking that it’s a useless gadget, which is not the case at all. Pressing the “shoot” button manually will add a slight blur to the image, so use your remote control at all times for best results. Next, you want to go into your camera’s “white balance” setting. Most digital cameras have this set to auto detect, which will actually reduce the brightness of your picture.

Set your white balance to daylight settings to maintain the vivid colors instead of blocking it out with auto or night settings. These are very basic night photography tips, but they can make a world of difference to your images. The last of the night photography tips I’d like to share with you here today is what time is best for taking these photos. Choosing the perfect time for your shoot is also vital to the outcome.

Try and avoid shooting in total darkness, the best time is just after dusk and before dawn when there’s a hint of light visible in the sky above. This will brighten colors even more, creating amazing images with ease. This will give you a 20-30 minute time frame to capture the perfect image, so make sure everything’s set up and ready to go. Play around with these night photography tips and be amazed at the difference they make.

12 Alternatives for the All Night Toddler Nurser

1. Tank your baby up during the day.

Toddlers love to breastfeed, yet they are often so busy during the day that they forget to nurse, or mom is so busy that she forgets to nurse. But at night, there you are, only an inch away, and baby wants to make up for missed daytime nursings. (This is a common scenario when a breastfeeding mother returns to work outside the home.) Finding more time to nurse during the day may make the night weaning easier.

2. Increase daytime touch.

Wear your baby in a sling and give your baby more touch time during the day. It’s easy when babies get older to greatly decrease the amount of touching time without realizing it. All-night nursing can sometimes be a baby’s signal reminding mothers not to rush their baby into dependence. In developing a healthy independence, a child leaves and comes back; lets go and clings, step by step until she is going out more than she is coming back. Many mothers have noted that babies and toddlers show an increased need for nursing and holding time right before undertaking a new stage of development, such as crawling or walking.

3. Awaken baby for a full feeding just before you go to bed.

Rather than going off to sleep only to be wakened an hour or two later, get in a feeding when you retire for the night. This way, your sleep will be disturbed one less time, and you’ll (hopefully) get a longer stretch of sleep.

4. Get baby used to other “nursings.”

Try wearing him down to sleep in a baby sling. After baby is fed, but not yet asleep, wear him in a baby sling around the house or around the block. When he’s in a deep sleep, ease him onto your bed and extricate yourself from the sling. This is a good way for dad to take over part of the bedtime routine. Eventually, your baby will associate father’s arms with falling asleep, and he’ll be willing to accept comfort from dad in the middle of the night as an alternative to nursing. Other ways to ease your baby into sleep without nursing him include patting or rubbing his back, singing and rocking, or even dancing in the dark to some tunes you like or lullabies you croon.

5. Make the breast less available.

Once your baby has nursed to sleep, use your finger to detach him from the breast. Then pull your nightgown over your breast and sleep covered up. A baby who can’t find the nipple quickly may just fall back to sleep. If you can stay awake long enough to put the breast away, he may not latch on again so soon.

7. Just say no!

When our son, Matthew, was two, Martha felt desperate for sleep if awakened more than two times. I would wake up to hear a dialogue like “Nee” (his word for nurse)…”No!”… “Nee!”… “No!”… “Nee!”… “No, not now. In the morning. Mommy’s sleeping. You sleep, too.” A firm but calm, peaceful voice almost always did the trick. You can manage to stay peaceful in this situation when you know you are not damaging your very secure, attachment- parented child.

8. “Nummies go night-night.”

Now the marketing begins. Around eighteen months, your child has the capacity to understand simple sentences. Program your toddler not to expect to be nursed when she awakens, such as “We’ll nurse again when Mr. Sun comes up.” When you nurse her to sleep (or have the first or second night nursing) the last thing she should hear is “Mommy go night-night, Daddy go night-night, baby go night-night, and nummies go night- night” (or whatever she dubs her favorite pacifiers). When she wakes during the night the first thing she should hear is a gentle reminder, “Nummies are night- night. Baby go night-night, too.” This program may require a week or two of repetition. Soon she will get the message that daytime is for feeding and nighttime is for sleeping. If “nummies” stay night-night, baby will too — at least till dawn.

9. Offer a substitute.

High-need babies are not easily fooled; they don’t readily accept substitutes. Yet, it’s worth a try. Remember, nursing does not always mean breastfeeding. Honor your husband with his share of “night nursing” so your toddler does not always expect to be comforted by nummies. This gives dad a chance to develop creative nighttime fathering skills and the child a chance to expand her acceptance of nighttime comforters.

10. Increase the sleeping distance between you.

If the above suggestions do not entice your persistent night nurser to cut back, yet you still feel you must encourage him to do so, try another sleeping arrangement. Try putting him in a bedside co-sleeper bassinet, on a mattress or futon at the foot of your bed, or even sleeping in another room with a sibling. Dad or mom can lie down beside baby to comfort him if he awakens. Mom can even nurse, if necessary and then sneak back to her own bed if continued closeness seems to encourage continued waking.

11. Sleep in another room.

If your baby persists in wanting to nurse all night, relocate “Mom’s All-Night Diner” to another room and let baby sleep next to dad for a few nights. He may wake less often when the breast is not so available and when he does wake, he will learn to accept comfort from dad.

12. Let baby be the barometer.

When trying any behavior-changing technique on a child, don’t persist with a bad experiment. Use your baby’s daytime behavior as a barometer of whether your change in nighttime parenting style is working. If after several nights of working on night weaning your baby is her same self during the day then persist with your gradual night weaning. If, however, she becomes more clingy, whiny, or distant, take this as a clue to slow down your rate of night weaning.

Babies will wean and someday they will sleep through the night. This high maintenance stage of nighttime parenting will pass. The time in your arms, at your breast, and in your bed is a relatively short while in the life of a baby, yet the memories of love and availability last forever.

4 Safety Tips for Night Driving

Hone Your Vision

Our pupils dilate in the dark, and our eyesight tends to detect lights and movement rather than the color and sharp details that we recognize during the day, according to experts. Consequently, our depth perception isn’t as keen at night, and our eyes may be more prone to become dry or tired because we tend to concentrate more and blink less.

With these physiological factors in mind, there are a few things you can do to make nighttime treks less treacherous. Eye doctors typically recommend scanning the road and keeping your eyes moving instead of concentrating all your vision on one area.

It’s also important to understand what you’re seeing. For example, if you’re traveling through a rural area that’s packed with deer, raccoons or other wildlife, two small, bright dots may be animal eyes in the distance ahead. Avoid hitting an animal by looking for reflections of your headlights in its eyes, which should be visible well before you can see the entire animal.

Make sure you’re getting your vision checked regularly, too. The American Optometric Association recommends getting your eyes checked every two years if you’re 18 to 60 years old, and annually after that.

Lighten Up
At night, the lights around you can work against you just as much as they work for you. Make sure that your headlights are aimed properly, since misaligned headlights can negatively impact your visibility and blind other motorists, according to the National Safety Council (NSC). Driving at dusk also poses greater risks than you might expect, since your eyes have to continually adjust as night falls. If the lights on your dashboard are on their brightest setting, it may take a toll on your forward visibility. Dim your interior lights so that they are visible, but not distracting. That way, it will be easy for your eyes to adjust to the lights on the road ahead.

By the same token, avoid staring at headlights from oncoming traffic and other bright lights out on the road. It’s easy to get distracted by the high beams of a tall truck, or the glare coming off of an illuminated billboard. If you’re blinded by oncoming traffic, look toward the right edge of the road and steer along its path until you can see clearly again, the NSC suggests.

Keep it Clean
Make sure that your headlights, taillights and turn signals are clean (and of course, clear of ice and snow), and ensure that your mirrors are also clean and properly adjusted. This can help maximize your ability to see what’s going on around you.Additionally, cleaning your windshield and windows with newspaper will help remove streaks that compromise your visibility at night, according to Popular Mechanics. Once your windows are clean, try to avoid touching them or wiping them off with your bare hand, since your skin’s oil can smear and create a glare when light shines in. Instead, keep a clean cloth in your glove box or center console, so you’ll have it handy when your windshield needs cleaning.

Stay Alert
It should go without saying, but distracted driving should always be avoided. Stop to stretch your legs and get food if you’re on a long trip, and if you’re tired, make sure you get some rest before heading back out on the road. It can be hard to judge how fast a car is traveling or how far away it is at night, so slow down and make sure that you are following other vehicles at a safe distance. Be mindful of other drivers, and switch to your low beams if there’s oncoming traffic or if you’re following another vehicle.

10 Tips for Driving After Dark

1 Own the Night: 10 Tips for Driving After Dark

Plenty of us hate night driving—there’s no feeling quite like getting someone else’s high beams shined in your eyes. But beyond the pure annoyance, few of us realize how dangerous it can be. Fatalities on the road occur at a rate three times greater at night than during the day, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. While only a quarter of all driving is done at night, more than half of all driving deaths occur then.
Your depth perception, ability to distinguish color, and peripheral vision are all worse in low-light conditions. You tend to be more tired at night. And consider a basic fact: Typical low beams illuminate the road from 160 to 250 feet in front of your car, and normal high beams shine from about 350 to 500 feet. At 60 mph it takes more than 200 feet to stop. So even with your high beams on, there’s not a lot of room for error.
But we can’t just sit around waiting for the sun to come up. Here are 10 tips to keep you safe on the road when the sun goes down.

2 Aim Your Headlights

We’ve found that headlights even in brand-new cars are sometimes uneven or pointed lower than necessary. So it’s worth the effort to aim them correctly. If you do it yourself, use the instructions in your owner’s manual. And be patient. It may take a few tries before you have them pointed perfectly. Just make sure those newly aimed lights are not blinding oncoming traffic.
Even lights that are aimed correctly can cast a dim glow if something is blocking the light, so be sure to clean the road grime from your headlights often. If you have an older car with plastic lens covers, those covers might have yellowed or faded over the years. The best fix is to buy a headlight polish kit to remove the haze so your lights shine through brightly. And check that they produce the same amount of light as they did when new. Aged incandescent bulbs make less light than new ones.

3 Dim Your Instrument Panel and Dash Lights

Cars come with dashboard dimmer switches for a reason. If you’re driving around with the dash light on max, you could be compromising your forward vision. Racers take the nighttime driving very seriously—in fact, endurance racers and rally drivers cover their dashboards with black felt to avoid stray reflections. While you shouldn’t do that in a road car, we like to turn down the dash brightness quite a bit.
And don’t leave your map lights on. Less-expensive interior lights will disperse light all over the interior and shine into the driver’s eyes, too. Most luxury cars have focused reading lights that pinpoint objects without causing glare. The rule of thumb for a good map light is that you should never see the source of the light from the driver’s seat. Still, as good as your map lights may be, it’s best to avoid driving with them on.

4 Don’t Wear the Wrong Glasses

Have you seen ads proclaiming that yellow-tint sunglasses will help you see better at night? Don’t believe them. The Sunglass Association of America says that yellow-lens glasses sold for night driving only make you think you see better.
The thought behind these glasses is that they might enhance contrast, helping you to distinguish objects in the dark. In reality, these hokey glasses actually cut down on the amount of light you can see. The smart choice is to use prescription glasses that have an anti-reflective coating, which keeps light from bouncing around inside your lenses. And as a bonus, these glasses have been shown to allow more light in.
Even if you’re on an ’80s music kick, it’s best to avoid sunglasses at night—or any glasses, if you don’t need them for vision correction. The sunglass industry folks say you’ll see the most light without glasses—antireflective coated or not.

5 Become a Retina Spotter

On dark country roads, animals are everywhere. An encounter between wildlife and your car can be devastating—to you, the beastie, and certainly your vehicle. But here’s a trick: You can often see the reflections of your headlights in an animal’s eyes long before you can see the animal itself. Pairs of tiny bright spots in the distance are a clear warning that an animal is in front of you down the road.
The best strategy when encountering large animals like deer: Slow down as quickly as you can. If you try to steer around a deer, they often will follow your lights and move in front of you.

6 Don’t Stare at Oncoming Lights

Bright lights can seriously disrupt your concentration at night. Inside the car, your eyes are used to the dim glow of the instrument panel and the dark road ahead. It’s very easy to become distracted and stare into a bright road sign or the headlights of an 18-wheeler headed your way without even realizing it. Turn your gaze away from other lights on the road, and don’t look at oncoming high beams. Even though you may sometimes find yourself trying to determine if that oncoming car’s high beams are on, or if they’re just mis-aimed, look away. If a car behind you has its high beams on, often you can move your rearview mirror to reflect light backward to alert the driver, and to get the reflection away from your own eyes.

7 Give Your Windshield a Wipe With Newspaper

Windshields that appear clean during the day may reveal streaks that can cause glare at night. A detailer’s trick is to polish glass with newspaper to remove residue. Try not to touch the inside surfaces of your windshield, side windows, or mirrors with your hands, even if it’s to wipe off mist. The oil from your skin will smear, and light will glare when it shines through any place where you touched the glass. Instead, keep a cotton or microfiber cloth in your door pocket.

8 Bolt on Some Fog Lights

Fog lights, as the name implies, help the driver see the road instead of simply lighting up the fog in front of the car. They’re are aimed as low as possible because fog itself often hangs no lower than a couple of feet above the road, and if a fog light is aimed high, it will produce glare in the fog and will blind oncoming drivers.
These lights can be useful even when it’s not foggy, however, because they spread wider than typical low beams, so they can help you see farther beyond the road’s shoulder. One point to remember: Fog lights placed low on a car’s front fascia will also create large shadows in front of small rocks, bumps and uneven potholes and make them look much larger.

9 Add Auxiliary Lights—Cautiously

When its time to really light up the night, there are plenty of auxiliary lamps available. These lights vary in name—they’re sometimes called driving lights, spot lights, or pencil beams.
But you’ve got to be careful with them. Some are meant only to supplement your high beams, and many of them are intended for off-road use only. So be sure to check the legality of the lights for road use in your state—some of them are against the law. The reason is that light from a high-intensity discharge (HID) source or from LEDs can be like instant daylight, and after a while your eyes will adjust to the increased brightness. Then when you turn off your extra lights for oncoming traffic, your ordinary low-beam headlights appear impossibly dim. Your eyes will need to readjust as if you’ve just walked into a dark movie theater, and that can take up to 30 seconds.
It’s best to temper your enthusiasm for driving lights, then, and select a pair of lamps that are meant for road use.

10 Clean and Adjust Your Exterior Mirrors

Dirty mirrors reflect the lights from cars behind you in a wider, diffused shape that can produce glare in your eyes, so clean them up. Also, aim the exterior mirrors so that you can move your head out of the path of lights reflected in them. We like to aim them downward just slightly. That way, you can see cars behind you by tipping your head slightly forward, but you keep the other car’s headlights out of your eyes—and prevent them from temporarily blinding you with their high beams.
Also don’t forget to switch your inside rear-view mirror to the Night or Auto Dim setting, which darkens the mirror to prevent glare.

11 Keep Your Eyes Healthy

To reduce the effects of eye fatigue at night while driving, eye doctors often recommend keeping your eyes moving, scanning all around your field of vision instead of focusing on one area. The American Optometric Association suggests checkups every three years if you’re under 40, every two years until you’re 60, and annually after that.

11 Tips For Nightclub Pickups

Most guys think that nightclubs are a great place for action, yet they don’t seem to have much luck. Even though bars and nightclubs are ground zero for pick-up artists, being successful at it is not always as easy as it seems.
So, rather than have you waste your time figuring out the situation’s basic principles yourself, I, as always, am happy to pass along the wisdom of my many nights working the scene for digits or takeout.

1- Pick the best real estate in the nightclub

Remember the three fundamentals of business: location, location, location? How many times have you seen hot women in a bar from afar, but were stuck at a table with your friends? You want to be mobile and ready to nonchalantly get near a woman who interests you. You want a spot with good visibility and high traffic, so as to be able to interact with more people than if you’re holed up in a booth in the corner. In the pickup game, it’s also good to have an excuse for being where you are — in line for drinks at the bar, or for the restroom — so as not to look like a stalker. Consider yourself in the picking up business, and adjust your location to take advantage of traffic patterns and sight lines accordingly.

2- Befriend the bartender/barmaid

Buy him or her a shot at the beginning of the night to get on his or her good side. This will help you get faster service when you want to buy a woman a drink, or just want to order for her to be chivalrous. Being connected, especially at a hot club, also makes you look like a big shot, which can only help your chances. And who knows, you may just wind up picking up the barmaid.

3- Forget the canned icebreakers

Pickup lines are lame. Women consistently rank honesty and a sense of humor very highly as desirable qualities in a man. A pickup line seems too premeditated, which makes it seem dishonest, and to women, dishonesty is threatening, not funny.
The only thing you can do to break the ice is react to or comment on the current situation, preferably in a humorous way. Humor is your fastest route in. Being in line, as explained above, is one obvious context to comment upon to someone near you — “I think I might have to cancel my retirement if this line doesn’t move along” kind of thing.

Otherwise, ask her to resolve a question you and your friend were wondering — or decided to wonder for icebreaking purposes. For example, you could ask if, in her opinion, the person across the room is committing a fashion crime with his/her getup, which naturally leads to an opening compliment on your target’s fashion sense, ostensibly the reason you want to know her opinion. There are millions of possibilities when you’ve got spontaneity, confidence and humor in your corner.

4- Don’t go at it alone

Three is a good number. More if you can. Use a wingman, and a Kamikaze Pilot to put out fires, if you can. You can also use a wingwoman, which can really help, given that having attractive female friends makes you look appealing to women in general. If your wingwoman is drop-dead gorgeous, that could be intimidating to women, but not if you explain that she’s a friend. The fact that you’ve got such a hot friend you can restrain yourself around (say something like, “I just know we work better as friends. I don’t need to go there with her.”) reflects well on you.

5- Meet all her friends

If she’s with a group of friends, don’t simply pick her up and ignore her friends. Introduce yourself to the group. As you will likely not talk to many of them very long, first impressions really count here. Make a joke about whether there will be a name test later on, or in a noisy club, if a woman introduces herself as Sandra, lean in and say, “Sorry, Bernice, was it?” This joke underscores the idea that it’s too loud to actually talk to anyone who isn’t beside you. You’ve thereby charmed your target’s friends while also earning the right to talk only to her.
If you’re with your buddies, introduce them to the women also. Let both groups mingle, rather than simply picking up one of the girls.

6- Ask her to buy you a drink

Be original and ask her to offer you a drink, for a change. This demonstrates confidence and creativity. Being a little cocky and unconventional — while still suave, interesting and interested, of course — works. Otherwise, you could be just any generic guy with this year’s “in” shirt and hairstyle, trying to pick her up.

7- Dance your way in

If she’s on the dance floor, put yourself in her line of sight. Get in her vicinity, then into her dancing area naturally. At first, be sure to respect her personal space. Once you’ve gotten and held her eye contact for a bit, extend a hand to her as an offer to dance with you.
Eventually you can take up regular arm-in-arm dancing positions, but make the dancing itself the pickup move. Don’t use the closeness as an excuse to grope or start a full-on conversation. Hold your cards closer to your chest and save the intimate touching for later, once you’ve closed the deal. Then it’s not groping; it’s foreplay.

8- Don’t pick up another man’s woman

Don’t cut another man’s grass. If a woman is there with a man, and she seems to be flirting with you, let her make the first step to you. Don’t move in while he’s gone to the bathroom, for example, as this can create very awkward situations. Do unto others, you know?
But even then, be careful. If a guy’s got a flirtatious girlfriend, let him work it out with her, not with your jaw, which will definitely set back both your ability and desire to pick up. There are plenty of fish in the sea, especially since, as a player, you’re not looking for “the one.”

9- Deal with a c*ck block

If another man moves into your territory and puts a move on the woman you’re working on, react swiftly. Don’t give him any importance and go about your business. Let your friends help you block him from the group.
Alternately, if you can clearly tell she finds him annoying, look in her eyes and tell her you’ll be right back. This shows you’re confident in the impression you’ve made on her and gives her the time to be fully annoyed by the other guy while also eagerly anticipating your return. That anticipation is building you up as much as hanging out with her ever could. Plus, you get the chance to save her from an uncomfortable situation.

10- Deal with bad company

This could be one of many women: an ex-girlfriend, the unattractive girl who’s infatuated with you, the overly chatty friend of a friend, etc. If she’s cramping your style while you’re trying to work the crowd, deal with it pronto.
How?

You could feign interest in your conversation with her, call someone else into it for their opinion, then excuse yourself. This is clear enough without being straight-out rude. You could also use this boring time with her to figure out your icebreaker with someone you’ve spotted across the room, then tell her you just saw someone you’ve been meaning to talk to. At that point, you’re ready to go straight up to the other woman and give it a go, which means you haven’t even lied to Annoying Girl.

The possibilities are endless, but the point is, don’t be too nice and waste your time talking to a no-go — and be seen talking to her by other women you might want to work, who will then think you a) are interested in the dud, and therefore b) have bad taste.

THE PSYCHOLOGY OF A NIGHTCLUB

Nightclubs are a pervasive part of our culture, and no matter where you go around the world, each country has adopted the nightclub as the benchmark of their nightlife. They are an excellent social venue and attractive to both genders, as they offer the promise of a wonderful experience on every visit. For women, nightclubs are a great place to dance with your friends and meet guys. The prospect of meeting attractive women is primarily what drives men to nightclubs, and the atmosphere and experience cultivated by a nightclub is designed with these factors in mind.

1) Nightclubs are dark.

I don’t know many adults that are afraid of the dark, but this mostly applies to when they’re in their own home. When you put a person into a room packed full of strangers and then turn off most of the lights, you’re going to increase the anxiety and fear of everyone in that room.

2) They’re crowded.

Most nightclubs pack in people as much as fire regulations allow, and the dance floor of a nightclub is prime sexual marketplace real estate, so this is where most of the patrons will be. When you’re in the dark and in a crowded place, your sense of personal comfort decreases and your anxiety increases.

3) They’re loud.

The third way that nightclubs impact your comfort level. A loud atmosphere where you can’t hear anything but the music and a few random snippets of shouted conversation decreases your personal comfort level and increases your anxiety. The human ear was not designed to live in an environment as loud as a nightclub, so even though you might only be in a club for a few hours, this exposure is enough to put you on edge. A loud environment hampers our ability to communicate, which can frustrate us and cause further discomfort.

So, knowing that darkness, close quarters, and excessive noise contribute to fear for visitors at a nightclub, the question now becomes: why do you manufacture fear?

Alcohol.

Nightclubs create the problem and then sell you the solution.

Girls go to nightclubs to dance and possibly meet guys. Guys go to nightclubs to meet girls and possibly dance. Since the onus is on guys to approach and meet girls, the pressure on them is much greater. Since alcohol reduces inhibitions, it is the natural choice to boost a guy’s courage towards interactions with the fairer sex.

In a situation where the three major anxiety and fear inducing factors are taken away, say at an outdoor barbecue, a guy may still need a few drinks to muster up the courage to speak to a hot girl. Factor in an environment of increased anxiety and discomfort, and you amplify the need for alcohol, which is why binge drinking has become so commonplace at nightclubs now. I won’t even begin to touch on the influx of MDMA, and now cocaine, in recent years, but essentially, music alone doesn’t produce enough of an emotional high, so many people are now pushing it to the extreme with these drugs.

In addition to providing alcohol, nightclubs first lure in male clientele with the premise of meeting beautiful women there. Promotional photos seen on the nightclub’s website or Facebook page are all filtered: the bulk of them are of attractive girls at the club, with a few pictures of groups of guys having fun or guys posing with the girls there.

Higher profile nightclubs even hire attractive girls to simply go to the nightclubs to increase the quality of women there; these women are essentially plants in the crowd working to get guys there to purchase more drinks and drive drink sales by flirting with them. And it works wonders: no motivating factor sells more than sex does, but fear is a close second. Combine the two, and you have a potent combination, so it’s no wonder why the nightclub business is booming.

The reason why nightclubs are so successful is because of an economics principle I spoke of in an earlier article. The Pareto Principle (more commonly known as the 80/20 rule) is a tool that can be applied to a variety of large sample sizes. Essentially it boils down to this: 20% of x is responsible for 80% of y. For example, many businesses find that 20% of their customers are responsible for 80% of their business. Why do you think virtually every major retail or fast food company tries to push a loyalty program? They want to add you to their 20% of regular customers so that they maximize the amount of business they receive from you. This same principle can be applied to a nightclub, and more specifically, hookup culture.

Think of your group of friends extended. Let’s say you’re moderately popular at school and have about 50 people you consider friends, or at least drinking buddies. How many of them routinely hook up with girls? How many occasionally do? How many almost never do? If you happen to roll with a group of guys who are all tall, handsome, and confident, your results may be skewed. Now if you were to increase your sample size to a more statistically relevant level, say, your entire campus, you would actually find that 20% of the guys are responsible for 80% of the hookups. This means that the remaining 80% of guys on campus are left to scrap over 20% of the total hookups that will occur.

Quite a shocking revelation, but when you apply the math and put on your nightclub owner’s hat, it makes perfect sense. Eighty percent of your male clientele are likely lacking with their current sex lives, so 80% of the guys walking the streets at night are actively buying what you’re selling: a chance to hook up with an attractive girl. And due to the Pareto Principle, no amount of alcohol, cologne, or cheesy pick up lines is going to radically shift that, so the majority of the guys walking through your doors will also leave empty handed that night. Many will be bitter because of that, but sex is a powerful motivator, and most guys will be back next week to try again.