Dating Advice Guru - Relationship advice

Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

By: Carlos Cavallo

If you’re looking up “signs he’s a player,” I’m going to go ahead and guess that you’re dating a guy (or trying to) who seems to be playing mind games. 

A man that won’t commit, no matter how awesome you are. A man who sees you as part of his lineup of women that he’s sleeping with.

But before you cut ties with him, you want to make sure that he is indeed a player. 

when your man plays mind games Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

Is he a player?

Then you’ll cut bait and run. Am I right?

The answer is simple; the one thing that separates a true player from a single guy looking at his options is one thing — manipulation. 

For example, if the guy you’re interested in is a player, he’s playing someone, whether that's telling the women he dates that each of them is the only girl he’s seeing, or convincing someone he’s single when he’s not.

Now keep in mind, flirting doesn't necessarily mean he is a player, so don't overreact if he's giving friendly attention to other women. 

If a guy is flirty, but is honest about his relationship status, and doesn't pursue anything beyond flirty banter, he's probably just a big flirt.

But if you suspect the guy you're seeing is going further than the occasional flirtatious exchange, then keep your eyes peeled for these tell-tale signs.

IS HE PLAYING GAMES? – SIGN 1: It’s Ghost Time…

So you got a little frisky while texting – the text or two you sent him were sure to get the fires started before you see him later, but now you’ve got nothing but crickets. This is when he’s ghosting you in the middle of texting…

Maybe he responds, maybe he doesn’t.

signs boyfriend is playing games Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

POOF! He's gone...

But either way, you always feel like you’re rolling the dice on whether or not you’ll feel connected after the interaction. Or just disappointed.

What you should NOT do:

First off, don’t panic. No, really, chill the $#&% out. This guy is not suddenly dating your best friend or anything. What’s likely is that he’s just busy and “not in the mood” to play.

What you should do:

So if he does appear to be deliberately ghosting you, if you detect this pattern of this behavior there’s really only 2 options:

  1. He just doesn’t like texting that much.
    NOTE: 90% of guys love texting … up until you sleep together for the first time. After that, texting goes back to being a nuisance to us. Texting will always be more of a communication tool for women. Guys typically only use texting to work out logistics and send information.
  2. He’s bored and just isn’t into it.

21 Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

You should just give him a day or two of silence and you’ll see his attitude turn around. If he doesn’t text or reach out to you more than a few days later, you should write this guy off and move on.

If his behavior is continually uneven, you should check this next Mind Game sign in the list…

THIS HAS TO BE A MIND GAME – SIGN 2: He’s Your Personal Roller Coaster…

Sometimes he calls, sometimes he doesn’t. Sometimes he’s eager and excited, other times not so much. Last night he was sweet and loving, and today he’s weird and kind of distant. He’s hot and cold, back and forth… and you feel like you’re being whipped around in your own personal Love Roller Coaster the whole time.

how to know when hes playing mind games Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

Feels like he's toying with your heart...

The man you are dating seems really into you, then disappears for days, even weeks. Guys don’t call or return texts for a number of reasons.

Sometimes he gets busy, sometimes he loses interest. There are some guys, though, who deliberately stop communication just to get your attention. 

They do this to control the relationship, or as a test to see what your reaction is. Tons of books out there tout “playing hard to get” as a good way to keep a person interested, but it’s pretty dishonest. The best way to find out if someone is playing this game is to ask them if they are.

Let him know how you are feeling, see what he says. Explain you prefer more communication and a direct approach from the people you date. If he continues the behavior, it shows a lack of respect toward you; and it might be for the best if you cut him loose.

Getting involved with someone who treats you in this manner will only lead to a toxic relationship.

This ride only creates one thing: Anxiety.

And that anxiety will push you to do things you wouldn’t normally do. You might even panic now and again that you’re “losing him.”

15 Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

What you should NOT do:

Don’t Panic!

It’s tempting to let the situation spiral out of control, but you have to stay grounded and calm. When a guy acts erratically, it’s a sign that he’s dealing with his own emotions. Never consider anything real until it’s real. And always look at actions more than words: words are warm air (in person) and a bunch of meaningless bits (in texts).

What you should do:

Give him some time and space to sort things out. As long as you didn’t just sleep with him on the first date (you didn’t, did you?) you should be fine. But if he continually plays the come-closer/go-away game with you, it’s time to move on.

This kind of uncertain dynamic will drive you crazy over time.

OH, and if you DID sleep with him on the first date, stop doing that! You’re welcome to enjoy sex the way men do. But when you give it up too quickly and easily, a man will lose all desire for the chase.

HE’S MESSING WITH MY MIND! – SIGN 3: Pack Your Bags – We’re Going Guilt Trippin'…

One of the worst ways a guy WILL play with your head is the guilt trip. (And – to be fair – women do this one quite a bit, too.) When he’s playing you like this, he’ll play with your sense of fairness and your values to manipulate. Women are especially susceptible to manipulation when it comes to how she’s viewed by others.

signs man is playing mind games Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

Are we there yet?

Everyone thinks that manipulators are easy to spot. Until they get manipulated. Or guilted into doing something. How does this happen?

Look—manipulative people don’t blast into your life announcing themselves with a theme song. They sneak in.

Many manipulators often gain entry into our lives through empathy. They fake empathy and emotional intelligence as a cover-up for their true motives.

Someone who is emotionally manipulative will often expose themselves through “guilt mongering.” A study from Carleton University investigated guilt mongering as an unhealthy front-line relationship maneuver that manipulators frequently use. Manipulators sneak in, figure you out, and use what they know against you for their gain.

If you want to be happy and successful in life, you need to spot manipulators early. You need to confront them directly and remove them from your life quickly.

What you should NOT do:

DON’T give in!

Don’t relent just because you’re afraid of “what other people might think,” of you. That’s part of the power of this technique to coerce.

19 Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

What you should do:

Even though a guilt trip SEEMS personal, it rarely is. It’s only purpose is to get you to do something the other person wants. You need to stand your ground. It’s going to be tough, especially if you have a habit of giving in to him.

REMEMBER: Guilt trips frequently induce not only strong feelings of guilt, but equally strong feelings of resentment toward the manipulator.

If you give in, you’re going to be poisoning your relationship. That should be incentive enough for you to not give in to his guilt trips.

Instead, use these 4 steps for any Guilt Tripper that tries to play you:

  1. Tell him that you do understand how important it is for him that you do what he’s trying to guilt you into doing…
  2. Explain that his using a guilt trip to make you do it makes you feel resentful, even if you do end up complying…
  3. Tell him you’re concerned that piling up these resentments will make you feel more distant from him – and that is not something either of you want…
  4. Ask him to instead express his wishes directly, to own the request himself instead of trying to activate your conscience – and to respect your decisions when you make them…

IS HE MESSING WITH ME? – SIGN 4: Mr. Flirty With the Periscope Eyes…

Guys are going to look at other women. It’s a fact of life that women have to have the security to deal with. Some women are just going to put their “assets” out there in a way that makes it hard for any man – or girl – to resist.

how to tell youre man is playing games with you Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

Uh, hello?

That being said, if the person you're seeing is constantly gawking at other women in your presence, then this is disrespectful. Although hounding the person you're dating about subjective behavior like this can get tricky, there's absolutely no reason you need to tolerate someone whose actions are making you feel uncomfortable.

What you should NOT do:


  • Freak out and cause a scene
  • Berate or embarrass him publicly
  • Shame him

You might know this by now, but any of those strategies will just get you dumped or ignored. Mostly because they are just as disrespectful to him as his behavior is to you.

What you should do:

Sometimes you will have to communicate how his behavior impacts your emotions. And this is a lifelong relationship skill that EVERY person – man or woman – has to have, so it’s worth cultivating now.

First – he’s not intentionally “disrespecting” you by doing this. By taking offense before you see what’s going on with him, you immediately close off understanding.

Men are programmed to look at beauty.


01 Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

If his eye takes in another girl, but comes back to you – that’s the most sincere form of love. Because it shows you he is committed to YOU – not chasing another skirt.

BTW – If he decides to flirt and chase one of these women, that’s another story entirely – and you need to shut it down immediately by letting him know that you know… and that his behavior is completely unacceptable.

Second – if his eyes are working overtime, let him know you need him to appreciate you as much as the novelty of some other woman.

And even better is to give him a little of his own medicine: Force yourself to visually appreciate other guys, and be obvious about it. If he gets jealous, even better.

(My advanced technique for handling these guys is in my Irresistible Desire program.)


SJS is “Super Jerk Syndrome” – where he acts out of character and becomes extremely jerky with you. It’s like neglect, only it’s obviously intentional and insensitive. Guys sometimes do this to girls to test them. They want to see what your boundaries and limits are.

how to signs boyfriend is playing mind games Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

Know when to walk away...

In fact, we all have this ability to push our limits to see what we can get away with. It’s not malicious, but it feels like it when you’re on the receiving end.

“He’s completely changed!” If you’ve thought this about your boyfriend, you know how terrible it is to feel so confused and worried about why he seems like a totally different guy to the one you used to date.

But here’s the thing: He hasn’t changed at all. He’s been playing you with his “nice guy” act all along.

EXAMPLE: He might put you down in public, or just douche on your good time.

What you should NOT do:

React or lash back at him. After all, he’s just acting out like a little boy. You have to maintain your dignity. And never let a manipulating jerk take/borrow your money or possessions.

I’ve heard enough horror stories of women supporting these loser guys to tell you that it never ends well.

What you should do:

Disengage, and walk away. The best way to make him realize what a jerk he’s being is by pointing it out with calm, cool silence for him to reflect on his childishness. Your only point is to draw a line on the ground and make him realize you have limits and healthy boundaries.

When he sees this, he’ll respect you and appreciate you. (And if he doesn’t, keep on walking away.)

Really, the universal antidote to any man’s mind games is simple: SELF WORTH!

“Women are only victims of mind-games because they hit a low mood and become vulnerable when they doubt their own worth.” – Carlos Cavallo

If you’ve got self-esteem or abandonment issues, you’re a walking target for guys who use these games. And now I have to share some shocking news about men and their mind-games… Look, I gotta warn you – this is going to disappoint you:

The Truest Truth about men is that we almost NEVER INTENTIONALLY play mind games.

I know that it often SEEMS that way with guys, but it’s not something a guy does on purpose. He’s not doing it intentionally or premeditated. What happens is that when he’s acting like a man – and ghosting you or being a real weenie – you’ll think he must be doing it on purpose to manipulate you.

03 Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

Unfortunately, it’s not him trying to manipulate you. It’s just that a man goes through a weird cycle of energy and interest in you.

  • When he feels he wants to win you, he’s all in. He’s going to text you, romance you, and put out all kinds of energy…
  • AFTER he’s slept with you – or after he feels that he’s “got you,” he’s going to simply stop doing most of those cute, romantic things…

The reason guys do this is very simple:

He’s a hunter by nature. And most women these days get suckered into the trap of chasing men way too soon. SHE tries to be the hunter!

Let me ask you: Do you think that men are attracted to women that chase them?

Yeah, that’s kind of an obvious NO… But there are a hundred ways you short-circuit a man’s hunter instinct without realizing it. He’ll think you’re chasing him – even when you’re not! And when he misunderstands you like this, you’ll probably experience him playing the mind games you just read about.

If you want to avoid that, you need to know how to make yourself IRRESISTIBLE to him.

Go watch this short video presentation now and learn how to put him under your spell!

The Bottom Line:

At this point, you’ve come to one of two conclusions:

Conclusion 1: You realize that the man you’re dating isn’t a player, but that maybe he’s just moving slowly. He’s showing signs of wanting to be in a more serious relationship with you (he takes you on actual dates, you have long phone calls (actually talking) about anything and everything into the wee hours of the night, he’s looking for more than just a sexy fling), but maybe hasn’t taken the step toward full commitment.

I really hope that’s the case, because you can definitely work with that!

Conclusion 2: You have read this list of signs he’s a player and you’ve realized that this guy you’re into is a total player and just isn’t that into you.

The question is, in the second situation: What will you do now?

signs your man is playing games with you Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

Check mate!

You respect yourself too much to let this man play you, and he’s just a roadblock on your way to finding true love. So don’t waste a single second on him. And don’t try to play games to give him a taste of his own medicine either. Just exit stage left as quickly as possible.

What can you say to end things?

“We seem to want different things right now. I’m looking for something of substance, while you seem to be looking for something casual.”

“I’m really a one-guy kind of gal, so dating other people isn’t really something I’m into. Best of luck to you!”

Realize that his ego will be bruised. Above all, players like collecting trophies (women), so he might not let you go so easily. He may make promises that, I assure you, he cannot keep. He may lie and say he’s not dating other women, even though you have evidence to the contrary.

Again, trust your gut.

Look at him as part of the bigger picture: can you imagine yourself still dating him in six months?

A year?


No? I didn’t think so. Make your speech and move on.

Your intuition is rarely wrong, so why do you spend so much time doubting it? A lot of the time, bad vibes are just that — bad vibes — and you shouldn’t ignore them, especially when it comes to guys you’re seeing.

It’s totally normal to feel butterflies or temporary feelings of nervousness when things are still brand spanking new and you’re not sure where things are headed, but it’s another thing when you can’t shake the feeling that something’s not quite right.

If you have a gut feeling about him, you’re probably right.

You hear a lot about those happy couples who say they “just knew” right away, so in reality, the bad vibes your intuition is sending you could be acting the same way, but in reverse.

No matter how many times you’ve been hurt before that might cause you a bit of anxiety with a new man, the right guy won’t make you question all the little details, because he’ll be showing you the ways you can trust him too.

If you want to forge ahead, by all means do so — but keep your intuition in mind. Your gut isn’t trying to make you overthink or doubt that things could potentially work out — it’s merely giving you a warning to not invest too easily and with no doubts at all.

20 Is He Playing Games? 5 Signs He’s a Player and What to Do About it

You deserve a guy who’s going to make you feel like you don’t have to question any and every little detail.

It’s completely natural and normal to be nervous in a new relationship, but as the past will dictate, your gut shouldn’t ever completely be ignored if you never want history to repeat itself.

Normally, if you have a gut feeling about a guy, it’s generally pretty spot on, so be careful.

The reason guys do this is very simple:

He's a hunter by nature. And most women these days get suckered into the trap of chasing men way too soon.

SHE tries to be the hunter!

Let me ask you: Do you think that men are attracted to women that chase them?

Yeah, that's kind of an obvious NO...

But there are a hundred ways you short-circuit a man's hunter instinct without realizing it. He'll think you're chasing him - even when you're not!

And when he misunderstands you like this, you'll probably experience him playing the mind games you just read about.

If you want to avoid that, you need to know how to make him OBSESSED with you...

Go watch this short video presentation now and learn how to put him under your spell!

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