The objective is not to deceive. This is not an exercise in dishonesty. Your goal is to learn to bring forth the best possible you, a you to whom people will naturally be attracted. The most successful ren-ai occurs when you don’t know that you’re doing ren-ai at all. These simple rules will guide you to that realization.
In ren-ai, there is only one possible failure — that is to do nothing. Though you may not succeed in making a connection, that is not a failure, that is purely incidental. Maybe your interest had a bad day, maybe your interest doesn’t speak your language, maybe your interest just hates the color blue and you happen to be wearing blue shoes. These are things you cannot control. The one thing you can control is whether or not you approach. After that, everything else is a learning experience, never a failure. Therefore, so long as you try to make an approach, you should never feel dissatisfied.
One time I tried talking to a girl and things were going really well. She was a university student and was studying English (how lucky!). However, her friends who had been shopping came up to us a few minutes later and one suddenly asked, “Hey, are you doing nampa?!” I was caught and didn’t know how to respond. Though we never talked again (I don’t think I even got her number), it was a funny story to tell. Not a failure, just a lesson. In retrospect, I should have said something like, “What? No, this is reverse nampa! Your friend won’t leave me alone!”