How To Get That “Don’t Mess With Me” Look

How To Get That "Don't Mess With Me" Look by Charles Sledge

Not all muscles are created equal. Not in strength, athletic ability, or in what they do for your physique. Some muscles may impress other guys like having a big bicep or a six pack. While others may signal to other men that you are not someone to be messed with. That is the muscles that we are going to talking about here. The muscles that signify those who have spent some time in the ring or in combat. Of course by following the guidelines below you can get this look without spending so much time in the ring.

Like I said not all muscles are created equal. If you standing across from a guy with big biceps and a ripped six pack you’re not going to be intimidated by him because of that alone. No if he has a big chest and jacked tris. We’ll get into what muscles do matter here in a second. If you want to impress guys get big biceps and ripped abs. If you want to “impress” women then be a man alright and having a good shoulder to hip ratio will also help. And if you want to look intimidating then read on.

The Intimidating Muscles

Here are the muscles that when built up make you look intimidating to other men as they signify fighting experience of some kind and that you’d be harder to take down during a fight. Those muscles are the traps, the neck, and the shoulders respectively. Men who have these developed to a high extent are automatically thought of as more dangerous and more capable fighters then men with other muscles that are built up (such as the biceps, chest, and “vanity” muscles). These are the fighting muscles.

Looking like you can handle yourself will never be a bad thing, ever. In any situation. Regardless if you’re meeting women at bar, walking around town with your family, or asking for a promotion from your boss. When the other person deep in their hindbrain thinks you can tear them limb from limb it’ll make them want to give you what you want a lot easier. It’ll get respect from men and attraction from women. Prisoners spend a lot of time developing these muscles as well, as they understand the psychological effect that they have.

Biggest Bang For Your Buck

Also if you’re a guy who wants to look bigger these are the muscles that make the biggest visual impact. As a matter of fact when a Hollywood trainer wants to make a star look bigger they focus on the shoulders and traps extensively. Because it’s shoulders and traps that are going to make the biggest visual impact on screen. And make the person think that the actor is strong and manly. When you want others to think you’ve added a lot of muscle in the shortest amount of time possible you are going to want to focus on your shoulders and traps.

That doesn’t mean to ignore other things, simply that those two muscles give you the biggest bang for your buck visually. And go far in cultivating that “Don’t mess with me” look that this article is all about. These muscles make you look like you’d be expensive to fight. Alright now we are going to get into the best exercises for developing the “Don’t mess with me” look. I’ll leave set and rep schemes up to you because they’ll vary depending on what you’re going for.

Best Exercises To Develop The “Don’t Mess With Me” Look

Alright so we’ve identified the muscles that make up the don’t mess with me look. Now how to grow them. First off with these muscles (well shoulders are an exception) we’re really not going for strength so much as development. So high volume will be a must to develop them. Higher reps and higher sets, again I’ll leave the exact numbers up to you. Alright here are exercises that are a must to include in your program (and I’m going to assume you’re already squatting, deadlifting, and using overhead presses).

First things first the neck. I’d get a neck harness and crank out 50+ reps daily. You can do this during your gym time or simply have it by your bed or in another convenient place. Feel free to take the weekends off to give your neck a rest. For traps do high rep shrugs I’ve done everything from 10×10 to 5×10 just use high reps and get a lot of work in on your traps. Then for shoulders (this is done in addition to overhead pressing) do high rep lateral raises 5×10 or higher. Remember developing these is all about volume. You could also do high rep overhead presses if you’d like.


The “Don’t mess with me” look is the look of a fighter, the look of a warrior. Others can tell. There is a marked difference between a man who has these muscles developed and one who does not. Even men who are in shape and have decent muscle tonality and size may look weak if they have failed to develop these muscles. Likewise someone with not that much development but a focus on these areas could still look like a bull ox ready to tear up his next opponent. Make sure you’re not missing out on this important part of masculine physique development.

If you have any questions you would like to see answered in a future post send them to me at charlessledge001 (at) gmail (dot) com. If you found value in this post then I would encourage you to share this site with someone who may need it as well as check out my books here. I appreciate it. You can follow me on Twitter here.

-Charles Sledge

Charles Sledge

  • Johnny Grube

    The look and the way you carry yourself is number one in
    intimidation. I have a bald head, goatee, 17″ neck and never
    smile and look fit. No matter where I’m at inner city or rural
    men just give me the head nod. But you also better be able
    to handle yourself or you can’t pull off the look, because others
    can tell when you’re bullshitting.

    As always great article

    • Thanks man. Damn that’s one thick neck. And haha having a shaved head will complete the look. And as always gotta be able to back everything up for sure.