Body language has been used for hundreds of years to attract the perfect partner. Being able to tame the language, however, has become something I’ve been only beginning to master during the last, oh, three months of my 22-year existence.
So, let me pass on my very trivial, most likely in-need-of-tweeking advice. And if you have any pointers, don’t be greedy – share it. We all need help in this department.
Keep your eye on the prize
Eye contact is huge when initiating anything with someone. Holding eye contact, however, can be hard. And if it’s held too long at first, it’s extremely creepy. Mastering the amount of time to look someone in the eye can be tough. So, my best advice? Do what’s comfortable. You can do a whole lot of flirting using your eyes alone. The other side of the coin is you can do a whole lot of shutting out with them as well.
When on a date, although it may be tempting to constantly look past the person you’re with to see who’s coming into the door, who’s walking by the table, or to watch just how cheesy the waiter is being with the other table, avoid it. This will send a lack of interest signal to your date. So, if you really are uninterested, by all means – keep those eyes wandering. It may save you the awkwardness of having to find an excuse to high-tail it out of there.
Give ‘em a hand
Even without a touch, hands can send really powerful messages. There are countless ways to show that that you’re interested in someone with your hands. Keeping them loose and unclenched shows that you’re an open, happy person.
While I was in undergrad, I was a server. One thing that some servers do is touch their guest to get a bigger tip.
Studies have shown that touching someone, even a quick pat, creates a much more personal connection. And for a server, a bigger tip because now the customer feels like they’re not only a patron, but a friend.
By creating that connection, you show that you’re interested and comfortable enough to touch and be touched.
Your posture is one of the most telling signs of how you feel. Being slouched over with your head down, as your passive-aggressive, yet loving mother has pointed out in the past, shows you have no confidence. Also, the arm crossing? That’s got to go.
Understandably it’s easy to do this. Sometimes it’s just a comfortable position, especially when you don’t know what to do with your arms. But, when you cross your arms you’re sending the signal that you’re shutting people out and seem uninterested. As stated above, if this is your intent, then by all means, keep it up.
A little extra, on me
- You’ll know things are going well when you start to mirror each other’s body language and gestures – it shows that you guys are reading eacho ther’s body language, and, in turn responding to it.
- Don’t tease with body language by offering any more than you plan on following through with – trust me, this will get ugly.
- If you’re doing all you can and s/he’s not responding: abort mission immediately.
- Following the person around all night trying to perfect your non-verbal skills will not ultimately pay off. Persistence, in this case, is not a winner. I actually believe it’s called stalking. Move on.
And if all else fails? Get a t-shirt that reads “Single & Ready To Mingle.” At this point, it couldn’t hurt.