And how to flirt

How To Flirt (Even If You’re Far From A 10) | Thought Catalog

and how to flirt

Find fun flirting quotes, flirting tips, and advice to up your game. Part of the fun of dating is the art of the flirt so we dive in. If it's been a while since you knew how to flirt, use this article to get tips on how to succeed, and which mistakes to avoid when flirting. Flirting isn't like 'oh you're so pretty/handsome' it's just making yourself seem chill and good to be around. But that doesn't mean avoid compliments completely.

Are you the last person they look at when they say goodbye? Play a little coy: Honestly these days I find the best technique is when to active listen and when to play a little coy. Tease them in a nice way: All I do is try to make them laugh and smile either by just joking about something or teasing them.

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I know it high school behavior but it works for me. Eventually I got to sleep with them and date some. Stand a little closer to them: As a lady, I get close to them.

and how to flirt

Like stand a little closer when talking, casually touch their arm, shoulder, whatever. Also initiate conversation, ask the person about themselves, show genuine interest in them as a person.

Treat them like a human being: Just be nice and treat them like a person. If they are interested look for the signals. Smiling at you, tilting their head when they talk to you, laughing harder that the joke should warrant, touching your arm when talking, crossing their legs toward you, saying things that continue the conversation rather than stop it.

Get used to being shot down. Be okay with it and move on. Let your eyes do most of the flirting: When I like a girl, then my eyes do a lot of the flirting. Girls are easy to make laugh. Usually I just have to pull my pants down though! I was on a date with a girl that had a snap story a couple months back that showed her buying a cocktail, because it had Ugli fruit in it and she loves Ugli fruit.

I saw Ugli fruit at the grocery store and bought one. I remembered how much you love them, so I got one for you. I told her it was for her. She said that was sweet. I constantly switch between the two to make it a chaotic neutral with a girl. Her feelings go up, they go down, and they constantly end up in the middle. Just smile and introduce yourself. Very rarely are you going to come across someone bitchy enough to ignore you or tell you to fuck immediately off.

Then the doors open. Show them pictures of dogs: I show pictures of dogs. If they happen to look at me, I smile, then after a second look somewhere else and back to them. When near them, I tend to lean in closer to them, but never cross any common courtesy boundaries. Not grab their hand, but tap it a little. What comes naturally for me is some mix of sarcasm and dark humor.

I might be cheating because I grew up with 2 sisters, so talking to a girl was always natural for me. Live your best life to impress them: Feel free to widen your audience of who you want to flirt with. Do something fun in your life so you have something better to talk about than video games and that meme you saw on reddit. Use your observational skills to point out the peculiarities and inconsistencies of life. Say yes when they ask you out. Try to relate to what they are saying: Then just laugh and try to relate to them.

Then you sit close to them, pick a feature about them that you like, and compliment it. Like their social media posts: By liking their Facebook posts. Break the ice as early as possible: Mirror-image postural echoes — where one person's left side 'matches' the other person's right side — are the strongest indication of harmony and rapport between the pair.

When flirting, you can also use postural echo to create a feeling of togetherness and harmony. Experiments have shown that although people are not consciously aware of someone deliberately 'echoing' their postures, they will evaluate a person who does this more favourably.

This technique obviously has its limits. We would not suggest, for example, that a woman in a mini-skirt should 'echo' the open-legged sitting posture of her male companion. But if he is leaning forward with his left forearm resting on the table, she could create a sense of common identity by 'mirroring' this aspect of his posture — leaning forward with her right forearm on the table. In addition to these 'generic' signals of interest, there are specifically male and female posture signals which are often seen in flirtatious encounters.

These tend to be postures which enhance the masculine or dominant appearance of the male, and the femininity of the female. Males may adopt postures which make them appear taller, larger and more impressive, such as placing hands in pockets with elbows out to enlarge the chest, or leaning one hand at above shoulder height on a wall to appear taller and more imposing.

Females either adopt postures which make them look smaller, such as drawing the knees towards the body when seated, or postures which draw attention to physical attributes attractive to males, such as arching the back to display the breasts, or crossing and re-crossing the legs to draw attention to them.

Gestures As well as overall body posture, the gestures we use can signal interest, attraction and invitation — or discomfort, dislike and rejection. When flirting, it is important to be aware of these non-verbal cues, both in 'reading' your partner's body-language and in controlling the messages you are sending with your own gestures.

In conversation, gestures are mainly used to enliven, clarify and 'punctuate' our speech, or to show responsiveness to what the other person is saying. In a flirtatious encounter, the amount of gesticulation, the directions of the gestures and the co-ordination of gestures can indicate the degree of interest and involvement your partner feels towards you. Different cultures vary widely in the amount of gesticulation that accompanies their speech Italians say that you can silence an Italian by tying his hands behind his backand even within a single culture, some people naturally express themselves more through gestures than others.

Generally, however, someone who is interested in you will be more lively and animated in conversation, using more gestures when speaking in order to keep your attention, and more responsive gestures to show interest when you are speaking. When your partner is speaking, you can show responsiveness by nodding in agreement, throwing up your hands in surprise, bringing them together in a 'silent clap' of appreciation, etc.

Researchers have found that nodding can be used to 'regulate' conversations. If you make single, brief nods while your partner is speaking, these act as simple signs of attentiveness, which will maintain the flow of communication from the speaker.

Double nods will change the rate at which the other person speaks, usually speeding up the flow, while triple nods or single, slow nods often interrupt the flow altogether, confusing speakers so much that they stop in their tracks. So, if you want to express interest and keep your partner chatting with you, stick to brief single nods. You can also watch for gestures which indicate anxiety and nervousness, such as hand-clasping movements and palm-rubbing.

As a general rule, anxious gestures are directed towards the anxious person's own body known as 'proximal' movementswhile 'distal' movements, directed away from the body, are a sign of confidence.

As well as watching for these signals in your partner, you can control the impression you are making by using more confident, 'distal' gestures. As with posture, the greatest involvement and harmony is achieved when gestures are synchronised — when the movements of one person are echoed or reflected by the other.

You may have noticed that this tends to happen naturally between people who like each other and get on well together. Watch pairs of lovers in a bar or pub, and you will see that they often tend to lift their drinks and take a sip at the same time, and that many of their other body movements and gestures will be similarly synchronised.

Psychologists call this 'interactional synchrony' or 'gestural dance', and some of their research findings indicate that the timing of matched gestures may be accurate down to fractions of a second.

Although this synchronisation normally happens without conscious effort, you can use it as a highly effective flirting technique. Men should not assume that it necessarily indicates sexual interest, however. Women can avoid creating this impression by reducing synchronisation, adopting a more 'closed' posture and avoiding the use of gestures which are specifically associated with flirtatious behaviour.

In experiments, female hair-flipping and head-tossing were among the non-contact gestures most often regarded as sexually flirtatious, along with repeated leg-crossing and movements designed to draw attention to the breasts.

Facial expression An ability to 'read' and interpret the facial expressions of your partner will improve your chances of successful flirting, as will awareness of what you are signalling with your own expressions.

Some expressions can be effective even from a distance, as in the 'across a crowded room' encounter with a stranger. The 'eyebrow-flash', for example, which involves raising the eyebrows very briefly — for about one-sixth of a second — is used almost universally as a long-distance greeting signal. When you see someone you know, but are not near enough to speak, the eyebrow-flash shows that you have noticed and recognised them. We all use this non-verbal "Hello!

Watch a video of Andrew and Fergie's wedding, for example, and you will see that Fergie performs frequent eyebrow-flashes as she walks down the aisle. Social etiquette does not allow a bride to call out cheery greetings to her friends and relations during the ceremony, but the highly sociable Fergie is clearly unable to refrain from signalling the same greetings with her eyebrows.

If you are desperate to attract the attention of an attractive stranger across a crowded party, you could try an eyebrow-flash. This should make your target think that you must be a friend or acquaintance, even though he or she does not recognise you.

When you approach, your target may thus already be wondering who you are. You can, if you are skilful, use this confusion to initiate a lively discussion about where you might have met before.

Such conversations inevitably centre on possible shared interests or friends or habits, and invariably involve mutual disclosure of at least some personal information. As you will learn from the 'Verbal flirting' sections of this Guide, these are essential ingredients of successful flirting.

So, assuming your target finds you attractive, an eyebrow-flash with appropriate follow-up could leapfrog you into instant intimacy. Two warnings are necessary here: If your target is attracted to you, this may be more evident in facial expressions than in words. Studies have found that women are generally better than men at reading these expressions, but that both sexes have equal difficulty in seeing through people's expressions when they are controlling their faces to hide their real feelings.

The problem is that although faces do express genuine feelings, any facial expression that occurs naturally can also be produced artificially for a social purpose. Smiles and frowns, to take the most obvious examples, can be spontaneous expressions of happiness or anger, but they can also be manufactured as deliberate signals, such as frowning to indicate doubt or displeasure, smiling to signal approval or agreement, etc.

Feelings can also be hidden under a 'social' smile, a 'stiff upper lip' or a blank, 'inscrutable' expression. Despite this potential for 'deceit', we rely more on facial expressions than on any other aspect of body language. In conversation, we watch our companions' faces rather than their hands or feet, and rely on their facial signals to tell us what effect we are having, and how to interpret what they say.

Although people are better at controlling their facial expressions than other aspects of body language, there is still some 'leakage', and the following clues will help you to detect insincerity. Let's say your target smiles at you. How do you know whether this smile is spontaneous or manufactured? There are four ways of telling the difference.

First, spontaneous smiles produce characteristic wrinkles around the eyes, which will not appear if your target is 'forcing' a smile out of politeness.

Second, 'forced' or 'social' smiles tend to be asymmetrical stronger on the left side of the face in right-handed people and on the right side of the face in left-handed people. The third clue to insincerity is in the timing of the smile: Finally, there is a clue in the duration of the smile, as a manufactured smile tends to be held for longer what is often called a 'fixed' smile and then to fade in an irregular way.

When observing your target's facial expressions, it is important to remember that although an expressive face — showing amusement, surprise, agreement etc. Women naturally tend to smile more than men, for example, and to show emotions more clearly in their facial expressions. You are also likely to interpret expressions differently depending on who is making them. Experiments have shown that people may read the same expression as 'fear' when they see it on a female face, but as 'anger' when it appears on male face.

and how to flirt

There are also cultural and even regional differences in the amount of emotion people express with their faces. Oriental people are more likely than Westerners to hide their emotions under a 'blank' expression or a smile, for example, and American researchers have found that in the US, Notherners smile less than people from the South.

If an attractive stranger smiles at you, it could be that he or she finds you attractive, but he or she could also be an outgoing, sociable person from a culture or region in which smiling is commonplace and not particularly meaningful. These factors must also be taken into account when considering the effect of your own facial expressions. People tend to be put off by levels of expressiveness that are considerably higher or lower than what they are used to, so it could help to try to 'match' the amount of emotion you express with your face to that of your target.

As a general rule, however, your face should be constantly informative during a flirtatious conversation. Unexpressiveness — a blank, unchanging face — will be interpreted as lack of interest when you are listening and an absence of facial emphasis when you are speaking will be disturbing and off-putting.

You need to show interest and comprehension when listening, and to promote interest and comprehension when speaking, through facial signals such as eyebrows raised to display surprise, as a question mark or for emphasis; the corners of the mouth turning up in amusement; nodding to indicate agreement; frowning in puzzlement; smiling to show approval, or to indicate that what you are saying should not be taken too seriously, and so on.

Fortunately, most of these facial signals are habitual, and do not have to be consciously manufactured, but some awareness of your facial expressions can help you to monitor their effect and make minor adjustments to put your target more at ease, for example, or hold his or her attention, or increase the level of intimacy.

Finally, remember that your target is unlikely to be scrutinising you for tiny signs of insincerity, so a 'social' smile will be infinitely more attractive than no smile at all. Touch Touching is a powerful, subtle and complex form of communication. In social situations, the language of touch can be used to convey a surprising variety of messages. Different touches can be used to express agreement, affection, affiliation or attraction; to offer support; to emphasise a point; to call for attention or participation; to guide and direct; to greet; to congratulate; to establish or reinforce power-relations and to negotiate levels of intimacy.

Even the most fleeting touch can have a dramatic influence on our perceptions and relationships. Experiments have shown that even a light, brief touch on the arm during a brief social encounter between strangers has both immediate and lasting positive effects.

Polite requests for help or directions, for example, produced much more positive results when accompanied by a light touch on the arm. When flirting, it is therefore important to remember that the language of touch, if used correctly, can help to advance the relationship, but that inappropriate use of this powerful tool could ruin your chances forever. Although there are considerable differences between cultures in the levels of touching that are socially acceptable, and different personalities welcome different levels of touching, we can provide a few basic rules-of-thumb for first encounters with strangers of the opposite sex.

The first rule, for both sexes, is: Women are much less comfortable about being touched by an opposite-sex stranger than men, so men should take care to avoid any touches which may seem threatening or over-familiar. Men are inclined to interpret women's friendly gestures as sexual invitations, so women should be equally careful to avoid giving misleading signals with over-familiar touches. This does not mean 'don't touch', as appropriate touching will have positive benefits, but touching should initially be restricted to universally acceptable areas and levels.

As a general rule, the arm is the safest place to touch an opposite-sex stranger. Back pats are equally non-sexual, but are often perceived as patronising or overbearing. A brief, light touch on the arm, to draw attention, express support or emphasise a point, is likely to be acceptable and to enhance your companion's positive feelings towards you.

If even this most innocuous of touches produces a negative reaction — such as pulling the arm away, increasing distance, frowning, turning away or other expressions of displeasure or anxiety — you might as well give up now.

Unless your companion is exceptionally shy and reserved, negative reactions to a simple arm-touch probably indicate dislike or distrust. If your companion finds you likeable or attractive, a brief arm-touch should prompt some reciprocal increase in intimacy. This may not be as obvious as a return of your arm-touch, but watch for other positive body-language signals, such as increased eye-contact, moving closer to you, more open posture or postural echo, more smiling, etc.

Your arm-touch may even prompt an increase in verbal intimacy, so listen for any disclosure of personal information, or more personal questions. If you see or hear signs of a positive reaction to your arm-touch, you can, after a reasonable interval, try another arm-touch, this time slightly less fleeting.

If this results in a further escalation of verbal or non-verbal intimacy from your companion, you might consider moving to the next stage: Remember that a hand-touch, unless it is the conventional handshake of greeting or parting, is much more personal than an arm-touch. By touching your companion's hand, you are opening negotiations towards a higher degree of intimacy, so keep it light and brief: A negative reaction to your hand-touch, such as the non-verbal signals of displeasure or anxiety mentioned above, does not necessarily mean that your companion dislikes you, but it is a clear indication that your attempt to advance to the next level of intimacy is either premature or unwelcome.

A very positive reaction, involving a significant increase in verbal or non-verbal intimacy, can be taken as permission to try another hand-touch at an appropriate moment. Highly positive reactions to a second hand-touch — such as a definite and unambiguous attempt to move closer to you, reciprocal arm- and hand-touching, along with significantly more personal questions, more disclosure of personal information and more expression of emotion — can be taken as permission to proceed, with caution, to a higher level of intimacy.

The next stages might involve a hand-squeeze or hand-hold, repeated twice before moving on to an arm over the shoulders, or perhaps a brief knee-touch. Males should note, however, that positive reactions to any of these touches can not be taken as permission to grope. You will have noticed that we advise performing each touch two times before progressing to the next level.

This is because repeating the same touch, perhaps with a slightly longer duration, allows you to check that reactions are still positive, that you were not mistaken in your judgement that the touch was acceptable.

The repetition also tells your companion that the first touch was not accidental or unconscious, that you are consciously negotiating for an increase in intimacy. Repeating the same touch before moving to the next level is a non-verbal way of saying "Are you sure?

and how to flirt

Vocal signals You may be surprised to see this heading in the 'Non-verbal flirting' section, but 'verbal' means 'words' and vocal signals such as tone of voice, pitch, volume, speed of speech, etc. In other words, body-language may be your most important 'flirting tool', but vocal signals come a very close second. An ability to 'read' the vocal signals of the person you are flirting with will also help you to find out how he or she really feels about you.

Attraction and interest, for example, are communicated much more by the tone of voice than by what is actually said.

Depending on the tone, volume, speed and pitch, even a simple phrase such as "Good evening" can convey anything from "Wow, you're gorgeous" to "I find you totally uninteresting and I'm looking for an excuse to get away from you as quickly as possible". If your target gives you a deep-toned, low pitched, slow, drawn-out "Good evening", with a slight rising intonation at the end, as though asking a question, this is probably an indication of attraction or at least interest.

If you get a short, high-pitched, clipped "Good evening", or a monotone, expressionless version, your target is probably not interested in you. Once you are in conversation, remember that the intonation of even a single word can communicate an immense variety of emotions and meanings.

As an experiment, try practising variations in your intonation of the one-word response "Yeah", and you will find that you can communicate anything from enthusiastic agreement to grudging acceptance to varying degrees of scepticism to total disbelief. If you speak in a monotone, with little variation in pitch, pace or tone of voice, you will be perceived as boring and dull, even if what you are saying is truly fascinating or exceptionally amusing.

Loud volume, a booming tone and too much variation in pitch will make you seem overbearing. Speak too quietly or too slowly and you will seem submissive or even depressed. Aim for moderation in volume and tone, with enough variation in pitch and pace to hold your companion's interest.

Also remember that a rising or falling intonation, especially when accompanied by a drop in volume, is a 'turn-yielding cue', whereby speakers signal that they have finished what they are saying and are ready to listen to the other person.

When you hear these vocal signals, your companion is probably indicating that it is your turn to speak. When your companion hears these signals, he or she may well assume that you are 'yielding' the floor. If you frequently end sentences on a rising or falling intonation, with a drop in volume, and then carry on without allowing your companion to speak, he or she will become frustrated.

and how to flirt

Taking your turn when your companion has not given any vocal 'turn-yielding cues', even if he or she has finished a sentence, will be perceived as interruption, and is equally irritating. Verbal flirting Although your target's initial impressions of you will depend more on your appearance, body language and voice than on what you actually say, successful flirting also requires good conversation skills. The 'art' of verbal flirting is really just a matter of knowing the rules of conversation, the unwritten laws of etiquette governing talking and listening.

The best and most enjoyable conversations may seem entirely spontaneous, but the people involved are still obeying rules. The difference is that they are following the rules automatically, without consciously trying, just as skilled, experienced drivers do not have think about changing gears.

But understanding how the rules of conversation work — like learning how and when to change gears — will help you to converse more fluently, and flirt more successfully.

Men make up for this with superior visual-spatial abilities, but these are not much help in verbal flirting. Men can, of course, easily learn to be as skilled in the art of conversation as women — it is only a matter of following a few simple rules — but some do not take the trouble to learn, or may be unaware of their deficiencies in this area. Those males who do take the trouble to improve their conversation skills perhaps by reading this Guide have a definite advantage in the flirting stakes.

Opening lines When the subject of flirting comes up, most people seem to be obsessed with the issue of 'opening lines' or 'chat-up lines'. Men talk about lines that work and lines that have failed; women laugh about men's use of hackneyed or awkward opening lines, and all of us, whether we admit it or not, would like to find the perfect, original, creative way to strike up a conversation with someone we find attractive.

The answer, perhaps surprisingly, is that your opening line is really not very important, and all this striving for originality and wit is a wasted effort. The fact is that conversational 'openers' are rarely original, witty or elegant, and no-one expects them to be so.

and how to flirt

The best 'openers' are, quite simply, those which can easily be recognised as 'openers' — as attempts to start a conversation. The traditional British comment on the weather "Nice day, isn't it? The fact that these comments are phrased as questions, or with a rising 'interrogative' intonation, does not mean that the speaker is unsure about the quality of the weather and requires confirmation: In Britain, it is universally understood that such weather-comments have nothing to do with the weather, and they are universally accepted as conversation-starters.

Saying "Lovely day, isn't it? If you are indoors — say at a party or in a bar — and nowhere near a window, some equally innocuous general comment on your surroundings "Bit crowded, isn't it? The words are really quite unimportant, and there is no point in striving to be witty or amusing: This formula — the impersonal interrogative comment — has evolved as the standard method of initiating conversation with strangers because it is extremely effective.

The non-personal nature of the comment makes it unthreatening and non-intrusive; the interrogative questioning tone or 'isn't it?

There is a big difference between an interrogative comment such as "Terrible weather, eh? The direct question demands and requires a reply, the interrogative comment allows the other person to respond minimally, or not respond at all, if he or she does not wish to talk to you.

In some social contexts — such as those involving sports, hobbies, learning, business or other specific activities — the assumption of shared interests makes initiating conversation much easier, as your opening line can refer to some aspect of the activity in question. In some such contexts, there may even be a ritual procedure to follow for initiating conversation with a stranger.

At the races, for example, anyone can ask anyone "What's your tip for the next? Unless the context you are in provides such a convenient ritual, use the IIC Impersonal Interrogative Comment formula. This formula can be adapted to almost any situation or occasion. Just make a general, impersonal comment on some aspect of the event, activity, circumstances or surroundings, with a rising intonation or 'isn't it?

50 WAYS TO FLIRT: Head to Toe Compilation!

Your target will recognise this as a conversation-starter, and his or her response will tell you immediately whether or not it is welcomed. There are of course degrees of positive and negative response to an IIC.

The elements you need to listen for are length, personalising and questioning. As a general rule, the longer the response, the better. If your target responds to your comment with a reply of the same length or longer, this is a good sign. A personalised response, i. A personalised response ending in a question or interrogative rising intonation as in "I thought it was supposed to clear up by this afternoon?

So, if you say "Nice day, isn't it? Note that there is nothing original, witty or clever about the above exchange. You may even be inclined to dismiss it as polite, boring and insignificant. In fact, a great deal of vital social information has been exchanged.

How to Flirt: The 5 Types of Flirting Styles

The biggest mistake most people make with opening lines is to try to start a flirtation, rather than simply trying to start a conversation. If you think about your opening line as initiating a conversation, rather than starting a flirtation, use the IIC formula and pay close attention to the verbal and non-verbal response, you cannot go wrong.

Even if your target does not find you attractive and declines your invitation to talk, you will avoid causing offence and you will avoid the humiliation of a direct rejection. Turn-taking Once you have initiated a conversation with your chosen target, your success in making a favourable impression will depend as much on your social skills as on what you say.

We have probably all met at least one person who is highly articulate, witty and amusing, but who loses friends and alienates people by hogging the conversation, not allowing others to get a word in. You may also have come across the equally irritating strong, silent type who makes you do all the 'work' in the conversation — who never asks a question, never expresses interest and makes no effort to keep the conversation flowing.

What you have to say may be fascinating, and you may express it with great eloquence, but if you have not grasped the basic social skills involved in conversational turn-taking, you will be perceived as arrogant and unpleasant, and neither your target nor anyone else will enjoy your company.

The basic rule on how much to talk is very simple: The essence of a good conversation, and a successful flirtation, is reciprocity: Achieving this reciprocity requires an understanding of the etiquette of turn-taking, knowing when to take your turn, as well as when and how to 'yield the floor' to your partner. So, how do you know when it is your turn to speak?

Pauses are not necessarily an infallible guide — one study found that the length of the average pause during speech was 0. In other words, people clearly used signals other than pauses to indicate that they had finished speaking. In previous sections of the Guide, we have described in detail the various non-verbal signals people use to show that they have finished what they are saying, and that it is your turn to speak.

These include eye-contact signals remember that people look away more when they are speaking, so when they look back at you, this often indicates that it is your turn and vocal signals such as rising or falling intonation, with a drop in volume.

SIRC Guide to flirting

This may be accompanied by verbal 'turn-yielding' signals, such as the completion of a clause or 'tailing off' into meaningless expressions such as "you know". As a general rule, the more of these turn-yielding cues occur simultaneously, the more likely it is that your partner has finished and expects you to speak. Watching and listening for these clues will help you to avoid interrupting, and also to avoid awkward gaps and lengthy pauses in the conversation.

Talking This Guide clearly cannot tell you exactly what to say, what words to use, in a flirtatious conversation, but it is possible to provide some general guidelines on what you talk about, and how you express yourself, particularly in terms of mistakes and pitfalls to avoid.

Negativity, for example, is real turn-off. If you talk too much about the bad side of things, and constantly complain about the world or your own problems, your partner will soon get bored and fed up. Other characteristics that research has identified as particularly boring or off-putting include self-preoccupation talking too much about yourself and showing too little interest in othersbanality only talking about superficial things, repeating hackneyed jokes and storiestediousness talking too slowly, pausing too long, taking too long to make a pointpassivity failing to take full part in the conversation or express opinionslack of enthusiasm talking in a monotone, not making eye-contact, expressing too little emotionover-seriousness using a serious tone of voice and expression, even when your partner is trying to be light-hearted or humorous and over-excitement easily sidetracked, engaging in too much meaningless chatter, too much slang.

Compliments, on the other hand, are almost universally welcomed, and do not have to be witty or original. In other words, you should not be afraid of paying simple, unflowery compliments such as "That's a nice jacket" or "That colour really suits you", as they can be very effective.

Clearly, excessive use of compliments will make you seem ingratiating, and your partner may become bored with too much suffocating niceness, but of all the ways you can bore someone, studies have shown that this is the least offensive. Males should, however, avoid paying women embarrassing or potentially offensive compliments.

This is not a matter of 'political correctness', but of basic social skills. Some men need to learn that it is entirely possible to convey to a female friend or acquaintance that you find her physically attractive, without being crass or intrusive. A simple, admiring comment such as "You look lovely or pretty, or stunning " is enough.

Anything more explicit will only cause embarrassment or offence. The body-language must be right as well: Timing is equally important: It is not possible to list all these situations here, but as a rule-of-thumb, only comment on a woman's appearance a if you know her well enough this kind of compliment should not be used as an opening line, but only at a much later stage in flirtatious conversation and b at times, places and situations where appearance is relevant — i.

If the situation is not one in which you would compliment a male acquaintance on his flattering new jacket or haircut, do not comment on a female's appearance either. In one American survey, women were asked what were the three words they would most like to hear from a male partner. The most common answer was not, as expected, "I love you", but "You've lost weight". While you should not make any comment on a woman's figure unless you know her well, this compliment might please a girlfriend or close female friend.

Listening Good listeners have distinct advantages in the flirting stakes, but being a good listener is not just about shutting up and letting the other person talk although this certainly helps.

Good listening is essentially about giving good 'feedback', which involves giving both verbal and non-verbal signals to show that you are a paying attention, and b interested. Good verbal feedback signals include the use of expressions such as "mm-hmm", "yeah", "mmm", "ah" to show interest or agreement and to encourage the other person to continue. Research has shown that these basic feedback signals are highly effective in winning friends and influencing people. They can even result in concrete, tangible rewards: Even just a few nods can significantly improve your chances, both in interviews and in flirtatious conversation.

Another effective good-listener technique is 'paraphrasing'. To show that you are paying attention and interested, and to encourage your partner to tell you more, it can help if you occasionally sum up what your partner has said, as in " so you were stranded at the station with no money!

How did you get home? You may have noticed that the question at the end of the 'paraphrasing' example was an 'open' question, rather than a 'closed' question requiring only a yes or no response. If you want to encourage your partner to talk, try to ask more open questions, such as "What kind of food do you like?

Journalists and personnel managers are taught to ask questions beginning with these words in interviews, to encourage job candidates and sources to give detailed replies, but they are equally effective in informal social conversation — particularly in flirting! Reciprocal disclosure One of the most important aspects of verbal flirting is what psychologists call 'reciprocal disclosure' — the exchange of personal information.

In fact, unless partners disclose at least some personal details, the conversation can hardly be called a flirtation. When you first meet, these details do not have to be particularly intimate: If your partner discloses some such detail, you should reciprocate as soon as possible by revealing some similar information about yourself, perhaps 'raising the ante' a little by making your disclosure slightly more personal. If your partner likes you, he or she will probably try to 'match' your disclosure with one of similar value.

Reciprocal disclosure of this kind is a much more subtle and less threatening route to intimacy than asking direct personal questions.

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