Flirting is fun but it can be hard to know where the line is. You never want to come across as creepy. Here’s some insight into how a woman thinks about flirting to help you flirt better without creeping her out.
David Dryden Henningsen, professor at Northern Illinois University identified that there are 6 motivations behind flirting:
- Sex (trying to get into bed with someone)
- Fun (treating it like a sport)
- Exploring (trying to see what it would be like to be in a relationship)
- Relational (trying to increase the intimacy of a relationship)
- Esteem (Increasing one’s own self-esteem)
- Instrumental (trying to get something from the other person)
In Henningsen’s study, he asked 101 women and 99 men what a hypothetical flirty conversation would look like and what he found was that men tended to have sexual motivations; whereas, women were motivated to flirt for relational reasons—to increase intimacy. Intimacy is defined as a close familiarity or friendship.
It’s important to understand her motivations and the ways to avoid creeping her out. Because once you creep a girl out, there’s no going back.
You can avoid being creepy by using these tips I’m about to outline for you.
1. The “You-Caught-Me” Glance
The first point of contact to make with any woman with whom you’re trying to flirt is to make eye contact.
Or, the best way to get her attention is to get caught checking her out or glancing at her. Try to do this subtly, you’re glancing at her, not staring at her. So do a quick glance.
After she catches your first glance, give her a little nod. And after the second glance, smile like an “oopsie, you caught me checking you out.”
Why I want you to establish eye contact first is to ensure that she meets your eye contact.
Eye contact’s purpose is to establish mutual interest. I’m not saying that just because a woman makes eye contact with you means that she wants to sleep with you. What I’m saying is that she could be interested in you if you’ve made this connection, at the very least, you could approach her and see what happens.
Every human has four zones of interpersonal space.
- The public zone
- social zone
- the personal zone
- the intimate zone.
What we’re focused on here is moving you from the social zone, which ranges from 12-4 ft. away from your target flirting partner to the intimate zone, which is within touching distance.
Eye contact is your golden ticket into the desired intimate zone.
The social zone is where you start any flirty encounter. It’s a space used for public and social conversations; whereas, like I said before, the intimate zone is within touching distance—ultimately where you want to end up. You approach the intimate zone through making eye contact through your casual glances.
2. Mirror Her Posture to Build Rapport
Remember that flirting is a response to attraction. And attraction is evoking interest, pleasure or liking for someone. So what else can you do to persuade a woman with whom you’ve never met that you’re the best candidate to flirt with and maybe even sleep with?
One way to win her over is to mirror her body language.
When we first meet someone, we make snap decisions about whether we like or dislike them. this is a survival method that we have adapted into our modern interpersonal interactions.
We have an involuntary fight or flight response to people, which dictates whether or not we like them. This happens in a matter of seconds.
One of the ways to be seen as more favorable is to mirror the posture of the person with whom you’re speaking.
This is a technique used in building rapport.
Rapport: a close and harmonious relationship in which the people or groups concerned understand each other’s feelings or ideas and communicate well.
In other words, rapport is a bond that you form with someone through certain gestures. One of which being mirroring body posture/ body language.
If the girl that you’re trying to flirt with is standing tall with relaxed shoulders, it wouldn’t make sense for you to approach her with arms crossed hunched over. No, that’s a closed off body posture, try to mirror ever so slightly the posture and gestures of your communication partner.
If she uses her hands to talk a lot, think about trying to gesticulate as you talk as well. You don’t have to go gesture for gesture, but it will make her feel more comfortable talking and flirting with you if she feels comfortable and like you have a similar communication pattern.
You’re trying to create a feeling of togetherness and harmony.
My third tip in learning how to flirt without creeping women out is to look at the topic of conversation.
Pick-up lines are a thing of the past, but compliments are the way of the future.
The thing about flirting is that it is all about making the other person feel good by giving them attention and asking them questions.
One way to give a woman positive attention is to compliment her on something that she has chosen.
A good compliment is about something that a woman has chosen to wear, or the way that she has chosen to style her hair or to compliment her on something that she has worked on.
Compliments make people feel good about themselves when they’re around you. And as Maya Angelou once said:
“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
And that is a statement that I personally live by.
4. Gentle Touches
Gentle touches are a great way to raise the stakes if she’s already responding positively and flirting back.
Psychologist Dr. Nicolas Guéguen in his essay “Courtship Compliance: The Effect of Touch On Women’s Behavior” suggests that there is research to prove that light tactile contact increases compliance to a wide variety of requests.
He conducted three experiments in three different locations. Each experiment had two different approaches:
- a man approaching a woman and gently touching her
- a man approaching a woman and made no physical contact
The results were that women were more attracted to men who engaged in gentle, momentary, tactile touching because it made them seem more dominant.
In another study called “Dominance and Heterosexual Attraction” conducted at Arizona State University, researchers showed female university students a 1-minute video clip of a man who expressed non-violent dominant gestures, like pacing his hand on a woman’s shoulder.
They found that the female students viewed the men who engaged in light touching as more sexually attractive and were considered to be a more desirable dating partner because of their perceived dominance.
Now, dominance kind of has a negative connotation. But I think what they mean here is influence. And really, that’s what flirting and courting is and that is influencing another person to think that you’re a potential sexual contender.
So use touch to your advantage. Playfully touch a woman to deepen your flirtatious connection.
You can touch a woman’s arm to get her attention, place your hand on the small of her back to guide her somewhere, or even tickle her if you feel like the situation is right.
Find quick friendly ways to make physical contact with a woman to better your flirting experience.
5. Have Fun
And my last piece of advice when flirting is to remember to have fun.
Take it slow so that you aren’t showing all of your cards at once. Give a little and then see what you get in return flirt wise from a girl.
But flirting is also a mindset, so please, please, please, remember to have fun with it because if you aren’t having any fun, neither will she.
Don’t be afraid to be goofy and don’t take yourself too seriously.
That’s how you make connections with people, by finding similarities between your lives and you can’t do that without being a little vulnerable.