So as a woman, you are consistently told that you shouldn’t show too much interest in a man. That you should play hard to get. Make him work for it. While this is sound advice in the respect that you should of course never lower your standards and accept advances from just any random man who shows interest in you, it is too broad to really be useful.
If all of this was such great advice, then why are so many women who follow it still single? Because women aren’t the ones who should follow it – men are.
That’s right, but don’t take my word for it, there are studies to prove it.
While women are more attracted to men who tend to play it cool and show less physical interest in them on a first date, men are more attracted to women who do show physical interest to them on a first date. This does not mean that men just want to think they have a chance of sleeping with you, it also hints at their interest in long term commitment.
“Men who perceive women to be interested in them rated the women as more feminine and sexually attractive. They also showed more interest in having long-term relationships with the responsive women than with the nonresponsive women.”
Now, as a man, this is not news. I can already tell you that if a woman shows interest in me, I will be more interested in her. This is often misconstrued as a level of desperation where we are just looking for anyone who is attracted to us in return. The truth is that apathy and disinterest are not exactly things that will attract us to a woman, so naturally the opposite is also true.
Men are used to being the pursuer. We are accustomed to being the ones who have to show interest, especially at first. We are not usually approached by women and are sometimes left guessing about how they feel about us. But, we want to be wanted, too. We want to be desired and we want to be confident that the interest we have in a woman is reciprocated, so we know we are not setting ourselves up for heartbreak.
If we feel that a woman enjoys our company, has a good time with us, and is attracted to us, we are more likely to show similar interest in her. Believe it or not, it really is that simple. So if you are interested in a man, make sure he knows it.
As far as the other side of the coin: “Women may think the men are trying too hard to win their affection and get them into bed. Or, women may see responsive men as eager to please, or even desperate,” Birnbaum said. Perhaps, the researchers noted, women may view a responsive man as vulnerable and less dominant.”
So we have a clear divide. When on a date, men want women who show more interest, and women want men who show less. Don’t worry, ladies, if he is out with you he is interested, and he is very much hoping to learn that you are, too.
The truth is that you shouldn’t play hard to get, you should be hard to get. This means living a life that you love and only accepting people into it who will enhance your experiences. When you find that man, make sure he knows it.
Photo Credit: We Heart It