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Date Doctors - The Art Of The Flirt
Date Doctors - The Art Of The Flirt
There are few things in life as fun as a good flirt. For my money flirting is an essential, healthy,...
There are few things in life as fun as a good flirt. For my money flirting is an essential, healthy, revitalising part of living, no matter how old, young, single or attached you are.
Whether it’s in the safety of an online chat under the guise ‘ruup4it’, making a friend’s day with a cheeky observation or simply complimenting the check out chick at the grocery store on her great smile. Flirting is the elixir of youth. And the more you practice the better you get at it.
When you lose your desire to flirt, or at least interact playfully with the opposite sex, you lose one of nature’s finest gifts. Just ask the multitudes who have allowed the overworked, underappreciated humdrum of life or a jealous partner snuff out the spark.
But the truth is flirting has got a bad wrap. Rather than a playful and invigorating exchange it’s often seen as unattractive, forced, insincere or heaven forbid, sleazy.
Of course this is largely due to the fumbling pig’s ear most of us make of it, leading to all those uncomfortable embarrassing moments. But it’s also because we find it hard to accept flirting as a natural, normal interaction and expression of simple appreciation.
The truth is the flirt has recently been credited by the anthropological boffins as being the seed of human evolution itself.
Yes its true girls, what you thought were sleazy cum-on’s across the bar were in fact holding the very fabric of our civilisation together, whilst of course trying desperately to remove the very fabric of yours!
Apparently much like the display of the peacock’s tails, early humans showed off their bigger brains, language and smarts at the local watering hole by flirting and thus got more action than their less articulate tree swinging brothers. Although by the looks of my local pub someone was dishing out the charity bonks even back then.
My point is, the ability to flirt is actually built in no matter how shy we are or how much we hate it. The trick is to stop trying so hard to emulate what we ‘think’ is attractive to the opposite sex and let Mother Nature do what she knows how to do best. Get us laid!
Anyhoo with the arrival of Valentine’s Day this month we thought what better time to start our romp through the facts, fiction and finer points of finding yourself the perfect mate than now. So over the next few months we will be covering the 30 odd steps between flirt, F!@k and forever. Things like eye contact rules – the art of touch- flattery, coyness or cum hither - dealing with disapproval - petting 1 2 3 and so on.
So are we sitting comfortably? Let’s begin.
There is no doubt that flirting can be a bitch. With all the unwritten rules, social etiquette, and personal idiosyncrasies it’s hardly any wonder most of us give up or resort to horrible lines like ‘Do you have a map? because I keep getting lost in your eyes”.
Of course the more you throw your hands up in despair at the results of your faux pas, the worse things get. Like walking, talking and any other natural skill, it needs to be practiced and if you make a half arsed effort to smile at 1 person on your monthly shindig out with your mates, you are hardly going to become Don Juan.
Take for example one of my male clients. A 35 year old virgin. Yes you read that correctly. Not for lack of desire but because he never came to grips with the idea of talking to a girl beyond normal everyday chit chat. For years he has tried and failed to ‘get a ticket into the ball park’, never mind a peek at first base. Now after 20 years of falling at the first hurdle, asking a girl out seems more like scaling Everest than a simple question with a one word response, yes or no.
A few months ago he came to me really depressed and angry at the world. I pointed out the stupidity of letting the fear of 1 word ruin his life and suggested he change his perspective. Rather than looking for a ‘Yes’ why not go out and collect No’s. Turn it into a fun game, maybe challenge a mate. This way you break the fear of rejection and start knocking the wall of possibility down one brick at a time.
Sure enough two weeks later he called and said I had ruined his game because now girls had started to say yes! His attitude had changed and his confidence grown by learning to laugh at rejection. Turning what was a negative into mini victories. Of course the women he talked to could sense his renewed confidence and relaxed approach and suddenly found that attractive. So remember perspective is everything.
What do they mean?
A common problem we hear all the time is ‘what does he/she mean. Are they flirting with me or not’. One person’s ‘Hi you’re a pleasant person to talk to’ is another persons ‘tie me up and shag me rotten’. So how do you know when no means go and vice really means nice?
The truth is, many of us flirt without really knowing it or ever wanting to take it to the next level, and that’s totally okay. All of us have acceptable and usually very flexible, (especially after a few drinks) levels, and we can’t expect other people to read our minds.
So rather than clamming up and not trying for fear of rejection or conversely, unwanted attention, take the focus and pressure off mind reading, thinking up clever lines and contrived approaches and simply enjoy genuinely expressing yourself. If you imagine they are already a mate and behave in such a way, you give them every opportunity to make a positive assessment of you either way.
Remember they don’t know you and you can imagine its kinda scary and a little disconcerting being approached by random strangers grinning inanely at you like you should drop what you are doing and rush into their arms. So guys, don’t take it personally if their reaction is a little defensive. Put yourself in their shoes. Brush up on your approaches and remember life goes on.
For those on the other end of the flirt, lots of girls complain they never get to meet nice guys. Truth is most nice guys are fed up with being made to feel dirty, small or pathetic from their past experiences approaching girls. And I don’t blame them!
Remember regardless of the size of the gold chain, chest wig or coke bottle glasses these people are going out on a limb and risking humiliation just to acknowledge you are HOT, which in case you didn’t realise is a good thing. So be nice back ladies, its not like you have to marry them.
Eye contact – The acceptable length of eye contact according to the men in white coats is 1 to 7 seconds. If you are anything like me, half way through the first 2 seconds you start feeling like a turkey. Your heart rate goes up and you start to sweat. The best remedy for this aside from 3 stiff drinks is to clear your mind, control your breathing and study their nose. Not very romantic I know but they will think you are looking deep into their soul when actually you are wondering why they didn’t see that zit on their face. Tricks like this help break down the IMAGINARY fears we all have. Try paying attention to anything that makes you feel uncomfortable. It’s a sign that you are hiding a fear there. Then devise ways to break the discomfort down one bit at a time. You won’t believe the results after a few months of making the uncomfortable comfortable.
Body language – Stats say that first impressions pan out something like this: 55% on your appearance and body-language, 38% on your style of speaking and only 7% on what you say. So while you worry about your next cool pick up line your body may have blown it for you. Simply imagine you are approaching a friend. Don’t pause or hesitate, be direct and open. One school of thought suggests it should take 7 seconds from when you see ‘that’ person to your first hello. This short circuits your mind’s natural urge to call you a pussy and press the eject button. Remember casual mimicking is always a winner. Studies show that it actually builds unconscious bonds between strangers regardless of how attractive they find you.
Loving them up – Advertisers have known for years that if you make someone feel a strong positive emotion before you sell them something they are up to 75% more likely to buy it. So guide their conversation into an area that gets them talking about something exciting, sexy, juicy, meaningful or passionate to them. Then switch it around and place yourself into their minds by affirming their feelings and associating yourself to the situation they have just described. Things like, ‘Oh I totally feel what you are saying, I have felt the same when I ……...’ An additional warm touch on the arm or knee as you explain helps to anchor you to that emotion and they’ll start to see you in a whole new light.
Shoot for the stars – If you think you have your Valentine’s date sorted you might want to think again. Research has revealed that because women are more critical than men about their own appearance, they are three times more likely to date guys lower on the hottie score than them. Men on the other hand tend to have fairly healthy opinions of their wonderfulness but often lack social skills that women value. So guys if you want to trade up, practise your prose. Take a speakers course or acting lessons or just get out and talk to more people about more things. Ladies a little less self fladulation along with a little more self appreciation and you may be surprised who stops by to give you a hand.
So to summarise, practice makes perfect. Mother Nature gave you the skill but it’s your job to hone them. Girls give the guys a break. Try and see through his uncomfortableness and throw him a bone or two of your own.
Guys be polite. Telling a girl she is lesbian just because she would rather enjoy the night with her friends is the ultimate confirmation that she made the right choice in rejecting you. Remember it ain’t over till the fat lady sings so don’t start the night by pushing her on stage and handing her the song sheet.
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