In the age of swiping right, flirting has become more blunt, convenient, and confusing. Instead of meaningful conversations, people are using likes, comments, and memes as a way of attracting mates. Back in the day before mobile phones and dating apps, flirting involved some form of personal connection, or at the least, a smile and eye contact. But in today’s world, real-life connections have been replaced with dick pics and emojis. So, whatever happened to the lost art of flirting?
The best part about flirting is that it’s fun and can inspire laughter, smiles, blushes, and—more often than not—dates. Whether you are online or dancing on top of the bar, there are subtle ways of making the sparks fly. These tips are for anyone in a relationship or for those who want to spice things up or if you have your eye on someone cute in the neighborhood.
It’s time to revive the lost art of flirting with these basics.
Pursuer v. Pursued
You know your type. The type that likes the hunt or instigating the flirting. They rise to the challenge of having to woo the fair maiden or dashing knight. The tricky part about this role is you can easily cross the line into creepy. Play it cool a bit, and don’t be afraid to hang back and let them come to you as well. Confidence is always the sexiest attribute of a person. So, exude it by showing them that you are interested, but you can live without them.
The Pursued enjoys being chased, which is all well and good, as long as they do it in a way that keeps it interesting. You can’t just sit back and wait for people to impress you without giving anything back. It’s a fine line between hard-to-get and a complete bore. Make them work for it, but be sure you are worth the effort.
No Friend Zone Allowed
Stay out! Don’t ask about how their childhood pet died, or discuss Grandma’s peptic ulcers. Keep it sexy. The problem with going too deep too soon is you end up in the dreaded Friend Zone. You should be friendly, of course, but keep the fact that you want to have sex with them in the forefront. You have plenty of time discussing Grandma’s health issues in your long relationship together.
The Language of Love = Body Language
Making direct eye contact is great for letting that person know they have your full attention. Do your best to stay engaged by making frequent eye contact and turning your body toward them as a silent gesture that you are welcoming more engagement.
Smiling is known to help ease nervousness and boost confidence. When someone sees how friendly you are, they are more apt to be open to a conversation. A slight smile can be alluring too, but be sure to read their body language. If they don’t respond, don’t keep staring. It’s the fastest way to being labeled a weirdo.
Flirting is not just about what you’re saying, but rather, what the whole body is conveying. Are your arms crossed? Are your shoulders hunched over? Are you leaning far away from the intended target? This is not flirting behavior. When engaging with a potential partner, put your back into it and lean into the person. This shows you are interested in what they are saying and draws them in as well. It lets them know “we are in our own world” without uttering a word.
Say Something Nice or Nothing at All
One of the hardest parts of flirting is knowing what to say—especially when messaging someone online. It’s especially difficult when we don’t know the person that well or can’t read their bodily clues. Worrying keeps anything clever from coming out. The way around this is through confidence. You don’t know this person, so if they end up dropping you like a hot potato, it’s all good. You’ve lost nothing and can move onto the next hottie. There are plenty of hotties in the sea.
Especially online, there’s nothing wrong with having a few openers in mind ahead of time. It’s especially charming when they deliver them in a way that makes it clear what is up. You don’t want to deceive anyone as to who you are, plus honesty can be really refreshing. Avoid complimenting them too much in the beginning. It’ll come off as insincere, and if you are hitting on a woman she’s probably heard it a million times. A compliment about her shoes or insightful comments about her job, however; never gets old.
To Joke Thyself is to Know Thyself
Either way, make the conversation less about yourself and more about them. You will find the conversation will start flowing more easily. Teasing and jokes are perfectly fine, as long as they are benign and avoid anything that might be a sensitive subject. When first getting to know someone, jokes about yourself are going to make you seem more approachable and humble, so start there.
There is a notion that “negging’ or being cruel to someone will get their attention. We’re not going to say this doesn’t work, but you’ve got to be damn good at pulling it off. If your insight is in any way off, you are douchebag No. 1 and there is no going back. And they are going to tell all their friends, so have fun sleeping alone. Knowing who you are and presenting that honestly is going to work 99 times out of 100.
Flirting is all part of human nature—just like a flower flirts with a bee. More than anything, reviving the lost art of flirting should never feel forced. Of course, you’ll feel nervous at first, but give yourself permission to have a good time. Give flirting a try the next time you go out and see what happens. You never know—that gorgeous smile and calm demeanor could result in finding the perfect mate—at least for the night.