Today I want to talk about nonverbal flirting.
Nonverbal flirting is really important because unlike the spoken word body language can signal invitation, acceptance or refusal without being really obvious or causing offense or binding yourself up.
So I'm just going to outline the various different things you can use for flirting, there are a few of them. The first one is eye contact; eyes are probably the most important flirting tool because looking into another person's eyes directly is very powerful. In fact if you have prolonged eye contact, it's either an active love or hostility. Like you have one of the two, there are even studies that say if people are exposed to more eye contact, like three or four minutes in a row they start to fall in love another person, I don’t know how valid that is but, I've definitely seen that study.
When it comes to nonverbal flirting with eye contact you're looking for someone to hold eye contact for more than a second though not much more, or smile. If those two things happen, then you can go ahead and approach, if on the other hand they avoid eye contact or look away after a fraction and don’t look back you should probably just assume that they're not interested, though there is the possibility that they're just shy or they didn’t notice you, if it's like across the room, et cetera.
Once you’ve approached you can make eye contact again in order to keep the conversation going, but it's normal for eye contact to be broken as the speaker looks away, so whoever is speaking is going to look away more than the person listening, and you take turns and stuff like that. But you don’t want to stare like a creepy person, and you don’t want to never make eye contact.
The next nonverbal thing is distance, interpersonal distance. The distance you keep is important because it affects the impression the other person has of you. When you first approach a stranger, you will want to have what I like to call social space, about four feet away. About four feet away you're in the social zone.. The social zone is like 4 to 12 feet and the personal zone is 18 inches to 4 feet. So if you receive a positive response when you're about 4 feet away, then you can move in to arm's distance and then you will want to be careful and look at her reactions to move into like the intimate zones, and stuff like that.
If it's crowded you can get a little bit closer, if it's a bar or club, that’s why turning sideways is helpful sometimes so you're not straight up in her face, but you know, also if you misjudge, you can always take a step back. That’s something to keep in mind. It's like if you go to approach a girl and they get freaked out, right off the bat, or surprised right off the bat, then you might just want to take a step back but keep talking. That step back gives them a little bit of social breathing room.
Posture is another thing, you want to look for what's called nonverbal leakage, which is basically when we tend to be less conscious of what the rest of our body is doing, we are more conscious of our faces. So if the girl is crossing her arms, you don’t want to cross your arms, you'll want to have open, positive body language, and you want to make sure you, kind of, have similar postures to what the girl is doing. Gestures are another form of nonverbal flirting, gestures can signal interest, attraction, dislike, rejection, but you will want to keep you're gestures to a minimum because they tend to affect the signal to noise ratio.
You will also want to make sure that you keep your gestures below your chest because most of the time your chest is going to be close to the girl's face and you don’t want to have your hands be in her face, that’s another big part of it.
There's also facial expressions, that’s pretty much the big one and most people can read facial expressions fairly effectively, you know, so if people raise their eyebrows, if they kind of grimace a little, if they smile, stuff like that, you will want to be aware of what her expression is saying and what your expression is saying. You will want to make sure that you definitely smile yourself and have a relaxed expression. You don’t want to be uptight, scared, surprised, there's a lot of stuff on facial expressions.
Dr. Paul Ekman has written several really good books on it that are really helpful for pickups, so you might want to check those out.
Touch is another powerful form of flirting, the way you touch a woman is going to tell her a lot about you. So it's important to remember that you will want to be careful, you will want to start in less intimate areas: shoulder, elbow area, move to the hand, move more and more... you know—things in escalation.
That’s a good primer on nonverbal flirting, now get out there and flirt!