How to recognise romantic body language
The eyes have it
Often regarded as windows to the soul, eyes can indeed by very telling. Lingering eye contact can indicate interest in the conversation, but if the gaze flits from one eye to the other, attraction is there. If they eyes then glance down to the lips (in a triangular motion) it indicates attraction and lust; your date wants to kiss you.
There are a number of reasons for avoiding eye contact. The person may feel uncomfortable or nervous, or it could mean they are lying or feel guilty. They could also be distancing themselves.
Preening is a courtship ritual seen across the animal world. Birds do it, chimps do it and we do it. It’s all about making yourself look more attractive to your potential partner.
Of course this happens before you meet your date—getting done up in front of the mirror—but this also happens in person when there is an attraction. This may include straightening the hair, brushing imaginary lint off arms or legs and looking into mirrors.
Enactments of lust
Similar to preening, enactment is a little more sexy and involves acting out romantic activities. These inviting gestures include stoking one’s own arm, leg, or face, parting of lips, stroking of objects such as a drinks glass. These gestures imply sexual readiness.
Displaying is also very suggestive. Attractive parts of the body are thrust forward or revealed. For women this may include legs, breasts and neck. For men this includes muscles, torso and arms.
Faking also occurs—the flexing of muscles and pressing breasts together—making everything look a little more pronounced. It’s quite a primitive gesture, saying, “Look at me, I’m healthy and fit and will make a great sexual partner.”
Pointing it out
When you feel comfortable in someone’s company and want to get closer to them, your body will show this physically, often leaning in. This may start with the head, maybe a simple tilt, or even the entire torso.
Similarly, pointing involves pointing parts of your body towards the partner: feet, legs crossed towards, arms, and head point the body towards the desired individual.
Up close and personal
When the attraction is reciprocated you’ll find the space between each other close up, so you are in each other’s personal space. If standing, you will find body language is square on, blocking off any sexual competition.
You may also start to notice something called mirroring. When completely comfortable in someone else’s company, you will start to copy the other person. This includes body position, gestures and even language.
Was that touch accidental?
Maybe not. When your potential partner touches you, whether it’s an 'accidental’ brushing or touching non-intimate parts of the body (arms, knee, back) this is a sign of interest.
If you’re picking up any combination of these signals, and the feelings are reciprocated, you may want to consider finding somewhere a little more private…
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