There’s a language of love that goes beyond words, gifts, and acts of kindness. It’s the most effective way to express signs of attraction — and it’s called body language.
It’s something we all do, whether intentionally or unintentionally. But picking up on the subtle signals can make or break your romantic game.
So when it comes to learning the signs of attraction, here’s where you can start:
- 7 Most Common Signs of Attraction
- What Are the Signs of Male Attraction?
- What Are the Signs of Female Attraction?
- 3 Rules for Reading the Signs of Attraction Accurately
You can tell a lot about a person by their demeanor. And understanding how to interpret these signals is the stepping stone in decoding the subtle language of attraction.
7 Most Common Signs of Attraction
The thing is, the body has a lot to say. More than the mouth, it seems.
The way the body talks is “an outward reflection of your emotional condition,” according to Allan Pease, also known as “Mr. Body Language,” in an interview with Vishen, founder of Mindvalley. “It shows how you’re feeling — you’re happy, sad, angry, holding back, telling the truth, lying, likely to say ‘yes’…”
In fact, only 7% of communication is verbal. The rest is nonverbal — tone of voice (38%) and body language (55%). This is relevant for all “ships” — kinships, friendships, partnerships, fellowships, and even companionships.
So when you put yourself out there in the dating world, there are signs of attraction you can look out for. Here are some common ones shared by the body language experts at Mindvalley:
1. Positioning of the head
Do you ever catch yourself tilting your head when someone’s talking to you? No, it’s not a sign of being socially awkward. It just so happens that it’s the body’s way of showing that you’re receptive to what the other person is saying.
Now, the head tilt is one position of body language. According to Allan, who’s also the co-trainer of Mindvalley’s Mastering Body Language: Truth, Lies, Love & Power Quest, there are two more: head up and head down.
Head up exposes the throat, indicating they’re unafraid of any danger. Allan adds, “The higher it goes, the more authoritative, the more self-confident, even arrogant the person who’s using it is.”
On the other hand, when the head goes down is to protect the throat from a frontal attack. He explains, “When people are feeling intimidated, threatening, disapproving of what you’re saying, they’ll put their heads down.”
2. Head nods
Different cultures have different ways of saying “yes.” However, the generally accepted way is the head nod.
It’s also a signal to show the person is interested. Moreover, when you see it as the receiver, it encourages you to keep talking.
There is a catch, though. According to Allan, the number of nods is crucial. “Three head nods” — meaning one, two, three nods in a row — “they’ll talk forever. Five head nods tell them to stop.”
So knowing this sign is especially useful if you can help to see if the person is feeling your vibes. If you see your romantic interest nodding — one, two, three, four, five — away, it’s time to wrap it up.
3. Hands on hips
Animals tend to make themselves look bigger when they’re frightened, when they want to fight, or when they want to find love. Humans do the same.
However, we can’t make our hair stand on end like dogs and apes. So our go-to pose is the “hands on hips.”
It helps a person more noticeable to those around them, as Allan explains in his Quest. And if the person you’re interested in is using this posture, you can use it as a way to mirror them.
This gesture is what it sounds like — replicating the person’s body movements. When we’re interested in someone, we subconsciously mimic their body positioning and reflect on their posture.
There are many ways we do this, like yawning, people jumping simultaneously at rock concerts, and even in sexual encounters (which might help when trying to overcome sexual anxiety). On the darker side, mirroring can also instigate angry mobs.
Allan describes it as a way of bonding, getting accepted by others, and creating rapport. He adds, “It says, ‘Look at me. I’m the same as you.’ And that’s what people read.”
Mirroring occurs when one person feels a strong connection to another. Now, while this may indicate attraction, it can also indicate camaraderie and close kinship.
5. Hands and arms gesture
The hands and arms play a role in how people communicate, especially when you’re trying to figure out whether your love interest is giving off signs of attraction.
According to Linda Clemons, body language expert and trainer of Mindvalley’s Body Language for Dating & Attraction Quest, here’s what they indicate:
|Hands open, palms exposed: Truthfulness and authenticity.||Hands closed, palms hidden: Deception or hiding something.|
|Arms unfolded: Confident and open to receive.||Arms folded: Unapproachable or uninterested.|
When the person you desire is speaking with their hands and arms, know that it’s a show of romantic interest and an invitation in.
6. Eye contact
“The eyes are the windows to the soul,” as the saying goes. And with good reason — eye contact is a major love signal.
“[The eyes] allow you to be able to look at another human being and decide, in a primitive way if you will, if that person is going to be a friend or foe,” Linda explains. “It allows you to see the beauty, the integrity, the honesty of another individual.”
Moreover, it triggers the autonomic nervous system to respond to emotions. And that causes the pupils to dilate.
In an average conversation, adults make eye contact between 30% and 60% of the time, according to communications-analytics company Quantified Impressions in a Wall Street Journal article. And to create a sense of emotional connection, it suggests extended eye contact up to 60% to 70% of the time.
7. Facial cues
Most notably, one of the top signs of attraction is the ones people make with their faces. Why? It’s often the first glimpse we have of the other person.
“It’s to make an impact and influence during the initial impressions,” says Linda. They can display how a person feels and indicate their intentions, even in a crowded room.
What’s incredible is that, with 43 different facial muscles, the face can make more than 10,000 expressions. These include smiling, laughing, gazing, flirting with the eyes, and even blushing.
So when someone is looking at you, notice the facial cues. They could be sending messages like “I’m attracted to you,” “I like you,” or “Come hither.”
What Are Signs of Male Attraction?
While there are common signs of attraction that apply to both males and females, there are some subtle cues that are used predominantly by the former. Here are a few of them:
- Giving a quick rise and fall of the eyebrow, called “eyebrow flash”
- Unconscious self-grooming, like stroking his tie or tousling his hair
- Standing with hands on the hips and legs slightly spread
- Flared nostrils and an “open” facial expression
- Facial touch, which combines preening and sensual gestures
Some of these are dating tips that Linda shares in her Quest on Mindvalley. And you can use these powerful signs of male attraction for yourself on your next rendez-vous.
What Are Signs of Female Attraction?
It may be a surprise that women typically exhibit 52 different ways to signal attraction, according to Allan. He adds that men use only about 10.
Here are a few handpicked from the lot to help you awaken your inner sex goddess:
- Pouting and licking her lips
- Gazing through the lashes
- Thrusting a hip outward
- Swaying walk
- Wearing bright, colorful clothes and a fruity, spicy fragrance
These cues can be involuntary signs of attraction. You may not always register them consciously. But you just know.
3 Rules for Reading the Signs of Attraction Accurately
There are rules for effective communication. And while the verbal form has words, phrases, and punctuation, the body, too, has something of the like.
Barbara Pease, co-trainer of Mindvalley’s Mastering Body Language: Truth, Lies, Love & Power Quest, explains, “People who are often described as ‘perceptive’ are those who can read the body language’s words, sentences, and punctuation, and can accurately match them against what’s being said.”
Here are three rules that Barbara and Allan share in their Mindvalley Quest. And it’s important to keep them in mind when reading the signs of attraction:
1. Read gestures in clusters of three
One gesture can have several interpretations, just like how one word can different meanings. For example, the word “dressing” could mean putting on clothes or the sauce you eat with your salad. And in body language, if someone is rubbing their nose, it could mean they’re lying or that their nose is itchy.
A mistake people often make is interpreting one signal at a time. It’s like reading a word in a book and trying to understand the sentence.
To avoid the possibility of a high-five to the face, Allan advises reading gestures in “clusters” (which is another word for “sentence”).
2. Read gestures in context
Understanding context is an essential interpersonal skill. And the same goes for reading body language.
Take the arms cross, for instance, and let’s look at some examples of context and interpretations:
|Example 1||Context: You live in a cold climate and you see someone outside in the dead of winter with their arms crossed.||Interpretation: The person is cold.|
|Example 2||Context: You’ve just pitched a sales presentation and the person crosses their arms.||Interpretation: The person doesn’t like what you said.|
A common mistake many people make when reading body language is to overlook the context. Without it, it’s like seeing someone mouth the words “olive juice” and thinking they’re saying, “I love you.”
3. Look for congruence
Have you heard that phrase, “talks the talk but doesn’t walk the walk”? It simply means that the person doesn’t act in a way that is aligned with the things they say.
When this happens, it raises red flags and there’s more mistrust than trust.
This is why congruence is so important. Allan describes it as “what you’re hearing (the verbal) will match what you’re seeing (the body language).”
And when it’s there, along with the gestures and context, it’ll help you build a better, stronger connection with the other person.
Put Your Attraction Into Action
Chances are, you’re taught how to use grammar properly or the art of writing. But what are the chances you’re taught the nuances of body language?
Now you can with the experts at Mindvalley to guide you. By signing up for an account, you can sample some classes for free. And you can start with these quests:
- Mastering Body Language: Truth, Lies, Love & Power with Allan and Barbara Pease. Decoding other people’s behavior is a valuable skill to have, but mastering your own body language takes you to a whole other level. Allan and Barbara will help you with why you should use your body to speak and how to use it to connect better with others.
- Body Language for Dating & Attraction with Lisa Clemons. There’s a certain level of awe when you show up in your love life with confidence. And with guidance from Lisa, you’ll learn how to make simple, subtle, scientifically-proven shifts in your body language to create instant intrigue and attraction.
The truth is, the body doesn’t lie — the signs of attraction are either there or not. By knowing how to read the subtle signals, you’ll no longer be guessing if someone secretly likes you. You’ll know that they do.