Why do some guys seem to have all the luck with women? Why do some women go for jerks? Is it possible to make ourselves more attractive?
Sexual attraction is a complex phenomenon that we may never fully understand. It can be so counterintuitive that sometimes success seems out of our control and so illogical that some people just give up.
What makes us attractive? The first thing that comes to mind is physical attractiveness: being in good shape, being well groomed, having attractive features, or dressing well. Some scientists think that attractiveness is related to the symmetry of our facial features. Others have complex theories about the spacing of features.
Science aside, most people agree to some extent on what makes someone physically attractive. While different people have different preferences, physical attractiveness is something that is very intuitive.
My biopsychology professor in college claimed that attractiveness could be explained biologically by a person’s interest in preserving their DNA. He taught that women were attracted to men with resources (so that they could protect them and their offspring) and that men were attracted to women with the characteristics of fertility (who would be more likely to bear multiple children.)
While this theory seems to have worked well in our society, it certainly isn’t the only factor affecting attractiveness. There are plenty of physically attractive, rich men who don’t have any luck with women, and plenty of men without money (or looks) who do just fine.
No matter how good-looking or biologically attractive you are, there must be some sort of chemistry between you and someone else before there is attraction. Every one knows what it is, but chemistry is a very difficult thing to quantify. Some people are better at creating it than others, but why?
The type of attractiveness that transcends physical or biological attractiveness is what I call spiritual attractiveness. Spiritual attractiveness is a kind of gravity that creates the chemistry that draws people together. While physical and biological attractiveness are hard to change, you can actually do something about spiritual attractiveness.
Over years of observing the opposite sex, I’ve picked up on a few interesting tendencies in dating that hold true on average. Maybe they can help us figure out how spiritual attraction works.
Clue #1: Ignorance is Bliss
When I was in high school, I downplayed the fact that I was in advanced classes because smart kids were “nerds.” I wanted to be more like the “cool” kids. It seems as if intelligence can have an adverse affect on spiritual attractiveness.
This is how I imagine the spiritual attractiveness curve would look like if someone was able to plot it against intelligence on a graph. While there are different types of intelligence, for the sake of this discussion I am referring to people who are “book smart” (meaning they do well in school).
At the very lowest levels of intelligence, attractiveness is also low for obvious reasons. A person needs a basic level of cognitive ability before the opposite sex will consider him. The first peak of attractiveness on my chart is at a relatively low level of intelligence. At this level, a person is smart enough to function in society, but not so smart that he questions himself.
I imagine that spiritual attractiveness starts to diminish as intelligence increases past this first level. The more intelligent a person is, the more he overanalyzes himself to the point of killing his confidence. When confidence is gone and intelligence is relatively high, the attractiveness curve dips to its lowest point at full “nerdiness.”
If you are reading this article, my guess is that you are an intelligent person and at this point, you’re either offended or depressed. If this is the case, don’t click away just yet. In my model, the most attractive people of all are also the most intelligent. This is because I believe that a person has the ability to figure out where he went wrong and increase his spiritual attractiveness.
Clue #2: The Harder You Try, the Less Attractive You Are
This is probably the most frustrating aspect of dating. When I first started trying to meet girls, it seemed like I could never win the heart of the one I went after. There was a direct correlation between how hard I tried and how miserably I failed.
How many times have you heard the same old story of a girl who keeps going back to her jerk of an ex-boyfriend? It’s as if no matter how hard you try, she always goes back to the guy who doesn’t care about her.
At the risk of sounding like my entire philosophy is based on the movie “Swingers,” it illustrates this point perfectly. Mike, played by John Favreau, is obsessed with his ex-girlfriend through most of the movie. He constantly checks his messages to see if she called.
His friends finally coax him to try to loosen up and see what else is out there. To their dismay, he messes up several opportunities because he can’t let her go. At the climax of the movie, he learns to relax enough to have a really great time with another girl. He regains his confidence and wouldn’t you know it, the minute he forgets about his ex, she calls.
Clue #3: Feast or Famine
My friends and I used to joke that in dating, it was “feast or famine,” meaning that opportunities seemed to come all at once or not at all. During long droughts without the possibility of a date, I thought that I would never find anyone. Then, out of nowhere there would be two or three girls interested. Why did this happen?
For some reason, people in relationships seem to be more attractive. When you get into a relationship and stop dating, all of a sudden everyone wants to date you. When I worked as a bartender, some of the cocktail waitresses I worked with wore fake wedding rings hoping to fend off predatory men, but instead, it only increased unwanted approaches.
The Law of Attraction
The Law of Attraction was introduced to the world by “The Secret,” a movie about attracting what you want into your life. I would recommend this movie to anyone who wants to get a better understanding of why life tends to unfold the way it does. The Law states that your thoughts and feelings manifest into your reality. Could this help to explain the mystery of dating?
At first glance, it doesn’t seem to help. If the law is true, then why does trying too hard reduce attractiveness? In this way of thinking, it would seem logical to assume that if a person has strong thoughts and feelings for someone else, then they would attract the other person into their life by trying; but just the opposite seems to happen.
And what about intelligence? Aren’t smart people better at thinking? Shouldn’t they therefore be better at attracting things into their lives via thoughts?
The Law of Subtlety
One piece of wisdom that has helped me immensely in my life is the idea that the difference between success and failure in life is often subtle. If it were more clear, then many more people would choose success.
In light of this, I like to ask myself what piece of information the majority of people are missing. What wisdom is in front of my eyes, but does not seem obvious?
Often, the answer to this question is given to me by my subconscious. I find that if I have been working on a problem for hours without an answer, the best thing to do is to put the problem down and do something completely different. I change my environment, relax, and forget about it, then… poof… the answer magically appears.
Sometimes the best way to attract an elusive answer is to declare that you seek it, and then completely forget about it by retreating to a state of relaxation, comfort, and security. I think that the Law of Attraction can provide some insight into this kind of problem solving. Let’s take a closer look:
What is the difference in your subconscious mental state between desperately trying to solve the problem and relaxing? As you are wrestling with the problem, subconsciously you are feeling desperate. The harder you reach for the answer, the more you are confirming to yourself that you do not have the answer. Even if you are showing confidence on the outside, your subconscious keeps recreating the reality of being without the answer.
In a relaxed state, the pressure is taken off of your subconscious. By feeling good, you are projecting confidence that the answer will come. The subconscious is free to get creative and deliver your answer.
This line of reasoning might also help to explain some of our dating clues.
Ignorance is bliss… Why does intelligence seem to hinder attractiveness up to a certain level? At first it would seem logical to assume that since smarter people are better thinkers, the Law of Attraction must make them more spiritually attractive, but I think that the truth is a more subtle.
As intelligence increases, the ability to question also increases. People with above average intelligence tend to question themselves more which erodes their confidence at the subconscious level.
The Law of Attraction works when the mind’s thoughts and feelings are focused on one outcome. If you are constantly questioning yourself, you are confusing your subconscious with mixed signals.
Can you see how ignorance might really be bliss? A blissfully ignorant person doesn’t question themselves all the time and has the advantage of remaining focused on their goal.
The most attractive people of all have learned not to question themselves. They have great confidence in their intelligence and spiritual attractiveness.
The Harder you Try… It seems counterintuitive to think that trying hard might actually hurt your chances of getting something that you want, but let’s examine it on the subconscious level. Just like trying to find an answer to a problem, trying really hard in dating reinforces the fact to your subconscious that you don’t have what you want. As your subconscious keeps getting messages that you don’t have what you want, the Law of Attraction brings you more of what your subconscious is thinking and feeling.
The same principle applies to excessive feelings of want. The more you want something, the more desperate you are to get it. Desperation, by Law of Attraction, breeds more desperation and less of what you want.
The paradox, of course, is that it’s easier to get something that you don’t want than something you want badly. This concept is well known by master negotiators. The side that can walk away from the deal because they have options has the power.
This may sound unromantic or inhuman. You’re probably thinking “it’s no fun to not want anything!” In response, I don’t think that the Law of Attraction is telling us not to want anything, but instead to control our feelings of excessive want. Desire is natural and human, but desperation is a sign of unbalance.
Feast or Famine… The subtleties of the Law of Attraction can help to explain this phenomenon. If you are in a “dry spell” because you haven’t had a date in awhile, you are subconsciously confirming feelings of loneliness. As your subconscious feels alone, the Law of Attraction brings you more of it.
As soon as you get a date, your subconscious feels great! Your confidence comes back and the Law of Attraction makes you more attractive.
How to Become More Attractive
The real lesson of all of this is to develop yourself from the inside until you love yourself enough that your confidence and self-assurance shines through from your subconscious so that all the world can see.
The most attractive people of all are extremely secure and at ease with themselves. Once you are so comfortable with yourself that you don’t need anyone else to make you happy, the Law of Attraction will bring you what you have wanted all along.
I am not talking about arrogance, conceit, or egotism because all of these paradigms come from insecurity. Insecure people tend to hide behind facades of pretend confidence.
The fake confidence approach might work in the short run, but since it is built on a lie, it eventually collapses. People with fake confidence tend to attract insecure partners. This, of course, is the recipe for a bad relationship filled with jealousy and mistrust.
Secure people tend to attract partners who are also secure. A relationship between two people who trust not only themselves, but each other, is a thing of beauty! Ironically, the happiest relationships in the world are between two people who are happy with themselves.
Since the two people don’t depend on each other, they can focus on giving instead of getting. Since they don’t need each other to make them happy, they can focus on making each other even happier. Since they trust that they would be okay without the other, they are free to trust the relationship.
Developing true security and self-love takes a lot of work. You have to spend a lot of time getting to know yourself before you can start to build this level of self-trust. The path is difficult, but the rewards are invaluable. Not only will you be more attractive, but your power will expand until the world is at your fingertips.
Order The Secret.