Is someone flirting with you?
Studying human behavior is a complicated endeavor. It’s tricky because, well, we’re complex.
Many scientists consider the human brain “the most complex structure in the known universe.” Containing billions of cells and an immeasurable number of connections, there’s a reason why it’s taken some of history’s most brilliant minds hundreds of years to explain anything about the 3-pound organ.
We now know that the mind-body connection is a real thing. The interactivity between brain, mind, and body cannot be separated more than a computer’s mouse, keyboard, or monitor. We couldn’t function.
Body Language and Flirting: An Undeniable Connection
What about body language? More specifically, what about nonverbal communication? You’ve probably heard the old axiom “93% of all communication is nonverbal.”
Given what we’ve covered so far about the brain, do you see a potential problem with this number? Trying to measure the immeasurable is pointless. More critically, these percentages are meaningless!
What is essential to understand – and say with certainty – is that most human communication is non-verbal. The Nonverbal Group, an independent academic and research group that focuses on nonverbal communication, says that non-verbal communication, including body language, is the most crucial aspect of communication.
What’s this got to do with flirting? Everything.
If you want to know whether or not someone is attracted to you, understanding the nuances of human behavior – or at least recognizing that they exist – is invaluable.
Here’s an example: a sweet guy or gal often walks by your desk and smiles at you. Does this mean they are attracted? Maybe, or maybe they are just a nice person.
We must investigate. Further, we must understand how the brain and body work together; hence, the quick sociology lesson above!
How many times have you wondered if someone is flirting with you? You catch them looking at you out of the corner of your eye, or they seem to stay close when you’re at a social gathering. Was it just you, or were they subtly trying to get your attention?
It’s common to second guess yourself when it comes to a potential suitor, but if you know what to expect, it’s easy to spot when someone is interested. The last thing you want to do is make a move and find out they’re not interested. So, you need to know how to tell if someone is flirting with you.
Eight Scientific Signs of Flirting
Everyone needs a little help for love and attraction, but did you think science might give you the assistance you need? How many times have you got the courage to make a move on someone, and you fell flat on your face?
Thankfully, there’s a scientific way to tell if someone is into you that can give you the assurance you need. It can help you prevent the sting of rejection or avoid someone with whom you don’t reciprocate their feelings. Here are eight ways to tell if someone is flirting with you, and it’s science.
Blushing happens quite often for some folks, but there’s science behind this reaction, according to ABC News. When you blush, you’re activating your sympathetic nervous system. There are many reasons why your face can turn red, but anxiety is likely the underlying cause.
Have you ever experienced extreme anxiety, and your face turns red and is hot to the touch? It’s because of the surge of adrenaline that’s released. If someone is embarrassed or feeling the pangs of anxiety, it causes their heart rate to increase. As the heat rises, it causes the blood vessels to dilate, which helps send more oxygen and blood flow to the body.
The facial veins are very susceptible to extra adrenaline. These veins are more vulnerable than others in your body, so you don’t blush all over. When it comes to flirting, it’s only natural for a person to feel a burst of anxiety when experiencing strong feelings.
They can’t help but blush because if they’re trying to get the nerve to come to talk to you or to ask you out, their anxiety is in overdrive. This surge of adrenaline causes the discoloration on their face, and it can indicate that someone is into you. You should note that it can also be caused by makeup, rosacea, social anxiety, and high blood pressure.
2. Feet Placement
The direction of the feet can also be very indicative if someone is flirtatious. Oddly enough, this is something that a person does without even thinking about it. Consequently, their feet will point in your direction if they’re into you.
According to The Telegraph, it’s a subconscious compass that guides them in the direction they desire. Notice your behaviors towards something you want. If you’re in the presence of an attractive person, notice how your feet point.
The next time you want to see if someone is looking in your direction, check their feet. You don’t want to find that their feet are facing toward the door. Sadly, this means they have little to no interest in you.
Staring can be done for many reasons, but they can’t take their eyes off you when someone is into you. It’s also not uncommon for someone to stare if they think your outfit is too loud or your hair is in an odd style, but they will quickly move on to something else. Another interesting fact is that if someone is staring at you because they’re interested, their pupils will dilate.
The next time you catch someone who can’t take their eyes off you, look closely at their pupils. Are their pupils larger and dilated? People who will gaze at you and don’t break their eye contact certainly like what they see.
However, if their eye contact is broken and pupils aren’t dilated, then you need to wait till you see other signs to make a move.
4. Body Language
If a person stands directly in front of you and has their arms crossed, looking at the ground, they’re probably not sending you any flirtatious vibes. You want to see someone with their legs and arms uncrossed, and when they lift their head to look at you, they smile.
According to the National Library of Medicine, when someone wants to engage with you, they will uncross their arms and legs. So, if someone is flirting, their body language will show that they’re open and receptive. If you notice them bring their head up when you look at them and give you a grin, they’re definitely flirting.
5. Rummaging Through Purses or Pockets
You already know that your nerves are in overdrive when you’re strongly attracted to someone. It can cause your face to turn red, but you will also fidget. A woman may go through her purse many times as it’s something to distract and help with her anxiety.
A man may play with his car keys, jingle something in his pockets, or rub his head repeatedly. The difference would be if the woman held her bag close to her, clinching it. That would show closed-off behavior.
When someone is attracted to another person, they don’t want anything to stand in the way, so they will find something to fidget with it to ease their angst. Holding the purse constantly sends a different message than rummaging through it.
6. Voice Tone
Another interesting fact is that a person’s voice is likely to lower when they’re attracted to someone. A woman’s voice may become huskier and more profound as it shows she delves into her loving, sultry, and more passionate side. Men don’t usually experience a drop in their voice, but the same hormones cause their voices to become a higher pitch and softer.
It’s fascinating what this surge of hormones running through your body does to you, but it’s beneficial in determining if someone is into you or not.
When someone’s flirting with you, they might mirror your body positions. Why would someone do this? Well, it’s a subconscious thing, and they’re not trying to copy you, but they want to establish rapport.
The suitor may be using it as a test to see if you pick up on their advances. You can also see if someone likes you back before asking them out. It’s very similar to the positioning of the feet and the subconscious cues they show, as there’s something unique about all these extra hormones surging that make you do crazy things.
8. Expressive Behaviors
Expressive behavior is a vast field that can encompass many things, and there are both discreet and untactful ways of using them. When someone engages in flirtatious body language, they may add in suggestive behaviors to let you know they’re interested. This means they’re taking their body language one step further and exposing parts of themselves to you in a subtle manner.
For instance, women often like to show off their vulnerabilities through their necks or arms. It’s also an odd coincidence that this is where most ladies put their perfume. When a person tilts their head, it exposes their pheromones.
A pheromone is simply a chemical that you produce that profoundly affects another person as it changes their behavior. These behavior-altering agents are potent. Have you ever seen a lady take her hair down, toss it around, or play with her locks?
The female is trying to get attention, and their pheromones are in overdrive. A man may take his shirt off to expose his muscles, as their chest is often a sign of pride. You may also notice a guy lifting the sleeve of his arm to display his muscles.
When a person wants you to notice them, and they’ve taken their flirting to the next level, there will be little suggestive behaviors that prove their interest. Unlike some of the other methods listed, this one is hard to deny.
Five Types of Flirting
Here are the five types of flirting (and some potential signs someone is flirting with you)
As the name suggests, physical flirting is all about contact. It’s also the flirting most popular among women. According to Jeffrey Hall, the study’s lead author, they’re the kind most likely to go alone to a bar or club to find a possible mate.
Potential signs: Touching/rubbing the arm, sitting or standing close in proximity, leaning in during a conversation.
Playful flirts see the act of flirting as something of a game, as harmless fun. They throw caution to the wind and just display interest – and often to multiple people. Men and women use playful flirting at about the same rate. Extroverts, understandably, are more comfortable with this “go with the flow” type of approach.
Potential signs: Physical touch, inattentiveness, darting in/out of the conversation.
Polite flirting entails a mix of compliments, niceties, and standoffish behavior. Introverts dominate this group, while it ranks fourth of five among extroverts. Polite teasers also ensure the use of proper manners and decorum. Unless you happen to stoke a polite flirt’s interests or share the polite flirting traits, it’ll probably be an uneventful meetup!
Potential signs: Shyness followed by sudden attentiveness, various social niceties, moving closer as the conversation progresses, and increasing openness in body and conversation.
Sincere flirts ‘Strongly Agree’ with the statement, “Showing sincere interest is the best way to let someone know you are interested in them.” They take a more low-key approach to flirting than physical and playful teases and are a bit more outgoing in their process than the polite type. If they like you, you’ll know; if they don’t, you’ll know.
Potential signs: Strong eye contact, active listening, sudden playfulness.
Traditional flirts are the most likely to agree with the statement “Men should make the first move.”
If you’re going on a first date with a traditionalist, you’re probably not going to a hip bar or club. As with the sincere type, traditional flirts believe firmly in getting to know someone and getting to the point.
Potential signs: Serious attitude, good eye contact, “accidental touching,” respect for boundaries
Final Thoughts on Knowing the Signs Someone is Flirting
When you have a crush on someone, it’s normal for you to experience butterflies in your stomach. Your heart will race, and your face will blush. Your body gives subtle clues to let you know that you’re falling hard. When two people start a relationship, many fascinating chemical reactions occur with your hormones and throughout your central nervous system.
Oddly enough, these reactions also occur when two people are trying to make a connection with one another. Isn’t your body fascinating? The little things that happen when someone flirts can be backed by science. Now, armed with knowledge, you will know if someone is interested and whether or not you should make the next move.
In keeping with the theme of the introduction, we’re going to throw some science at you. Scientific evidence, while not infallible, is certainly more trustworthy than the “Oh my…Did you see that?!? She SMILED at me, bro! I’m making my move!”
“Good luck, man!” (You’ll need it.)
Researchers from the University of Kansas found five main types of flirting: physical, playful, polite, sincere, and traditional. Interestingly, there were no significant gender differences in any five types. Women, however, did score higher on all styles besides playful.
Your intuition, understanding of human behavior, and flirting methods – yes, flirting (!) – may help someone find the person of their dreams.