Monday, 15 May 2006

Scientific Dating Tips

Some of us are pretty unlucky in love. The old tricks of buying flowers, buying dinner and whispering sweet nothings just isn’t working. Perhaps its time to turn to science to win us the heart of that special person. But can science successfully play Cupid? Here are some tips from society’s most lucky in love, the scientists.

Make your Body talk
Forget the pick up lines. Body language is more important than the smoothest of opening lines. When you meet someone for the first time, 55% of the initial impression is based on your body language, 38% is based on the tone, speed and style of your voice and only 7% on what you actually say! So what sort of body language should we employ? Mirroring the other person’s movements and posture is a good start. Most people do not realise they are being mirrored, but will view you favourably. Adopting particularly masculine or feminine postures can also help, like putting your hands in your pockets to puff out your chest.

When I look into your eyes...
It may seem like a pretty simple act, but looking into someone’s eyes can have a powerful impact. Gazing into someone’s eyes lights up parts of the brain associated with feeling good. Psychologist Arthur Arun performed an interesting study where he asked people, who had previously never met, to stare into each other’s eyes for four minutes. Their feelings of attraction rocketed compared to staring at other parts of the body. Indeed, one of these couples ended up getting married!

Our pupils dilate when we are interested in at what we are looking, and it has been shown that people are attracted to large pupils – in the way that people find big-eyed puppies cute! Indeed, in medieval Italy, ladies put bella donna in their eyes to make them look bigger. This is not particularly wide spread these days, as bella donna is a poison!

Be afraid, be very afraid
There is a strong connection between anxiety, arousal and attraction, and it has been found that couples who meet when physiologically aroused, or who experience fear together on a first date, have an increased chance of having romantic feelings for each other. No one is quite sure why this happens – it could be that the adrenaline rush from the danger is misinterpreted as attraction – but it suggests that a bungee jump first date could be a good idea. Or at least, choose the suspense or horror film over the chick flick.

Be Funny
Love and laughter go together. If you can make your partner laugh, you have a stronger chance of them falling for you. If you have ever noticed that couples in love tend to find each other funny whilst the rest of us think that their jokes are pretty bad, it is because a compatible sense of humour seems to be one of the keys to love.

Can there be more than one “one and only”?
Do we each only have one “soul mate”? Is there really such a thing as finding your one and only beloved in a world of over 6 billion people? Evolutionary psychologists at Indiana and New Mexico Universities used computer simulations to examine this question of how to best choose your partner from a set of prospective lovers. They set up their experiment such that the person making the choice of partner examined a bunch of potential partners to determine how attractive they were, and how high he should set his sights. Once this decision is made, based on those prospective partners he has seen, he goes for the next person who he comes across that fits his criteria.

The researchers found that one should only examine 9% of all the possible partners out there, before making your choice. For example, if you were at a party of 100 people looking for love, you should only scrutinize the first 9 possible mates you come across before focusing your attention on that special someone. Examining less than this number means that you do not collect enough information to make a good choice. On the other hand, examining more means that it is more likely that you wont choose your best possible choice as they are more likely to be amongst those you examined and then ignored before choosing. Whilst this model is far too simplistic to be an accurate representation of the search for love, it tells us that we should not search forever, as it is likely that we may let our true love pass us by.

So let us know how these tips work for you, as it would seem that love does not follow a rulebook.

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  1. Marc, Marc, Marc

    According to Clio Cresswell's book "Mathematics and Sex" it isn't 9% you should examine. In her book, if you have 100 choices for a partner, you can optimise your partner by testing 37 of them ("testing" can mean whatever you want it to mean) and then choosing the next person in line who is better than all 37 previous partners.

  2. Jacqui, Jacqui, Jacqui

    I reckon 37 is a bit out of my league, although it could be fun to try. I've seen 9% quoted a few times, perhaps Clio is just looking for an excuse to date more people!

    9% does seem a little low though, my thoughts would put the answer somewhere closer to 37% than 9%, where do you think it should be?

  3. Attraction Explained: Your Social Circle

    Our social circle is one of the biggest determining factors in who we meet. Going back a bit, in a 1956 study 70% of married American couples lived within 20 blocks of each other before marriage. Now admittedly that was 1956 and this is now, but the basic principle holds true - you're more likely to find success with someone closer to you than you are someone further way.

    So, how do we use this to improve our chances? Simple - we expand our social circle!

    1) Network, Network, Network
    2) Organise a night out, invite all your friends, tell them to bring friends
    3) Join a club. A sports club, a movie club, a dinner club, a sex club - whatever you fancy!
    4) Don’t try and jump into an encounter or relationship with every attractive person you meet.
    5) Put people in contact with each other.

    Read Further... & More Articles on Attraction Explained.

    At Attraction Explained we provide a range of free articles and media teaching you the skills you need to improve your luck in love.

    Attraction Explained

  4. Wow! I never knew that if both of you feels afraid at the first date, then you both share the same romantic feeling for each other. This is great, thanks for sharing this.

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  5. I experienced the number one dating tip. My current boyfriend did that when we first met. He looked very great. Thanks for these helpful tips.
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  6. I experienced the number one dating tip. My current boyfriend did that when we first met. He looked very great. Thanks for these helpful tips.
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  7. This doesn't always work. I've tried some of it while on the bar and some girls show different reactions.

  8. Making someone laugh doesn't mean you'll go romantic with this person. You just making someone laugh anf that's it.

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  9. I do really agree with such scientific tips, but it may look unnatural while dating, and if my date is staring at me I would probably think smth is wrong)) Every coin has 2 sides! By the way, mixing science and feelings is a bit wrong, love is not just chemical reaction, I suppose
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