Sunday, July 11, 2010

Indicator of Interest

When you meet someone, how do you know they're into you? How do you know they're willing for you to move to the next step?

You look for the clues, verbal/nonverbal and conscious/subconscious, that the other person is saying "Hey, you're okay by me."

That, my friends, is what we call an indicator of interest, or an IOI.

IOIs get easier to read the longer you know a person and the further into a relationship you get, but they also get easier to read if you know what to look for. They are often very subtle, or at least they seem to be until you get the hang of it.

Everyone has their own IOI style, so the invitation to make the initial approach can be the absolute hardest to spot. Here initial approach can mean physically (e.g. the "come hither" look) or as part of a conversation, giving permission to get a phone number or ask on a date.

I can't speak for the men, since I am not obviously not one, but here's a few things they can look for from us as we indicate interest.

Maintaining eye contact - This a big one from me, since I'm a people watcher. I'm mostly looking at you, that's a very good sign.

Physical contact - Arm touching, hand on the knee, a non-sexual touch while we're talking, no matter if it's as I'm making a point, as a reassuring gesture, or even not, I don't touch people I don't at least like.

Offering my name - This is a big one. My name is very important to me, and if I'm giving it to you before you ask for it, it means I want to trust you with it. I am most definitely thinking "I think this is going well."

Maintaining an open body position - If I'm sitting down, my legs are almost always crossed, but if my arms are not folded and instead are lightly placed on my lap - I'm into you. I may even try to point my body in your direction. If we're standing or walking, the closer I am to you, the more into you I am. I may even so much as switch my purse to the side you aren't on, so that my hand is available for you to hold (during a date, not a first conversation, obviously). I once spent an entire date with my arms crossed as we walked around for close to a couple of miles as we played tourist in our city. I was NOT into him at all. If it's the first conversation, and we're standing, the more open my arms are, the better. Again, arm-folding is not as good as one hand fiddling with my necklace and the other just loosely hanging to my side.

Smiling and laughing - Even if you're not the next Brian Regan, a smile is always good and a laugh is better, especially if it's particularly hearty. And if I catch your eye across the room and smile? Also very good.

So, there you have it, a few of the things I know I do when I'm trying to send the "I like you enough to move forward" message. Good luck!

Ladies, anything I'm missing?


Roxie said...

Not just touching his arm, but if I'm touching my arm, or my neck. Those are very good signs.

Body language is such a fun language to learn because you already speak it, you just might not do it fluently or fully understand it.

Saimi said...

If someone can't hold a good conversation or loves to talk about themself, I usually tune out and answer with just a umm.

If I start to Umm, it's not a good thing.