Approaching someone of interest can be daunting. What if he/she rejects me? What if they’re taken? These questions will never be revealed unless you build up the confidence to approach.
The approach is extremely important, your attitude and your persona are just some of the factors that determine whether someone will engage in conversation with you, and want to get know you further.
No two women are the same, and what we look for in an approach could differ. However, I believe we could agree collectively that respect and politeness is a common denominator in what we are looking for.
Personally, mannerisms is a must for me, I need to gather from the start that you are respectful. If you Address me with words such as ’oi, yo or a whistle’, I wouldn’t even give you the time of day, as I’ve already formed my opinion on you. At this stage, my name is not known to you, but there are other ways to address me, ’excuse me miss’ ’hi, can I have a few minutes of your time’. This is just examples of course.
Moreover, what appeals to me? In all honesty, if you look good, you have my attention, not to sound shallow. However, what follows plays a more significant role. Confidence is so attractive! Don’t overdo it, there’s a thin line between confident and arrogant. Be yourself, don’t put on a facade, we see through this.
A sense of humour? This is a must, you need to be able to make me laugh. Approaching someone can be awkward, so light-hearted banter makes both people involved more relaxed.
Additionally, I believe you should approach someone without expectations.
The person you are approaching may not be interested, maybe in a relationship or simply just doesn’t want to be approached. If you don’t get the response you want, just accept the rejection gracefully, there is plenty more fish in the sea, no one is obliged to want to get to know you further.
To assist me with this post further, I was able to get two women to share their perspective on ’being approached’.
I understand that I am a complicated magical creature. I go to bars alone, just to try a new scotch. I’d rather shop online than to ever try on a dress at a store. I can swear like a sailor but talk to your 90-year-old grandmother about the beautiful melodies of Glenn Miller.
And for this reason, I find it interesting that men have such a difficult time approaching me. Maybe I give off a highly confident, unapproachable vibe. Or maybe my RBF is so good that the men who do approach me, go straight to the “Sex Tactic”. You know what I mean. “Love that dress. It’ll look better on my floor!” No seriously, I had that happen.
Whether your approach is subtle or direct, there is a true art to approaching the opposite sex in order to strike up a conversation or even ask them out on a date. Here are some of my personal faves and a few No No’s when it comes to being approached by a guy.
Eye Contact, but no “Stalker Eyes”- When I see a guy lock eyes with me, or even if, on a date, I see that he is really looking at my eyes, it instantly puts me at ease. I want you to look at me and be engaging. But don’t look at me like you’re secretly undressing me in your mind. (Don’t worry though, we know you are!)
Be Funny vs Sexy- Being sexy with your approach is like eating dinner and starting with the dessert. Instead of going straight to the bedroom talk, why not try making me laugh. There are tons of studies that show that women appreciate a guy who can make her laugh. And why do you think that is? At the end of the day, if you can laugh together, you have a good chance of building something of value, rather than that bar hookup that ends with me deleting your number.
Compliment, Compliment, Compliment- There’s a great Chris Rock comedy special where he talks about what men need versus what women need. And he’s right in that one of the biggest things that women need is compliments. What this means is, we want you to acknowledge us and more than just “Oh, I like your eyes.” Don’t get me wrong, we love that. But if we talk about work and I mention how I was the youngest manager promoted to my current position, you might say something like “Wow. So you really work hard, and it’s paid off!” What that tells me is that you are listening to me, really listening, and you hold value to my work ethic. This, in turn, makes me feel that you are complimenting me as a person, and not just as a chick who you might want to see naked!
So go out there and take charge. Oh, and ladies, the approve can apply to you too. We often make a few mistakes with our approaches, but I think the biggest one we make is thinking that we CAN’T approach guys. So if I could give the best advice for women, just do it already! Buy that coffee for the hot guy who rides his bike to the coffee shop. Ask the guy at the gym what his arm routine is. Finally, talk to the cute tech support guy at work. The approach may be a fail, but an even bigger fail is sitting alone wishing you could have done something!
When it comes to being approached with romantic intent, I think I prefer to be approached by that person in the same way that they’d approach anyone else. I don’t really like being flirted with by someone I’ve just met, so if they just keep it friendly and try to get to know me a little at first, then I’ll feel more comfortable!
For instance, let’s say I’m at a party – I find it really off-putting when a guy just comes up to me and instantly starts trying out chat-up lines and such. I much prefer it when they start off with a casual conversation, and then if we vibe well, then the flirty conversation will naturally follow.
I don’t like being approached in the street. On the occasion that it does happen, it tends to be from older men which makes me incredibly uncomfortable. If being approached in public, I don’t think I’d mind if it was from a ‘familiar stranger’ e.g. a regular at the bus stop who you acknowledge every now and then.
When being approached in general, I tend to seek authenticity. I can sense when someone is putting on a front with me and it makes me have an aversion towards that person. Also, I don’t really like small talk so if I can end up in a deep conversation with someone pretty soon after meeting them, it’s a sure sign that we’d get on well.
I believe a smile is pretty inviting. It instantly sets the mood for the rest of the approach. It means that the person has made a good impression already without even having to say anything at all!
An example of a time I was put off by an approach – It was about 10 pm and I was waiting for the tube to get back home (when I still lived in London). I think I was about 17 at the time because I was doing NCS. There weren’t many people on the platform but a man (probably in his 40's) approached me and his first words were something like, “You look nice. Where are you going?” I lied and said I was going to a different station. But he definitely would’ve known I was going in the same direction, as we were both waiting for the tube on the same side.
He asked if he could have my number and I said no, he then asked if I had a boyfriend. He was being persistent in his questions and wasn’t taking no for an answer. As soon as the tube came a couple minutes later, I quickly legged it up the platform so I’d be in a different carriage to him. I then ran home once I got off at my stop.
As you can imagine, being a woman, it wasn’t a comfortable position to be in at all, and I was worried for my safety. I definitely think that men need to avoid approaching women when they are on their own, especially at night. We already feel vulnerable as it is, so even if the person is harmless, we’ve experienced enough difficulties with men and heard enough stories to know how things could end.
As a woman myself, this post focused mainly on men approaching women.
However, I am very aware that the old-fashioned idea that sees men as the initiators is no longer the case.
Many women fear being seen as ”desperate” or ”too full on” if they approach a man. Hopefully, my next post will visit this viewpoint and help us to see what a few men think about being approached.
Thanks so much for reading this post, I would love to know your views on this topic. Comment below.