Desire triggers is a term I have coined. It means anything you do that increase a man’s attraction to you. Slimness is only one such trigger – and it is NOT universal. Once you understand the other triggers, you can start to feel more confident around men because you will see how powerful these triggers are. It’s like a beautiful empowered buffet of fun strategies. You definitely won’t turn every man’s head, but you will get more attention than complaining about your fat stomach can ever give you.
Out there in the real world these triggers are guidelines – one man may be more affected by one trigger than another. You will start to see each man as individual, and so start being able to honour your own uniqueness. Whatever desirability shopping list any man – or any woman, for that matter – has in their head, when we fall for someone, we fall for that unique individual.
Desire Trigger #1: Validation
Imagine you are in a room of 30 men, all within the age range that you would consider for dating. How many of them do you think you would find attractive?
5? Maybe less.
Now imagine a man is in a room full of 30 women. How many of them would he find attractive?
My guess is 15 – probably more.
When it comes to attraction to the opposite sex, men generally find a greater number of women attractive than we do men.
This is because men validate themselves on their sexual attractiveness to the opposite sex, in a way women do not.
Why is this? It is not because they are seedy, low life animals who choose to think lewd thoughts all day long.
To answer this question, we need to go back thousands of years to our cavedwelling ancestors and the fascinating field of evolutionary psychology. This is just a fancy term for the fact that our thinking is far more influenced by our primitive past than we would like to admit.
In spite of our technological developments of the past few centuries, our bodies and brains have not really evolved past those of our tribal, cavedwelling ancestors. One example of this is that when you feel stressed, a lot of lightning-quick physical responses take place in your body. Cortisol and adrenaline are released, your digestion shuts down, your heart rate increases, and blood is diverted to your muscles. Why? To enable you to fight or flee the man-eating tiger your primitive mind thinks is about to attack you.
The main fact you need to grasp about this is that while our conscious minds may think that life is all about happiness, fulfilment, making a difference to the world etc etc, we are all hard-wired with a far more basic life goal:
In cavedwelling times, life was in constant danger. Not just from man-eating tigers, but threats from neighbouring tribes and extreme weather events. There wasn’t much call for self-help seminars in those days because we were too busy just staying alive. And we needed our tribe for this.
It makes sense that each individual’s chances of survival – and passing on their genes – were vastly increased by belonging to a tribe that could produce as many babies as possible and produce babies that were as healthy and strong as possible.
Quantity AND quality – the tribal dream.
I haven’t read any research on this, but my theory about the 15 vs 5 apparent conflict between men and women is that in tribal times, the men of the tribe were responsible for the quantity aspect – and we women were in charge of quality control.
What do I mean?
If a man sleeps with a lot of women, he has a higher chance of fathering more children, so bolstering the numbers in his tribe and passing on his genes. However many men a woman sleeps with, generally she can at most produce one baby a year.
You can see who would be better at increasing the sheer number of babies in any given cavedwelling tribe. Men. Think of them as being in charge of output.
In those days, we women were the ones who raised the young. We were the quality control department of the tribe. A vast tribe is useless if the males cannot hunt or fight off attackers. Therefore we women evolved to be more choosy than men. Research has shown that today women are more attracted to males over 6 foot tall. (If this is not you, stick with me here. I’ll get to individual differences later on). This is because in tribal times, a taller mate equalled a better hunter, which equalled more food for your babies.
There is no survival advantage today in women fancying taller men, just as there is no survival advantage in men finding multiple women attractive. But we are wired like this.
(I realise this paints a rather depressing picture of men. The good news is that is in no way universal, as I explain in the very last desire trigger.)
Because of this wiring, men validate themselves on their sexual attractiveness to women.
And who is better able to help a man validate himself – a billboard of a perfect looking supermodel, or a living, breathing woman who is not so flawless, but is showing she feels attracted to him?
One of the most liberating aspects of dating after a long marriage was trying out the act-as-if-you-are-hot-fox persona. This may feel uncomfortable to you, so just try out what feels challenging but not overly risky.
A sidelong glance across the bar (If he’s not interested he won’t return your look, and you risk nothing).
A joke about the cordon blue snack range while queueing in the works cafeteria (if he’s not interested he will smile and turn away, and you risk nothing).
Remember that you are not one of those 30 men in the room with one woman – with a 5 in 30 chance of success. You are a woman, and may as well act as if you have a 15 in 30 chance of success – that’s a whopping 50%!
Validating a man is not about throwing yourself at him or sleeping with him on the first date. This is often the road to temporary attraction and a swift rejection.
Here are three ways you can validate a man with no emotional risk:
- A) Ask him to do a small favour
One of men’s roles in the tribe was to provide and protect. If you can tap into this in a low key way, you allow him to tap into his primal self. Ask him to reach up and get you something. Ask him to hold your jacket for a minute. Ask him to open something for you. To move something for you.
- B) Compliment him
Thank him for doing whatever you asked him to do (above) then compliment him. “It’s so nice to have a helpful man here”. Tell him you are impressed – as long as you genuinely are. Compliment his shirt. His guitar playing. His taste in X Y and Z. Be specific – it shows you value him as an individual.
- C) Tell him what you find attractive
This is for you if you are in a relationship. “You look great in that X” or “I love it when you do X”, whether in an intimate or non-sexual context, allows him to feel that you have sexual interest in him. His primal brain wakes up and says “Hello. Let’s validate ourselves!” Your behaviour will trigger increased desire in him. Do not underestimate the power of this strategy!
This was an excerpt from my for female clients-only book Desire Triggers: The 8 Attraction Factors that tap into male psychology and have absolutely nothing to do with your weight.