Once you've piqued a man/woman's interest enough for him/her to be attracted to you, how do you keep him/her there?
One way to enhance the attraction and keep his/her interest is play hard-to-get.
Playing hard-to-get when done right is much more important than most people think, realize or are willing to admit.
Mystery and elusiveness is fundamental to our very nature. God, the universe, the weather, human nature, male-female relationships are all examples of things that are beautiful, very real and so easy to see (or find) but so hard to figure out and pin down.
We first become conscious of our ability to be mysterious and elusive when our caregivers can no longer anticipate our every need -- especially the need for a relationship.
As children we did not have the vocabulary for initiating human interaction that is exciting, stimulating, arousing and breathtaking, the game of hide-and-seek became the language by which we invited another to create such a relationship.
We can still see this language of interaction as children happily hide behind other adults, or under towels or sheets or wherever. When he or she is "found" the child says, "Okay, this time, you hide." As the two people take turns to hide-and-seek, a language of interaction of equals with an equal interest in a relationship starts to emerge. Laughter signals that the game was successful and a relationship was established.
Variations of this game increase during the teenage years. One popular and universal game of hide-and-seek is the "manhunt". First you pick someone to be "It" (the person to seek) then he/she turns around and counts with their eyes closed at the "base" while the rest of the people hide. The "It" then says, "Ready or not, here I come" and rushes to find everyone.
When the "It" finds someone he/she holds onto them long enough to say, "I found you!" three times. If you ever played this game, you learned how to say that really fast and to hold on to the person you found really tightly.
If the "It" moves too quickly or roughly or someone hides that it's impossible to find him or her, the transitional space is shattered and the play is over. The game disintegrates and all lost.
These hide-and-seek games continue well into courtship and beyond.
While our society may have purposefully dumbed itself down for the sake of some implied guarantees for "dating success", the reality of life is that we never outgrow the desire to play hide-and-seek.
As children we didn't enjoy playing hide-and-seek with those who hid in plain sight, those who hid in the same place over and over again, but most of all we didn't like playing with those who hid so well that we couldn't find them. As adults we still don't enjoy the company of someone who isn't creative and much of a challenge or isn't spontaneous or fun. We get easily bored and disengage.
I absolutely think that it is worthwhile -- almost necessary -- to play hard-to-get on some level if you want to weed out people who don't have a serious interest and if you want to keep a man or woman interested.
Playing hard-to-get like the hide-and-seek games we play as children is not only an interactive game, it also increases our alertness to our environment, our skills for finding what we're looking for and also gives us a sense of satisfaction once we find what we're looking for.
Now you must be thinking, "Gee, I'd like to play hard-to-get but I just don't think I'd be any good at it."
You may actually be right. Rather than attract the opposite sex, popularly promoted playing hard-to-get rules and actions often piss off or push away the person you're trying to attract or keep interested.
Rules and actions that are so focused on the "hard" (do not answer the phone, stand them up, pretend you are busy, do not show you are interested, do not say I love you first, etc.) and forget the "play" part make you seem uninterested, at best, and mean and cruel at worst.
It can be such a headache trying to figure out what you think or feel and if it's worth investing any more time in trying to get to know you. Any self-respecting person will walk away from that kind of stress. The ones who don't are desperate and are that way for a reason.
Playing-hard-to-get when done right introduces a particular sense of depth to the mysterious and elusive phenomenon that the opposite sex tend to find absolutely irresistible.
Some of the Playing Hard-To-Get Strategies that I have personally used and highly recommend as a good jumping-off point from which you can successfully launch your "Game of Playful Pursuit" include:
1. Be flexible but not a pushover
2. Create distance without going anywhere
3. Give him/her what he/she wants but not in the way he/she expected
4. Don't compete, outlast the competition
5. Be totally open and upfront but keep raising questions in his/her mind and answering them: some right away, some later
7. Stir the pot once in a while
8. Work the imagination and tease all of his/her senses
9. Initiate sexual contact when he/she least expects it
It makes a lot of difference when you make things seems fresh and vital in ways that keep the blood flowing!
And whether you are pro or against playing hard-to-get the fact is that if he/she is not chasing you, he/she will chase someone else. It's in our genes. I think it's a consequence of the law of natural selection. We can't seem to escape from it. So use it to your advantage.
But before you start playing hard-to-get, it's important that you are aware of some of the behaviors that indicate that a man or woman's level of interest in you may be small to begin with. Trying to play hard-to get in this instances is the fastest way to end the relationship (even one that has great potential). It's like having one foot on a banana peel, the other in the grave.
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