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What Makes Some People More Attractive To The Opposite Sex? Science Gives The Answer!

What Makes Some People More Attractive To The Opposite Sex? Science Gives The Answer!

Have you ever wondered why you are attracted to a specific person or if there were certain biological features that were more important than others? Well it turns out that beauty is definitely in the eye of the beholder. In fact, there are different anthropometric traits we associate with an individual’s attractiveness. Science has uncovered distinguishing features that determine attractiveness. However, there is no need to worry if you lack these features as there are proven hacks we can use to improve our attractiveness. Let’s take a look at the scientific features that we are attracted to and what we can do to hack them.

We are unconsciously attracted to the shape of the human body.

Studies identify that men and women with symmetrical bodies have more orgasms. Science has discovered that we are attracted to the face more than any other part of the body; specifically, the symmetry of the face. A symmetrical face will be equal on both sides and demonstrates phenomenal genes. When we analyze the body of the opposite sex, we look for ideal body ratios. Men prefer a waist-to-hip ratio of 7:10. In contrast, women prefer a man with a 9:10 waist-to-hip ratio.[1]

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Let’s face it (pun intended), a youthful, proportional, and symmetrical face is ideal and attractive. There are specific exercises you can do in order to improve the symmetry of your face. These include the following: cheek toning exercise, the partial wink, and the facial stretch.

Furthermore, fix your posture. It seems as though everyone I come across has horrible posture. Here are some quick tips in fixing you posture: 1) Wear a posture belt; 2) Hold your cell phone at eyel level; 3) Use a standing workstation at the office; and 4) Simply stand up straight.

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We are attracted to the voice of a person.

What type of voice are you attracted to? What if I told you that men prefer women with a high (breathy) voice? Well, we do. As women age, their voice will get lower and a high voice represents a younger woman. Whereas, a female is attracted to the voice of a man proportional to his body size – preferably a large body size that signifies a low pitch.[2]

Fortunately, we can improve the sound of our voice. Preston Ni at psychologytoday.com provides four suggestions for improving our voice: 1) Breathe right; 2) Make sounds based on diaphragmatic breathing; 3) Take a singing or acting class; and 4) Work with a private voice coach.

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Our ring finger is linked to sperm count.

This one is a little shocking. Our fingers reveal a wide spectrum of information about us. John Manning writes in his intriguing book, Digit Ratio: A Pointer to Fertility, Behavior and Health, “The ratio of the length between the ring and index finger is somewhat sexually dimorphic.[3] The fingers may provide permanent, and easily visible, historic marker of hormones, particularly testosterone.” Manning also commented on our hands and how they may infer whether we are more likely to have homosexual inclinations, if we are highly fertile or not, or even if we may eventually suffer from a heart attack. Crazy stuff!

I encourage you to check out Manning’s book, specifically the table identifying the characteristics associated with the digit ratio. You just might be able to determine if you are more aggressive, more fertile, or if you have a greater proclivity toward homosexuality just by looking at your fingers!

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Long-distance runners are more attractive.

Research has uncovered that long-distance runners will have greater levels of testosterone. In fact, male long-distance runners have optimal genes. They are also in much better shape than everyone else. To rub it in even more, male long-distance runners are more likely to have raging sex drives and larger sperm counts.

Men and women who exercise are also more likely to be more intelligent. Exercise is the optimal vehicle for stimulating neurogenesis. Neurogenesis is the birth of new neurons (otherwise known as brain cells). So, get off your butt and go for a long run. This will not only make you more intelligent and fit, it will also increase your libido!

Lastly, men and women looking for the optimal partner will look for these qualities. By possessing them, you will more than likely attract a similar partner and continue to improve the gene pool. Remember, continuously improve your body, work on your voice, get in peak physical condition, and pay attention to your fingers.

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Dr. Jamie Schwandt

Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt & Red Team Critical Thinker

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Last Updated on January 15, 2021

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

Posture

First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

  • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
  • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
  • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
  • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

Facial Expressions

Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

  • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
  • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
  • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

2. Relax Your Face

New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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3. Improve Your Eye Contact

Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

3. Smile More

There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

4. Hand Gestures

Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

5. Enhance Your Handshake

In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

“Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

Final Takeaways

Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

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