What are the real rules of attraction? What governs the way we are inspired by, seek out and want to be close to other people? Much of society tells us it is how we look, how few wrinkles we have, how tall we are, how white our smile, how big our muscles, and how much money we have. But do these really form the basis of attraction? There is a secret to attraction (well, hopefully it’s not so much of a secret anymore) and a secret behind that secret. I’m going to share both with you.
The first secret to attraction is confidence. Many people are aware of this already. Confidence communicates to others that we are valuable, that we have something to offer. It is also attractive because many people want to feel more confident, and the easiest way to feel more confident is to have it reflected back to you by the company you keep. Confidence inspires people. A confident person can make those around them feel stronger by encouraging them to take some risks in the direction of their dreams. We all need more of that in our lives. But what is it that makes people confident?
Here’s where the other secret comes in. We all want to be confident, but how? Can we just tell ourselves to be more confident? What if we act confident? How about those positive affirmations we can get from the internet and say a few of those every morning? Set our intention? The true secret to confidence is self-love. That’s right. It’s not bluster, cockiness, arrogance or Alpha behavior; it’s the warmth and care we provide for ourselves. Confidence is feeling secure with ourselves, with our true personality, with our quirks and weaknesses, and being fully human without hiding. For that, we need love. We all make multiple mistakes and show our full range of humanity, strong and weak, every day.
But what’s up with those affirmations? Well, affirmations can help, like setting your intention, but the problem is that many times we are masking an underlying lack of self-confidence by trying to talk ourselves into being more confident. It’s a band-aid, and it doesn’t hold up under scrutiny. To develop a stronger sense of self-love that stands the test of time and weathers life’s challenges, we need a sense of self-compassion that extends to our core. So we’re not trying so hard to feel better, we just do.
To learn more about self-compassion, I recommend you interact with the wonderful work of Chris Germer and Kristin Neff. These two researchers have fleshed out what it takes to develop self-love from the inside out and have it at your core. Another reason self-compassion and confidence are attractive is because most of us get anxious and fearful about life. Self-compassion helps us weather the storm, and everyone needs that kind of reassurance that things are going to be okay. Self-compassion increases resilience in the way we deal with life. Resilience communicates to the lizard brain that we have a better chance of survival. We all want to survive, right? Ninety percent of our interactions with one another are unconscious, meaning we’re not aware of most of the information we’re picking up. Much of that information has to do with safety and security. Resilient people give off a sense of security, of stability, that calms others and makes them feel more secure as well. That’s attractive.
So, we’ve covered the true secrets behind attraction, the real rules that govern why others want to be near us and share life with us. Self-love and self-compassion have great benefits to us as individuals as well. The more we internalize a sense of self-care, the less stress we have, the better our immune system functions, and we can even live longer! There is also a lot of research on how a good relationship can improve all these areas–another reason to be attractive so we can find life partners. Attraction doesn’t stop after finding a mate; it’s a key component of keeping a relationship alive and secure. Learn about self-compassion and be a beacon of love all human moths out there want to flock to!
One more tip about self-compassion. We develop it partly through our relationships, so don’t neglect relationship education for you and your partner! That’s where you’ll learn how to build a secure and fun partnership that can help build self-love into the core of your being.
Featured photo credit: Portrait of a beautiful blonde woman in autumn park/yanlev via 123rf.com