Men think they’ve got game. Just know that you’re the referee. When it comes to dating, you’re in control. To keep his game in-bounds you need to know the 10 signs that a man is trying to pick you up.

1. He comments on your appearance

Most men know that they can't rely on cheesy pick-up lines to succeed with you. When a man is trying to grab your attention, he’ll usually comment on your appearance or what you are doing. This he'll try to make positive and nonsexual. If you’re receptive to his comments, then he’ll usually try to start a conversation by asking some open-ended questions.

2. He approaches you at a grocery store, sandwich shop, or another unlikely spot

Men realize that attractive women are everywhere, not just at bars or parties. And most men know that women don’t expect to be hit on at the dry cleaners or while in line for ice cream. If a man approaches you while you’re out shopping or walking around, don’t be surprised. He might try to strike up a casual conversation with you to engage you. If you’re feelin' him, reciprocate.

3. He studies your body language

Men watch your gestures to see if you’re into them. This is because body language indicates interest level. For instance, if you fidget around a man, then this signals to him that you’re feeling nervous and uncomfortable. Your laughter, however, signals that you’re receptive. If you want to signal to a man that you’re not into him, cross your arms. And if you want to signal that you’re interested, then relax your arms. It’s easy to let a man know if you’re interested or not using body language.

4. He acts confident

Men understand that rejection is inevitable. This is why they approach women confidently. He'll approach you for a casual conversation or tell some witty jokes while smiling. He's looking to present his best self so you'll warm to him. Smart men act confident, not cocky.

5. He puts you to the “15-minute test”

During the first 15 minutes of meeting you, a man will assess your interest based on your body language and level of involvement in the conversation. But if you don’t pass this test, you’ll notice him losing interest and trying to find a way to exit the situation. Don’t be surprised if he asks you if you’re single early on in the conversation; he just doesn’t want to waste his time.

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6. He’s upfront about his intentions

The ideal man is upfront about his intentions instead of being vague. He’ll use euphemisms to convey how interested he is in you. A man who’s seeing other girls might tell you something along the lines of, “I really appreciate that you’re so fun and easygoing. You’re just what I’m looking for: a girl to have a casual time with.” He’ll probably say this to you early on so you don’t feel misled.

7. He’ll hang out at a bar with some friends

Men who are looking to approach women at bars often bring along some friends. This is because they want to be perceived as just having a night with some guys rather than cruising for girls. Don’t be surprised is some of a man’s friends are funny or engaging. And don’t be surprised if you’re with your girlfriends and a group of guys approaches you.

8. He’ll ask you out

If a man thinks you’re interested in him, he’ll seal the deal by asking you out for a drink or back to his place. However, if he’s not entirely sure if you’re interested in him, he’ll play it safe by asking for your number or email address.

Gaming the sexual marketplace

Dating can be rough. And reading men can be especially difficult. Men are constantly playing the dating field, which gives them more options in terms of romantic prospects. Because men treat dating like a game, they often juggle multiple romantic prospects at once, so if one rejects them they won’t care as much. Men, when they’re actively pursuing women, will use their strengths to their advantage. This means older men pursuing younger girls will use the fact that they’re wiser and worldlier to their advantage.

But if you watch out for the above signals, then you’ll be able to tell if a man’s trying to pursue you and, most importantly, what to watch out for. And if you’re not interested in a man who’s signaling interest in you, it’ll be easy giving him nonverbal cues indicating as much.

References

  1. "9 Tricks to Confidently Pick Up Any Woman," Men's Health, April 1, 2015.
  2. "Do Pick-Up Artist Techniques Really Work?," Psychology Today, January 31, 2013.
  3. "How to Pick up Women (With Science)," The Guardian, September 18, 2013.
  4. "Take It from a Lady: How to Take Home a Lady," GQ, June 11, 2012.

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