Sunday, December 31, 2006
How to Ignite Love at First Sight
A man may be classified as a breast man, a buttocks man, or a leg man. And, although many women will insist otherwise, most women are certified butt watchers. (This is not just idle conjecture: a British study determined that these are people's favorite eyeball destinations.) 13 But researchers have ascertained that everybody is an eye person. When you were a teenager being reluctantly or otherwise introduced to strangers, your parents probably told you, "Look right into their eyes." And then they would tell you in no uncertain terms that any of the aforementioned anatomical locations were strictly off limits. Powerful eye contact immediately stimulates strong feelings of affection. This was proved once and for all in a study called "The Effects of Mutual Gaze on Feelings of Romantic Love." 14 Researchers put forty-eight men and women who didn't know each other in a big room. They gave them directions on how much eye contact to have with their partners during casual conversation. Afterward, the researchers asked each participant how he or she felt about the various people they had spoken with. The results? Subjects who were gazing at their partner's eyes and whose partner was gazing back reported significantly higher feelings of affection than subjects in any other condition. . . . Subjects who engaged in mutual gaze increased significantly their feelings ofpassionate love . . . and liking for their partner. Journal of Research in Personality 15 Let's say that in less technical language: Locking eyeball to eyeball with the attractive stranger helps put the match to the flame of love. Why does eye contact have such fiery consequences? Anthropologist Helen Fisher says it is basic animal instinct. Direct eye contact triggers "a primitive part of the human brain, calling forth one of two basic emotions—approach or retreat." 16 Unrelenting eye contact creates a highly emotional state similar to fear. When you look directly and potently into someone's eyes, his or her body produces chemicals like phenylethylamine, or PEA , that jolts the sensation of being in love. Thus, making strong, almost threateningly intense eye contact with your Quarry is one of the first steps in making him or her fall in love with you. People look lingeringly at sights they like and quickly avert their eyes from those they don't. We enjoy gazing for long, lazy hours into a cozy fire, yet our hands jerk up to shield our eyes from an atrocious movie scene. It's the same when looking at people. We gaze lovingly at our lovers, yet avert our eyes from unpleasant, ugly, or dull people. When someone bores us, the first part of our body to escape is our eyes. I'm acutely aware of this phenomenon during my speeches. Whenever I drone on too long about a particular point, audience members bury their noses in their notes. Inspecting their manicures takes on prime importance. Some even nod off. When I get back on track, their eyes flutter up like butterflies returning to the sunshine after a rainstorm. Another, almost opposite, factor that blocks good eye contact is shyness. The more someone overwhelms us, the more we avoid his or her eyes. Very low-ranking employees often avert their gaze from the big boss. If we meet someone extraordinarily handsome, beautiful, or accomplished, we tend to do the same. In my seminars, I strive to make eye contact with everyone in the audience. However, if there is an especially handsome man in the sea of faces, I often find myself avoiding his gaze. I look into the eyes of everybody but him. Then, realizing the folly of my ways, I force myself to look into the eyes of Very Attractive Male, and BLAM! My heart skips a beat. I sometimes lose my train of thought. I stutter. Powerful stuff, this eye contact. How Much Eye Contact Does It Take to Imitate Love? A British scientist determined that, on the average, when talking, people look at one another only 30 to 6o percent of the time. This is not enough to rev up the engines of love at first sight. While he was still a graduate student at the University of Michigan, a prominent psychologist named Zick Rubin became fascinated with how to measure love. Later, at Harvard and Brandeis, the romantic young researcher produced the first psychometrically based scale to determine how much affection couples felt for each other. It became known as Rubin's Scale and, to this day, many social psychologists use it to determine people's feelings for each other. In his study on the ''Measurement of Romantic Love," Zick Rubin found that people who were deeply in love gaze at each other much more when talking and are slower to look away when somebody intrudes in their world. 17 He confirmed this through a trick experiment. He asked dating couples a long series of questions so he could first rate the pairs on how much they loved each other. The couples, unaware of their rating, were then put in a waiting room and told, "The experimenter will be with you shortly to start the experiment." Unbeknownst to them, that was the experiment. Hidden cameras recorded how much time the couples spent staring into each other's eyes. The higher the couple had scored on the first test, the more time they spent looking at each other. The less love they felt for each other, the less time they made eye contact. To give your Quarry the subliminal sense that the two of you are already in love (a self-fulfilling prophecy), dramatically increase your eye contact while the two of you are chatting. Push it up to 75 percent of the time or more if you want to get the PEA gushing through his or her veins. The extra seconds of eye contact speak silent volumes. To a woman, the volumes will read, "Beautiful lady, I am intrigued by you. I am fascinated by what you are saying." A man might interpret the increased eye contact as, "I'm ravenous for you. I can't wait to tear your clothes off and have you make mad passionate love to me." You must, however, look right into your Quarry's eyes if you want to excite those feelings of love at first sight. Not at his eyebrows, not at the bridge of her nose—look right into those baby blues, browns, grays, or greens. Pretend you're admiring the optic nerve behind the eyeballs. Wisdom for the ages gleaned from The King and I is "Whistle a happy tune, and you will be happy." Likewise, give off signals of the two of you being in love, and your Quarry will feel sensations of love. TECHNIQUE #3: INTENSE GAZE When conversing with your Quarry, exaggerate your eye contact. Search for his or her optic nerve. Lock eyes with your Quarry to give the aura of already being in love. There's more to it than just looking deeply into someone's eyes, however. You must make your own eyes warm and inviting. Staring into the frigid eyes of a dead fish does nothing to incite love. How to Get Sexy "Bedroom Eyes" Bedroom eyes is not just a quality movie stars are blessed with. Neither Bette Davis nor Clark Gable had a patent on them. We all have that suggestive look buried deep in our evolutionary psyche. Ethnologists have even named it the copulatory gaze. The copulatory gaze plays a big role in lovemaking. For example, before having sex, pygmy chimpanzees—which are about as close to human as an ape can get—spend several moments staring deeply into each other's eyes. Sex without eye contact is difficult for some primates. Several Finnish researchers introduced male and female baboons to each other. With blinder devices, they varied what part of the female's anatomy the male baboon got a gander at first. When the male's initial glimpse of his lady love was her genitals, only five ejaculations occurred. However, when he first gazed into her eyes before getting a peek at her privates, twenty-one ejaculations occurred. 18 (Men, increasing eye contact during foreplay does not promise you twenty-one ejaculations, but it definitely encourages affectionate feelings from your female.) Anthropologist Helen Fisher goes so far as to say, "Perhaps it is the eye—not the heart, the genitals, or the brain—that is the initial organ of romance." 19 What makes your eyes sexy and inviting? Quite simply, large pupils. Incidentally, examine old photographs of Bette Davis or Clark Gable, and you will see enormously expanded pupils. Undoubtedly a retouching job, but, hey! The father of a science which became known as pupillo-metrics, Dr. Eckhard Hess, demonstrated that large pupils were more alluring by showing two pictures of a woman's face to a group of men. The pictures were identical except, in one of them, Hess had retouched the lady's pupils to make them larger. The male response to Ms. Big Pupils was twice as strong as to the identical woman with small pupils. Hess then reversed the experiment and showed pictures of men with enlarged pupils to women. Same positive female response to Mr. Big Pupils. Dr. Hess tells us that we can't consciously control our pupil size, but in the early 1960s he proved that we can at least manipulate it. He hooked male subjects up to a Rube Goldberg device to measure their pupil fluctuations and proceeded to show them a series of photographs. When the men saw pictures of a landscape, a baby, or a family, their pupils fluctuated a little. However, Hess sneaked a picture of a naked woman into the pile. When the men got an eyeful of that one, zing went the strings of their pupils, thus proving that when we look at an enticing stimulus, our pupils expand. Here's how to enlarge your pupils to make your eyes look like inviting pools your Quarry will willingly drown in. While the two of you are chatting, simply gaze at the most attractive feature on your Quarry's face. Does she have a cute little nose? Does he have an adorable dimple? As your eyes enjoy the sight, your pupils gradually enlarge. Keep your eyes off that mole with the black hair growing out of it. That will make your pupils slap shut like snapdragons! TECHNIQUE #4: BEDROOM EYES While chatting with your Quarry, gaze at the most attractive part of his or her face. Your pupils will automatically expand, giving you those bedroom eyes. Also, think loving thoughts. Concentrate on how beautiful your Quarry is, how comfortable you feel with her, how much fun it would be to take a shower with him. Also, you must force shyness, mistrust, nervousness, or any other negative pupil-closing ideas out of your mind. Think warm, fuzzy thoughts about your Quarry to further soften your gaze. How to Awaken Primal, Unsettling, Sexy Feelings in Your Quarry Let us now talk about a third technique with your initial organ of romance. This one gives your Quarry that primal, unsettling feeling that floods over people when they start to fall in love. When conversing, people tend to look briefly away at the end of a sentence or during silences, except when they are engrossed in the listener (or hopelessly in love). The phrase, he couldn't take his eyes off her is not just allegoric. People who love eachother not only indulge in much more eye contact while talking, but they are more hesitant to take their eyes off each other, even after they finish speaking. It is electrifying when someone's glance lingers on you during the silence, after you've stopped talking. Several years ago, I hired a carpenter to put an additional window in my office. Jerry wasn't terribly good-looking, and he certainly was no mental colossus, but for some inexplicable reason, I found him very attractive. There was an indefinable, mysterious quality about Jerry. It was unsettling, primal, sexy. I didn't permit myself to indulge in my little infatuation, however. Perhaps I thought seducing the carpenter was neither politically correct nor otherwise desirable under the circumstances. Or perhaps Jerry's other qualities weren't emblazoned on my Lovemap. However, thoughts of Jerry filled my fantasies for weeks. I didn't see him for several years. Then, just recently, while working on this book, I needed shelves to hold my research materials. Naturally, I called Jerry. He arrived on my doorstep, ten pounds heavier, three years older, but just as sexy. This time, thanks to my recent research, five minutes into our conversation, I realized why he turned me on. Every time I said something, Jerry's eyes lingered on mine. After I had finished speaking, even during the silences, his eyes stayed glued to mine. That quality, I realized, is what I had found so unsettling, so primal, so sexy. As our discussion about my shelves progressed, I also realized why Jerry was holding the eye contact longer. He wasn't trying to be sexy. He wasn't fascinated by me. It wasn't because he couldn't take his eyes off me. It was simply because Jerry wasn't too bright, and it took an extra beat for my "I'd like the shelves eleven inches wide" to sink into his brain. We now turn this into a technique to awaken those primal, unsettling, sexy feelings and give your new PLP a jolt. TECHNIQUE #5: STICKY EYES Whenever you are talking with your Quarry, let your eyes stay glued to his or hers a little longer—even during the silences. A gaze that stays overtime awakens primal, slightly disturbing feelings. It induces the same "fight or flight" chemicals that race through our veins when we feel infatuation. When you must look away, do so reluctantly. Drag your eyes away slowly, as though they had been stuck with warm taffy. Naughty Eyes Are So Nice Now we come to the last way our eyes can get the chemicals flowing through our Quarry's veins. There are carefully choreographed steps that a man and a woman must take upon meeting each other if love is going to develop. One of those can't-do-without steps involves our eyes. A curious phenomenon happens to the eyes when a man and a woman begin to feel comfortable with each other and the rumblings of love start to resonate through their bodies. As lovers are lulled by the good feelings, their eyes become more courageous. They slowly start to wander lovingly over each other's faces, hair, eyes. Then they become bolder and venture down to their partner's shoulders, neck, and torso. A dreaminess sets in. To push your relationship with a new Quarry into this next step of intimacy, use the technique I call a visual voyage. As the conversation progresses, let your eyes slide slowly down from the nose to the lips. Caress the lips with your eyes for a moment or two, then slowly venture south to the neck and, if all is going well, beyond. TECHNIQUE #6: A VISUAL VOYAGE As you and your Quarry are chatting, let your eyes do some traveling—but only on safe territory at first. Take a visual voyage all over his or her face, concentrating mostly on the eyes. If he or she seems to be enjoying your expedition, take small side trips to the neck, shoulders, and torso. Women, you have a more liberal passport to travel in this territory. Men, be more wary. You're cruising into dangerous seas and can sink the ship if your eyes travel too far south and vacation there too long. These four eye techniques—intense gaze, bedroom eyes, sticky eyes, and visual voyage—are scientifically proved aphrodisiacs. When you start using them on your Quarry, you will feel the effect. However, you don't need science to tell you that you cannot make someone fall in love with you unless the two of you are introduced to each other. Unless, of course, you engineer an acquaintance without the benefit of introduction. In the vernacular, that's ''pick them up." Proponents of politi- cal correctness would recoil at the term. But I, for one, have nothing against the concept—if the "pickup" is done in a manner, shall we say, befitting the situation and the individuals involved. Let us now cover some basics. We'll explore how you can engineer the acquaintance of a Potential Love Partner without the benefit of third-party introduction.