Behaviors that attract people the most

Attraction can be tricky, which is part of why dating is so tough. When it comes to true attraction, it's not surprising to learn that one's physical appearance plays an integral role. However, there's actually much more to attraction than meets the eye. And while a vast array of studies have revealed that a person's attraction to others is based upon many different factors, including his or her biological predispositions, unconscious desires, as well as his or her personal upbringing and background, this isn't the entire picture. It's important to recognize the key behaviors that have been proven to attract other people the most, and the best part is that all of these behaviors can be easily applied and integrated into your life right now. These are the behaviors that attract people the most, so go ahead and start using them.

Being a good listener

If you're looking to attract others, it's really your ability to listen that makes you particularly appealing and alluring. When you're fully listening to another person, you're showing him or her that what he or she's expressing is meaningful, significant, and important to you. By deeply engaging in what he or she's communicating to you, you're also building trust, rapport, and a deeper and closer connection between you both. 

In fact, if your desire is to boost and heighten your attraction levels, practicing a skill known as active listening is an important step in the process. Active listening is when you fully commit to understanding what someone is expressing to you, and you listen with intent, purpose, and without any distractions or interruptions. And since so many people today are totally preoccupied by their phones, their jobs, and their personal  commitments, having the ability to listen while being completely present in the moment is a highly attractive behavior.

Paying attention to verbal and nonverbal cues

When looking to draw others toward you, another important component entails paying attention to a person's verbal and nonverbal cues as well as honing in on his or her body language. In other words, you're not only listening to what this person's saying to you, but you're also concentrating on how he or she's saying it

For example, is this person shouting, breathing heavily, whispering, or whimpering? Are their hands in fists, are their arms crossed, or are they nervously shaking back and forth? If your goal is to be attractive, alluring, and eye-catching to another person, it means that you should strive to listen with your ears as well as your eyes. Further, an additional aspect of this type of engaged listening is found in your ability to rephrase what's been expressed to you when you're crafting your response. 

Not only does this directly show the speaker that you are fully committed to listening to what they expressed to you without any disruptions, but it also builds a sense of intimacy, empathy, and understanding between the two of you because you're demonstrating that you want to completely comprehend what's been said. So instead of responding with a short, vague reply, your commitment to rephrasing and putting in your own words what was expressed helps make you closer to the speaker and shows that you truly value and care about what they have communicated to you. And it's this kind of behavior that others find very attractive.

Being kind

When it comes to engaging in behaviors that can attract others the most, one of the most crucial is acting in a kind, giving, and considerate way. In fact, not only does being kindhearted, caring, and genuinely concerned about the well-being of others immediately draw people toward you, but research has shown that men and women actively prefer to be around others who engage in altruistic behaviors and find them more appealing and desirable. 

This may not be too surprising, as you probably know from your own experience that you'd rather spend time with someone who's thoughtful and generous as opposed to someone who's cruel and mean-spirited. However, what may surprise you is that a 2016 study published in Evolutionary Psychology found that being selfless, compassionate, and acting altruistically are not only important and appealing behaviors to those seeking a long-term relationship, but this giving and caring nature also helped to increase a person's overall physical attractiveness levels

In other words, acting in a benevolent way is so powerful in terms of attracting others that it can influence your appearance in a way that helps you to look more physically appealing. So if your goal is to truly attract others to you, making a real effort to be kind is the right kind of behavior.

Displaying your volunteer spirit

Volunteering not only helps your community, but it's also been found to benefit your health. Much like mindfulness, it can even boost your attractiveness. As part of a 2013 study, researchers polled men and women and asked them to rate the attractiveness of people demonstrating a "helping" behavior and people demonstrating another type of behavior. Those engaged in helping behaviors — both men and women — were rated as significantly more attractive as long-term sexual partners. The researchers hypothesized that helping behavior may signify "good genes." They may also demonstrate a person's potential as a parent. 

When it came to short-term relationships, altruism also had a positive effect on the attractiveness of men, but not of women. A woman's volunteer spirit is apparently a non-factor for men seeking a fling. But, if you're looking for a more serious relationship, forget those bars and coffee shops and invite your date to your local soup kitchen.

Smiling

While smiling is one of the easiest, simplest, and most basic behaviors that you can do, it's actually one of the most powerful in terms of its ability to attract others. Not only does the very act of smiling activate the release of endorphins and serotonin in your body, which can help to put you in a better mood, but it can also help to elevate and improve the mood of those around you. 

Research has shown that the very act of seeing a smiling face can help to stimulate the part of the brain associated with reward, so, in essence, people can actually feel a strong sense of pleasure and satisfaction when they're around a person who's smiling. 

To that end, a study from the School of Psychology at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, revealed that people actively prefer and are more attracted to smiling faces that look directly at them as opposed to non-smiling faces that look directly at them. And if you're still not convinced that a smile can have immeasurable benefits and advantages in terms of its ability to attract others, a study from the School of Psychology at the University of Bern, Switzerland, found that a person's level of attractiveness is heavily affected by the magnitude of the smile on his or her face

In other words, the bigger and more genuine your smile, the more likely that others will find you attractive. It's definitely worth cracking a smile over that.

Laughing

They say that laughter is the best medicine, but it's also one of the best ways to attract others and draw people toward you. Not only does laughter have innumerable advantages for both your physical and emotional health, but it's also advantageous for others to be around someone who's fun and full of laughter. Specifically, when a person laughs, he or she's helping to improve his or her circulation, oxygen intake, and overall mood while simultaneously lowering the stress levels in his or her body as well as his or her perception of pain. 

With this in mind, it's no wonder that people are instantly drawn to those who like to laugh and can make them laugh. Laughter has the power to provide them with an instant feel-good sensation throughout their entire body. Laughter also helps to create an instant bond and understanding between you and those around you. By laughing together, you're laying the groundwork for a strong attraction, connection, and relationship.

Being trustworthy

If you're looking to truly attract others, being trustworthy can make you incredibly likable and desirable. After all, when you act in a dishonest or deceitful way, you're undermining any chance of creating strong connections and relationships with other individuals because you simply can't be trusted. 

Moreover, people won't feel comfortable around you, they'll be less likely to open up and confide in you, and they'll refrain from being their authentic selves around you because of a fear of broken promises and getting hurt. However, being trustworthy enables you to create deep and meaningful relationships with others that go far past the superficial and can inevitably draw people closer to you on a more intimate level. 

A study from the University of Pennsylvania revealed that when it comes to behaviors and qualities that people seek out in their friends and friendships, acting in a trustworthy, honest, and sympathetic way was of utmost importance. In other words, it's truly a person's ability to be trustworthy and honest that attracts others, not just his or her physical looks. Companies are actually rated on the basis of their trustworthiness. In fact, this rating is meant to attract potential employees and customers, as well as investors. If you're looking for others to be attracted to you and want to invest in creating a real relationship, being trustworthy is a truly important step.

Smelling like vanilla

While the smell of your body's natural pheromones plays a role in attracting others, there are ways that you can enhance your own scent and therefore enhance your ability to draw others toward you. The trick is to smell like vanilla. 

First, it's been found that vanilla is a universally pleasant aroma, and it even has the power to elicit happy memories from childhood in those who smell it. To that end, people can be automatically more attracted to you simply because of the feelings of happiness that your scent can trigger inside of them. Further, it's been shown that when people take a whiff of a vanilla scent, it also helps them to feel more calm and comfortable. It's not too surprising that people will likely be more attracted and drawn to you and your aura because they'll feel more at ease when they're around you. 

As noted in the Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging, research has revealed that the scent of vanilla can help to reduce stress and anxiety, which further demonstrates its importance when your goal is to make yourself more appealing to others. It's also not too surprising that vanilla is a very popular scent found in many of today's self-care products, such as shampoos, conditioners, lotions, perfumes, soaps, lip balms, and more. Isn't it worth adding vanilla into your daily routine?

Wearing the color red

While wearing revealing clothing, sexy outfits, and body-hugging attire can help turn heads, there's actually a more colorful way for you to attract others. In fact, research from the University of Rochester revealed that men are markedly more attracted to women who are wearing red. The study demonstrated that men were more sexually interested in these women and were even more inclined to ask them out or spend more money on them during a date or a social engagement. There's even research demonstrating that men are more likely to give higher tips to waitresses who are wearing red. So your favorite waitress might just be sending subliminal messages if you always see her in red.

While red has often been associated with love, romance, and passion, there are different explanations as why this color has such a profound and powerful effect on attraction. For instance, when looking specifically at the animal world, it's interesting to note that red is a color that displays sexual maturity, sexual power, and even fertility. And in terms of humans, it's believed that a woman's face becomes redder while she's ovulating. The color red is also associated with being aroused, as people's cheeks and bodies tend to appear more flushed when excited. So if you're truly looking to draw others toward you, there's no better time to paint the town red in every sense of the word.

Being confident

Acting in a confident way is an extremely important behavior in both your personal and professional lives, and it plays a major role in attracting others toward you. As noted in a study in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science, when individuals were feeling more confident, others rated them as appearing more physically attractive. Unsurprising if you consider that if someone is projecting self-loathing and self-doubt, you're likely going to be put off.

On the flip side, when someone is acting in a confident and self-assured way, you'll likely be drawn to this person and feed off of the kind of positive energy that he or she's exuding. Research from Washington State University revealed that acting in a confident way can be more powerful, important, and alluring to others than being correct. This means that simply projecting confidence is strong enough to attract others to you, even if what you're saying is untrue, baseless, or entirely wrong. 

So how do you become more confident in your daily life? There are many different practices and exercises that can help to boost your self-esteem: volunteering, working out, ridding your mind of negative thoughts, starting a new hobby, meditating, spending time with loved ones, and engaging in self-improvement projects like redecorating and reorganizing.

Being on time

The small act of being on time can have huge implications, as it represents not only your personal principles and priorities, but it also gives insight into the way that you view and treat others. When you're on time to meet people, it shows that you respect them, that you value their time, and that you're able to make and keep commitments and promises. However, when you're constantly running late, you're actually demonstrating that your time's more valuable than theirs, that you haven't made them a priority, and that you don't truly care about their needs, feelings, or concerns. 

With this in mind, if you're looking to attract others, being on time is an easy way to show that you're considerate, respectful, and that you truly value them. People will want to be around you because you've clearly shown that they're important to you. It's no wonder that punctuality plays such an important role in the business world, too, as it not only demonstrates your time management skills, but your people skills as well. 

If being on time isn't your forte, there are various time management strategies you can learn that can enable you to take matters into your own hands and show others that they matter to you. Some time-saving tips include making a to-do list, delegating tasks, prioritizing your responsibilities, and planning ahead.

Being a pet owner

Research has shown that an individual can appear far more enticing when he or she is out with a pet, as animals often become magnets that draw people together. They can even help to provide an easy conversation topic and icebreaker. With that in mind, it's not surprising that pet ownership can play a large part in attracting potential dates and romantic partners, both online and in person. 

Many singles use their cats and dogs as a way to get the attention of other possible suitors, whether this is through online photos or when meeting in person. Further, when these potential dates interact favorably with their pets, this behavior can help to make these individuals appear even more appealing and attractive. Not only can pets be beneficial to a healthy social life, but to a healthy body as well. 

It's been found that pet ownership can be advantageous to your physical and mental health in numerous ways, as it's been shown to help lessen stress and anxiety, lower your blood pressure, and reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. Pet ownership can also give you a much-needed sense of purpose, fulfillment, and companionship, as pets can help you to combat feelings of loneliness and depression by improving your overall mood, temperament, and well-being. To that end, the kind of love and affection that pets provide can help you attract others, as the bond you have with your pet can aid in your ability to exude positivity, confidence, and self-worth.

Being an obvious flirter

Playing coy seems like a solid flirting strategy, but shouldn't flirting be discernible? That doesn't mean you have to go up to the person you're attracted to and flat-out explain that you're about to start flirting. No, that would be super awkward. Instead, your feelings can be clearly communicated through universal body language. And, as it turns out, these movements might already feel natural to you.

"Women from places as different as the jungles of Amazonia, the salons of Paris, and the highlands of New Guinea apparently flirt with the same sequence of expressions," Helen E. Fisher, an anthropologist and human behavior researcher, wrote in a Psychology Today article. "First the woman smiles at her admirer and lifts her eyebrows in a swift, jerky motion as she opens her eyes wide to gaze at him. Then she drops her eyelids, tilts her head down and to the side, and looks away."

Fisher revealed that men often use a "chest thrust" or a way of "standing tall" when flirting. Additionally, anthropologist David Givens and biologist Timothy Perper analyzed the flirting patterns of Americans and found that men also exaggerate their body movements to draw attention to themselves.

Having an appearance of wealth

Could the car you choose to drive and the apartment you choose to rent impact your love life? In a 2014 study, volunteers were asked to rate the attractiveness of a man or woman pictured standing in either a luxury apartment, thus being of "high status,"or a run-of-the-mill apartment, which would demonstrate a "neutral status." "The male model was rated significantly more attractive when presented to females in the high status compared to the neutral status context and was also adjudged to be significantly more attractive than the female target superimposed on an identical background," the study revealed. However, men rated women in the luxury apartment and standard apartment to be equally attractive.

In an earlier study, a similar test was conducted with a high-status vehicle, a silver Bentley Continental GT, and a neutral-status vehicle, a red Ford Fiesta ST. Men who appeared to own the Bentley were perceived as "significantly more attractive." As was the case in the 2014 study, status didn't affect how the men rated the women's attractiveness. Ladies, if you've found yourself swiping right for men in swanky cars or apartments, well, now you know why.

Using the "copulatory" gaze

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, as they say, but your eyes are actually even more powerful than that. By adjusting your gaze, you have the ability to attract another person. "In Western cultures, where eye contact between the sexes is permitted, men and women often stare intently at potential mates for about two to three seconds during which their pupils may dilate — a sign of extreme interest," wrote anthropologist and behavior expert Helen E. Fisher in an article for Psychology Today. After locking eyes for those few vital seconds, you'll want to look away. Or, you know, you might completely freak the person out.

This type of eyes-only communication has been dubbed the "copulatory" gaze, and, well, you can probably guess why. According to Fisher, this form of eye contact causes an almost instantaneous reaction. "The gaze triggers a primitive part of the human brain," she revealed, "calling forth one of two basic emotions — approach or retreat." If the person at whom you're gazing is feeling your bedroom eyes, they'll likely experience the former emotion.

Practicing mindfulness

The benefits of mindfulness are abundant. According to the American Psychological Association, mindfulness can reduce stress and rumination, increase your focus and memory, and even boost your relationship satisfaction. A 2015 study also proved that mindfulness has the ability to influence romantic attraction. Say what? 

Through a speed-dating experiment, researchers from the School of Psychology at the University of Queensland and the School of Psychology and Public Health at La Trobe University in Australia reviewed the effects of "dispositional mindfulness" on attraction. This form of mindfulness is sometimes referred to as trait mindfulness. Essentially, someone who practices dispositional or trait mindfulness is both aware of and considers their thoughts and feelings while in the moment.

By the end of the study, the psychologists found that women were more attracted to men who had a higher level of dispositional mindfulness. The male participants, however, were still more attracted to women who were "more physically attractive." That said, this was the first time a study like this had been conducted and, since then, the art of mindfulness has become more mainstream. Could men eventually become more attracted to mindfulness than physical attractiveness? Hmm.

Being courageous

Branding expert and professor at the University of Southern California Jeetendr Sehdev polled 10,000 men and women from all over the world and determined which qualities made a person most attractive. The survey (via Glamour) revealed that an overwhelming percentage of people — 75 percent, to be exact — rated courage as even more important than confidence. Likewise, risk-taking was also found to be "super sexy." Cowardly lions need not apply.

But how does one demonstrate courage to a potential partner? Perhaps the easiest way is to incorporate courage into your everyday life. Sure, it can help you in the dating game, but there are plenty of benefits outside of that — especially when it comes to your career. According to Forbes, speaking up at a meeting even when you're the only woman in the room, setting boundaries with coworkers, and making time for self-care are just a few ways to exercise courage. And, as Anaïs Nin once wrote, "Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." So, yes, it's worth it to be courageous in all areas of your life.

Nodding in agreement

When you agree with someone, how do you show it? If you nod your head, you may be surprised to learn that this small act influences others to perceive you as more attractive. For real.

After having male and female volunteers watch clips of computer-generated figures either nodding their head, shaking their head, or remaining still, researchers in Japan asked the men and women to rate the simulated people's attractiveness, likability, and approachability (via EurekAlert!). Nodding was found to increase approachability by a whopping 40 percent and likability by 30 percent. These results were consistent among both men and women. "Our study also demonstrated that nodding primarily increased likability attributable to personality traits, rather than to physical appearance," Jun-ichiro Kawahara, one of the study's researchers and an associate professor at Hokkaido University, said in a public release (via EurekAlert!). 

While the researchers said more studies need to be performed to fully determine the real-world effects of nodding, there's nothing that really prevents us from conducting our own experiments, right?