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How to Not Appear Desperate to Someone You Are Attracted To

by Maura Banar, studioD

Looking desperate can be a real turn-off to someone you are attracted to. It is the romantic equivalent to trying too hard, making you seem insecure and unable to enjoy being single. The implications for these characteristics include being a clingy girlfriend who cannot bear to spend time with anyone but you. Not looking desperate takes time to learn, commitment to change and a moderate amount of temporary discomfort.

Become Confident

Most people can identify a person who has a high level of self-confidence but it is a bit more difficult to define self-confidence itself. Self-confident people are not egotistical. In fact, self-confidence is equated with humility and the confidence that you are not perfect, explains the University of Illinois in their online guide, "Self-Confidence." You can build your self-confidence when you emphasize your strengths, when you take chances, and when you use positive self-talk and consistently evaluate yourself. Building your level of confidence can help you feel less inclined to resort to behaviors that show people you are desperate.

Flirt Conservatively

Like anything else, too much flirting is too much of a good thing and can make you appear desperate. The key to flirting with someone you are attracted to is to be aware of the timing, frequency, duration, location and response. Avoid flirting in places where it is not appropriate, such as at work during office hours. When you do flirt, do so in a private place, without distraction and without being obvious. Flirting in a way that is not desperate is not obvious and can include a gentle, brief touch of the arm, a friendly smile or a genuine compliment.

Take an Interest in His Interests

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and asking questions can provide you with plenty of information that you can use to express interest without seeming desperate. You cannot expect to share every interest but finding out what someone enjoys opens doors for conversation and shared activities. Asking questions about his interests also takes the pressure off him to participate in more intimate conversation. Stick to brief discussions, especially if you are not familiar with the specifics of his particular interests. Ask about his interests without expecting an invitation to participate or attend an event with him.

Have a Life

You're less effective with anyone else unless you are comfortable in your own company. This can be difficult, especially when your natural inclination is to impulsively attach to someone. This tendency is borne out of your upbringing and characterizes a lack of security that comes from within. If you're attracted to someone, one of the most attractive traits of people is their level of independence. This takes a lot of pressure off a potential partner, who might otherwise be risking their own independence if they pursue a relationship with you. Becoming independent requires taking more risks and spending time and becoming more comfortable with yourself and with your freedom.

Be Yourself

Once you have spent time getting to know yourself and feel more comfortable in your own company, it is time to share yourself with the world. For the person you are attracted to, this is the process of simply being in their company occasionally and putting aside your expectations as much as possible. You will respond and react very differently if you do not place undue pressure on yourself to be exactly who that person needs. The object of your interest will be naturally attracted to you, without your having to take steps to get and keep their attention.

About the Author

Maura Banar has been a professional writer since 2001 and is a psychotherapist. Her work has appeared in "Imagination, Cognition and Personality" and "Dreaming: The Journal of the International Association for the Study of Dreams." Banar received her Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Buffalo State College and her Master of Arts in mental health counseling from Medaille College.

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