Flirtation 101: Effective Methods for Flirting

At a Christian homeschool conference a few years ago I happened to pick up a little book on a table.  The book was about dating.  I figured since it was a Christian, homeschool conference, it might have some interesting tips for single girls.  It did.

In the middle of the book were two pages — one for girls, one for guys — on how to flirt with the opposite sex.  For guys, it suggested smiling, winking, holding her hand, and commenting on her hair, eyes and skin (!).  For girls, it suggested flattering his ego, gazing into his eyes and touching his arm or leg seductively (!!).  I was flabbergasted.  What was this doing here?!  The little book was teaching how to be a Jezebel.  A hussy.  A manipulative, wily, deceitful woman of the world. 

Since we have already covered what to do when a man flirts with you, and since we have addressed the question of having friends that are male, now we turn to how to act with those friends.  Worldly girls learn by osmosis how to gain attention from men, and work that talent to their ‘advantage’.  Christian girls, however, are being trained to keep Christ as their focus, not their friends (male OR female).  Even in this, however, Christian girls can unintentionally flirt with a man. 

Methods of Flirtation

The Hair Toss:  You’ve seen it; in response to a compliment, she giggles, throws her head and flicks her mane behind her back.  This is probably the most apparent method of flirtation — painfully obvious and attention-grabbing.

Eye contact:  This, I think, is an easy place to stumble.  Where looking someone in the eyes is essential for good communication, steady eye contact with a guy send signals of “I’m really interested in you…” There is a fellow at my local college who consistently tries to make eye contact with me across the room.  If I accidentally happen to pass his gaze, he assumes I am interested in him!  Be careful how long you look into someone’s eyes. 

Giggling/Whispering:  Don’t giggle and whisper to a guy.  Doing so projects a closeness with him that either isn’t happening or shouldn’t be.  Also, giggling and whispering with a girl about a guy, with him present, is another way to gain his attention, or just attention in general.

Laughing:  Okay, here is where I have a problem.  My mom has a *cough* rambunctious laugh, and so do I.  Thus, whenever I laugh, it is usually rather loud.  This is just my natural guffaw!  However, when with young men, if you laugh extra loud or often at his jokes and comments, that is a way to tell him that you like him better than anyone else.  I have to consciously tone down my laugh around men because of this. 

Flattery:  I have one male friend who happens to notice whenever anyone cuts their hair, and he usually comments on it.  When I got my hair cut, he told me it looked nice.  I knew he wasn’t flattering me because I knew his personality.  With men you don’t know, or are only aquainted with, they may try to compliment you unnecessarily to get your reaction.  In the same way, don’t dish out compliments are that aren’t relevant to the conversation, the environment or the relationship.

*Special Note

In the olden days, when a young man thought a young woman was pretty, he would whistle at her.  This still goes on today.  Men are visual, and when they see a pretty girl, they may ‘compliment’ her by throwing out a little tune her direction.  This happened to me when I was skiing a few years ago.  A young man whistled at me, and utterly flabbergasted by it, I yelled at him to “Shut up!”.  Smooth.  When I told my parents, thinking they might understand my flabbergast-edness, they told me I had disrespected that young man.  My dad said the best thing to do in those situations is to smile and walk on.  Don’t return the attention —  but don’t scorn his attempts at a compliment either. 

Aggressiveness:  This is more common in preteen girls.  Still unaware of what to do when it comes to boys — half annoyed at them and half liking them around — they fight, wrestle and punch like one of the guys.  Girls left to themselves still do this into their late teens.  It is not attractive, and comes across quite masculine rather than feminine, as we should be. 

Touching:  Even with my friends, I really don’t touch them unless I have to — and then it’s a quick pat on the upper arm to get their attention.  Guys are very responsive to touch and it belongs within very strict boundaries.  There are certain male friends that I do hug on occasion — but then it is a ‘side hug’, never signalling any intimacy.  Of course, fathers will decide what it appropriate, but I don’t know a father alive that wants his daughter running about throwing her arms around every guy’s neck!  Now, standing stiffly next to a young man is not necessary either.  Good communicators turn and look the person in the eyes, stand close enough to talk easily but do not appear possessive of their conversation partner.

Posessiveness:  Possessive girls are often very ‘latchy’ and like to keep a guy ‘on their arm’ even if he isn’t literally on their arm!  They are also jealous and sarcastic toward other girls because they present a ‘threat’ to their crush.  Jealous girls tend to be insecure, while also assuming that the guy wants to be their friend in the first place.  Something I have learned over the years is that guys like to pick their own friends.  If they approach you, and talk to you on their own, they want to be your friend.  ‘Pushing’ yourself on them makes them feel disrespected. 

Most of these can be done, and are done, unintentionally.  This certainly isn’t Phylica’s List of Do’s and Don’ts — but I hope it helps you in evaluating your own actions when interacting with young men.  In addition, I interviewed five young men about how girls flirt, and the above methods were all given as evidence of flirtation.  

Finally, a girl who has Christ as her focus will not be concerned about getting attention from men, and will not need to use any of these methods to her ‘advantage’ — because she has the Advantage of being loved by the greatest Man of all!


8 Responses

  1. I’ve been consitently coming now that you have your little email notifications! 🙂

    I never had thought about flirting with your laugh before… I laugh a lot- at whatever I think is funny! (And like you- I laugh with volume! ) I’ll have to start thinking about who I’m laughing to- and control the volume:).

    The same with eye contact… I like to look people in the eyes, it really does add to you communtication, but I can easily see where you (I) could cross the line without meaning to in that respect.

    You’re doing a really great job on here Phy! It’s nice to read advice from someone you know & love- rather than some far-off blogger or book writer- once in a while. =)



  2. Hey Phy,
    I’m liking your post! One correction though – the whole “Shut up!” thing happened last year, not a couple years ago- though I’m sure you didn’t want me to say that… 😉
    Are you going to post on “Waiting” next week?


  3. Yeah, Autumn, I realized that after I did it… so it was last year after all. *Sigh* They all blend together after a while…


  4. Wow!!! What a great article, Phy! I really enjoy reading your blogs… thanks for reminding me of the skiing incident:) Remember me rolling around in the snow laughing hysterically? Anyway, keep up the awesome articles; they are very informative and encouraging to me, knowing that I am not the only one who needs to work on her attitude around the guys!

  5. Thank you Phylicia! I am really appreciating your blog! I had not even thought about the eye contact thing.


  6. Hey Phylicia –
    Sorry, I did get your notifications but didn’t get to comment yet. Thank you for the comments you left. I enjoy your visits as well. 🙂 I didn’t realize you had commented on my About Me page… that’s funny. (Were you looking to see how old I was?) hehe. Thank you for leaving me a comment telling me you had posted those posts. 🙂

    As for your post, I am not at all surprised at the book you found at a Christian conference. I am appalled, yes, but not surprised. Yes, *Christians* are teaching young girls how to be Jezebels. As you said, “A hussy. A manipulative, wily, deceitful woman of the world.” That is the reason why the Bible says that we are in the world, but not of the world. We are to be aliens to those of the world, to stand out, to shine for Him — not for ourselves.

    I agree – the best thing to do is just walk away from a guy who is trying to get your attention. One time, my two older sisters and me were picking up Mother’s Day flowers for my mom, aunt and grandma. There were three boys there that said, “Hey you three.” I turned around to see who was talking, and there were two boys walking behind us. We just kept walking. Well, we went over to a flower stand and they followed us, and started commenting on the flowers, and US. Like “maybe this one for her, and this one for her…” you know what I mean. Well, we just walked away and went to pay. Well, they still were following us. Fortunately, they didn’t follow us outside to our car.

    If you don’t act interested in them, they won’t bother you anymore. But I do wish my dad would have been there. He was upset that they had done that.

    I loved what you said at the end of your post – “a girl who has Christ as her focus will not be concerned about getting attention from men, and will not need to use any of these methods to her ‘advantage’ — because she has the Advantage of being loved by the greatest Man of all!”

    Thank you for this great post again Phylicia. I hope that other girls who do have these problems will not be offended by this, but try to change it. 🙂

    love and blessings!
    Lady Rachel

  7. Thank you for these posts! It is so easy to get distracted, it’s awsome to have these posts as a good reminder. Thank you.


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