Emotions: Attraction

What is it about people that makes them attracted to other people? Why do guys like a girl and only see other girls as “just friends,” and vice versa? Two best friends can be so similar, but one is the object of a crush and the other is just a friend. What sets those two people apart in the crusher’s mind, when often times they are very similar?

For example, a good friend of mine has a huge crush on my best friend, but I’m just a friend to him, even though my best friend and I act alike and think alike. I’m perfectly fine with him liking my best friend, but it makes me wonder. What is it about her that makes her crushable to him, but not me? And it’s the same thing the other way around. Why do certain guys like me and not her?

So, with all these questions, I hopped onto Google and hoped to find some answers. I read a plethora of articles and learned a few things.

  1. Physical attraction is an important factor in most cases. The first thing people do when someone walks into a room is judge them by their looks. They may not be doing it consciously, but the way someone looks is the deciding factor on whether or not they will pursue the person and attempt to get to know them better.

    Barney Stinson

    Barney Stinson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  2. Proximity is also important. Okay, so the first time we see someone, we may not be impressed. But if we continue to run into them or see them everywhere, we will become more and more attracted to them. So, if we live near someone or sit near someone in class or work near them and interact with them, we may find ourselves become more attracted to them, which, I suppose, is why “boy next door” or “girl next door” love stories are fairly common. I guess Barney Stinson’s “mermaid theory” is actually true.
  3. The saying that “opposites attract” is not true. People are generally like people that are more similar to them because similarity encourages positive interaction.
  4. We actually subconsciously have a list of criteria for what we look for in a partner or a friend. When we meet someone who meets a large percentage of our criteria, we automatically like them better and find them more interesting. But if we find someone who doesn’t match our list of qualifications, we lose interest in them, even if it seems like everyone else loves them.
  5. We tend to look for people who remind us of other loved ones. Familiarity breeds attraction. People that have similar characteristics as people we know and love are more attractive to us because they validate our values and beliefs.
  6. Men tend to be more attracted to classically beautiful women, and women tend to look for the “dominant” or “alpha” male. I guess that’s why girls seem to tend to go for jerks, especially if they’re strong, confident, and popular.

Attraction is an interesting emotion. Many different factors determine why certain people find you attractive and certain others don’t. I suppose, in the case with me and my best friend, some find her more attractive because they tend to interact with her more and others find me more attractive because they interact with me more. Positive interaction with someone breeds attraction, so if you want to get the girl (or guy), man up and talk to them! If the experience is pleasant, they will definitely like you a lot better.


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