Women Can Smell Desperate

Several years ago I was hanging out with some older married friends (remember it’s good to have married friends).  They were asking about my dating situation.  As usual during that period there was a girl I really liked and was pursuing (read chasing) and I wasn’t sure if it could go anywhere.  One of the men said, “Women can smell desperate.”  We all laughed.

Women really can smell desperate and no woman that I know wants to go out with a guy who is desperate.  It’s not attractive.

A quick note about attraction.  Here’s a newsflash.  You have to be attractive.  If women are not attracted to you then you need to actually deal with that.  This is probably not really about physical attraction as much.  In fact how you look as a guy does affect things but it affects how you think about yourself more than how a woman thinks of you (future blog).  But if you don’t have women being attracted to you then you need to figure that you probably have some stuff to work on.  That’s ok – it’s not ok to pretend it isn’t a factor.

One of the ways we can be unattractive is to be desperate.  A non desperate man is very attractive.  Think about it.  The guy who has a girlfriend, or even a wife – women are more attracted to him.  You see it all the time.  Women truly can smell desperate and they walk away from that.  It makes them uncomfortable.

So what does desperate “smell” like?  In some ways it’s hard to define.  But when you are desperate there are some subtle (and not so subtle) signs.  There are the things that women subconsciously pick up on – signals you send when you are desperate.  Here are a few

  • Lack of eye contact – if you can’t look her in the eyes, or hold it
  • You have a submissive posture – I know this sounds weird but if you are slumped over and kind of leaning forward you can convey weakness
  • Fidgety movements – this just betrays nervousness
  • Talking really fast or excitedly.  You know how a new puppy goes crazy when it sees you and sometimes pees itself – yeah not good.
  • Needing everyone to “like” you.  Heck, needing her to like you.
  • Any sort of apologizing or rationalizing when you first approach her.  For example, “You are probably busy but. . . ” or “I might not be your type but. . . ”  Pretty much any sentence with the word but in it.
  • Being too loud (pushy and striving) or too quiet (needy and submissive).

These are just a few examples.  How are you doing?  I don’t mean with the random girl – I mean with someone you really want to meet.

Here are two things we have to do. 1. We have to get our core questions answered from God.  If you are thinking that a woman is going to answer questions like, Do I have what it takes?, Am I a man?, Do I have worth? then you are going to be desperate when approaching women.  Don’t give women that kind of power over you.  They don’t want that power anyway.  2. We have to face our fears of rejection.  We have to actually go approach women. Remember that there is not THE ONE.  I know she seems magical right now but you’ve made it this far without her.  If she rejects you, you will be ok.

Here’s the thing about behaving desperately.  It betrays a truth about you that you had better figure out.  It means that you are not fully confident in who you are with the Lord. That’s the beauty of this whole area of discussion.  It’s a two for.  If you begin to deal with this it will force you to deal with Jesus and get your identity and confidence from Him.  In turn it will help you with the ladies.  I honestly believe that this is why God sets us up as the initiator.  He knows it’s hard and he knows that you have to be strong to do it well.  A man who is strong in the Lord is attractive precisely because he is not desperate.  If you were truly fully confident in who you were in Jesus, you could approach anybody.

For a lot of us, this is a lot more than a dating problem.  We lack confidence period.  The attractiveness to women issue just sticks out as the big example.  It would be a great idea to do a couple of things.  Ask, “where else do I feel desperate or try hard?” and if you have people you trust, ask them where they see you not being you.  Then take that to the Lord. Being single is great.  Being desperate is not.

24 thoughts on “Women Can Smell Desperate

  1. Insightful post. I have a couple guy friends who believe ‘making an effort’ is superficial. But if you can’t take care of yourself what message does that convey to a potential partner about your ability to take care of her.

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    • It might not mean your desperate. It could mean that you are socially immature, scared of people or rude. Most likely all of those circumstances would keep you from dating success as well.

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  15. So what? Why is all of the obligation and pressure on how to behave properly in dating relationships always on men? Why don’t women have to avoid any mistakes?

    • It isn’t. Women have to avoid things too. But this post isn’t about that. And for the most part I write to help men. So why not learn to not act desperate. Seems like a good idea regardless of what women do or don’t do.

      • Well, I definitely have OCD, and my parents and I both think that I might have mild Asperger’s syndrome. I thought love was about accepting other people for who they are, so I don’t see why shyness should disqualify a person from dating.

        But, okay. I see your points.

      • Although, I hear it expressed all the time the sentiment that if a man doesn’t do this or do that for a woman on a date, then he isn’t “worthy” of her. Women automatically, unconditionally deserve the best from men, you know. I don’t believe I’ve read anything telling men what superficial mistakes on a woman’s part to look out for, and that they deserve better than that.

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