10 Shocking Things Guys Wish Girls Knew

You’ve probably heard it before—boys love to complain about how confusing girls can be. But us girls know firsthand that understanding guys can be just as complicated. In hopes of helping girls better understand the guy’s point of view, we surveyed 150 guys about a way-worthy topic: you! What do guys wish you knew?

Here’s one from one of my female readers I thought was worth sharing…

1. Texting does not mean what you think it means.

“Please, tell me why a girl thinks texting or snapping her equals I want her to be my girlfriend,” says Mikey. Blunt, but we like blunt. Mikey is in the majority when it comes to flirting. Nearly every guy we talked to says when he texts, he’s really just trying to get you know you better. A text is just a text, not a confession of love. “It’s like texting a girl means I’m admitting I like her, but that’s not what’s up,” explains Mikey. “It’s more like I’m texting because I might like her. I hate it because the next day the girl acts like she owns me. Or, if she’s shy, suddenly she can barely talk to me because she’s scared. It’s stupid.”

Basically, a text or a snap from a guy isn’t some hidden signal to decode. “I’m just texting because you’re cute or nice or whatever,” says Jordan. “If you treat me like I’m a dog just because I think you’re cool enough to text, that’s not cool.” In other words, exchanging texts with a guy isn’t a reason to change your behavior. Just be yourself, take it slow and feel out the situation. Sure, a text could lead to something more, but for now, it’s just a text, so there’s no need to stress or DTR right away. And if you’re feeling nervous? Keep your cool. Texting your crush can be just as easy as talking to your BFF.

2. You don’t need makeup to impress guys.

Judging from our survey, boys just don’t get makeup. In fact, a lot of guys even complain about it. Sure, they all like pretty girls, but they also have a problem with a face that looks full-on painted.

“Why do girls think they need to have so much crap on their faces?” asks Billy. “Girls at my school wear all this black crap on their eyes, and their lips are, like, thick with brown goop. It’s ugly. Do they really think that will get them a guy?”

Don’t worry, we set Billy straight about one thing: Girls don’t apply makeup to “get them a guy.” We wear makeup because we like it, full stop.

Still, guys’ hatred for cosmetics is no joke. But remember, boys are not the authority on fashion and beauty. You may be a girl who prefers to go au naturel every day, or you may love using every shade of eyeshadow in your Naked palette on any given Tuesday at school. Either way, you do you, girl! Sure, it’s good to know that you don’t need to put in a ton of effort every morning to impress someone, but it’s your choice if you want to apply enough purple mascara to impair your vision. Go for it.

3. A lot of times, guys’ are at a loss with girls’ emotions.

“What is up with girls hopping up and down when they’re happy about something?” asks Pete. “I really do want to know why are girls so excited about normal stuff,” says Pete. “Every other thing, it’s like, ‘Ohmigosh! No way!’” Clearly Pete just doesn’t get that a new season of your favorite show or the return of the PSL are pretty much the best things since sliced bread. But really, what Pete’s saying is something a lot of surveyed guys struggled with: unpacking how girls are feeling, and why.

Colin, a self-described shy boy, has an interesting theory: “I think girls like attention, and being excited about something makes people look and wonder what she’s so happy about.” Hmm…While Colin the amateur psychologist has certainly thought a lot about the topic, we’re not sure he’s cracked the case yet.

Arnie, a jokester, has a theory of his own: “I think girls are just different. You’re raised to let your feelings out, even if they’re bad. I’ve never seen a guy friend cry, but I’ve seen a chick fall apart because some dude she liked didn’t pick her for his volleyball team in phys ed.” Arnie may be onto something. It’s true that because girls are viewed as more emotional, our emotions are seen as more acceptable to express in public, while phrases like, “Man up!” tell boys to keep their feelings, whether it’s sadness or excitement, hidden away.

Here’s the deal: boys are just as emotional as girls, but a lot of times, they don’t show it. That may explain why our guys are so confused about girls’ displays of emotions. Hang in there girl, and remember, there are some things guys just don’t get.

4. Gossiping and being mean to others makes *you* look bad.

“Girls are always passing notes around or texting each other in class, and it’s just so friggin’ dumb,” says Joey. “Or they’ll look right at me, then whisper to each other and laugh. Do they want me to think they’re talking about me? ’Cause I do. And if it’s really true and they are talking about me, then that’s just lame.”

Rude is the word, actually, Joey. Whispering and gossip can seem pretty immature, especially when you’re spreading rumors or being mean to another girl. “When I hear one girl talk trash about another girl, it’s like I can’t believe it,” says Dominick, “like I’m in a bad movie about how mean girls are. If I heard my friends were talking about me like that, I’d transfer schools.”

So don’t trash talk or put down other girls to seem cool. Guys certainly aren’t impressed, but more importantly, you don’t want to hurt others. Sure, people talk about other people. That’s life. But there is a big difference between gossip and character assassinations. You wouldn’t like it if the gossip was about you. It’s bad form to let anyone believe you’re saying negative things about him. If you absolutely must exchange information, be discreet. Oh, and be sure that the “information” isn’t going to hurt someone’s feelings, OK?

5. Boys worry about what you think of their hair, skin, weight and clothes.

“My best friend is a girl, and the other day she said my hair looks exactly the same every single day,” says Luis. “I couldn’t believe it because some days my hair is jacked up.”

Guys may not talk about their insecurities to girls, but they totally think about their appearance even if they don’t say it out loud. “I had to ask my mom to take me to the dermatologist because I was breaking out on my cheeks and back,” says Jay. “I couldn’t stand it.”

His friend Robert has a different issue: “Girls like guys with good bodies but, when I try to get six-pack abs, it never works. I just feel like I have a spare tire all the time.”

If you could get a view of Robert, you would tell him what we told him: He’s out of his mind—the boy is a total babe! But here he is worrying about looking like a model. Moral of the story? Boys have body image issues, too. Isn’t it a relief to know that?

6. PMS is no excuse to be mean.

“I know girls get weird when they’re on their period, but I don’t get why they have to act like I’m their worst enemy,” confides Sean. “Sometimes, my sister acts like she wishes I were dead because I won’t give her the remote control, but all that’s going on is she’s PMSing. Screaming at me and freaking out on me isn’t right.”

We know what you’re thinking: Boys just don’t understand what it feels like to wake up with serious cramps, bloating, breakouts and headaches. So, yeah, we feel your pain—and we really mean feel it. But that’s the point: Boys don’t.

Let’s face it—the hormones that come with menstruation affect moods and being cranky around your time of the month is beyond understandable. But that doesn’t mean you should take our your pain on anyone, much less a guy who doesn’t get it. The best thing you can do is take care of yourself. Just deal the best you can by taking care of yourself. Avoid things that aggravate physical and emotional symptoms like caffeine, sugar and greasy foods. Ever wondered what your cravings mean? We’ve got all the answers. But seriously, get plenty of sleep, drink loads of water, get some exercise and take lots of warm baths—yes, even in the afternoon when you get home from school. Soaking in bubbles while daydreaming is a girl’s best friend.

We’re not saying you should become a recluse just because you’re wearing a maxi-pad. But don’t feel bad for bowing out of a social opp if you’re really not up to it. What’s the point of going to a party if you’re not gonna have a good time? Oh, and if you do snap at your boy for no other reason than those nasty hormonal intrusions, a short, simple apology (“Sorry—I was in a bad state of mind yesterday”) could go a long way. No lengthy, drawn-out explanations necessary.

7. Guys care way less about your body than you think.

“If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s when a girl asks me if she looks fat,” says Stephen. “I don’t know if you’re fat.” And a lot of the boys echo his sentiment. The truth is, you’re a way harsher critic of yourself than a guy will ever be. Guys can’t tell slight differences between sizes, and honestly, they don’t really care.

All guys have different tastes when it comes to the feminine physique. Some guys like booties. Other guys like their girls thin as a fence post. Who cares? You are what you are. Worry more about your own health and happiness and less of guys’ opinions on your looks. Need some self-image pick-me-ups?

Whether you’re questioning a guy friend for his honest opinion or fishing for a compliment from a guy you like, asking about your body is usually a no-win situation. You’re just putting the guy on the spot. And, guess what—if a boy likes you, he likes you for the way you are right now, this second. A shy boy named Paul says it awesome: “Girls’ bodies are an endless mystery to me. I think you’re all beautiful.”

8. Don’t feel pressure to wear revealing or tight clothes just for guys’ attention.

“I think girls get mixed up because of how how people dress on TV,” says Matthew.

Matthew’s not wrong, fashion on TV is all about skimpy looks and attention-grabbers. But remember, the fashion you see on TV are really just costumes designed for performing. The point is, girls should wear what they feel comfortable in, not what TV or movies tells them to wear and definitely not what they think guys are looking for. If you’re still wondering what guys look for in a wardrobe, the truth is, it depends.

“I like the way my last girlfriend dressed,” says Miguel. “She wore some stuff that showed off her great athletic body, but it wasn’t like all hanging out. Sometimes she wore baggy pants and just a little of her belly showed. Or sometimes, if she wore those tight jeans girls always wear, she wouldn’t have her boobs all out.”

In other words, for a lot of guys, less is more. You don’t have to look like a pop star or a character from Riverdale, you just need to wear clothes that make you comfy and happy. And if you’re feeling yourself, the right guy will too!

It’s good to know that guys aren’t looking for runway models, but some guys just don’t get fashion altogether. I mean, you wouldn’t let your brother pick out your outfit, would you? So who needs them to tell you what to wear?

“My sister complains that boys always stare at her boobs, but she wears tight shirts that totally show off her boobs,” says Chad. “I’m confused.”

Ugh, Chad, girls’ fashion choices aren’t an invitation to stare. The truth is, a lot of guys are not fashion experts, and they won’t be impressed just because your outfit shows a ton of skin. Bottom line? You do you girl, and the rest will fall into place.

9. Most boys are looking for the right girl.

Daniel puts it so eloquently: “I would love to find a girl who’s cool.” Being “cool” does seem pretty vague, but our guess is that Daniel is looking for a girl who can be herself around him.

Whatever he means, Daniel is not the only boy looking for a girl to like! Don’t believe it? “I’m sick of everyone acting like boys aren’t as mature as girls,” says D.B. “It’s just that we also think about other stuff. If it happens, it happens, but I’m not going to talk to my friends on the phone about girls every day.” So even if a guy plays it cool about girls, it doesn’t mean he’s not interested. The truth is, a lot of guys are just as interested in finding the right person as girls.

That doesn’t mean all guys are as mature as D.B. His friend Raymond, for example, gives another, ummm, interesting perspective. “So many girls at my school are hot, but me and my friends just wait for them to figure out who they want because that’s what girls seem to do at my school. It’s like they’re all spazzed out about finding a boyfriend all the time. We just have to wait and see.” Hmm…Seems like Ray might not be ready for a relationship.

A lot of surveyed boys agree with Ray on one count, though: some girls may put too much emphasis on finding a boyfriend. As Eric says, “Do girls want any guy or the right guy?” Sending signals to the guy you like is different from going full boy-crazy. Do you and your squad constantly discuss guys? If so, maybe scale it back a bit, and not just because of what boys think. Remember, you have so much more interesting things to explore than “who-likes-who,” as fun as that can be sometimes. Plus, it wouldn’t hurt to show guys (like Ray) what’s really on girls’ minds.

10. If you like him, just tell him.

There was one major statement that kept popping up on our surveys: “Girls should not flirt and act like they like me, and then later ignore me.” Maybe the flirting thing is to girls what the phone is to boys: You’re just flirting to feel him out, and it doesn’t mean you want a relationship. We get that.

Sadly, guys are obviously confused, and sometimes take your friendliness as flirting. Can we trust guys to know the difference? “There is a big difference between just being cool and flirting,” says James. “I can tell if a girl is just talking to me or if she likes me.” A lot of surveyed guys aren’t as confident as James. You may be feeling confused if he likes you, and chances are, he’s in the exact same boat.

So what do you do when you want to make friends with a boy, but you’re worried that striking up a random convo could be misinterpreted as major flirting? Just be honest. “If you like me, just tell me. If you don’t, say you’re not into me like that,” says Ray. It may seem tough to tell a guy you’re just not into him like that, but in the long run, he’ll appreciate knowing the truth instead of feeling led on.

OK, just telling a guy you like him isn’t as easy as it sounds. But all the guys agreed on this one, which means it should work. Courage to be honest? You can do it. Plus, telling your crush how you feel can be a major confidence booster. You can offically consider yourself fearless.

What do you think girls? What surprised you the most about what guys think? Let us know in the comments!

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to Phicklephilly LIVE on Spotify!

What Do Girls Look for in a Guy? The Worthy Traits of a Real Catch

Of course, every girl wants something a little bit different but, if you’re asking yourself, what do girls look for in a guy, here are the essentials…

Hey there, gentlemen, I am super glad you came here to find out what do girls look for in a guy. In my experience, guys seem to think girls look for things like competitiveness, cockiness, and aggression. In reality, that is not the case.

By being open to learning more about what women want, you are already on the right path.

Before answering what do girls look for in a guy, consider this.

I know you came here for guidance and insight. And don’t worry, I’m getting there. But, before we get into what do girls look for in a guy, I want to offer a bit of a disclaimer.

All girls are different. All girls look for different things. Some girls look for a guy with a successful career. Others may want someone with more free time. Some girls look for a scruffy beard and someone with calluses on their hands, but others want someone more clean cut.

You cannot lump all girls together and think that if you exude what girls look for in a guy, that all girls will be attracted to you. But, by focusing on the parts of yourself that girls look for, you can get noticed by the girls that appreciate you.

You cannot take this list and change who you are to fit what girls look for. If some girls are looking for a guy who shares her religious beliefs, you can’t just start believing in God to get her to notice you.

Rather focus on the traits you already have that girls are looking for. For example, many girls look for a guy close with his family. Be sure to talk about those relationships and maybe even introduce a new girl to your family earlier than usual.

You can improve upon yourself and explore new interests. But changing who you are will not get a girl’s attention. It will probably turn her off that you are not being genuine.

For instance, a girl may look for a guy who cares about his physical fitness, so taking time to balance your diet or workout could be beneficial within dating as well as the rest of your life. But, if working out is not something you are interested in, don’t do it solely to attract a girl. Instead, join a book club if you’re an avid reader.

Being true to yourself is one of the main things girls look for in a guy.

What do girls look for in a guy?

Now that you get how to use this list of things girls look for in a guy, let’s get into the specifics.

#1 Honesty. I know this is so generic. Everyone says this, but not everyone lives up to it. Anyone can say that they are honest but anyone can lie.

When a girl is looking for an honest guy, she doesn’t mean just a guy who doesn’t cheat. She means a guy who talks to her about the good stuff and the bad stuff. She wants a guy who admits when he’s made a mistake. Then makes sure he is the one to tell her about it so she doesn’t have to hear it from someone else.

Honesty is the glue that holds all the other things girls look for in a guy together, so focus on this one. 

#2 Masculinity. Masculinity is a pretty popular word on social media right now. Actually, toxic masculinity is the phrase that is thrown around and for good reason. Toxic masculinity is seen in a man who needs to prove his manliness through traditionally male things like cars, violence, not crying or showing emotions, and avoiding the color pink, etc.

This is not the masculinity that girls look for in a guy. Rather, gentlemanliness, honor, and humility are what truly shows masculinity in a man. If you need some examples of a man who shows his masculinity without an ounce of toxic in the mix, there is Chris Evans, Tom Hanks, and Mr. Rogers, just to name a few.

#3 Openness. A girl looks for a guy willing to try new things. This can range dramatically based on the girl. It can mean you are willing to take a spur of the moment vacation or trying a new restaurant.

Openness is also relevant to see things from someone else’s point of view. If you are not open, you are closed. You are essentially stuck in one mindset or view of the world. Being open helps you understand and experience life more fully. Girls want that in a guy.

#4 Respect. Make a note of this one because it is a priority. I am sure you have heard from other guys that girls like to be talked down to or treated badly. That is far from the truth. There are some women that get manipulated by this behavior due to trauma or past dysfunction. No one is looking for that.

What women want is respect. For you to take our words at face value and treat us as equals. Sure, dating comes with a level of flirtatious teasing and challenges. That can all be done without disrespect.

#5 Understanding. Just as a girl understands how bad it hurts to be kicked in the junk without ever actually experiencing it herself, girls look for that empathetic characteristic in a guy. A girl wants you to understand how she is feeling. She wants you to pay attention to her worries and fears.

You may not be able to feel what she is feeling, but by understanding her and empathizing with her, you are trying.

#6 Support. All girls want a guy who will support them through their struggles and their choices. Whether that means being there for her in the midst of family drama or supporting her decision to go back to school or apply for a promotion.

A modern day version of this would be the term “Instagram husband.” This is the boyfriend or husband of an Instagram model that goes out of his way to help her get that perfect photo. He supports her hustle 100%. The opposite of this would be a guy telling his girlfriend not to post that picture because other guys will look at it. 

#7 Independence. No girl wants a guy who can’t survive on his own. You should be able to care for yourself and function on your own. It isn’t the 1950’s anymore. A man should be able to do his own laundry and cook his own food.

When a girl sees a guy who still has his mom take care of him or is always in a relationship so someone can do these things, it is a major turn off.

#8 Compromise. Having a willingness to compromise is not only something girls look for in a guy, but it is something that is essential to any relationship. Someone unwilling to compromise on things like a date spot or who drives will not be able to handle bigger issues in the future.

#9 Availability. This is something girls look for in a guy from the first date. Actually, before the first date even happens. Now, I do not mean you must have tons of free time. Just be able to make plans and stick to them.

A sign that a guy will not be available regularly are loosely made plans and being hard to reach. A girl will notice that you take the time to prioritize her.

#10 Self-care. Another word for self-care could be hygiene. But I really shouldn’t have to say that. Of course, a girl is looking for a guy who brushes his teeth and showers regularly, but this should go beyond that.

Girls want a guy who takes care of himself like an adult. This means you clean your bathroom *or at least hire someone to*, wash your dishes, have soap and shampoo in the shower, wash your face, etc. 

#11 Confidence. Confidence is something just about all women look for in a guy. A guy who second-guesses himself and is in need of constant reassurance and approval is not only unattractive but can be very manipulative and needy to a dysfunctional level.

Showing that you like who you are and feel good in your own skin will help her see your best qualities.  

#12 Acceptance. Just as you want her to accept you and all your quirks or imperfections that make you, you, she wants the same thing. Accept her for who she is. She will notice that. Do not judge her for her choices, her past, or anything else.

So, what do girls look for in a guy? All girls want is for you to be a good person and show it.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Listen to Phicklephilly LIVE on Spotify!

Facebook: phicklephilly       Instagram: @phicklephilly       Twitter: @phicklephilly

10 Surprising Things That Make You More Attractive

Even if most of us can’t do anything to change how we look, there are still many ways we can raise our attractiveness factor for the opposite sex. Smell good, be funny, and don’t talk about your ex too much. It’s not as complicated as self-help books and relationship blogs make it out to be.

According to science, though, those are only the well-known ones. Many other factors seemingly unrelated to attractiveness secretly influence the success rate of your dates.

Food

As to how attractive you are to the opposite sex, you’d think that the only effect of food occurs when you show up on a date with visible food stains on your clothes. Beyond that, what you eat shouldn’t affect attractiveness at all. If it did, we’d spend as much time choosing meals for upcoming dates as we spend on clothes.

According to one study, food can influence your sex appeal in other ways, though only in the case of women.[1] Researchers at St. Cloud State University in Minnesota found that women find men 20 percent more attractive immediately after the women eat something spicy. The study authors say that it’s because of something called embodied cognition, wherein our sensory feelings affect what we feel even if those two are otherwise unrelated.

Color

Preference for color is assumed to be subjective in nature. While some women may immediately ask you to take them to bed after seeing your blue shirt, others may not even answer your calls after the date. It depends on how much they like the color blue. Although that is true in general, one color is unanimously considered to be more appealing—at least on women. Red.

Quite a few studies have found that men tend to find women dressed up in red—whether it’s the color of the dress, bag, or lipstick—to be much more attractive than other colors. It’s perceived to be an indicator of sexual willingness, which may have something to do with the female body’s natural mechanisms to indicate that they’re interested.

Ever notice that your female partner blushes a lot, has fuller cheeks, and is just generally a lot redder than usual during the fertile phase of her menstrual cycle? Yup, that’s directly related to why men find the color red so hard to resist.

Being In A Group

Entire books and gossip columns have been written on how to approach someone at a bar (or any other public gathering). Apart from facial cues and the type of setting, many other minor factors influence whether you’ll be getting the person’s number.

We’ll leave the full analysis of all elements to the experts. But according to science, we know of at least one factor that will increase your chances—being in a group.

In research conducted by psychological scientists from the University of California, participants were asked to rate 100 people on attractiveness. The pictures included people in a group as well as alone, though they were spaced out enough so that the participants didn’t notice any repetition. Overall, people in groups were found to be more attractive than those who were alone.

It may sound counterintuitive, but the researchers believe that it makes perfect sense. When you’re in a group, your face is seen in comparison to the other members of the group. This makes it more average than it would be usually.

You may think that being average would immediately lower your rating, though that’s only true for conventionally attractive people. For the rest of us chums, being in a group hides our otherwise unattractive features as they’re perceived in comparison to others.[3]

Fear

Even if we don’t know the scientific reasons behind it, a lot of us have intuitively used this at one time or another. Ever wondered why your dates at horror movies have a higher chance of succeeding than, say, at rom-coms?

Common sense would suggest that watching romantic scenes together would give you a higher chance of succeeding than staring at ghastly entities out to devour your soul. But we all know that’s not the case. So, what gives?

According to many studies, the answer is simple. We tend to mistake feelings of fear for arousal, and it almost always works. In psychology, it’s creatively known as the misattribution of arousal. When we’re scared, our body exudes symptoms—like increased heart rate and shortness of breath—that are very similar to the ones we have when we’re sexually attracted to someone.

The Side Of The Body

It’s common knowledge that the left and right hemispheres of the brain work in wildly different ways. Even if the extent of the difference between them and how it affects our overall personality is still not perfectly understood, we know that each side is responsible for a different type of brain function. What we don’t know, however, is that it also influences your chances of success while talking to someone in a public gathering.

According to one study, if you approach someone at a loud club and speak into their right ear, you have a much higher chance of making that person listen than if you speak into the left ear. The researchers actually tested this in a club instead of a lab.

Their findings suggest that we’re much more receptive to things on our right side. We’re not entirely sure why it happens, though you could certainly use it to your advantage on your next visit to a loud concert.

Scars

A huge part of the cosmetics industry is aimed at exploiting our insecurity about visible scars, especially on the face. Admittedly, different cultures have different opinions on scars. In Western society, they’re largely seen as indicators of unattractiveness. However, that’s only because we’re listening to the cosmetics industry and not actual science.

Studies have found that facial scars—at least in the case of men—are considered to be more attractive for women seeking short-term relationships. Even if we don’t hunt and fight for survival like we used to, women still associate scars with bravery on the battlefield and with survivability.

They also instinctively indicate higher levels of testosterone and genetic qualities, though the study was only conducted with short-term relationships in mind. Women may still want men without scars for longer-term commitments as that suggests that the men are more caring and empathetic.

Sweat

Sweat isn’t considered to be an attractive trait in any culture around the world as it comes with unpleasant side effects like body odor. People who don’t sweat a lot are still thought to be better mating partners than those who do for the simple reason that no one wants someone else’s bodily fluids in their space any longer than necessary.

According to science, though, sweat may actually make you more attractive. In a study published in The Journal of Neuroscience, researchers found that male sweat contains a pheromone known as androstadienone. It raises the levels of the cortisol hormone among women, which is responsible for sexual arousal and the activation of certain regions of the brain.

Now we’re not saying that you should show up for your date in your sweaty gym clothes as personal hygiene is still an overpowering attractiveness factor. All we’re saying is that you’re much more attractive to the ladies at the gym than you realize.

Ambiguity

It’s no surprise that people tend to be more romantically attracted to you if the feelings are mutual. That works the other way around, too, as someone who’s not attracted to you will eventually make you lose interest in them. (However, that may also have to do with having no choice in the matter.)

It gets a bit unclear when you can’t tell if someone is interested in you. Anecdotal evidence suggests that it should make them much more attractive to you, and science confirms it.

In one study done by researchers at the University of Virginia and Harvard, female participants were found to be attracted to men whose intentions weren’t clear. Surprisingly, the level of attraction was even higher than with men who had obviously shown interest in them. This suggests that the best course of action in a romantic pursuit is keeping things confusing.

Drinking Too Much Or Too Little

Ask anyone in college and they’ll tell you that drinking a lot of alcohol is the best way to find another person more attractive than he or she usually is. While we have no doubt about the veracity of that—despite a lack of scientific evidence—not much is known about how it works the other way around. How does drinking affect your own attractiveness for others?

If one study is to believed, the trick is to have just the right amount of alcohol. If you have too little, you’re (understandably) perceived as “no fun.” But having a lot isn’t good, either, as it’s associated with risky sexual behavior. According to the study at least, the perfect amount is somewhere around 250 milliliters (8 oz) of wine for an average-sized individual.

No Smiling

Popular wisdom says that smiling is a sure way to be more attractive than you usually are because it indicates friendliness and social adeptness. It makes sense, too, and conventionally unattractive people—like a lot of us online writers—have to resort to factors like that. According to science, though, we’re doing it all wrong.

At least for men, smiling is actually perceived to be a less attractive trait by women. It ties into the conventional stereotype of the brooding types being more appealing. But it also has to do with smiling being seen as a feminine and submissive trait. On the other hand, men find smiling women to be more attractive than their ever-serious counterparts.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to Phicklephilly LIVE on Spotify!

Wildwood Daze – Kites – Part 2

So I needed another kite. I knew my mom wouldn’t spring for it. So I used what little allowance I had to get another one.

It had to be this:

The Baby Bat! This was a cool kite. Probably the coolest kite Gayla ever made. Black, with flaming eyes, and the lower edges looked like real bat wings. It too was only a dollar.

I loved my new, cool black kite. The eyes were stickers you had to put on yourself, so the spacing had to be perfect upon application. You didn’t want your bat looking cross eyed or weird. It needed to be cool and menacing.

In hindsight, I think the better name for this kite would have been the Manta Ray, because it better resembles a ray than a bat. Just saying…

Our next idea was to buy more twine. Let’s connect two or more spools of twine and make the tether even longer than 200 feet. Let’s go for 400 feet of string. It became less about the simple whimsy of flying a kite as a restful activity, and more about let’s see what these kites can withstand.

But, this is what boys do. Let’s just see how far we can take an idea before something breaks, or we’re injured. As kids we used to engage in activities that endangered our health and welfare on a daily basis.

It was called the 70’s! Nobody wore seat belts in the car, and nobody wore helmets when they rode their bikes. It was like the wild west back then. Look at jaw breakers candies. Perfect choking hazard for any child. But when you’re young all you ever think of is “I”.  I’ll be fine. I’m Indestructible. I’m Immune. I’m Immortal. You never think anything you do will have any consequences, until you start seeing kids wearing casts on their arms and legs for broken bones.

Good times!

So, I tied the string together, and wound the second spool of 200 feet of string to the first one. Now I had 400 feet of tether. My kite will go higher than ever! My kite is going to go so high, a plane or even a helicopter could crash into it. Now that would be a spectacular day of fun for a couple of boys. Nothing like causing a good old-fashioned air disaster to get the blood up.

We head down to the beach with my new Baby Bat kite and a giant spool of string. The wind is up and blowing north. We follow the path through the bushes to the open beach.

Once there, we let it rip. The string is going out like mad and the kite is rising high into the twilight sky. The sea air is invigorating as I watch as my great ebony vessel rises higher and higher. I decide to place both of my index fingers into the ends of the spool and just let that sucker spin. The cylinder of twine is a blur in my hands as the line goes out like mad. It’s as if I have a fish on the line. (That, or a giant bat!)

The bat is going so high, it’s getting smaller and smaller. Soon it’ll be just an inkblot in the sky. I’ll have flown the highest kite ever!

Now, you have to keep tension on the line so that the kite stays up. If that pressure is off the kite could fall. But the wind is carrying my kite higher than I’ve ever seen a kite go. The spool spins on my fingers.

The line… still going out.

Once it reaches the end, it’ll stop, and the kite will soar even higher. 400 feet is just seconds away! My beautiful brand new kite soars like a bird.

But that didn’t happen.

What I failed to realize was that the string on these spools isn’t tied to the spool. It’s simply wrapped around it by a machine when it’s manufactured.

The final feet of the twine go out, and I’m left standing with what would be equal to an empty role of toilet paper in my hand.

The kite is so high it continues to fly. But it’s so far away and we’re on a beach, so I can’t even see the string as it slips away at high speed. I watch as my brand new  Baby Bat flies away on it’s first, and final mission. My friend is laughing hysterically as we watch the kite fly over the channel as it heads out to sea.

It probably crashed somewhere across the channel in Stone Harbor, five miles away.

So, that was the end of that kite.

I owned a few more Baby Bats that summer. I think it was my favorite kite design. Most were destroyed in sky battles or tangled in electrical lines and lost. I remember my mom saying, “You went through a kite a week that summer!”

Ahh, what a grand time we had as children each summer. Living by the sea, in the sunshine, and getting our exercise. Those experiences build strong, healthy minds and bodies. Better than any video game you could imagine.

One night, there was a land breeze from the west and my friend and I were flying the latest kite. It was a red Sky Raider.

Exciting fun for all ages! Boys, girls, and apparently old guys who smoked pipes! (for only one dollar!)

We were sitting up in the lifeguard chair. Which is the coveted spot to sit on the beach at night. You’re probably 7 feet in the air and it definitely feels like a position of power for a couple of kids.

Ogunquit Beach Lifeguard Chair at Sunrise Ogunquit Maine Photograph by Toby McGuire

I got tired of holding  the string of my kite, so I tied it to the chair. The red kite sailed high over the Atlantic Ocean. Normally you don’t stay long on the beach during the day when there’s a land breeze. It brings all of the green  flies from the bay to the beach. They aren’t like the annoying pests you get in your house in the summertime. These suckers are bigger and ‘bite like horses’, as my dad would say. But by nightfall they’re usually gone.

So my buddy and I are just chilling in the lifeguard chair and chatting. We’re watching the red kite as it flies and dips over the sea. But at some point, the wind died down, and the kite vanished below the waves. At that point we didn’t feel like hauling in all of that wet sandy string, so we just broke the string and let it drift away. I remember before it sank it looked like a big red shark’s dorsal fin before it slipped away.

Another dollar and a half well spent. Taken by Neptune.

I wanted to change up my game. I needed a better kite.

I had heard from one of the other kids that there was a bigger and better kite that was made by Gayla. It looked like the Sky Raider, but it was bigger and had a metal controller you held to maneuver your kite.

Kind of looked like this, but much bigger. It had a six foot wing span. It was called…

The Invader!

Rare 1962 vintage Gayla kite The Invader Kites with box | #1821116875

I had to have it. It cost a whopping six dollars!

I scraped together what little allowance money and change I had to get that kite. It was bigger than any kite on the beach, and it had the cool metal controller included. I scampered over to the store and bought it.

I quickly assembled my great bird and was ready for action. The controller is simply a wire frame shaped like an hourglass that you hold horizontally like an airplane controller. (Don’t get too excited. Think, cheap-ass, coat hanger bent into a metal bow tie.)

Flying Fish Kiting Team: Radcliffe Conversion

You actually needed two spools of twine to operate the kite properly. They were both hooked to the controller and the other ends were attached at two different points on the kite’s brindle. This is so you could steer and maneuver your amazing kite.

I was about to become the Lord of the Skies in Wildwood.

I made sure the string was securely tied to each spool before I hand wound them both back onto each cylinder. I affixed the ends of each cord to the appropriate spots on the kite.

I was ready.

We took my vinyl Phoenix to the beach for it’s maiden voyage to the heavens. The wind was blowing from the south which was perfect. This way, if anything happened it wouldn’t crash in the sea. It would land on the beach north of where we were standing.

I slowly let out the string, and my great winged toy was carried upward. It looked enormous. Some people who were still on the beach at dusk, looked on with pride and amazement at the kid with the amazing kite.

I was so proud as I watched it sail higher and higher. Such an enormous pull on the strings. Huge kite. More wind resistance coupled with great aerial strength and elegance. My beautiful winged beast flying high. It’s glorious six foot wing span, like some great albatross, controlled only by my willing hands. I held the controller and watched as my kite flew higher and higher. We were coming to the end of the string.

This was it.

That moment where the line would become taut and the kite would fly even higher on the tension of the lines. I would proudly steer it along the beach as startled onlookers watched the glory of my passing.

The Sky King.

The Invader!

The anticipation was exhilarating as the end of the spools approached. Within seconds, the strings went taut.

The force was so great it yanked the controller from my tiny hands.

I watched in mute protest as the controller flew from my grasp and bounced down the beach.

My friend and I gave chase. Running as fast as we could in an attempt to catch the bouncing metal frame as it bounded down the beach. It had enough weight to keep the kite aloft, but was light enough to escape from us.

We eventually ran out of energy as the kite flew further and further away.

Another kite had made its escape. It would probably crash like the last on the other side of the channel in Stone Harbor.

My kite…

Snatched from my hands like my fleeting childhood.

 

I’ll always look back on my times at the shore with fond memories. Some of my greatest moments happened on that sandy stage.

 

Here’s a great song that serves as a soundtrack to this story.

 

Here’s one gentleman’s obsession:

http://gaylakitememories.blogspot.com/2012/07/introduction.html

 

Why couldn’t this have happened to us?

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

My new books, Phicklephilly 2 and Sun Stories: Tales from a Tanning Salon are now for sale on Amazon!

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

 

SUN STORIES – Tales From a Tanning Salon, Now Available on Amazon

Yes. It’s now available on Amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

I was working at a local media company here in Philadelphia. One of my advertising clients was a tanning salon. I became friendly with the owner. He was always complaining about his staff. I asked if I could start moonlighting there for some extra income.

He immediately hired me. One shift became two, then three, and within a month or so, I became full time. I was tired of working at the media company where I was currently employed. A publication that was no longer relevant in this city. Print was basically dead… but tanning salons were hanging by a thread.

But I enjoyed working there. It was a fun job. I met a lot of great people during my time there. But with every job, there’s always challenges… and temptations.

Sun Stories: Tales from a Tanning Salon, takes you on a sunny, and sometimes dark journey of my time working there. It’s filled with funny, unique, and sometimes cringe worthy tanning stories. But there were other forces at work there. What began as an easy part time gig, slowly evolved into a story filled with love, obsession, sex, and misadventure.

When I was editing Phicklephilly 2, I had a revelation. I realized that Phicklephilly 2 was all about the relationship I was in with my girlfriend, Cherie. The love affair, the passion, and the infidelity of that glorious celebration of two people coming together.

But, I looked at Sun Stories, and saw that it ran parallel to Phicklephilly 2. It was a complete documentation of my work life during that period. Phicklephilly 2 was about my relationship with Cherie, and Sun Stories was my work life.

They’re both happening at the same time. I have to release them together.

That’s my whole life between 2016 and 2018. It’s everything. I have to release them both.

Cherie. I loved her. But after Michelle and Annabelle, I was now armed with how to navigate my future relationships. Secure myself and see what happened. I’d never enter into another relationship without my armor on.

I was working at the media company that was the last cool paper in the city. When I think about going to that publication, I think of Ronnie James Dio. He once said that when he joined Black Sabbath to replace Ozzy Osbourne, he called it, the second coming… or going, of Black Sabbath.

That’s how it felt when I joined this dying publication. I loved all of the people I worked with there, but knew the paper was doomed. It’s greatest days had come and gone. I only did it because I was about to be fired from the start up where I was working. I had such high hopes for what I was going to build with that little start up. The money was great, and I’m forever grateful for that. But they never followed through with the investors to build it out into a national site.

That site is dead now.

It was heartbreaking for me to leave them, but I’m sure the owner was relieved he no longer had to pay me. Why did he never follow through? It makes no sense. I guess I’ll never know. We could have built something wonderful. I jumped to a local free publication and made a go of it. That old publication was in a state of flux, and the changes that unfolded for that sweet paper destroyed the very thing it once was. I worked hard at what I’m good at. Acquiring accounts and building the business.

But the writing was on the wall. They had brought in a fool to run the daily operations. He systematically destroyed the advertising department at the paper. Can you imagine that? The guy gets a job to grow a struggling business and all he knows how to do is ruin it.

He did that. All of the meetings. The Monday morning kickoff meeting. The Wednesday Sales Meeting. The Thursday One on One. He should be horse whipped. He broke the spirit of everybody who worked there.

There are no clients in any of your foolish meetings you silly asshole.

How could he be such a failure as a leader when he seem like such a nice guy?

Detritus.

My father passed away, and I was fed up. I was the only sales guy on the floor. Rocco was a fixture and an account rep. He can’t sell. The new manager brought in a couple of retards, and I could see there was no future there. The place was a rotten husk.

It kind of sucks, because back in the day, I LOVED that publication and the CITY PAPER. They were god to me. If you wanted to see what was up in Philly, they were the papers you grabbed. They were in honor boxes around the city. I would always read them every week. Everything I needed to know was in those sweet papers.

But, here I was working at this anachronism. It was over. My daughter will never touch a newspaper. It’s over. It’s been over since 2008. Print is dead.

Oh, but here we go…

Tanning is dead too.

I had a client who actually spent money with me to advertise his brand. I did my best for him. I believed in his products and services. I gave my all. I came up with creative ideas because I cared. I wrote killer copy for his ads. I did what I’m good at.

I liked it so much, I went to work there to escape the dungeon of selling print advertising in a paper whose epitaph had already been written.

But I had no idea it would open a flower I had never seen before.

This is the most lurid book I’ve ever written.

So let’s begin.

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

 

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

My new books, Phicklephilly 2 and Sun Stories, are now for sale on Amazon!

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

18 Science-Backed Ways Men Can Appear More Attractive To Women

  • Romantic attraction is complicated.
  • Lucky for us, scientists have generated insights over the years into what might make men attractive to women.
  • Men who look older, sport a light beard, or do volunteer work are generally considered more appealing.

Romantic attraction is a complicated thing that scientists still don’t completely understand.

But, through research and experimentation, they’ve come up with many ideas about what draws one person to another.

Below, Business Insider has rounded up some of the most compelling scientific insights about the traits and behaviors that make men more appealing to women.

None of the items on this list require you to get cosmetic surgery or do a major personality overhaul; we’re talking small tweaks, like acting nicer and swapping your deodorant.

Read on for simple ways to step up your dating game.

Look for the universal signals of flirtation.

wolf of wall street margot robbie

Mary Cybulski/Paramount Pictures

Rutgers University anthropologist and best-selling author Helen E. Fisher says that women around the world signal interest with a remarkably similar sequence of expressions.

It goes like this:

“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. Frequently she also covers her face with her hands, giggling nervously as she retreats behind her palms.

“This sequential flirting gesture is so distinctive that [German ethologist Irenaus] Eibl-Eibesfeldt was convinced it is innate, a human female courtship ploy that evolved eons ago to signal sexual interest.”

Look for someone “in your league.”

Master of None

Netflix

Men — and women — are attracted to people who are as attractive as they are.

In one study from 2011, researchers at the University of California at Berkeley looked at the behavior of 60 heterosexual male and 60 heterosexual female users on an online dating site.

While the majority of users were inclined to reach out to highly attractive people, they were most likely to get a response if that person was about as attractive as they were (as judged by independent raters).

“If you go for someone roughly [equal] to you in attractiveness, it avoids two things,” Nottingham Trent University psychologist Mark Sergeant, who was not involved with the study, told The Independent. “If they are much better-looking than you, you are worried about them going off and having affairs. If they are much less attractive, you are worried that you could do better.”

Many men are delusional of their own worth. Many aim too high but fail to realize they lack the ability to acquire a woman that is far out of their league.

Present yourself as high status.

Bentley Continental GT

Bentley

A 2010 study from the University of Wales Institute found that men pictured with a Silver Bentley Continental GT were perceived as way more attractive than those pictures with a Red Ford Fiesta ST.

And a 2014 study from Cardiff Metropolitan University found that men pictured in a luxury apartment were rated more attractive than those in a control group.

Interestingly, men don’t seem to be more attracted to women when they’re pictured in a high-status context.

Grow a light beard.

david beckham beard

Larry Marano / Getty

In a 2013 study from the University of New South Wales, researchers had 177 heterosexual men and 351 heterosexual women look at images of 10 men in one of four conditions: clean-shaven, light stubble, heavy stubble, or full beard. Participants rated the men pictured on several traits, including attractiveness.

Women said the most attractive beard length was heavy stubble.

“Facial hair correlates not only with maturity and masculinity, but also with dominance and aggression,” write authors Barnaby J. Dixson and Robert C. Brooks.

“An intermediate level of beardedness is most attractive,” they add.

Build muscle (but not too much).

Steph Curry

Ezra Shaw/Getty

In a 2007 study from University of California, Los Angeles, 286 women looked at pictures of shirtless men and indicated which ones seemed like they would make the best long- and short-term partners.

Results showed that women were more likely to want short-term relationships with the guys who had big muscles.

The evolutionary signal that might be at work here?

Characteristics like muscularity are “cues of genes that increase offspring viability or reproductive success,” say authors David A. Frederick and Martie G. Haselton.

But Frederick and Haselton took away another telling finding: Less-muscular men were thought to be a better fit for long-term relationships. So if you want to catch a woman’s eye and hold her attention, you may be better off not going overboard.

Be kind.

ryan gosling omg

Rommel Demano / Getty

One of the best documented findings in psychology is the halo effect, a bias where you unconsciously take one aspect of somebody as a proxy for their overall character. It’s why we think beautiful people are good at their jobs, even when they aren’t necessarily.

As psychologist and writer Scott Barry Kaufman notes, the halo effect works in other ways, too.

In a 2014 Chinese study, more than 100 young people looked at images of men and women’s faces and rated them on attractiveness. Each face pictured was paired with a word that described either a positive personality trait — like kindness or honesty — or a negative personality trait, like being evil or mean.

Results showed that the people described with positive traits were rated more attractive.

“Even though beauty is an assessment of fitness value, there is no reason why assessment of fitness needs to be purely physical,” Kaufman writes, meaning that acting kind can make you appear more attractive.

Wear red.

will smith red

Mike Coppola / Getty

A 2010 cross-cultural study — with participants from China, England, Germany, and the US — found that women are most attracted to men wearing red.

In one experiment from the study, 55 female undergrads looked at a color photo of a man in either a red or green shirt, and then rated the man’s attractiveness.

Sure enough, the man was rated significantly more attractive when he was wearing a red shirt. The results were similar when researchers compared the red shirt to other color shirts as well.

Interestingly, participants generally weren’t aware that the man’s clothing color was influencing their perceptions of his attractiveness.

Make your partner laugh.

couple on date

Shutterstock

Multiple studies indicate that women are more attracted to men who can make them laugh. Interestingly, men generally aren’t more attracted to women who can make them laugh.

In one 2006 study published in the journal Evolution and Human Behavior, researchers asked undergraduate students (who didn’t indicate their sexual orientation) to say how much they valued a partner’s ability to make them laugh and their own ability to make their partner laugh.

Results showed that women valued both their partner’s sense of humor and their own ability to make their partner laugh; men valued only their own ability to make their partner laugh.

Walk a dog.

Dog

Fiona Goodall/Getty Images

In a 2014 experiment from the Ruppin Academic Center in Israel and the University of Michigan, 100 Israeli women read vignettes about men.

Some of the men were described as “cads”: They would cheat on their partner and get into fights. The other men were described as stereotypical “dads”: They would work hard at their job and take good care of their kids.

Whenever the story featured a cad who owned a dog, women rated that man as a more suitable long-term partner than a cad who didn’t own a dog. Cads with dogs were even rated slightly more attractive than dads with dogs.

The researchers concluded that owning a pet signals that you’re nurturing and capable of making long-term commitments. It can also help you appear more relaxed, approachable, and happy.

Play good music.

ed sheeran

Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP

In a 2014 study, researchers at the University of Sussex asked about 1,500 women (whose average age was 28) to listen to simple and complex pieces of music and rate the attractiveness of the composer.

The results showed that women preferred the more complex music, and said they would choose the composer of the more complex music as a long-term partner.

Practice mindfulness.

In 2015, Australian researchers studied undergrads participating in a speed-dating session, and found that mindful men tended to receive higher attractiveness ratings from women.

Before the session began, 91 students were asked to fill out a mindfulness questionnaire in which they indicated how much they agreed with statements like:

  • “I perceive my feelings and emotions without having to react to them.”
  • “I notice changes in my body, such as whether my breathing slows down or speeds up.”
  • “I’m good at finding the words to describe my feelings.”

After each interaction with an opposite-sex partner, students privately indicated how “sexy” they found their partner and how much they’d like to date that person.

Results showed that men were generally more drawn to physically attractive women. (Independent coders had rated the students’ attractiveness beforehand.) But women were generally more attracted to mindful men.

Play extreme sports (carefully).

Hiking up a snowy mountain skiing

Doug Pensinger, Getty Images

A 2014 study led by researchers at the University of Alaska at Anchorage found that women are attracted to men who take what the researchers call “hunter-gatherer risks.”

More than 230 undergrads filled out questionnaires about how attractive they would find a partner who engaged in certain risky behaviors, as opposed to a partner who engaged in low- or no-risk behaviors.

Hunter-gatherer risks included mountain biking, deep-sea scuba diving, and extreme rollerblading. “Modern” risks included plagiarizing an academic paper, casually handling chemicals in a lab, and not updating the virus-protection software on your computer.

Low- and no-risk behaviors included biking along paved paths and carefully handling chemicals in a chemistry-lab class.

Results showed that women said they would be more attracted to men who engaged in hunter-gatherer risks — the kinds that were similar to risks faced by ancestral humans. Women said they would be less attracted to men who engaged in modern risks, which might seem just plain dumb.

Wear a scented deodorant.

Simply knowing that you’re wearing a new fragrance can make you act more confident, and even make you seem more attractive to other people.

In a small 2009 study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science, researchers gave one group of male undergraduates a spray with antimicrobial ingredients and fragrance oil, and provided another group with an unscented spray that didn’t contain antimicrobial ingredients. Over the next few days, the men who used the scented spray reported higher self-confidence and felt more attractive.

The strange part? When a group of women were shown silent videos of the men, they found those who were wearing scented spray more attractive, even though they obviously couldn’t smell them. The researchers determined that the men using the scented spray displayed more confident behavior, which in turn made them more attractive.

Chow down on garlic.

Ken Christopher holds a garlic plant at Christopher Ranch in Gilroy, California, U.S., March 29, 2019. Picture taken March 29, 2019. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
Ken Christopher holds a garlic plant at Christopher Ranch in Gilroy 
Reuters

The smell of garlic on your breath is generally regarded as an instant romance killer. But a series of studies from researchers at Charles University and the National Institute of Mental Health in the Czech Republic and the University of Stirling in the United Kingdom suggests a different story when it comes to body odor.

In one study, eight men ate a slice of bread with cheese and 12 grams of fresh garlic; another eight ate bread and cheese without any garlic. For the next 12 hours, the men wore cotton pads under their armpits and were instructed not to use any deodorants or fragrances.

The following day, all the men returned to the lab, where 40 women sniffed the pads and rated the odor on pleasantness, attractiveness, masculinity, and intensity. Results showed that the garlic group was rated more pleasant and attractive and less masculine and intense.

Do volunteer work.

Diego Prada (C), Maria Luisa Pombo (L) and other volunteers of the Make The Difference (Haz La Diferencia) charity initiative prepare soup to be donated, at Maria Luisa's kitchen in Caracas, Venezuela March12, 2017. Picture taken March 12, 2017. REUTERS/Marco Bello

Thomson Reuters

A 2013 study from UK researchers found that women find men more appealing when they do volunteer work.

About 30 women looked at a picture of a man with a brief description of his hobbies, which sometimes included volunteer work. The same procedure was repeated with about 30 men looking at a picture of a woman. Everyone rated how attractive they found the person pictured for a short- and long-term relationship.

Both genders rated the person pictured as more attractive for a long-term relationship when they were described as a volunteer — but the effect was stronger for women rating men.

Show off your scars.

Heidi Klum Seal Thumbnail

Getty

That scar on your chin from when you fell off a bike could help you attract a mate.

In a 2009 study, researchers at the University of Liverpool and the University of Stirling took photos of 24 male and 24 female undergrads. They digitally manipulated half of the images so the subjects appeared to have facial scars — for example, a line on the person’s forehead that looked like the result of an injury.

Then the researchers recruited another group of about 200 heterosexual male and female undergrads to rate all the people pictured based on attractiveness for both short- and long-term relationships.

Results showed that men with scars appeared slightly more attractive for short-term relationships than men without scars. Women, on the other hand, were perceived as equally attractive regardless of whether they had scarred faces.

Use open body language in your online dating photo.

flirting

Getty Images

A 2016 study — from researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, Stanford University, the University of Texas at Austin, and Northwestern University — suggests that we’re more attracted to people who display expansive body language.

In one experiment included in the study, the researchers created profiles for three men and three women on a GPS-based dating app.

In one set of profiles, the men and women were pictured in contractive positions — for example, by crossing their arms or hunching their shoulders.

In the other set of profiles, the same men and women were pictured in expansive positions, like holding their arms upward in a “V” or reaching out to grab something.

Results showed that people in expansive postures were selected as potential dates more often than those in contractive postures. This effect was slightly larger for women selecting men.

Look proud.

Oscars

AP/Jordan Strauss

A 2011 University of British Columbia study revealed a curious finding: heterosexual men and women prefer different emotional expressions on potential mates.

In one experiment included in the study, researchers had nearly 900 North American adults look at photos of opposite-sex individuals online.

The researchers were specifically comparing people’s perceptions of expressions of pride, happiness, shame, and neutrality (other people had already identified the emotion behind the expression in the photo). For women evaluating men, the most appealing expression was pride, and the least appealing was happiness.

Even weirder, an expression of shame was relatively attractive on both men and women.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

My new book, Angel with a Broken Wing is now for sale on Amazon!

 

 

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

How To Keep Your Breakup From Making You Literally Sick

One from a female reader!

The first time I ever smoked a cigarette was the night my fiancé broke up with me over the phone. After he told me he didn’t love me anymore and that I could keep my engagement ring, I hung up, went into the kitchen, and grabbed a cigarette from an open pack that belonged to my dad. I didn’t think twice — I just needed to burn something.

The end of that relationship was so sudden and unexpected that I didn’t know how to process it. So, I smoked cigarettes and started drinking alcohol excessively. Hanging out in bars and getting wasted had never appealed to me, but I had just turned 21, so I figured, why not? For a few brief hours every Friday and Saturday night, three or four Long Island iced teas could help me forget how devastated I felt the rest of the week.

“Breakups are painful — literally,” says Rosie Shrout, a postdoctoral researcher at Ohio State University who studies the intersection between health and romantic relationships. “Just like any other stressful experience, breakups can cause a psychological and physiological stress response, meaning our bodies produce stress hormones that wear and tear on our mental and physical health.”

Too often, we turn to behaviors that affect our physical health — such as binge drinking, smoking, using drugs, or exercising too much — to help cope with the aftermath of a relationship ending. We may view these behaviors as a way to get back at our ex, or we may turn to them because our inhibitions are lowered or our self-esteem has been damaged, Shrout says.

That was Penny’s* experience. The 31-year-old says she started drinking heavily, getting high, and hooking up with people who didn’t make her happy after she discovered her boyfriend had cheated on her. “Drinking and getting high numbed me, and sleeping around gave me validation,” she says.

Shrout says that while these types of responses are not uncommon, they’re also not great coping strategies. You might feel better in the moment, but these behaviors “don’t treat the emotional distress from the breakup and can even contribute to long-term health problems.”

Research shows that romantic relationships play a role in a person’s overall health — and not always for the better. One study found that people who said their closest relationships (including those involving an S.O.) were filled with conflict had a 34% higher risk of developing heart problems, even after adjusting for things like age and overall health. Another study found that people who were married and unhappy had higher blood pressure than those who were single. Researchers have also found that women who’ve dealt with multiple breakups have worse mental health than women who’ve managed to avoid heartache by staying single or sticking with their very first romantic partner.

But let’s be real: The chances of that happening in 2019 are pretty slim. We will all likely experience a bad breakup at some point. Knowing that, here are a few ways to stay healthy during those tough times.

Unfollow your ex.

To preserve your well-being, Joy Harden Bradford, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist in Georgia, recommends disconnecting from your former partner on social media — at least for now. “A lot of times when we’re trying to stay connected with the ex, we’re trying to answer questions that social media will not give us the full answers to,” she says. “We’re trying to see if they’re hurting as much as we’re hurting or if there’s somebody new that they’re dating.”

This can create more emotional distress than forcing yourself to let go. And, as Bradford explains, that distress can manifest in physical symptoms, such as headaches, stomachaches, random pain or tension. Thanks, but no thanks.

Stay active.

Working out might be the last thing you want to do after getting dumped, but exercise has been proven to reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety and increase self-esteem. “It doesn’t have to be full-blown Orange Theory every day,” Bradford says. Even a walk around campus or a few yoga poses while you binge on “Stranger Things” can be beneficial. The endorphins you get from exercise can help stabilize your mood — and yes, that’s true even when you’re convinced you’d rather spend the next six hours with your face in a tub of popcorn.

Get nutrition.

It’s not uncommon to lose your appetite post-breakup, especially if you’re really sad. The stress of a broken heart can unleash a swell of hormones and put your body in survival mode. As a result, the urge to eat becomes secondary — even a plate of authentic savory tacos from your favorite Mexican restaurant can look unappetizing. (The horror!) If that’s the case, Bradford recommends a smoothie or meal replacement shake. “Sometimes it can feel really hard to eat,” she says. “I typically will recommend people drink because that’s a little easier.”

Find a voice box.

Showing up to a party without your ex will likely raise questions, especially if you’ve been joined at the hip since day one. If it hurts too much to talk about the breakup, ask someone you trust to give people the heads up on why you’re riding solo. “When you are telling the story over and over again, sometimes you get stuck there,” Bradford says. “You can’t move on to the healing place if you are stuck in the reporting place.” Ask a friend to simply tell it like it is so everyone can move on: “Yes, they broke up, and no she doesn’t want to talk about it. How was your week?”

Allow yourself to feel all the feelings.

Everyone deals with painful events differently. Avoidance, however, is not an effective coping mechanism. “Those feelings don’t go away because we’re distracting ourselves,” says Bradford. “[It’s important to] really allow yourself to sit in the depth of those feelings, even though it sounds really miserable. There is no way for them to go away unless you actually allow yourself to experience them and then come to realize you can come out on the other side of this.”

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Buy my new book, Angel with a Broken Wing on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

The Four Simple Rules for Dads Getting Divorced

A single dad life coach gives his most common and useful advice for men heading into divorce involving kids. Hope all you guys had a good Fathers Day.

As the man in the divorce, you have an opportunity to lead the process with grace and empathy. You cannot control how your ex behaves, the only thing you can control is your own response to the challenges ahead.

I’m going to make this as simple as possible. It’s the conversation I have every week as I speak to dads about ready to enter in the process (voluntarily or otherwise) of divorce. Most of them are scared out of their wits. They were unprepared for the “filing.” And now they are scared and lacking an adequate support system to carry them through the coming storm.

It’s going to be hard, but you are going to make it. And here are the three top mantras for you to remember.

  1. You have to take care of yourself first. Your health and clear direction is necessary for you to lead your kids through the emotional trouble ahead for all of you
  2. Keep the fight of the divorce between the adults only. Deal with your soon-to-be-ex as civilly as you can, but never debate or degrade each other in front of the kids. Never speak poorly of your co-parent
  3. Let go of your ex completely. She no longer deserves your attention and energy
  4. Don’t go it alone, talk to others, build community, and please don’t isolate

Take Care of Yourself First

Do you know how they instruct you before takeoff on an airplane? “In the case of emergency, oxygen masks will come out of the ceiling. Put your mask on first. Then work on your kid’s masks.” Here’s why that matters. If you lose consciousness (or in the case of divorce, lose your mind) everyone will suffer. As the man in the divorce, you are going to be hit with a lot of unfair rulings and family law precedents. You may want to lawyer up and fight, or you may decide to make peace with the divorce and simply act in the best interest of yourself and your kids.

Also, as the man in the divorce, you have an opportunity to lead the process with grace and empathy. You cannot control how your ex behaves, the only thing you can control is your own response to the challenges ahead. If you can keep your kids in mind any time you are responding to some new request or modification in the divorce agreement, you can relax and make the right decision. Not being reactionary, not buying into potential drama, and simply stating what you need, and what your kids need. That’s the best past forward. Don’t buy into the drama. Don’t try to be detached and emotionless, but keep your kids at the heart of your response. Always think of the kids.

Your Health (Mentally, Physically, and Spiritually) Is Your Highest Priority

What can you do today to start taking better care of yourself? Are you sleeping okay? Are you drinking a bit too much? How is your diet and exercise? Are you getting together with others? Are you praying? What things about your life can you be grateful for today, even as things feel like chaos around you?

Here are the parts of your life you can control easily:

  1. Watch what you eat and drink
  2. Get enough sleep, make it a priority
  3. Get some exercise, anything is better than nothing, start small
  4. Talk to someone about what’s going on

Keep the Fight Contained Between the Adults

You are going to have disagreements with your ex. The idea of co-parenting sounds nice, but in practice, it takes a lot more than good intentions. There are going to be negotiations about holidays and birthdays, negotiations about school and who should stay home when one of your kids is sick. You are going to need the goodwill of your ex-spouse, and often their cooperation and coordination around home life and school life. Complaining about your ex in front of the kids is a lose-lose situation. Just don’t do it.

Work on getting your support team together. Who can you call when you really want to call and bitch at your ex-partner? Do you have a counselor or a friend who is willing to keep your struggles confidential? In all that is going on, your isolation will only make things harder. Make sure you get out of your house and get involved in some activities with others. Al-anon is a great program for emotional healing. Meetup groups can provide activities and new hobbies for your alone time. But most of all, keep the fighting between you and your ex. And when possible, let them win. If there’s no loss for you, just let them get their way. Just to reduce the conflict. If it’s not that important to you, let it go.

The Big Release of Your Ex

One of my last lessons in my divorce journey was to let all expectations about my ex-wife go. She is never going to be a cooperative co-parent with me. She may never get over being mad a me, even when the divorce was her idea. She’s not going to say “thank you” when I do something over and above the call of duty or outside of the divorce decree. She’s not going to celebrate your victories with you. She may be able to celebrate the victories of your kids with you, but more than likely, she’s going to keep most of those to herself. You’ve got to let go of all expectations. The “relationship” with her is over. There is no closure. There is nothing to get from your ex-wife.

As I began to understand my ex-wife’s inability to be cordial, I began to communicate with her only around the logistics of getting the kids where they needed to be. It’s as if they are a convenience store clerk, you go into the store to get milk, you don’t need to know about the clerk’s life troubles. In the same way, you don’t need to know everything that’s going on with your ex. As you can let go of their approval and permissive involvement in your life, you can begin to let go of them emotionally too.

It’s taken me nine years to get clear of my optimistic expectations of my co-parenting ex-wife. I still think about calling her from time to time about something regarding our kids. But I don’t. And I’m not going to call her. She gave me my kids, initially. She can’t give me anything else. As you detach from them, the hope is that your resentment and anger at them will also dissipate. That’s the hope. I’m not sure I’m ever going to be okay with the time I lost with my kids as a result of the divorce my wife initiated.

I’m still releasing, daily. You can begin releasing your ex right now, too.

Return to the basics.

Your health.

The energy and health of your kids.

Moving on to what’s next in your life.

Don’t Go It Alone

Men don’t do all that well at supporting one another when things get hard or emotional. But you can find other men, and even women, who are willing to support you just as you are. In my experience, Al-anon meetings are the best self-help programs in the world. They are in your town, and there are probably 3 or 4 meetings you could attend over the next week or so. Find a place you can go and talk about what’s going on.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Buy my new book, Angel with a Broken Wing on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

18 Things Women Find Irresistible About Their Man

One would assume that if you’re in a happy, healthy relationship and were given a challenge to name 5 things you found irresistible about your mate in 30 seconds you could do it, right? Ok I did start this blog with the word assume – so I’m assuming you could.  But guys if you’re reading this, I somehow happened upon 18 things women find irresistible. So, you’re welcome if any of these helps you out:

  • Own a pair of really nice shoes and actually wear them.
  • Brush the hair out of their eyes.
  • Are able to hold a baby or push a stroller without squirming.
  • Plan an evening out from soup to nuts, from finding a movie to making the dinner reservations.
  • Kiss creatively.
  • Handle our emotions with grace and compassion.
  • Have impassioned, informed opinions about women writers and women’s issues.
  • Can distinguish between being courteous and being wimpy.
  • Know how to inscribe a card with a heartfelt, personal message.
  • Demonstrate respect for others by standing up when your mother comes to the table, giving up a seat on the bus for a pregnant woman, asking your dad for his opinion and really listening, etc.
  • Show genuine, platonic interest in your female friends’ lives.
  • Are playful around dogs, cats and kids.
  • Make the bed in the morning and fold the laundry — competently.
  • Offer juice, soup and TLC when we’re sick.
  • Do the come-from-behind cuddle-hug, just to say hello.
  • Remember insignificant details, like our favorite color or flower, and make use of that knowledge.
  • Are unfailingly polite to all members of the service industries.
  • Offer us caresses and compliments for no particular reason.

Ladies, do you agree? Does your man already do any of these? You’d think some would be a given. And I’ll be honest; I can’t wait to read your comments! Be sure to sound off. As always, thanks for stopping by my blog today! – Chaz

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

My new book, Angel with a Broken Wing publishes of Amazon June 20th!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly

What It’s Really Like to Be Sober Curious: When an Alcohol “Break” Becomes Permanent

In the spring of 2018, 42-year-old Kim Banks found herself in a lonely place. Struggles with anxiety and depression interfered with life as a wife, mother of 5-year-old twin boys, and her work in public relations. Despite self-improvements like daily exercise, healthy eating, and good sleep habits, Banks wasn’t happy.

“I was feeling lots of anxiety and depression, along with irritability, even though I was trying to do all the right things,” she says.

In the back of her mind, Banks describes a nagging thought, “Give up the alcohol.”

“I was in a constant, daily argument with myself,” she says. At the root of was the question: “Should I drink tonight?”

Photo credit: Instagram/@kimbanks_reset
Photo credit: Instagram/@kimbanks_reset
More

Banks ended each workday with a few glasses of wine. On weekend nights out with her husband, she describes “going a little hard,” and leaving a wave of bad feelings for the next day.

“I knew I needed to eliminate alcohol, but it was the last thing I wanted to eliminate,” she says. “I really enjoyed wine, and I definitely bought into the idea alcohol enhances experiences,” she continues. “Tell me to give anything else up but the wine.”

Initially, Banks describes a curiosity around “taking a 30-day-break” from alcohol. She researched online for information about what impact alcohol has on the body. “I mainly searched for success stories from people who gave up drinking for 30 days or more,” she explains.

Her online searches turned up first-hand accounts of people like herself, who hadn’t suffered major life-altering consequences from drinking, but saw their drinking as problematic all the same. Others identified as “alcoholic” but blended traditional 12-step recovery with other support among fellow “sober curious” followers.

Banks made the decision to go alcohol-free. “I was thinking, ‘This isn’t making me happy anymore, but it’s ingrained in my daily habits,'” she says.

How Giving Up Alcohol Became a Wellness Trend

Ruby Warrington’s 2018 book Sober Curious is something of a guidebook for this less-threatening, label-free, booze-less trend. The book describes Warrington’s “gray-area problem drinking.” Uncomfortable with the label “alcoholic,” she developed a following of like-minded non-drinkers via her book, podcasts, and social media. Banks is one of many who either gave up drinking altogether or drink more mindfully.

Sober coach Rae Dylan lives in New York City and sees the trend up close. Cities like New York City and Chicago are seeing a rise of sober-free bars and events. Instagram and Facebook pages devoted to alcohol-free living boast followers in the tens of thousands.

“I see it as part of what’s happening all around us,” says Dylan, who works with recovering addicts and alcoholics requiring protection from the press, nutritional guidance, mental health issues, medication, and detox. “People are more interested in a healthy lifestyle and part of not-drinking is part of this healthy culture which recognizes it’s not healthy the way Americans drink,” she adds.

In particular, the idea of not drinking in what some consider awkward social situations, like a bar atmosphere, is encouraging, Dylan believes. “It’s a good thing; the movement gives younger people, who may feel pressure to drink or do drugs, another outlet,” she says.

“Instead of feeling pressure to drink,” Dylan continues, “the focus comes off labels like ‘alcoholic’ and, instead, people focus on having a cool virgin mojito with maybe organic cane juice.”

Finding Like-Minded Non-Drinkers

Banks admits her first steps into a sober lifestyle weren’t easy. Friends and family didn’t object, but they had difficulty supporting what they couldn’t understand.

“I was surrounded with casual drinkers who didn’t understand why someone would choose to give up alcohol without being an alcoholic,” she says. “I wasn’t a rock-bottom alcoholic, so it wasn’t a black-or-white issue for me.”

Instead, the issue, like Warrington describes, was more of a gray area. “I was tired, my skin was breaking out and I had tried everything else,” she continues. “I knew in my heart what I needed to cut.”

Finding support from other non-drinkers meant turning to the internet and social media. At first, Banks was unaware she was part of the sober curious movement. Her first steps going wine-free centered on setting up an Instagram page to record an initial 30-day break from alcohol. “I would post things like, ‘This is my second day without alcohol!’”

Today, Banks has nearly 6,500 Instagram followers celebrating her alcohol-free experiences. She credits this early support with her sober lifestyle today. “There were so many supportive people on Instagram,” Banks says. “I felt like I had these online pen pals who really got what I was going through.”

She describes the connections as uplifting without shame. Followers celebrate her victories and help her navigate rough days. Plus, she knows she has 24-hour access to a community of support. If she and her husband go out for the evening, she’s only an Instagram away from others who are also abstaining from drinks on a weekend night.

Trend vs. Lifestyle

Living in Greenville, SC, Banks doesn’t have the luxury of countless, trendy sober bars to visit. But, time away from drinking has made it easier and less appealing to go backward. She says she focuses on the reality of drinking versus the fantasy.

During a recent family vacation, Banks said the idea of having a drink sounded tempting. She reminded herself, however, of the reality behind the “one drink,” which included, for her, likely more than one drink, a bad night’s sleep and heavy anxiety in the morning. “In the beginning it was so hard, but now I’ve had so many experiences under my belt, and I feel more confident,” she explains.

“I think through the drink,” she explains. “I admit to myself I have the urge, but I know the ‘idea’ is way better than any glass of wine.”

The days of pushing through moments of temptation are fewer and further between. If she needs support, she knows her Instagram followers are always nearby, along with other sober curious friends she’s made on the journey.

Her friends and family are still casual drinkers, but Banks has been abstaining from alcohol for the past year and a half, and has no intention of going back to her evening wine. “I love waking up at 6 a.m. on a Saturday morning without a hangover,” she says.

Enjoying sober experiences has left Banks feeling healthier, more focused, and more present for her husband and children. In addition, her family’s finances have improved without the steady purchase of wine. She says her husband is proud of her accomplishment, and her children are enjoying a more active family life with hiking and trips.

“There are so many physical and emotional benefits from intentionally taking a break from alcohol,” says Banks. “It opens a whole new world. I’m a better friend, wife, and mom,” she adds. For now, she remains alcohol-free, one day at a time.

 

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Buy Phicklephilly THE BOOK now available on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly