Why Playing Hard-To-Get May Help Your Love Life


What could be sexier than a little mystery? It keeps lovers on their toes, creates intrigue, and suggests a world of potential. Giving away all your secrets, telling your funniest stories on the first date, confessing mistakes of past relationships, introducing your hottie to every friend and colleague — these are the bloopers we make when we give it all up to a new fling. Why not indulge in a little discretion instead, and keep them guessing and aching for your attention? Use these six suggestions to become a master of mystery.

First Things First

You only have one chance tffo make a magically delicious first impression, so make it count. After all, the initial outing determines if there are subsequent rendezvous and sets the tone for each date thereafter. Use the Gift of Gab game plan (outlined below), answer as many questions as you can with a secretive but warm smile, and don’t touch even a shoulder before you know the timing’s perfect. If your outing involves a sport or game, don’t wuss out and let them win… unless, ahem, it’s strip poker. Play your strengths, and be a good (read: confident) sport when you lose. Some furtive flirtypants like to seal the date with a kiss but nothing more.f

Keep Your Cool

If you hit it off, the last thing you want to do is let rampant insecurities ruin a perfectly good first impression. Avoid calling the moment you get up the next day to make sure they had a good time, and never put them on the spot by asking how they feel about you — otherwise you’ll look unconfident, even desperate. Insecure people make other people nervous. Give your date time to absorb the night’s highlights, which will lead to curiosities about the things left unsaid and details not divulged.

Get Busy with It

If you had to decide between two restaurants, an empty eatery or one that brimmed with patrons, which would you choose? First impressions are often skewed by others’ opinions. And this applies to perceptions of people, too. If that cowboy is popular, he must be a fun guy to know. So when you say you can’t meet up because your calendar is full of social engagements, you send the message that people crave to be around you, a challenge worth pursuing. Keep this theory in mind when replying to dates’ invitation for spontaneous get-togethers. To inject a little mystery into the mix, be vague about the details of your plans and let them wonder who they’re competing with.

Friends Façade

Friends and family make your world go round, so don’t ditch them to pursue a lover. You’ll not only piss off your posse, but that lover will also question your dedication to friendship. Your goal is to give the impression that you’re the star character in a movie thriller packed with romance, adventure, and mystery. If you ditch that façade to drool and pant over a girl, you end up looking like an extra in someone else’s B film. To get his imagination percolating, resist introducing him to your gang right away and steer clear of his group events. Allude to different groups of your friends — colleagues from the space station, pals from circus school, bocce-ball drinking buddies — to enhance the mystery.

Gift of Gab

Perhaps the most important piece of the puzzling puzzle is how you communicate. The trick is learning to hold back details and embracing the power of silence. Answering questions with questions is another technique, but too much of this and you risk generating frustration. Sex, politics, and religion are topics some may avoid in first dates (they give away too much info in one powwow), and confessions of failed relationships are definitely off-limits. If you suffer from verbal diarrhea when nervous, ask your date about their life story rather than blab away about your life accomplishments. Be prudent with your compliments: delivered too thickly and you’ll come across as forlorn, delivered too early and your date will suspect insincerity.

Mystifying Faux-pas

A successful flirt aims to always look confident. So rather than dial up your lover the second you discover a voicemail, be a tease, wait a few hours and relish in your newfound control and mysteriousness. Avoid replying to messages on weekends or evenings — you should be out causing some mischief. A real master of mystery knows the difference between creating intrigue and freaking people out with over-elusiveness. Sometimes a die-hard approach can come across as unstable and grumpy, and it’s important to remember that creating curiosity doesn’t mean hiding all the details of your life or pretending to be someone you’re not. Rather, gild the already-quirky aspects of your allusive life, and don’t forget to drop a little flirty morsel every now and again to let them know you’re still hot for teacher.


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