The only thing better than playing ‘hard to get’, is actually being it.

I know a girl who is irresistible to men.  Nearly every guy who enters her orbit ends up wanting to take her home.  But it wasn’t always this way. Not so long ago she was just like you and I, enjoying the occasional sleazy glance from a guy provided she was his ‘type’ (and he’d consumed some alcohol). And no, she didn’t go get herself a boob job, drop ten pounds or even graduate with an MBA.  It actually happened after she found herself a boyfriend.

Have you ever noticed that the moment you start seeing a guy you actually like, after what feels like an eternity stranded in Single-Gal-Siberia, suddenly, like worms after a rainstorm, scores of men start popping up everywhere. This ‘man-shower’ has nothing to do with luck; it’s because the minute a woman becomes unavailable, she simultaneously becomes more desirable. Call it cruel, call it pathetic, but I call it the “Boyfriend Effect”.

So, what’s behind this Boyfriend Effect (BFE)?

While most single girls are playing hard-to-get, the BFE makes a woman genuinely hard to get. Free from the pressures of living by The Rules*, or pretending to be a Stepford Wife, (“Oh, I am such a neat freak”…yeah, right we know you’re a slob), she can finally relax and be herself. If she’s not interested in understanding the player controls of Grand Theft Auto, she doesn’t fake her enthusiasm. If she feels like a burger and fries, you won’t catch her perusing the salad menu. If she feels like a goddam salad, she won’t be force-feeding herself a Philly Cheesesteak, because she read somewhere that guys like girls who eat. After eons of playing Little Miss Perfect, she’s transformed herself her form ‘first date fling’ to ‘girlfriend material’.

Because, the moment you finally relax and be yourself, you give guys permission to do the same. Only then can you can stop trying to impress each other and start enjoying spending time together.

Now, I’m not suggesting you show up on a first date in sweat pants, a well groomed gal in sexy lingerie is still a turn on, but consider spending less time twirling you’re blow dried hair around a freshly manicured finger and more time being good company.  Why? Because there’s no greater aphrodisiac than a girl who’s comfortable in her own skin (especially if that skin’s not slathered in layers of foundation).

More attractive than a set of double D’s, the ability to look good in a pair of ‘skinny jeans’, or even a fat bank balance, the best asset a girl can possess is confidence. Not surprisingly, when a woman is in a loving relationship, she naturally feels more secure and self-assured. Just knowing that she’s desired is enough to put that wiggle in her walk and a sparkle in her eye.

The BFE also rids a woman of that dreaded desperation vibe; instead of looking for The One, she’s looking for fun. And while I’m not saying all men are dogs, I am saying they can all spell desperation a mile off, no matter how many squirt of Tom Ford’s Tuscan Leather you embalm yourself with.

It’s human nature to want what other’s want. In marketing, the term is Social Proof, whereby if we see that others want something we assume that it’s good and desire it ourselves.  It’s used to sell perfume, it’s the reason half empty nightclubs still keep patrons waiting in lines half way around the block, why Hermes has a wait list for a bag that costs more than six months rent and why if you appear to have a boyfriend, all of a sudden you start looking like ideal girlfriend material.

And it’s not just men who fall victim to wanting what they can’t have. I happen to know a guy who gets hit on by more women when he takes his baby nephew to play in the park, than when he hits the clubs on a Friday night. People are really taken by people who are taken.

So, for those of us living in no-man land, how can we make the Boyfriend Effect work for us? The secret here, my single sisters, is to pretend you have a boyfriend!  Walk out of the house seeking nothing more than a fun night. Feel the confidence of knowing that- no matter the evening’s outcome- you have someone magnificent to go home with (yes, we’re talking about yourself). When you catch yourself feeling anxious talking to a guy, and feel the need to impress him creeping up inside you, simply remind yourself that you are already deeply loved, appreciated and desired.

When you become your own ‘boyfriend’, you give yourself the security you need to finally stop looking and start living. And the best part about having a “pretend” boyfriend? That it’s just that, “pretend”. So, unlike my newly irresistible gal pal who actually has one and can do little more than enjoy the male attention, it’s the single gals who can enjoy just about everything!

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