10 Things I Used To Do To Impress Men That I’d Never Do Now

Just as our taste in men develops as we age, so do the ways we try to attract them. And seriously, thank goodness for that. My flirting style has matured just as I have, but when I was younger, I used to do these utterly stupid things to try to impress guys:

  1. Dress against my style A lot of guys like a girl who can rock a super feminine look every day, and while I definitely love wearing pretty dresses on occasion, I’m much happier in a t-shirt and jeans. Back when I was hell-bent on becoming the girl that every guy would want, I tried way too hard to dress the way I thought men would like. I wore clothes that made me physically and emotionally uncomfortable all for the sake of looking “hot” for guys. These days, though, if a guy doesn’t like my more casual vibe, I’m totally fine with letting him go his own way.
  2. Pretend to be a “cool girl” I’m not “cool” by any stretch of the imagination. I think beer is gross, I don’t get the appeal of baseball, and I’ll never be the person who’s fine with my partner hanging out at strip clubs every weekend. I own that about myself now, but in the past, I was someone who pretended to be someone different. I forced myself to do things that a “cool girl” would do just to win over a man’s favor. It didn’t take long for me to learn my lesson there.
  3. Play dumb I grew up hearing that men didn’t want to be outshined or intimidated by a woman who was more intelligent than them, so I figured that if I wanted to impress guys, I had to pretend that I was lesser than them. I always downplayed my intelligence or athletic abilities when I was hanging out with a guy I liked so he could get an ego boost out of being better than me at something. I dropped that act long ago, though, and these days, the type of men I attract aren’t scared of being with a smart, strong woman.
  4. Let myself be objectified I feel sick when I look back and think about how I used to take it as a compliment when men made disgusting comments about my body. My self-respect depended on what men thought of me, so any attention I could get was welcome. I now know the difference between creepy “flattery” and a genuine compliment, though, and I’ll never settle for a guy who focuses solely on my body again.
  5. Put down other women I used to think that talking crap about other women would make men see how great I was in comparison. I tried to make myself stand out not by proving how great I was, but by telling guys how other women were “promiscuous” or “all the same.” I really wish I could give my past self a strong kick in the rear and tell her to support other girls rather than tearing them down. I wouldn’t dream of doing such a horrible thing now. Besides, such pettiness isn’t an attractive trait in anyone.
  6. Compromise on my beliefs  My conviction in my values was a lot weaker in the past. I had no problem agreeing with a guy’s tasteless jokes or offensive remarks, even though inside, I was seriously cringing. If my crush makes racist comments or easily goes along with his buddies’ sexist tirades now, he instantly stops being my crush. I have no problem standing my ground now.
  7. Take on their interests  When I was younger, I was like clay, ready to be molded and shaped into whatever a guy might want me to be. I had a few interests of my own, but they all took a backseat to my whatever my partner or crush wanted to do. I’d pretend to like their favorite music rather than my own, and I’d pretend to be fine with sacrificing my own hobbies to make time for his. Luckily, I’ve grown a spine since then, and I have no problem making it clear from the start that I’m not giving up what I love to do for any man.
  8. Act like a doormat It’s honestly amazing what I used to tolerate just to get guys to like me more. I kept my mouth shut when I was treated like garbage (after all, I didn’t want to be labelled a “bitch”), and I avoided arguments at all costs so I didn’t scare anyone away. My backbone is much stronger than it was before, and now, I’m a firm believer that if a guy doesn’t like what I have to say, he can peace out of my life.
  9. Post cryptic social media updates I was totally That Person who put up vague posts on Facebook and Instagram in hopes that my crush might see them and wonder what was going on in my life. Looking back, all those depressing song lyrics and celebrity quotes just made me look desperate and ridiculous, but at the time, I thought for sure that they were the way to get a man’s attention.
  10. Try to make them jealous A little bit of jealousy can definitely make a person wake up and realize that they actually want to be with someone, but I took things to a whole new level. I flirted with EVERYONE, especially if the guy I liked was around to see it. All it did was make me look super thirsty for attention, and unsurprisingly, it rarely got me what I wanted out of a man. I’ve learned that acting like a normal human being is way more conducive to getting the attention of a guy that I like.
Averi is a word nerd and Brazilian jiu jitsu brown belt. She's also a TEFL/TESOL-certified ESL teacher and an equine enthusiast. Originally from Pennsylvania, she lived in Costa Rica for a while before moving to Australia. In addition to her work as a writer and editor for Bolde, she also has bylines with Little Things and regularly writes for Jiu-Jitsu Times.

You can follow Averi on Instagram @bjjaveri or on Twitter under the same handle.