She's giving you every clear sign you have NO shot.
By Ethan Fixell
At one time or another, every one of us guys has been unable to summon the – ahem – cojones to ask a girl out. But sometimes, no amount of "peacocking" or "kino escalation" is going to convince a lady to commit to a romantic dinner. If she's simply not into it, she'll find a way to let you know.
Remember: there are plenty of fish in the sea. If your crush throws down any of the following visual or interactive cues, it's time to rethink your approach – and potentially invest your energy elsewhere. If she shows you any of the following signals, it may be time to back away and choose a different strategy.
But, we're getting ahead of ourselves here. First, see if any of these physical signs ring a bell.
1. Turning Away
Perhaps the most obvious sign that things aren't going well is the snub women have been using since the dawn of humanity. When a swooning male Ug would attempt to get a disinterested female Grug's attention by tapping her shoulder and grunting, Grug would simply turn away from Ug to avoid his advances. (And if that didn't do the trick, a good clubbing to the head usually did.)
The more physically open a woman presents herself to you, the more open she is to your offerings as a potential romantic partner. Conversely, when a lady faces in the same direction as your stupefied gaze – that is, positions her body away from you – she's making it clear that she's not interested by physically shutting you out. You'll have maybe one good shot to break through with humor, or you'll have to let this one go.
2. Refusal to Make Eye Contact
In the list of obstacles you might face when approaching a woman, lack of eye contact is one of the most often confused. In some cases, she might be very much interested — but is merely as shy and nervous as you are. Most times, however, an aversion to looking into your big baby browns is a certain indication that she doesn't want any part of your deep and longing (or in her estimation, creepy) stare.
The secret to interpreting the message lies entirely in context: if she is demurely or coquettishly smiling, blushing, and seems otherwise open to your efforts, you likely only need a joke or two to lighten the mood before making your move. But if she seems confident and deliberate in her decision to intently fix her eyes upon a blank iPhone screen, she's likely afraid to send the wrong signals to a man she's not into… or fears you might chop her up into bits.
Smiling is an excellent flirtation tool that can indicate that a woman is enjoying her interaction with you. Laughing is even better. Frowning or staring ahead blankly like a Walking Dead zombie, however, as you might have guessed, is not good news.
Unlike eye contact, frowning is less likely to indicate bashfulness or timidity, although it can be a common characteristic of certain dour personalities. If the latter is the case, you'll have to work extra hard to crack her tough shell. But if you know or suspect that she possesses sufficient people skills and a generally amiable disposition, your very presence may be inciting this out-of-character mood swing. Best to test this hypothesis on another day and give her some space for now — or give up altogether.
4. Lack of Touch
Of all the flirtations a woman can perform, making physical contact is the simplest and most direct. You can put her attraction to the test by gently (and appropriately!) touching her once or twice. If she fails to reciprocate or exhibit any positive reaction (e.g. she's now keeping three feet between you at all times), you might be in trouble.
Much can be learned from how a lady touches herself, too: when she's not playing with her hair, exposing her neck, or casually grazing upon her own erogenous zones (such as her collarbone, wrists, or thighs) you are likely failing to arouse her interest. Hopefully she's at least touching something, whether sensually playing with a piece of jewelry or the rim of a wine glass (although tapping an iPhone to play Candy Crush does not, in fact, count).
If she's sitting or standing as still as a possum, respect her wishes to play dead and let her rest in peace.
5. Conversational Lock Out
Any of the previously mentioned discouraging signs may be used in conjunction with the ultimate pick up barrier: conversational lock out. Is she making it impossible for you to get a word in? Perhaps she's been responding with terse answers before immediately turning back to her friends? If you're unable to get her to respond to a sentence or question with more than one word and an eye-roll, she's not just distracted – she's purposefully ignoring you, buddy. In which case, you're not going to snag her attention with sheer persistence, repetition, or the VOLUME OF YOUR VOICE, which will only make you look about as smooth as Anchorman's Brick Tamland.
Make a graceful exit and try again later, or play the long game and take an indirect path to her heart by conversing with and gaining the trust of one of her friends. An endorsement from one pal is worth more than a dozen dead-end corny jokes.
At the end of the day, you need to assess for yourself if there might be potential there and if she might be into you. But, we have to be honest, if she's showing any of the above signs, the outlook isn't great and it might be best to let her go and move on to someone who will reciprocate the attention and interest.
This article was originally published at AskMen. Reprinted with permission from the author.