Making the first move is, to use one overused but appropriate expression, like walking a tightrope. You want to be forthright and flirtatious without being overwhelming or overly sexual. You want to seem mysterious and enigmatic, but not shy and socially inept. Failure to toe that line oftentimes results in the worst insult that can be directed at a human male: being called a "creep."
But a new study published in the New Ideas in Psychology journal sussed out the specific behavioral tendencies, physical attributes and even careers that will earn singles the dreaded badge of "creepiness."
Surveying 1,341 participants online, the study found, perhaps unsurprisingly, that women are more attuned to spotting creepiness than men are. Some of the traits and behaviors that sound alarms are...
- Poor eye contact
- Staring at someone before interacting with them
- Greasy hair
- Showing little emotion
- Steering conversation towards sex
- Asking for details about one's family
- Touching too much
- Being older
Researchers also found that certain professions read as creepier than others, although careers carry a smaller impact than behaviors and traits. Some of the creepier occupations include...
- Clown (duh)
- Sex shop owner
- Funeral director
So long as you wash your hair regularly, wipe off the clown makeup for your Tinder shot, and don't run a funeral home, then your fears of seeing creepy are likely in your head.
Be confident, respectful and go forth!