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Posted July 1, Reviewed by Gary Drevitch. A quote by Prakhar Sahay has a similar basic idea: "Sometimes you gotta care less to see if they will care more," suggesting that playing hard-to-get is a way for people to identify high-quality partners. Our new research looks at the psychological underpinnings of making yourself seem more desirable by withholding obvious s of romantic interest. Together with my co-author, Jeffery Bowen of Johns Hopkins University, we examined whether hard-to-get behaviors can be predicted using gender and attachment style. Attachment style, usually formed in childhoodfalls into the primary of secure or insecure people with an insecure attachment style are usually classified as anxious or avoidant.
We expected that people high on attachment avoidance, who tend to avoid closeness and intimacywill be more likely to play hard-to-get, while people high on attachment anxiety, who tend to be concerned about being rejected or abandoned, will be more likely to pursue. Hard-to-get behaviors were expected to help insecure people achieve their mating goals.
Based on evolutionary theories, we He plays hard to get expected gender differences.
Men, in a complementing way, are more likely to pursue women. These tendencies are compatible, and potentially representative of an aspect of the sexual conflict between males and females.
Over four studies with more than participants, we provided evidence to support these propositions. As expected, we found that gender and attachment style predict and shape hard-to-get behavior, particularly among insecurely attached individuals. People higher on attachment anxiety and men vs. When we nudged or primed thoughts of attachment insecurity, we found primed avoidance led to a greater likelihood of playing hard-to-get among avoidant heterosexual men.
Primed anxiety led to a greater reported likelihood of pursuing hard-to-get targets overall. While many people might be using these strategies playing and pursuingtheir reasons for doing so might be different control, self-protection, partner selection, etc. Our studies shed light on who plays hard-to-get, who pursues the players, and why. Insecure people high on avoidance, anxiety, or both use hard-to-get strategies to manage their psychological vulnerabilities.
For example, growing up with cold rejecting parents is likely to result in attachment avoidance. Avoidant people do not want to get too close He plays hard to get others, and playing hard to get can help them with that. People high on anxiety may have grown up with inconsistent parents. They learn that they need to keep pursuing loved ones to get the love and support they need. This reflects in their tendency to pursue hard-to-get others, even before they are their relationship partners.
Insecure people are playing hard-to-get or chasing hard-to-get others i. This is not to say He plays hard to get is good or bad, but for some people these strategies seem to be working, helping them to create relationships and get the partners they want. But what are the outcomes? For other people, playing hard-to-get is less a romantic strategy and more of a survival instinct. Playing hard-to-get is one aspect of the psychological power dynamic that defines many human relationships, romantic or not.
Any relationship in which we have two sides involved is going to have some push and pull. There are relationships in which one side wants it more and the other side wants it less. Before engaging in such behaviors, you need to ask yourself if you really want to get involved in game-playing when it comes to your relationship, and if these are the kinds of relationships you'd like to have eventually. Omri Gillath, Ph. He studies close relationships and their underlying mechanisms. Omri Gillath Ph. All We Need Is Love. About the Author. Online: Faculty. Read Next.
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Men Reveal The Honest Truth About Whether They Like Playing Hard To Get While Dating