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The Secrets of Seduction
The tricky art of successfully seducing the opposite sex has always been a hotly disputed topic, but recent research suggests that even the age-old secrets of attraction can now be revealed.
"In recent years there has been lots of new and exciting research into attraction, seduction and the strategies that people use to initially search for, and then keep, their partners," explains Dr Raj Persaud, consultant psychiatrist and author of Simply Irresistible: The Psychology Of Seduction - How To Catch And Keep Your Perfect Partner.
"The modern world gives us far more choice of partner than ever before, and in this new type of environment it's important to develop successful strategies for attracting the right person, generating their interest and then maintaining that relationship."
"The science of psychiatry says that love and attraction are governed by laws, and if you can harness these laws you can make anyone fall in love with you," Persaud claims.
He adds that experiments on dating can predict with over 80% accuracy who will be attracted to whom by whether just a few simple conversational strategies are used on a date.
"This is not about chat-up lines though! You do have to put the necessary time and effort in, and it could end up being a very long term project."
Of course every romance starts with a first date, but one of Persaud's top tips for seduction success may come as quite a shock.
"Start off the date by disagreeing with everything that the person says, and then half way through switch tactics and start to agree with everything they say," he explains.
"The remarkable finding here is that you are found to be much more attractive by the opposite sex in that situation than if you spend the entire evening agreeing with your date.
"One reason for this is that they think they have had an impact on you, which is very seductive.
"The other is based on a theory that the combination of stress with sudden relief causes significant emotional turmoil which is often mistaken for attraction.
"Indeed, your date gets quite stressed when you disagree with everything they say, but when you switch to being more agreeable the wave of relief they feel makes them more attracted to you."
Persaud adds that the later you make the switch, the more attractive your date will find you because the correlation between stress and relief is increased.
"Another good tip is to always tailor your seduction techniques to the person - nobody ever wants to hear a general chat-up line as it displays a remarkable lack of imagination or interest.
"Try to think of something that indicates a specific and deep interest, and make a concerted effort to notice something unusual about them," he advises.
Before you can even begin to build a clear picture of the type of person you are looking for, Persaud believes that you must first be clear about who you are - and what you want - in order to ensure optimum compatibility.
"Think hard about the kind of person that you think you could live with for a long time and then be really honest with yourself about what would genuinely drive you mad in the long-run, regardless of how attracted you are to them," he says.
"For example if you are a very tidy person then someone who is excessively untidy would not be a good match, or if you are the kind of person who is very busy and to whom efficiency is important then a partner who wastes lots of time making decisions would be completely unsuitable for you."
As simple as that may sound, Persaud believes most people don't know themselves well enough to realise what makes really makes them tick.
"In my opinion, around 99% of divorce is due to the fact that people are very attracted to each other but are not actually compatible in the long term.
"They always start off their marriage thinking that their attraction to each other will triumph over their incompatibility - but it is always the other way round.
"The key is not to commit to someone for what you hope they might become but for who they already are," he smiles.
Holding On To Your Partner
Even when you are settled in a long-term relationship or marriage you still need to make a concerted effort to keep seducing your partner, according to Persaud.
"Everyone has a favourite emotion, and what you need to do is to keep supplying that emotion to your partner so that they are experiencing it from you more than they do from anyone or anywhere else.
"For example, a psychiatrist might like to feel insightful - their partner doesn't have to go as far as to say, 'Gosh what an insightful person you are' every day, but if he or she can subtly make them feel like that on a fairly regular basis then they are very unlikely to stray.
"Indeed, the reason that people stray is that the favourite emotion of theirs starts to be supplied by someone else outside their relationship," he warns.
"Making a person feel that you are thinking a lot about them is also very seductive so, as exhausting as it may sound, if you want to keep an existing relationship alive you have to continue the seduction process that you adopted when you first fell in love throughout the entire relationship.
"There's no reason why you can't still dress up and go on dates with each other even if you are 10 or 20 years into marriage," he adds.
* Simply Irresistible: The Psychology Of Seduction - How To Catch And Keep Your Perfect Partner, by Dr Raj Persaud, is published in paperback by Bantam Press, priced £12.99. Available now.
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