It seems like a very stupid question to ask: What is flirting? But actually this is a really good thing to be curious about. On the surface it just means that a man and a woman meet somewhere – online, offline, in a café or supermarket – and carefully dance around the fact that they actually like each other, without being too blunt about it.
Flirting serves a few purposes: To test if the other person is also interested – here we send some indication of interest to the other person and see what is coming back. If we get an equally flirty reply, we can easily continue on this path, be cocky and funny and see where this is heading. This makes flirting an obvious test.
More importantly, flirting serves the purpose of keeping up the tension between a man and a woman. Flirting makes dating and meeting people more interesting, because we don’t show our intentions 100% clearly to the other person but rather keep up an aura of mysteriousness.
But why go through all this stuff?
A big part of it is entertainment: We as humans are easily bored by things and people, so we like to get entertained by unclear signals and the resulting tension of the situation. It is just exciting to do that and fun to take part in such an interaction.
On the other hand: Men and women would love to just go up to the person they find attractive and say “Hey, let’s go home, have sex and check out later if we actually like each other!” But of course, we can’t do that.
Men can’t do this because they will get all kinds of – sometimes even very painful – reactions from women. Women can’t do this, because they have a built in warning system to not easily engage in this kind of behavior – it is just not socially acceptable to be this kind of woman. Plus, it is not a good strategy in terms of procreation and survival. This means: Women usually will not go home with just any guy even if they find him very attractive.
That’s why we need flirting:
For men to conceal their main goal of getting sex easily and fast, and for testing the grounds – and for women to conceal their interest in having sex to look better to themselves and society and also to use the situation to weed out the good guys from the bad ones.
Since women are still the ones to pick the right suitor, it is up to the men to present themselves in an optimal light – this is why men need to be good at flirting.
… and there is only one way to get good at flirting: Going out and practice! Enjoy!