Have you ever wondered what role beauty plays in attraction? I mean, society teaches us that attraction is all about beauty, and that we need to look as close as possible to the models gracing magazine covers in order to be seen as worthy. But deep down we know that’s a load of garbage and not something we want to buy into. Nonetheless, it can be challenging as a woman to be caught in the middle of these messages, trying our best to stay true to ourselves and be authentic.
So what gives? Is what men find irresistible some cookie cutter person modelled after societal expectations? Or is there more to it?
Enter: Matthew Hussey. One of my friends introduced me to him a few years ago, and he’s a speaker, coach, and relationship expert. He has an awesome YouTube channel as well as a book, coaching programs, and more. His perspective on relationships and dating is unique, but often really resonates.
Matthew Hussey on Objective Beauty vs. Perceived Beauty
This video of his speaks directly to that question of attraction. Here’s an excerpt from his dialogue:
“There is a big difference between objective beauty and perceived beauty. Objective beauty is what society finds beautiful at any one time… but perceived beauty very often has nothing to do with that, because perceived beauty is to do with who we are as a package.
When you’re in real life you’re not in a magazine…[real life is] animated, it’s moving. Sometimes you get attracted to someone based on the way they move, the way they gesture, the way they use their face, the way they laugh, the way they speak. Those are things that make people look beautiful.
Now objective beauty matters for the catwalk… in real life, when it comes to our love lives, perceived beauty is what counts, not objective beauty and let me tell you how perceived beauty is created. Perceived beauty comes from the overall package that we have, not just our face, not just our body… our personality, the way we talk, the way we walk, our energy, our whole demeanour, our outlook on life. That goes to create a package… that cannot be replicated by anyone else – that’s what makes you unique, and ultimately that’s what the [person] becomes attracted to.”
The full video is below and really starts at around the 3:30 mark:
While this all makes intuitive sense to me, I hadn’t heard it articulated like this before. Matthew’s done a great job highlighting the importance of one’s energy and personality in their overall attractiveness. The way I see it, this has a few implications for how we live our lives.
First, what men find irresistible physically is based on perceived beauty.
It’s the way we smile and laugh, the way we gesture, the way we move. And it’s based on the total package, something that is unique to us and our energy. Not only is this “feel good” news (that gives me, for one, more faith in humanity!), but it reinforces the value of uniqueness and authenticity.
It also reinforces the importance of self confidence, as this shapes our energy, how we carry ourselves, and how we interact with others. In fact, my book The Confidence Toolkit goes into much more depth about how to build confidence based on scientifically proven methods.
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Second, we shouldn’t expect our looks to get us to the finish line.
Have an extra 5 minutes before a date? It’s better to spend that time getting into the right mindset to be your best self versus rushing to try on that 5th outfit and leaving the house frazzled. (Though here is some outfit advice!)
No matter how lovely we may look, if we’re not being our true selves, we won’t be relaxed and comfortable. And that can in turn cause us to emit the wrong energy that doesn’t reflect our true light.
And last, we should put less stock in the initial image we see of someone.
Whether it’s online dating, Tinder, or a picture a friend shows us of someone they want to set us up with, it’s easy to give a quick “no” and move on. But what sense of the person do we really get from that image? What if the person has an amazing energy and personality? What if their charisma would be highly attractive to us? We could be missing out on some really impactful connections.
Think about some of the people you have been attracted to who weren’t your typical “type”. Many of them wouldn’t have turned your head walking down the street, and many you may have rejected at first glance. But by getting to know them, you saw them as a full pacakge, and were won over by their energy and disposition – not their looks.
Did this resonate with you? Do you agree with Matthew Hussey’s assessment? What you find to be the most beautiful non-physical quality in a partner? Leave me a comment and let me know!
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For me, the most important non-physical quality is a good heart. (And not the 4-valve muscle that beats in one’s chest. That one *is* physical.)
Great answer! Thanks for the comment 🙂
Mimi K. says
Very interesting perspective. I totally agree. And to take it one step further, how many times have you met someone who you thought was beautiful but then once you got to know them better, you discovered that they were not a nice person, and all of sudden they didn’t seem to be beautiful anymore? Or conversely, you think someone you know is very beautiful because you know they have a good heart and a constant smile?
The truth is that beauty is NOT only skin deep. Beauty reflects the whole person.
Excellent point, Mimi – thanks for sharing!
B … babe
I … in
T … total
C … control of
H … herself
I am a proud bitch 😉
Thank you Matthew for you blog!!