Ladies and gentlemen, if you are desperate like me, then congratulations. The holy grail of dating has been found: it turns out that you can trick the apple of your eye into falling in love with you. Let’s get to the point before delving into the details:
The research into arousal says you are bad at explaining yourself to yourself, but it sheds light on why so many successful dates include roller-coasters, horror films and conversations over coffee. If you want to get things rolling with a romantic interest you would be better served by bungee jumping or scuba diving, ice skating or rock climbing than candlelit dinners.
In his article, David McRaney—author of You Are Not So Smart—delves into several psychology experiments (which may or may not be perfectly controlled, for you purists out there) demonstrating the way general excitement can be misattributed to the person who could be a love interest. For example, college males who talked to a woman in a fake scenario where they were to receive a huge electric shock described being more attracted to the woman than those who were to receive a tiny tingle. Their horror, their excitement, was incorrectly projected onto the woman they were talking to. Was it her that made their heart race?
If you are taking someone on a first date, make sure it’s one that will scare the living crap out of them. Find out more about the background and experiments in McRaney’s original article; it’s long but worth the read.