The Body Language Challenge: Are You Sending the Right Dating Signals?

Two teens on an awkward date, bad body language on a bench

Have you ever felt nervous about dating? Do you wonder what your date is going to think of you? Do you worry about how the date is going to end? To understand dating, the dangers involved, and how to build wonderful relationships, we must first comprehend the way we communicate on dates. Body language is the most common way we communicate when dating. For example, do most people ask before they kiss someone? No. Instead, they try to figure out when is the right time to make their “move.” How do they figure out when is the right time? By reading body language.

Body language is the most common way we communicate when dating.

The world of dating relies heavily on sending and receiving body language signals. Is body language reliable? No. If it were, you would know when someone wanted to be intimate with you. You would never experience confusing moments in the beginning of intimacy or during intimacy. You would always know how comfortable your partner was with you. Occurrences of sexual assaults could be greatly reduced by effective communication.

Are you good at reading body language? Are you great at sending the right “messages” to your dates? Take this Body Language Challenge. If you have a group of people, each of you take the test individually and then share your answers.


Challenge No. 1: Imagine you are single. An attractive person is sitting across the room from you. Send the person messages through your body language to tell them you want to ask them out on a date. Will the person interpret your signals perfectly? For a fun exercise, try this with another person. Remember, this person has to interpret your body language correctly.

Challenge No. 2:
Write down all of the body language signals used by individuals on a date to communicate with each other. Include every signal imaginable. Example: moving closer to someone to let the person know you like them.


Challenge No. 1:
If you tried this challenge with another person, did either of you laugh? The reason people will start laughing during this exercise is because each of you realizes how silly you look trying to send body language signals. While trying to read another person’s body language, you feel like you are trying to read the person’s mind. Reading minds is a skill most people admit they don’t possess. If you can’t read minds, body language does not work. For body language to be an effective means of communication, everyone needs to use the same “signals.” Since every person reads The Look “signals” differently, you cannot guarantee the correct interpretation of body language.

Challenge No. 2:
Are you done writing all the body language signals? For fun, share the answers with other people. If you wrote down every possible body language signal, you would be writing for days (flirting for fun, letting a person know you are attracted to them, sending the signal you want to kiss, etc.). Since an infinite number of “signals” exists, knowing all of them is impossible.

Challenge No. 3:
Dakota’s Reaction: “If Casey is holding my hand tightly, Casey likes me. Casey is letting me know how enjoyable holding my hand is. Casey might even have strong feelings for me. The sweaty palms are telling me Casey is nervous and wants everything to go right . . . another sign Casey really likes me.”

Casey’s Reaction: “My hands are sweaty because I am nervous. Dakota has made some comments during the date that make me feel uncomfortable. In fact, I am a little scared being alone with Dakota as we walk down the beach. I want to pull my hand away from Dakota, but I don’t know how Dakota will react. I don’t want to get Dakota mad, especially with us being all alone out here. I was holding Dakota’s hand tightly? I didn’t even notice. Must have been my nerves.”

Dakota and Casey were experiencing the exact same body language, yet each had completely different reactions to Casey’s signals. These misunderstandings can happen on any date.

The Body Language Challenge shows you multiple examples of how body language can cause confusion and misunderstanding between two people on a date or in a relationship. Each of the examples is a real-life scenario that frequently happens to people. Each challenge proved body language is not effective. We need to use a better form of communication.

Can I Kiss You?Remember these keys to better dating communication:

Body language is unreliable and often misinterpreted! To communicate effectively with your partner, utilize verbal communication. While on a date, do not project or force your wants onto the other person.

For a complete list of the Body Language Challenge, download the first chapter of Can I Kiss You?

Mike Domitrz is one of the leading experts for transforming our sexual culture to one being built on consent and respect. For over two decades, educators, military, families, colleges and individuals of all have sought out Mike and his impactful programs and speaking engagements. Everyone; people of all ages, genders, sexual orientations and socioeconomic backgrounds, need to hear the challenging and life-changing message in his soon to be released book, Can I Kiss You?.