How to tell if a guy likes you: 24 (must know) signs to look out for

Are you trying to figure out whether a guy likes you or not?

Then this is the ultimate guide for you.

I’ve scoured the internet for research on how to tell if a guy likes you, and I’ve shared the 22 most important signs below.

Remember, men aren’t as complex as you might think. It’s just a matter of knowing what signs to look for.

(You may never have thought about #2, but it’s becoming increasingly popular in relationship psychology).

Here the 24 most important signs that a guy likes you.

1) He is asking you personal questions

If he can’t stop asking questions about your personal life and what makes you tick, then it’s a surefire sign that he likes you.

Dating expert Celia Schweyer says:

“You can tell that someone has real feelings for you if whenever you talk, you feel like they appreciate everything you say and do. It might feel like they’re clinging on to every word you say.”

He’s curious about you because he’s interested in you. He wants to keep the conversation going and develop rapport.

He also might be trying to work out whether you’d be a good fit for him in the future.

Professional matchmaker Kimia Mansoor says:

“They’ll … [observe] you carefully to try to learn as much as possible. They’ll want to know more about you.”

This should be easy to identify because his questions will be more intense and forward than what a typical “normal” person would ask.

For example, he might ask you what your purpose in life is. Or he might ask you about your dating history.

2) You make him feel like a hero

When a guy likes someone, it’s often because you have triggered something deep inside him. Something he desperately needs.

What is it?

To like a girl (and eventually fall in love), a guy needs to feel like he’s your protector. And that you genuinely respect him for doing this.

In other words, he needs to feel like your ‘hero’. Because when a man loves you he wants to be the one guy you can count on.

There’s actually a psychological term for what I’m talking about here. It’s called the ‘hero instinct’. This concept is generating a lot of buzz at the moment as a way to explain what really drives men in relationships.

I know it might all seem kind of silly. In this day and age, women don’t need someone to rescue them. They don’t need a ‘hero’ in their lives.

But this misses the point about what the hero instinct is all about.

The hero instinct is an instinctive need that men have to step up to the plate for the woman in this life. This is deeply rooted in male biology.

Although you may not need a hero, a man is compelled to be one. And if you want him to fall in love with you, then you have to let him.

When a man genuinely feels like your hero, he’ll become more loving, attentive, and committed to being in a long-term relationship with you.

But how do you trigger this instinct in him?

The trick is to make him feel like a hero in an authentic way. And there are things you can say, messages you can send, requests you can use to trigger this natural biological instinct.

If you want some help doing this, check out James Bauer’s excellent free video here.

He tells you everything you need to know about the hero instinct, including how to trigger it in your man.

I don’t often recommend videos but the hero instinct is one of the most fascinating concepts in relationship psychology I’ve come across.

Here’s a link to his unique video again.

3) He smiles at you

Is he always smiling at you? If so, there’s a good chance that he’s picking up what you’re putting down.

However, many people naturally smile, so here’s what to look out for to find out if he likes you or not:

1) Does his smile last longer? Typically when a person is interested in you, their smile will be prolonged or even wider. Instead of a brief one-second smile, it actually lasts for a few seconds or longer.

2) The smiles tend to happen for no reason: You don’t have to tell a joke or funny story for them to smile. They’re pretty much smiling because you’re in their proximity, or you give them brief eye contact.

3) They’re constantly smiling: They can’t stop smiling when they’re around you. It’s not once or twice, it’s constant.

4) When you talk to them, they smile: This is a huge sign that they’re just feeling good and trying to make a good impression when you’re speaking with them.

Keep in mind above 4 points when analyzing whether they are smiling because they like you.

After all, some people smile because they are polite, and others do it because they are shy.

4) They’re ignoring you

This sounds like a strange sign, but it can actually be a fairly good indicator that they might have a crush on you.

Some guys think that if they ignore a particular girl, then that girl will notice them and wonder why they’re disinterested. She’ll then like him because humans tend to chase what they can’t have.

Sometimes, it might work for the guy, but it also could backfire on him.

The problem is, it can be difficult to figure out whether he is ignoring you because he is trying to get you interested in him, or if he is ignoring you because he doesn’t have feelings for you.

Here’s what you can do:

Approach him and start a conversation. If you show him that you’re interested in talking to him, he’ll likely open up and show his true personality.

He’ll answer your questions with a bright smile. He’ll think that his ignoring has worked. If he reacts this way, he obviously likes you.

Keep in mind that if you approach him in a cold manner, then he might continue to ignore you and give you one-word answers.

So make sure you’re somewhat friendly when you talk to him.

Now if he doesn’t like you, he’ll probably be polite and act like a normal human being in the conversation. He won’t smile too much, and he’ll get out of the conversation fairly quickly.

Another thing to keep in mind is that some guys that like you will ignore you to avoid getting nervous when they speak to you. After all, they don’t want to make a bad impression.

This is easy to figure out. When you’re in a conversation, see if they’re nervous or shy when they’re speaking to you. If they are, then there’s a good chance they like you.

5) He wants to know if you have a boyfriend

Now obviously if he directly asks you, “do you have a boyfriend?”, he likes you.

But that’s not what I’m talking about here.

What I’m referring to is whether he indirectly tries to figure out if you have a boyfriend already.

It’s rare for anybody to ask whether you have a boyfriend directly.

So look out for whether he starts talking about his relationship status. He might say things like “ah life is more boring when you’re single” or “I’m single so I went to the wedding on the weekend by myself”.

The reason he is revealing his status is that he wants you to reveal yours.

If you mention that you went to a party at the weekend, he might ask you if you went alone.

There will be little subtle signs like this that will tell you whether he is trying to figure out if you have a boyfriend or not.

If you’re pretty sure that’s what he is trying to do, then he definitely likes you and might see a future with you.

6) He is finding excuses to touch you

This is a huge indicator that he likes you, especially if he is a direct and forward guy.

According to national bestselling author and behavioral investigator Vanessa Van Edwards:

“When you are in the same environment as others, the space between you and them can tell you a lot about the relationship. The fancy word for space is called proxemics.

“Does this person find subtle ways to touch your arm or hand? We use touch to signal connection.”

Humans tend to touch what they like.

Is he giving you an extra long hug? Or is touching your arm lightly when he is talking to you? Does he put his arms around your shoulder?

Guys who are confident and don’t have hang-ups about touching females will touch you in any these kinds of ways if they like you. After all, they like you and they get a thrill when they touch you.

It’s also a way for them to develop a rapport with you so that you feel comfortable with them.

Keep in mind though that if a guy isn’t touching you, it doesn’t mean he doesn’t like you. Some guys just aren’t very good at touching without looking sleazy or awkward. They might also be shy.

Also, it’s important to make sure that he isn’t a touchy-feely guy with other people as well. That might just indicate that he is comfortable touching people.

But if it seems that he is touching you more than other people, then you can put it in the bank that he likes you.

7) He’s emotionally unavailable

Okay, being emotionally unavailable isn’t a definite sign that he likes you. But equally you should never take it is a sign that he doesn’t.

The thing is that men want deep and intimate companionship just as much as women do.

So why are so many men emotionally unavailable to women?

An emotionally unavailable man is typically someone who is unable to emotionally commit to a relationship with you. He wants to keep things casual and undefined to avoid commitments he doesn’t think he can handle.

I know about emotionally unavailable men because I am one myself. You can read more about my story here.

If you’ve ever been with a man who suddenly goes cold and pulls away, you’ll see a lot of myself in him.

However, the problem isn’t you. The problem isn’t even with him

The simple truth is that male and female brains are biologically different. For instance, did you know that the emotional processing center of the female brain is much larger than in men?

That’s why women are more in touch with their emotions. And why guys can struggle to process feelings, leading to serious commitment issues.

If you’ve ever been let down by an emotionally unavailable man before, blame his biology rather than him.

I learned this from relationship expert Amy North. She’s smart, straightforward and one of the world’s leading experts on relationship psychology and why men act the way they do.

In her excellent free video, she gives you the solution for dealing with emotionally unavailable men.

The key is communicating with him in a way that he’ll actually understand. Because there are words and phrases you can say that will instantly draw him to you.

Amy North reveals exactly what to say to make a man commit to a relationship with you. Her scripts work surprisingly well on even the coldest and most commitment-phobic men.

Here’s a link to Amy North’s free video again.

If you want science-based techniques to attract men and get them to commit to you, this video is well worth checking out.

8) He is always chatting to you on social media

This is a bigger sign than most people realize.

When you think about it, we use social media in our free time. This is a time when we can literally do whatever we want. It’s the Internet after all!

So if he is using that free time to talk to you, then that’s a great sign that he likes you.

But take note, his response time actually matters

According to certified counselor Jonathan Bennet:

“One of the surest signs someone likes you over text is a rapid response. “This shows that the other person is excited to receive your messages and wants to keep the conversation going. It demonstrates that answering you is a priority, even above and beyond other commitments.”

However, if he is chatting to you, but taking time to respond and giving you one-word answers, then he might not be interested in you.

Make sure that he is engaged in the conversation, giving you thoughtful responses and responds fairly quickly. If he is, then he’s definitely into you.

Also, interacting with you through social media by liking and commenting on your photos is a great sign that he likes you.

Most social media platforms use algorithms to show users content, so if he is seeing your posts, it means that he has been interacting with your profile before.

This is obviously a great sign.

9) He asks for your number

This is a tried and true sign that a guy is into you. Asking for your number means that he wants to be able to connect with you and possibly organize a date with you.

Once he gets your number, then you can analyze how he responds to your texts to see if he truly likes you or not.

If he is unable to meet you at all times except late on Saturday night, then he would not be interested in you for you. He may only want a booty call.

But if he is actively trying to set up a meeting with you, and is quickly responding to your texts with thoughtful answers, then he is probably into you.

10) He feels essential around you

Men have a built in desire for something that goes beyond love or sex.

Simply put, men have a biological drive to feel essential to the woman in his life. Feeling essential is what often separates “like” from “love”.

This biological drive compels men to provide for and protect women. He wants to step up for her, feel essential, and be appreciated for his efforts.

Relationship psychologist James Bauer calls it the hero instinct. I mentioned this concept above.

Watch his excellent free video here. He explains exactly what the hero instinct is and how understanding can rocket your relationship to the next level.

James argues that men are not especially complicated; we’re just driven by primal instincts when it comes to women.

We all know that instincts are powerful drivers of human behavior. James Bauer simply takes this a step further and applies it to the romantic behavior of men.

I don’t often pay much attention to new fads in psychology. However, I think the hero instinct is a compelling explanation for what drives men romantically.

No one is saying that women need a hero to take care of them. Today women can change a tire, open their own jars, and generally fend for themselves in life.

While women may not need a hero, this doesn’t mean men still don’t want to feel like one.

That’s why it’s essential that women understand what the hero instinct is all about and how they can use it to their advantage.

Here’s a link to James Bauer’s free video again.

Some ideas can be life changing. And for relationships, I think the hero instinct is one of them.

11) He gets jealous when you talk to other guys

Is he intensely looking over when you’re talking to another guy? Does he look a little angry about it?

If he so, he might be jealous and jealousy is a tried and true sign that a guy likes you.

Relationship expert Dr. Terri Orbuch says:

“Jealousy is among the most human of all emotions. You feel jealous when you think you are going to lose a relationship you really value.”

Some guys might try to “act” like they’re okay with it, but as soon as you turn around, they’re pissed off and wondering whether that guy is legitimate competition for them.

How can you tell if he is jealous?

When you’re talking to another guy, have a quick glance over at him and work out if he can’t stop looking.

If his eyes are darting at you constantly, then he’s probably jealous and is trying to figure out how the conversation is going with the other guy.

What might also happen is that he will come and interrupt the conversation.

If he does that, then he clearly likes you and is making a move. Sometimes jealousy can spur a guy into action.

This could be a technique you can use if you want to get him to approach you, but be careful, as he might also think that you’re not interested in him if you’re continually talking to other guys.

12) He remembers every little detail of what you tell him

Did you mention to him that it was your sister’s birthday on the weekend? And the next week he is asking you how the party went? Then he probably likes you.

According to professional matchmaker Coree Schmitz:

“In today’s society where being present in a conversation is one of the hardest things to do, giving a new person full attention during [a conversation] is one of the highest compliments.”

If a guy likes you, he’ll remember the little things like your birthday, your friend’s name, your dog’s number and when you’re getting a haircut!

He’s interested in you and is consuming all the information he can to find out more about you.

This is also a reason why guys who like you will ask you personal questions. They know enough about your life that they can get down to the nitty-gritty of what truly makes you tick.

13) They’re teasing you

Teasing is one of the clearest signs that a guy likes you.

Do you remember in Kindergarten when the boy pulled your hair? Yeah, he liked you.

It’s normal for guys to tease girls to get their attention. Teasing is the grown-up way of pulling your hair.

Teasing is also a great way to initiate flirting. Usually, it will be playful teasing, and they might even give a slight punch on the arm as they do it.

But don’t mistake it for insults. They just trying to increase the playful vibe, get your attention and make you laugh.

So if they’re constantly teasing you (playfully) then they definitely like you.

14) His eyes are focused on YOU, not your assets

When you’re having a conversation, is he getting lost in your eyes? Can he not stop looking?

According to former FBI behavioral analyst Jack Schafer:

“People look at people they like and avoid looking at people they don’t like. The neurochemical oxytocin may be responsible for increased eye contact. Elevated oxytocin levels increase mutual eye gaze and provide a sense of well-being, which increases mutual attraction.”

The reason he can’t take his eyes off your face is that he genuinely likes you AND your personality.

If he doesn’t seem distracted at all when you’re talking, then it’s pretty clear that he’s focused on you and only you. That’s a great sign.

However, it’s important to watch out for the guys who are looking at your ass and breasts, instead of your face.

That’s a bad sign that they might like you sexually, but they’re not interested in your personality.

They’re the type of guys that I recommend you stay away from.

15) He has stopped flirting with other girls

Has he put the back burner on flirting with other girls? Is he being especially careful around you about how close he gets to other girls?

He might be conscious that you’re watching him and he doesn’t want to make a bad impression.

If he genuinely likes you, he wants you to know that his focus is only on you, and he hasn’t got time for other girls.

Marriage therapist Kimberly Hershenson says:

“They don’t want to talk to anyone else. If they were around you the entire time and didn’t bother to meet other people or strike up a conversation with anyone else, it’s a sign they think you’re special.”

How can you tell? Well, he’ll likely give you eye contact every now and then to see if you’re watching him.

He’ll make sure to not be stuck in one-on-one conversations with other girls as he knows you might be jealous – and he doesn’t want that.

He’ll also be extra polite around other girls so he can appear like a gentleman in front of you, and not like a playboy.

It’s also worth thinking about the way he has begun prioritizing you.

Dating expert Stef Safran explains:

“When someone follows through consistently with their promises — they contact you when they say they will, and if they forget, they actually acknowledge you — this can show that they really care about you and your feelings.”

16) He wants to help you in any way he can

A guy who likes you wants to make a good impression on you. They want you to know that they’ll look after you and that they’re able to protect you.

According to psychotherapist Christine Scott-Hudson:

“Pay twice as much attention to how someone treats you than what they say. Anybody can say they love you, but behavior doesn’t lie. If someone says they value you, but their actions indicate otherwise, trust their behavior.”

When someone likes you, they’ll do more than is usually required. Sure, most friends will help you out, but will they go above and beyond? Because that’s what a guy that likes you will do.

Is he offering to lift all your new furniture in your new place? Because most friends wouldn’t do that. Guys love to be the “hero” for the girl, especially when they have a crush on the girl.

17) After he makes a joke or tells a story, he looks straight to you for your reaction

This is one of the easiest and best ways to figure out if he likes you or not. If you’re in a group and he is telling a joke and once he finishes telling it, he looks to you first for your reaction, then clearly you’re on his mind and he’s trying to impress you.

If you smile back, and then he smiles or shows relief, then clearly he’s interested in you.

Humor and laughter are also major signs that someone is interested in you.

According to University of Texas psychology professor Norman Li:

“You are more likely to be interested in some kind of relationship with a person if you initiate any kind of humor towards them. If the other person is also interested, they should be more likely to perceive you as humorous and respond favorably (laugh), even if you’re objectively not all that funny.

“However, if they’re really not interested, then they probably won’t find humor in what you say, even if it’s your best material.”

18) Watch his friends closely

If he is truly interested in you, then it’s almost certain that he has told his friends.

So if they are trying to engineer you two being stuck together in a conversation, then clearly they are trying to help out their buddy.

They might leave the conversation when you arrive, or they might even giggle a little bit.

Also, if your man is introducing you to his friends, then that’s a clear sign that he likes you. He wants you to meet your friends and for your friends to assess if you’re a good fit for him.

Don’t be nervous, Just be yourself. After all, he definitely likes you!

19) Does his eyebrow lift when he is watching you?

When a man raises one eyebrow (or both eyebrows) it’s a sign that he is fascinated by what he is looking at. So if his stare is directed at you, then that’s a great sign that he is fascinated by you!

Not only should you watch his eyebrow, but pay attention to his eyes as well. If they widen or his pupils widen, then that’s a clear sign of attraction.

However, just like above, it’s important to make sure that he is looking at you for you, and not at your ass/breasts. That means that he is genuinely fascinated by you, not fascinated by you sexually – which is what you want to avoid.

Remember, his eyes will usually tell you what his body is thinking.

Relationship expert and author Cindee Bartholomew adds:

“When you’re introduced, they’ll look directly into your eyes with a level of intensity that makes your heart aware. They will often continue to stare at you even after you look away and when you look again at them they will smile again.”

20) Is he acting nervous around you?

Everyone can relate to this. When the person you like comes along, you start feeling nervous in the stomach. Guys are no different.

Therefore, if he really likes you, he won’t help but act nervous around you.

In fact, when we like someone, it creates havoc in our bodies.

According to neuroscientist and psychiatrist Dr. Daniel Amen:

“Falling in love — or rather falling in lust — activates those pleasure centers housed in [the basal ganglia] which causes an immediate physiological response. The heart beats fast, your hands will get cold and sweaty and you’re super-focused on that person.”

But here’s what you need to keep in mind:

Nervousness can be portrayed in different ways. Some guys will talk faster and seem almost hyper (like nervous excitement).

Other guys will tell weird jokes or start teasing you. And finally, some guys will be incredibly nervous on the inside but will do their best to portray a calm demeanor.

However, they’ll probably still present some signs of nerves, like fidgeting hands or legs.

So if you think that your guy is nervous around you, there’s a good chance he likes you.

And if you’re getting a little annoyed by some of his nervous behaviors, just give him time. He’ll eventually be comfortable and you’ll be able to get him to know for who he is.

21) He wants to know what your future plans are

Is talking about his future plans with you? Is he asking you about your future plans?

Then there’s a good chance that he is thinking about a future with you. Do you fit in? Are you going to be compatible together?

Furthermore, he might be trying to impress you by sharing his plans for the future. He wants to show that he is a man with ambition unlike a lot of the other guys.

He’s not just thinking about the short-term. He is thinking about the long-term and that’s a great sign that he might want to have a relationship with you.

22) He starts grooming himself

This is a telltale sign that he likes you that not many people know about. If you notice that he is readjusting his clothes, or fixing his hair when he is around you, he probably likes you.

This is actually something called preening, which basically means fixing oneself to appear better.

It tends to happen subconsciously. However, it’s important to make sure that he is fixing himself for you, and not for someone else.

But if you’re the only girl in his vicinity, or he is looking at you as he preens himself, then there’s a good chance that he’s into you.

23) He starts using “alpha” body language around you

What’s an alpha male? An alpha male is a guy who is the leader of the pack. You can usually tell who is alpha just by looking at body language.

Alphas tend to spread their body out, push their shoulders back, move slowly, and be very direct and open with their body language.

So if you find that your man pulls his stomach in and his shoulders back and tries to almost “stand taller” when he is around you, then he could be trying to appear like an alpha in front of you.

When he is sitting down, he may also try to use as much room as possible by spreading his arms and legs.

Why would he do this? Because he wants to show you that he is a leader that can take care of you.

The easiest way to look for this is to have a look at how his body language changes when he walks past you.

Does he pull his shoulders back and puff his chest out? If that’s noticeable and he does that as he walks past you, then he is almost certainly into you.

24) He’s “mirroring” you.

According to Van Edwards, mirroring is “someone subtly is copying/mimicking your speech or speech patterns and nonverbal behavior.”

She says the verbal and non-verbal cues of mirroring are:

  • Does this person face you with their entire body? When someone’s top, torso, and toes are angled toward you, this is known as fronting.
  • Do they mimic your standing or seated posture?
  • Or do they copy your vocal volume and cadence?
  • Do they use the same words or language as you?

Try to notice the way he acts when you’re together. If you notice him doing any of the physical cues above, he is surely interested in you.

Want to really know how he feels? Ask him!

Remember, sometimes the best way to find out if he likes you is to ask him, or let him know that you like him. There really is no reason to play games.

However, the confusing things can be that he may not even know the answer…

Men are wired differently to women. And they’re driven by different things when it comes to relationships.

I know this because I’ve been an emotionally unavailable man my whole life. My video above reveals more about this.

And learning about the hero instinct has made it crystal clear why I’m like this.

It’s not often that a mirror gets held up to my lifetime of relationship failure. But that’s what happened when I discovered the hero instinct. I ended up learning more about myself than I bargained for.

I’m 39. I’m single. And yes, I’m still looking for love.

After watching James Bauer’s video and reading his book, I realize that I’ve always been emotionally unavailable because the hero instinct was never triggered in me.

Watch James’ free video here for yourself.

My relationships with women involved everything from ‘best friends with benefits’ to being ‘partners in crime’.

In hindsight, I’ve always needed more. I needed to feel that I was the rock in a relationship. Like I was providing something to my partner that no one else could.

Learning about the hero instinct was my “aha” moment.

For years, I wasn’t able to put a finger on why I would get cold feet, struggle to open up to women, and fully commit to a relationship.

Now I know exactly why I’ve been single most of my adult life.

Because when the hero instinct isn’t triggered, men are unlikely to commit to a relationship and forge a deep connection with you. I never could with the women I was with.

To learn more about this fascinating new concept in relationship psychology, watch this video here.

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Lachlan Brown

Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the editor of Ideapod and founder of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 6 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. If you to want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter or Facebook.

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