So, you heard about emotional attraction… but don’t know what it is or the way to build it?
Well, that’s alright because you reached the perfect place to learn everything about it from scratch.
Whether you wanna know if you can be in love without it, want to know if you already have it in your relationship… or if you feel confused if an emotional connection always leads to sex or romance… this think-piece will enlighten you about everything.
So, let’s not keep you waiting and head right into it…
What is emotional attraction?
You feel emotional attraction when you relate to a person through their experiences, interests, beliefs, morals, and other deep things instead of feeling attracted to their face or body.
Emotional attraction happens when your life values, personality, beliefs, heart and mind feel aligned with the other.
You may feel sexually attracted to anyone because of the abundance of sexy people out there. But emotional attraction is rare.
Why? Simply because all individuals have different life experiences and they grow up with different values.
So, compared to any other kind of bond, one with emotional attraction makes it relatively much stronger.
Are you still confused about this hype over emotional attraction? Let’s clear it up from here…
Why is emotional attraction so important?
Emotional attraction allows you to be comfortable and safe while sharing your vulnerabilities. It helps you build everlasting relationships and feel satisfied in them.
Since in emotional attraction, people find a lot of emotions in common, they feel comfortable to be more open and vulnerable.
Further, a strong emotional attraction is important as it makes you feel safe, understood, and accepted which eventually helps people build intimacy and attachment.
So, this type of attraction helps you build long-term relationships better. All other forms of attraction like physical or sexual attraction might weaken with age.
But this one will stay around for a lifetime and make you feel validated, fulfilled, and appreciated.
Do you think a relationship can even work with just physical attraction? Let’s know the truth here….
Physical attraction vs emotional attraction
Some couples start off their relationship with physical attraction alone. Yes, it’s possible… However, the question is “For how long?” Relationships borne out of physical attraction and emotional attraction have subtle yet significant differences.
So, let’s know how they’re different here…
1. You can build physical connections quicker than emotional connections
To build physical or sexual attraction, you don’t need much time. It happens all too fast and you feel overwhelmed.
If someone doesn’t know better, they might misinterpret it as love at first sight and even feel they’re fated because why else do they feel like this?
On the other hand, you need a lot of time to build emotional attraction. You don’t go head over heels for one another instantly. You take time to look deeper which is, of course, time-consuming!
2. Physical attraction is thinner than emotional ones.
Physical attraction is about how the other person’s appearance appeals to you.
For instance, when you find someone beautiful, you instantly think they must be good in all fields. You’ll laugh at their jokes even when it’s not funny because of your hormones.
It also leads you to believe they’re confident, chivalrous, gorgeous… and everything else you can picture in a whirlwind romance.
However, deeper emotional connection thrives on honesty, mutual respect, intimacy, and trust. You know it’s fully formed when you feel safe, secure, comfortable, and content even while showing your vulnerabilities.
For this reason, emotional connections are more peaceful than physical ones.
3. You feel impulsive in physical connections but not in emotional ones
When your bond solely depends on physical attraction, you want to have a taste of every part of the other person instantly. As soon as you hold their hands, you can’t wait to go for an open-mouthed kiss or even hit the hay.
Contrarily, in emotional attraction, you take much more time to create a meaningful connection for a lifetime. You seek security and feel ready to invest time in it.
Even when you feel a sexual desire in emotional connection, you won’t try to convince your partner into a sexual relationship before they’re truly ready.
4. Physical attraction fades quicker than emotional attraction
Physical attraction dies away as soon as it begins. Since you don’t give it enough time to mature and understand one another, once the infatuation fades, you feel they’ve changed. But in reality, that’s their true nature and you didn’t take the effort to know it.
Since emotional attraction takes time to build, you know one another inside out. This means you have no unknown facts about each other which might put you off later.
So, you look forward to unveiling new, deeper, and more vulnerable parts as you truly find one another interesting.
5. Physical attraction might be one-sided unlike emotional attraction
More often than not, physical attraction is all about one person’s feelings. It’s normal because the relationship is hardly the time to find its roots.
In your mind, you might feel, “this is my king/queen”, but they’re just around for fun. You find it out later and feel hurt and betrayed.
In emotional connections, this isn’t that common. When you and a person feel emotionally attracted, you just know things can work well. You already have a beautiful soul-to-soul connection and the feeling becomes mutual.
Wondering what kind of characteristics lead to emotional attraction? Let’s get to know it here…
What triggers emotional attraction in a man?
Different traits trigger emotional attraction in different people especially amidst the two genders.
For instance, a man will respond to a different set of traits of a woman than a woman responding to the traits of man because both genders have different needs.
Don’t get me wrong, but it’s embedded in our genetics. So, let’s first know the traits men react to…
1. Clear verbal communication
Honestly, men are bad at reading emotions. If you expect them to understand you without uttering a word, you’ll be disappointed and they’ll get turned off.
Instead, if you’re more expressive about your needs and don’t beat around the bush, he’ll naturally be more attentive to you and understand you better which builds the foundation for emotional attraction.
2. Support during their rough times
Support during the testing times is a major turn on for most men out there. A man won’t plead with you to support him. He’ll keep his pain suppressed within him.
However, he wants you to notice what bothers him and support him in different ways. He wants someone reliable that says “Everything will be alright.”.
3. Good sense of humor
Men like playful and light-hearted women. Historically, men were the provider and women took care of the households. Men dealt a lot with the outside world’s harsh treatment.
So, every man feels that he needs a woman that can make him laugh after a long and exhausting day.
4. Long eye contact
Men feel a deep connection when you look directly in the eye. They know you’re independent and confident. A woman can attract superficial men with her coy nature… but such men won’t like her if she becomes headstrong or leads a relationship.
Through eye contact, men understand your exact nature. So, if he’s also looking for an emotional connection, he will be instantly attracted to you.
5. Individual space
High-value women don’t try to take up all the time of their men. Sometimes, if you allow him to enjoy space away from you and enjoy your life while he’s resting, he’ll want to know you more.
This also triggers the push and pull scenario. When he refuses to go out with you, you say “it’s okay, let’s order in!” and set out on the road trip alone… he’ll feel an urge to be needed more.
It’s a bit harsh but works greatly when you’re willing to build emotional attraction.
What triggers emotional attraction in a woman?
Contrarily, women seek the following…
1. Undivided attention
Women need to feel heard and understood to experience emotional attraction. She wants you to spend time with her, focus on her needs, and listen to her stories without her asking.
For instance, she’s back from work and feels extremely tired. If you help her out with chores, she’ll know you paid attention to her.
2. Aligning interests
If you both have shared interests, you’ll naturally have more to share about your past experiences. You have a topic to keep the conversation going for a long time. This eventually helps you instill emotional attraction.
3. An urge to experience new things together
Other than the existing experiences and the common parts, when you’re ready to step out of your comfort zone and try out new things she likes, she feels valued and believes you’re interested in putting in the effort.
She feels more comfortable sharing her desires and this leads to emotional intimacy and attraction.
4. Emotional vulnerability
Most women feel men are emotionally unavailable or at least their emotional availability is much lower. They look out for men that show vulnerabilities as this makes them feel “I want this one!”
She sees you in a different light and obviously believes you’ll wholeheartedly commit to the relationship if you share your insecurities.
5. Listening skills
Women like to complain even if it doesn’t help the situation. It helps them destress and prepare for another day of battle.
When someone listens to her silently patiently or makes an effort to help her through the day, instead of saying “I’ve had it worse” or “Grow up!”… that also triggers emotional attraction.
If you’re already in a relationship and wondering if you already share emotional attraction? Let’s check it here…
Signs of emotional attraction
Whether you’re snuggled up with the love of your life right now, or are still flirting with each other, you definitely wanna know if you both are emotionally attracted or not.
So, to find out, check for these…
1. You feel they understand you
When you share something with them, if they understand your context easily and you don’t have to stretch it long with explanations, you feel elated.
When you’re instantly understood by your partner without making much effort, it allows you to communicate your emotions easily and quickly.
This is a great sign of a deep emotional connection as you feel a different sense of fulfillment when you’re together.
2. They stay on your mind rent-free
If you frequently daydream about your next meeting or call, or you replay an enjoyable conversation in your mind, that’s another sweet sign.
You might be picking groceries or working on a project, but something or the other reminds you of them.
3. Late-night chats are on
If you guys talk or text till late at night about your weekend plans or next date night… Or, you guys share stories about how a person or situation hurt you, that’s one of the major signs of emotional attraction.
You can share fun things at one moment and delve into the deep and dark history the other. You won’t even have any track of time unless either of you is tired.
4. Their qualities are to die for
If you feel they have a good sense of humor and can’t stop telling your folks about their quirks, that’s another good sign.
You find them interesting in how they handle tough situations or how they motivate you. The liking is not limited to superficial characteristics like physical appearances.
5. Your values unnaturally align
Another good sign of emotional attraction is when your personal values align. You feel your choices, decisions, beliefs, and reasoning are all too similar.
Your similar perception of life minimizes conflict and helps you develop a deep and long-lasting bond… whether it’s romantic or purely platonic.
6. They never bore you
Even after knowing everything about them, if you don’t feel bored or don’t seek anything new, that’s another marvelous sign. Even doing the smallest and most mundane things with them feels exciting.
For instance, you might be happy just to pick up your monthly groceries together or watch a rerun of FRIENDS for the nth time. Nothing feels boring if you know they’re around.
7. Showing vulnerabilities is easy-peasy
Human beings can’t easily show their weaknesses to others unless they’re sure about the other person’s intentions.
If you both can comfortably show your vulnerabilities to one another, that’s a sure-fire sign of established emotional attraction.
Whether it’s a dark secret or insecurity, you won’t hesitate to share with them because you believe they’ll protect it forever.
8. They respect your boundaries and opinions
No two individuals can be one another’s carbon copy… at least I’ve never had one. You might have different opinions and choices and one of you may have stricter boundaries than the others.
If they can respect this difference, don’t judge you for it, and don’t force you to change your mind, that’s an amazing sign of emotional attraction.
They’ll give you the time to feel comfortable and never force you to do things “their way”.
9. They share before you ask
When the emotional attraction is present, they’ll tell you the important parts even before you ask them. You might be the first person they share the good news with.
If they confided in you about a bad situation and you’re worried about the outcome, whether it’s good or bad… they’ll let you know instantly even with a short text.
10. You’re their unofficial advisor in everything
Whenever they get in a pinch, they consult with you first… and that my friend is a great sign.
It shows they have immense faith in your opinion. They probably do so because your choices match a lot.
Did you hardly match with the signs? Want to cultivate an emotional connection? Let’s learn the tricks here…
How to build emotional attraction?
You can’t build emotional attraction overnight, so you need to be patient while in the process. Further, your love interest must also be open to emotional connections… otherwise, it won’t work.
So, let’s try everything possible to create a wonderful bond…
1. Begin with one thing at a time
Initially, don’t dig too deep in emotional attraction. Everything good needs time, so take small steps. If you come too strong, they’ll push you away.
Share your desires and hopes for your future… or, spill some of your fears or past bad experiences.
Tell them what made you the happiest… but make sure you don’t say it all at once. Sneak in with deep details in between fun and light conversations.
2. Be inquisitive about them
Never be afraid to ask questions… but also don’t turn it into an interrogation. Don’t stick to questions like favorite color or food… those won’t help you understand them better.
Ask meaningful questions like:
What quality do you not have but want a lot? What’s a must-have in a friendship/relationship? What qualities are red flags for you? What are you most thankful for in this life? What’s the most peaceful activity for you?
I’m sure you can come up with more such questions.
3. Share your answers to warm them up
If you feel they aren’t ready to share such deep and intimate details yet, give them a reason. If you share your answers before them, they’ll feel you trust them and return the favor.
As per relationship coaches, all kinds of relationships can be formed if you lower your guard and disclose the same facts you want them to share.
4. Casually introduce them to your circle
Whether it’s your sibling’s graduation party or a friend’s marriage, invite them over as your plus one. They’ll know that you’re serious enough to introduce them to your close ones.
They’ll naturally feel a sense of belonging and closeness. Of course, meanwhile you can also enjoy spending time with them.
5. Include them in your experiences
Often, we focus too much on common interests to talk about them. Plan your next date about something they like doing and on the date after that, make it about your interests.
Don’t stick to your common likes, plan for a unique experience to get a sneak-peek into the differences. This promotes a deeper emotional bond.
6. Turn off your phone when together
During dates or when you spend time together, don’t let them catch you fidgeting on your phone. This helps emotional attraction grow over time.
Otherwise, they feel less important than what you find on the screen. A screen-free time shows them they’re more important than other trivial matters. If you can’t offer them undivided attention, they won’t return the favor.
7. If you feel the spark, make them feel it too
When they talk about something and you relate to them, you feel this unnatural sensation like “Wow… I can’t believe we think so much alike”.
Well, why enjoy this feeling alone? To help them feel somewhat similar, look in their eyes and hold their gaze. Listen to them until they finish and share your feelings about it.
They’ll know you aren’t lying to get them to fall in love with you.
8. Don’t focus on the superficial bits
Especially in online dating, we focus excessively on physically attractive traits. His muscles or her luscious skin may not stay forever, so don’t cultivate feelings for someone’s superficial traits.
Look deeper and take more time to build a meaningful connection. A person’s heart and mind matter much more than how much they earn or the car they drive.
9. Use different modes of communication
In the modern era, people Snapchat instead of meeting face-to-face. Unless you guys are geographically distant and hardly have time, explore other means of connecting.
Video call them over Skype to look at their face. Send them video or voice notes if your schedules don’t match. Text, call, send pictures and audio, and meet in person. Try every communication mode to build a deeper emotional connection.
10. Help them without expectations
Sometimes, doing them a small favor is all they need. They’re running late on their clock? Help them prepare their lunch or grab their morning coffee so they don’t waste time further.
If they’re out of town and their folks can’t get a broken pipe fixed, help them out. If you cover for them in small ways and don’t expect them to do the same, you’ll build emotional attraction faster.
11. Build common routines
Whether you live under the same roof or live miles apart, enjoy at least one activity together every day. It might be going on a walk, having meals, or even watching movies on the weekends.
If you make a ritual of these small habits, you’ll always look forward to that part of the day. You’ll connect even deeper and feel happy about spending time together.
12. Go on double dates
When you hang out with other couples, you’ll feel how other couples are different in various ways.
For instance, you might learn to deal with relationship issues from other couples… or feel glad that your partner or relationship is much better than another’s.
This might not seem important, but you eventually understand your partner and relationship even better through these double dates.
13. Keep your worries aside
Share your worries with your crush or partner… but don’t overdo it, otherwise, they’ll assume they’re nothing more than a problem-solver in your life.
Indulge in quality time together and push away the regular worries. Focus on the moment and cherish everything you experience together.
14. Give yourself time
We always forget the most important relationship in the world… the relationship with self. Don’t wait for anyone else to live the life you want or depend on another person to be happy.
Instead, take charge of your life and happiness. A happy person naturally becomes attractive.
15. Develop trust over time
Create a safe space for your romantic interest. When they feel hurt, tell them that they can express their feelings without the fear of being judged.
Let them know you’re ready to accept them entirely… even the parts that they feel are ugly. This way you’ll build immense trust between you both which will bring you closer than ever.
16. Remember when they share crucial details
A closer bond and emotional attraction depend on how much you listen to one another’s little demands, desires, and necessities.
They might wish to visit for an amusement park date, but not ask for it. Rather they’ll only say “how romantic!” when they see a similar scene on Netflix.
That’s when you mentally note and apply it on the next date. They’ll get closer when they notice you’re so attentive.
17. Always support them
When they bring any issue to your notice, compassionately share ideas to support them. If they want to follow a certain path, be supportive and enthusiastic.
18. Never ask them to change
The worst thing you can ask from a love interest is for them to change. If you really want to fix them like a broken window, this isn’t love.
Accept your differences in beliefs, values, and personality, but of course, if it’s an unhealthy habit, talk to them about it.
19. Have healthy conflicts
Fights are normal in every relationship, but make sure you don’t use toxic dynamics like stonewalling, emotional manipulation, blame games, or show contempt.
Apologize when you’re wrong and explain your point of view if you feel you’re right.
20. Don’t overshare
If you wanna keep the spark lit, don’t let them read you completely in one day. Stay mysterious so they want to know more about you. This will keep the relationship interesting and fun.
If they know everything at once, what will make them return to you?
21. Comfortably and confidently refuse them
If they ask you for the impossible, don’t entertain them just to keep them around. Refuse them if you don’t feel good about granting their wishes.
Build strict boundaries and hold your grounds to teach them to respect you. If you respect yourself, they’ll know that you’ll respect their boundaries too.
22. Don’t gossip about others
Suppose someone in your workplace gets on your nerves and you share it with your romantic interest. That’s cool… you have the right to vent to them.
However, if you overdo it, they’ll doubt if you also talk ill behind them. This can ruin your entire emotional attraction game. So, limit the negative gossip.
23. Be punctual
If you decide to go on a date, don’t make your love interest wait too long. Otherwise, they’ll assume you don’t respect their time and prioritize yourself over them.
However, things aren’t always in your control. In such a situation, give them a heads up with a text. Make sure you don’t repeat it too often as it gives away wrong vibes.
24. Stay true to promises
Whether you promise them to feed their cat, pick up the laundry, or take care of their parents when they’re away… make sure to keep it.
If you hold your side of the deal, you’ll receive much more than mere reciprocation of keeping promises. However, if you break one, they’ll lose trust and depend less on you.
25. Be willing to give and take space
You can stick to one another 24/7… but that’s not healthy. Sometimes, you both need time apart. Don’t make your relationship a mandatory part of your life. Give your friends and family time when required.
If you’re confused about whether you’re emotionally attracted to them, but feel too lazy to check the signs, take this quiz instead.
Emotional attraction Quiz
Emotional attraction isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. So, if you’re still confused, I don’t blame you. To help you out of this muddle, here’s a quick quiz that can help you reach a conclusion.
1. Do you genuinely care a lot for them?
A. I guess
B. No, it’s so that they notice me
2. Do you feel you know them inside out?
A. Yes, because we have a lot in common
B. No, but why else do I feel so excited… we must have some connection
3. Do you talk for long hours with them?
A. Yes, I lose track of time
B. No, I can’t wait to hang up
4. How do you feel when they’re around?
B. I try my best to look perfect
5. What do you usually talk about?
A. Literally anything
B. Only about soccer/one subject
6. What if they turn ugly someday?
A. I don’t really care about looks
B. Well, we have surgeries…
7. How do you feel when they blabber about things they’re passionate about?
8. Do you let them wait for you on dates?
A. Not knowingly
B. Gotta slay with looks, so why not?
9. Do you respect their boundaries?
B. I negotiate hard
10. What do you feel about having clashing opinions?
A. I don’t mind it… to each their own!
If you mostly answered A’s, you’re emotionally attracted to them.
If you mostly answered B’s, you’re mistaken… This isn’t emotional attraction.
Since emotional attraction isn’t commonly discussed, you’re bound to have some queries. So, let’s clear it up here…
Some people feel physical attraction eventually enters where there is emotional attraction. Others believe emotional attraction is only for lovers.
So, to help you clarify all your doubts, let’s delve deeper…
Often, couples that claim themselves as soulmates have great emotional and physical attraction. They have extremely strong relationships. However, everyone isn’t as lucky. Some couples try to make things work even without much emotional attraction.
Further, emotional attraction can only end in a platonic bond and nothing romantic. They might be closer than siblings and call one another soulmates as friends.
Emotional attraction can easily happen without sexual attraction… especially if you’re not physically attracted either.
If an emotional attraction is important for you in a relationship, sexual attraction comes way later when you feel physically attracted.
Contrarily, you might be sexually attracted to someone without any emotional attraction.
Emotional attraction solely depends on your emotional availability and has the least to no connection with the physical appeal.
For instance, you might have a great emotional attraction to your siblings or a friend without any romantic feelings.
Similarly, you might be physically attracted to someone without any deep bond. Initially, such relationships are fun but it’s hard to continue them in the long run.
Playfulness, light-hearted nature, or a good sense of humor is important for emotional attraction. Any relationship with emotional attraction but without playfulness is unstable.
Such couples stay together out of convenience and build an unhappy bond. This kind of emotional attraction feels void for both men and women, so eventually, these couples call quits and find individual ways out.
If someone initiates conversations equally, remembers your needs, creates a safe space for you, and behaves as if they miss you, they’re emotionally attracted.
But if this person devotes their entire free time to you, mirrors your habits, always thinks about your safety, and is always empathetic and compassionate, they’re emotionally attached.
An emotionally attached person wants you much more in their life than an emotionally attracted one.
A word from ThePleasantRelationship
Emotional attraction is an important factor in familial, romantic, and even platonic relationships. However, if a person is emotionally unavailable, they won’t like the idea.
After repetitive attempts, if a person brushes off any emotional bond, communicate openly about the issue. Especially, if this person is your romantic interest, don’t delay the conversation.
If you conclude they can’t commit emotionally, think about the possible solutions. You guys can even seek a relationship coach or if it’s due to deep mental trauma, go for couples counseling.
Don’t give up too fast, but if everything fails, don’t be afraid to walk out of the relationship as well.
Surabhi wakes up every day with a drive to craft words that can create a soulful impact. Creatively adventurous, she is always seeking to learn new skills and acquire new experiences. With a hidden soft corner for languages (especially Urdu), she writes poetry occasionally, binges on romantic shows, and LOVES to talk. A hustler, admirer, chaser, Surabhi is just another-someone who refused to give up on her dreams. She says, she is just somebody who’s trying to make herself a writer and for now, she’s just writing...