By Jane Hoskyn

What’s the one guaranteed way to turn off a woman? Fart in her face? Put your lucky red pants in with her white washing? Give her crabs? Nope – it’s to act desperate. Desperation is cruel beast. Once it gets you, it grows like an evil love-fungus. The more desperate you are, the more desperate you’ll seem, and the less sexy you’ll be. Vicious circle, you see. One minute you’re feeling a tiny bit insecure ’cause you’ve not had sex for four months, and the next minute you’re Mr Needy from Needy Street.

The way to avoid or break this wheel of misfortune is to pretend like you’re not desperate at all. Once you learn how to fake confidence, you’ll start to act and feel more confident, and the women will be all over you. Here’s how.

1. Think like a winner

Sports psychology techniques are brilliant for boosting your confidence. They also help you radiate control and self-assurance – two qualities that bring women flocking. Use visualisation techniques before you chat up a woman or meet her for a blind date. Beforehand, picture yourself chatting to her with wit and eloquence, and imagine her lapping it all up. Picture yourself with a strong, confident posture. If you don’t believe it works, think about how easily the opposite approach can wreck your confidence. Remember starting school and thinking, “I’m too shy and weedy, I’ll get a kicking”. It was a self-fulfilling prophecy. Lack of confidence came streaming out of your body language and wibbly tone of voice, you did indeed end up getting a kicking. Which brings me to…

2. Walk like a man

Scientists reckon that women are around 10 times better at reading body language than men are. So learn to hide those giveaway geek-signs. Next time you’re at a party, watch the body language of the woman-winners. Pay attention to their every move. Look at everything from the way they hold their glass to the angle of their hips and shoulders. (But do try to avoid checking them out like some mini-me Dale Winton.) Compare the winners’ confident posture with your own. Hunched shoulders are a sign of nerves – a key symptom of neediness – so lift back and relax your shoulders. Fast movements also convey nervousness and skittishness, so slow your movements down to give an impression of control and self-confidence.

3. Look her in the eye

Extended eye contact can feel uncomfortable and intrusive when you’re doing it, but person you’re looking at will get the impression that you’re dead confident – in conversation, in the workplace and in bed. Grr. People who can’t maintain eye contact seem shifty and nervous, so learn to hold a woman’s gaze for at least as long as it takes to make her look away. She’ll love it, believe me. What’s more, she’ll respond to you as though you’re more confident, and you’ll feel more confident as a result.

4. Shut up and listen

Giving away too much information is a sign of insecurity. Stop ear-aching women with fascinating facts about yourself, and trust them to make their minds up without a lecture. Babblers and braggers simply sound like they’re trying too hard to impress, and that’s one of the biggest markers of desperation. If you have confidence in yourself, the qualities you exude will speak for themselves. By shutting up, you’ll also get brownie points for being a good listener. Good listeners get more sex.

5. Ex girlfriend? What ex girlfriend?

The quickest and easiest way to look desperate is to bang on about your ex girlfriend or wife. By “banging on about”, I mean mentioning, ever. Such talk suggests that you haven’t moved on, and that you’re desperately looking for a new hook-up to help you get over the past. Which, if you can’t help mentioning the ex, is probably true. Your new woman really doesn’t want to know. She won’t think you’re inexperienced if you don’t mention your ex. She’ll assume that your past is your past, and she’s your woman now. Besides, a man with true confidence is a man who never goes back. Onward and upward, my friend.