All men indulge in peacocking whether they realize it or not. But what is peacocking really? Find out why men do this and whether it works or not.
Despite what they say, women will always have a soft spot for nice guys. You know, the type that helps elderly people cross the street, pacify crying babies, and ones who help overburdened ladies carry their groceries. And who could blame them? Nice guys are easy to approach and less likely to make them feel uncomfortable. However, there’s a question that you need to ask before you assume he’s a pure gentleman: is he genuinely nice or just peacocking?
What is peacocking?
Peacocking comes from the behavior of the bird of the same name. Male peacocks are known to flaunt themselves and their decorative plumage whenever a female peacock is around their immediate vicinity.
Using this observation, behavioral scientists coined the term to describe the extra flashy behavior men display whenever there’s someone of the opposite sex near the area. But the question still remains: why do men do this?
Why do men exhibit peacocking behavior?
From an evolutionary perspective, peacocking is a behavior adopted by males of different species to increase their chances of attracting a mate. Just as how it works for peacocks and other birds, other animals and humans each have their own version of a “courtship display” to impress nearby females and convince them to become their mate.
So while peacocks and other birds strut around and display their feathers, frogs puff their chins, fish flash different colors, gorillas beat their chests, and human men act nicer than their usual selves.
Facts about peacocking in men
#1 Most men display peacocking unconsciously. As mentioned, peacocking is a behavior hardwired in a man’s genes. Chances are if you ask him what it is, he may not even be aware of the term. Most of the time, men who exhibit peacocking behavior are not aware that they do it.
#2 Peacocking is not limited to nice behavior. Peacocking is not just about showing her that you’re nice to others. It also manifests in different forms. Peacocking in general involves a man flaunting his perceived desirable asset.
So aside from being a nice guy, he could also flaunt his looks by dressing up in a trendy way, showing off his gym-sculpted muscles, show off his wealth by sporting expensive clothes or driving an expensive car, or show off his intelligence by dominating the conversation. [Read: 10 unassuming signs that show you’re dating a jerk]
#3 Peacocking among nice guys. Peacocking is a behavior observed in most men. A guy who does this cannot be judged as doing it for show. Even nice guys peacock too. They just flaunt it when a girl of their type is around watching him.
#4 The amount of peacocking increases as female attractiveness increases. Peacocking is directly proportional to observing a female’s level of attractiveness. Meaning, the more attractive the girl is, the likelihood that a guy peacocks also increases.
The reason behind this phenomenon lies the simple explanation that men prefer to choose younger, more attractive females to display their desirable traits in order to get her attention. [Read: 18 physical turn ons that arouse a guy instantly]
#5 Peacocking behavior still depends whether the girl is a guy’s type. If a guy displays this behavior between an overly attractive woman and a lesser attractive woman of his type, he’ll choose the latter. Why? Because the rules of dating still apply. Guys still lean towards the girl of his type regardless of her level of attractiveness. [Read: Science of attraction – 17 aspects that go far beyond appearances]
Types of peacocking behavior among men
While it may sound superficial to show off whenever a girl is around, it offers a level of success for men to get a girl. And that is one reason why this behavior is deep-rooted in their system. So in the context of modern dating, how do men display peacocking?
#1 A well-crafted social media profile. A guy’s personal social media profile shows a good sample of flaunting if you look closely. From carefully selected display photo which flaunts his best angle, his profile description, and humble-bragging posts also suggest peacocking, especially if more than half of his network is composed of females. [Read: 8 annoying social media users that make you wanna scream]
#2 Dressing up for a date. Sure everybody dresses up for a date—especially on the first date. But guys take extra effort to make themselves look like a million bucks if they know that they’ll meet a woman they would like to impress. If by day he’s just a plain dresser, you would be surprised how he can transform into someone you won’t recognize overnight.
#3 Changing body posture. Let’s say that there are a bunch of guys waiting in a room. Suddenly there’s a very attractive girl who enters the said room. Once the guys realize an attractive girl is in their presence, the initial reaction would be self-consciousness about their appearance and posture. [Read: How guys flirt – 15 things they do subconsciously while attracting a girl]
#4 Sales sway. Have you ever wondered why stores and charity booths are manned by attractive ladies? Well, you have peacocking to blame for that. Being as men are, they will be more likely to buy a product that they won’t need or donate to a charity they haven’t even heard of if they are approached by a girl who seemingly “needs their help.” [Read: Damsels in distress and why men find them irresistibly attractive]
#5 Impressing girls through conversation. It is not only limited to displays of good behavior, wealth, and physical appearance. A man may also be bold enough to state his desirable points in a conversation as a means to get a woman’s attention. Because maybe, flaunting it all around is not enough.
Women love themselves a nice charming guy. For this reason, men aspire and sometimes act as such. Peacocking is a behavior observed in males in any species. It’s used for the purpose of finding and impressing a potential partner.
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Paul Timothy or “Morty” (as he likes to call himself) is a writer-photographer based in Manila. After finishing a degree in Psychology he found himself swep...