Understanding popularity begins with understanding attraction. I use the word many times on this website and so it is important that you know exactly what attraction is and what it is not.
When I discuss popularity with people, they often say that, “being beautiful isn’t the only thing that matters.” My answer to them is always that I agree. Thousands of different things make someone attractive. When I use the word “attractive,” I am not talking only about being “beautiful.” Being beautiful is important, but it’s not the only thing that makes someone attractive.
All the Things That Make Us Attractive
Look at this picture of Johnny Depp. Even if you are not sexually attracted to what he looks like, it is easy to see that there are many things in this picture that make him attractive.
- He looks rebellious and tough with his unkempt hair, tattoos, and muscle shirt.
- He is surrounded by old and interesting things that are more exciting than just any old house.
- He is playing the piano and making it look easy–not something simple.
You may notice other things and / or disagree with me. My point is only that there are many things that make Johnny Depp attractive. He is more than just handsome.
If you want to know what makes someone attractive, there are actually two people you need to think about. You need to think about the person that you are judging and the person who is looking at them. Different people find different things attractive. Some girls will be very attracted to the fact that Johnny Depp plays piano. Some girls wont care. Different people find different things attractive.
The last thing I want to highlight about attraction is that it is not just sexual. You are attracted to your friends because they are fun to be with. You are attracted to your family because you love them (probably). None of these relationships are about sexual. Every time you read the word “attraction” on this website think of it as being the same thing as “wanting.” Anything that makes one person want to be around anther person is an attraction.
The Hierarchy of Attraction
The “Hierarchy of Attraction” might sound complicated but it is actually very simple. It is just a drawing that shows the following things:
- A very small number of people are very attractive to everyone.
- A few more are attractive to many people.
- Lots of people are attractive to about half of the people in a group.
- A handful are attractive to only some people in a group.
- A very small number of people are attractive to no one and are at the very bottom.
Looking at the picture, all you need to remember is that the fatter the triangle, the more people that are in that group. And, people are attracted to those above them. The higher you are, the more people are attracted to you.
- Few people at the top.
- Few people at the bottom.
- Lots of people in the middle.
- Those at the bottom are attracted to those above them.
If you understand the picture, you can skip to the next page and start reading about Input of Energy. You don’t need to know anything else about the Hierarchy of Attraction to understand popularity. If you understand the four things I wrote above, that’s enough. But, if you want to know where the Hierarchy comes from you can read the rest of this page.
Four Facts of Life
The Hierarchy of Attraction is not something that I invented. It is something that exists because of four facts of life. These things will never change and that’s why the Hierarchy of Attraction will always be in any group.
Fact #1: Many Different Things Combine to Make Each Person Unique
If you tried to write a list of all the things that make you… you, the list would be very long. You could write about your interests:
- Music, sports, school…
or what you are good at:
- Math, English, basketball…
or your body type:
- bum size, skin colour, gender…
or what you like:
- spicy food, dogs, rap music…
or just about anything else.
Many different things come together to make each person who and what they are. Every single person is unique because any combination of these things is possible. Think about all the people at your school. Everyone is a little different. Even identical twins aren’t exactly the same.
Fact #2: There Cannot Be Attractive People Without Unattractive People
Look at the three pictures labelled A and B. Who is tall and who is short in the first picture labelled A? Now, look at picture B. Who is tall and who is short now?
Without someone else to compare, the word “tall” doesn’t mean anything.
Tom is only tall when compared to Tim.
This silly example demonstrates an important point. The word “tall” only makes sense if there is someone who is“short” to compare them with. Thomas is “tall” in picture A but is actually “short” in picture B.
Just like tall people need short people, smart people need dumb people, rich people need poor people, and attractive people need unattractive people. If everyone was the same height, the word “tall” would mean nothing at all. Just remember that as soon as you think one person is attractive, you must think that someone else is unattractive as well. You always need both. Without unattractive people, there could be no attractive people.
Fact #3: Everyone Feels Attraction As a Human Instinct
Everyone has felt attracted to someone else. Attraction does not have to be about romance or sex. It would be correct to say that a person is attracted to their friends and family. Anything that makes you want to be around someone is an attraction.
Feeling attracted to other people is a human instinct and so everyone naturally does it. When it comes to dating and romance relationships, it just happens. Couples find each other and have for thousands of years.
Fact #4: The Hierarchy of Attraction Always Has the Same Shape
The shape of the Hierarchy of Attraction is based on statistics. You don’t need to worry about the mathematics. All you need to know is that the shape comes from something known as the “Bell Curve” or the “Normal Distribution.” It looks like the picture below. You can Google “Normal Distribution” if you want to see more pictures.
The Hierarchy that I drew is really the same thing. If you look at the picture below, you will see why. It’s really the same graph just tipped over.
The Hierarchy is actually just a normal distribution
As you can see the hierarchy of attraction isn’t something invented from nothing. It is based on four facts of life:
- Everyone is unique.
- Everyone feels attraction as a natural human instinct.
- There can only be attractive people if there are unattractive people to compare them to.
- Statistics ensures that there are a few people at the top, many people in the middle, and a few people at the bottom.
Three Important Points to Remember
There are some important points to remember about the Hierarchy of Attraction: Where you are in it can change; that is, nobody stays in the same place for their entire life. And, even simple things can make a difference. If, for example, you wear nice clean clothes instead of dirty clothes, more people will be attracted to you and so you will be higher up.
Also important to remember is that where you are in the hierarchy depends on the group you are in: sometimes you might be close to the top. Sometimes you might be close to the bottom. How high you are depends on who you are being compared to. Remember, how tall you are depends on who you’re standing beside as does how attractive you are.