Who wouldn’t want to be more likeable and have people think of them in a positive manner? There are many benefits to having others like us. Personally we will form closer and deeper relationships with those that we want to be in our lives. In the workplace, being likeable will result in better relationships with our colleagues and increase our chances for promotion. Many people have the misconception that being likeable is something that we are born with, some predetermined condition that certain people are fortunate to have acquired. Like all human skills, we can become more likeable by understanding what makes people like us and making a determined and consistent effort to practice those skills in our interactions with others. We will soon be rewarded when we start to see the positive difference that it is making in our lives.
Display to others that you are happy and excited to meet them
When first meeting, give your best smile, make eye contact and open up your posture to its’ widest position. If shaking hands make it firm and make solid eye contact. If you notice something about them that you can give them a sincere compliment about, do so. If there is a recent and proud accomplishment that you’re aware of, compliment them on it.
Become a good listener
Most people love to talk about themselves and will like and appreciate people who take the time to actually listen to what they say. The problem is that most of the time we are too busy thinking of our response and can’t wait for the opportunity to talk ourselves, to really listen. Next time we are in a conversation, pretend that we are being tested to see how much we learn about the other person and the more we learn, the higher our reward. Pretend you will have to write an essay on what you learned from speaking with this person
Be fully present when others are speaking
Have you ever spoken with someone and found them distracted, glancing at an attractive member of the opposite sex or checking their watch while you are speaking? Or else they take their cell phone out? You likely felt you were not very important to that person. Make others aware you are focused on making them the center of attention. Face them squarely, smile, make eye contact and let them know that they are the center of your world while you are with them.
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Learn to ask good questions
Conversations often die quickly or turn into monologues when not prompted by good questions. When someone is talking about something that they enjoy doing ask them about how they got into the activity, or what makes them enjoy it so much is a great way to give them the opportunity to go deeper into the subject. Since it is something they are really dying to talk more about, they will really appreciate you giving them the opportunity to do so. Maybe not consciously, but on a subconscious level, you will become someone they remember and want to be around.
Look for areas of connection
Discovering areas of interest are an excellent way to deepen our level of connection with others and increase their appreciation of us. We connect and develop the best relationships with those we have the most in common with. The commonalities may not always be obvious, we may have to look for them. For example I often had the opportunity to chat with a dedicated runner at the fitness facility that I work out at. Since I had no interest in running there seemed to be no common grounds for a meaningful conversation. However, most people like food, so I asked him what he ate before a major run. It gave us something in common to talk about.
Address people by their names and remember important facts about them
The most beautiful sound for people is the sound of their name. Use it when you first meet them and sprinkle it throughout the conversation if the opportunity comes up. Remember things that are important to them such as names of their partners, children, pets and favorite vacation spots. By doing so and mentioning those at appropriate times next time you see them you will be someone who will stand out in their memories. They will remember you more and look forward to more opportunities to connect with you.
Look for their areas of passion
When speaking to people, pay attention to what makes them come alive, become animated, lights up their face and sit up straight. These are opportunities for us to further help the speaker get further into topics that are of great interest to them. Speaking of subjects that are of strong interest are deeply satisfying to us and we will form strong positive impressions and lasting memories of people that encourage and help us to do so.