Ever wonder why some people just seem to sail through life with ease? They get job offers. People enjoy being in their company. And they seem to have extraordinary powers of persuasion.
Do you have a skill or talent to share but feel like people don’t pay attention to you? You may be struggling in the likability department.
But here’s the good news: you can increase your likability. Here are 10 things you can start doing today that will begin to make a difference in your life:
1. Be cheerful
People who are likable tend to smile even when it feels like there is nothing to smile about. They know that happiness comes from the inside rather than external circumstances. Smiling will make you appear more warm, inviting, and attractive.
Tip: Practice smiling when you’re alone. Need help? Think about the funniest or best thing that happened to you recently. Make your smile big and broad. A byproduct is that you’ll actually begin to feel happy.
2. Be positive
This is essential if you want to be more likable. Always have good things to say about yourself and others. Maintain a “can do” attitude. Be encouraging to others.
Tip: Stay away from gossip. If someone tries to gossip with you about another person, tactfully change the subject.
3. Be trustworthy
Be a person of your word. If you commit to doing something, follow through in a timely manner. If you are not able to meet a previous commitment, be honest about that. Forgiveness comes more easily when we’re open with one another. Over the long term, this builds trust and loyalty.
Tip: Guard your “yes.” If someone asks you to do something and you cannot do it, say a polite and gentle “no.”
4. Be genuinely interested in other people
Want to develop your interest in other people? It starts by learning the name of each person you regularly interact with and using it every chance you get. Get the other person to talk about themselves and truly listen to their answers. Speak to them in terms of their interests and likes.
Tip: If you’re bad at remembering names, learn a few tricks to help you memorize names.
5. Be sensitive
Being sensitive means considering the feelings of others. It means being mindful of what you say and not imposing your beliefs. Quietly living out your values can far more persuasive than a heated debate.
Tip: Practice empathy. Learn to put yourself in the minds of other people. Ask yourself “How would I feel if I were in this person’s situation?”
6. Be interesting
Pursue hobbies and interests. Join a local sports league. Try listening to a new genre of music. Read a bestseller. Pursuing variety of things makes for interesting conversations and connections with other people.
Tip: Don’t let your expectations or lack of experience prevent you from trying something you think you’ll love.
7. Be easygoing
Stress is contagious. Your stress levels may be affecting those around you more than you realize. And all it takes is a few tweaks to improve your ability to put others at ease in your presence.
People who are easygoing aren’t too concerned when things don’t go as planned. They let go of slights. They use humor to diffuse difficult or tense situations.
Tip: When things start to go south, interrupt your stress response by taking a deep breath.
8. Be generous
Generosity with your time and talents is a proven way to improve your likability. Volunteer. Practice hospitality. Lend your expertise and resources to good causes that you resonate with. Don’t be overly focused on getting something in return for your investment.
Tip: Be more intentional about increasing your capacity for generosity. Here are some simple ways to do so.
9. Be relatable
With the advent of social media and the personal brand, it can sometimes feel like we are competing to appear happier and richer than the next person. It feels like we’ve lost the art of being relatable. Likable people know how to make others identify with them. Others don’t feel “less than” in their presence. Relatability is the currency of human connection.
Tip: Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable to other people. Freely admit when you don’t have all the answers. Ask for help when you need it. Share experiences of heartbreak and rejection.
10. Be confident
Likable people are confident – but it has to be the right level of confidence. Insecure and overconfident people drive others away. People who lack confidence communicate to others “I am not worthy of being liked.” Over confident people say “You have to like me.” The right level of confidence communicates “I am worthy of being liked and I am comfortable in my own skin.”
Tip: Know your strengths. Tap into the satisfaction you feel when you’re doing something you’re good at, no matter what you’re doing.
It’s time to shine
Are you tired of always being in the shadows?
Are you ready to “win friends and influence people”?
Are you ready to make a first impression that will make you a sure winner?
Then you’re ready to take these steps to becoming more likable. All it takes is a commitment to following these steps.
Will you step out and shine or remain in the shadows?
The choice is yours.
Cylon is a spiritual chaplain, musician, devoted husband, and busy dad of six. He blogs about practical spiritual tips for living well at Spiritual Living For Busy People – sign up and get his free guide 20 Little Tricks To Instantly Improve Your Mood Even If You Feel Like Punching Something (or Someone).