Do you ever wonder how some people are magnetic to others and are so well liked?
We ALL want to be liked, to be accepted and to be THAT person, the one with the compelling personality.
The person who everyone is somehow drawn to because they're just so magnetic! What's the secret to becoming the person with the "million dollar personality?".
There are basic social skills blended with emotional intelligence that speaks to the heart of why people are likable, according to social psychology research.
How likable you are is totally up to you.
Practice good posture
Stand and sit up straight. Tall, strong posture sends the message that you're approachable and have a positive body image.
It conveys confidence and that you are open to embracing those you are surrounded with.
Put your phone in your pocket
I know how hard it can be to put your phone away. We have this dependent relationship with our phones. It's the non-fuzzy "security blanket", our buddy who we think will somehow protect us. Well, let's check the facts. It actually keeps us away from connecting to others, so nope, it's not protecting us all the times. Yes, we need our phones for many reasons and at many times. But when others are around, make it a habit of putting the phone AWAY. Pay attention to the person or people in front of you. Look at them. Show them they are important. That you want to be there with them.
Within the first few seconds of meeting you, others are scanning for a sense of safety, of trust and of connectivity. All social creatures are looking for warmth and gentle interest in who they are and what they have to say.
It's a decision that comes almost unconsciously as there are subtle cues that are being picked up almost immediately. "Is this person safe?" "Do they feel comfortable to be engaging with?" "Can we possibly be friends one day?".
The biggest sign that you're authentically interested in the other person is your EYE CONTACT. If you are able to meet the other person with your eyes and hold the connection for a few seconds, the other person gets that sense that you are fully present. More importantly, they also get a real sense that you are interested in who they are.
Research also shows that those who can hold eye contact are perceived as having higher levels of intelligence. So hey, you can even seem smarter :)
This seems so obvious, but take a moment and look around you. Notice someone who looks grumpy, worried or tense. Then notice someone whose face looks gentler, softer, calmer or even with a crease around their eyes from smiling gently, with a smirk on their face, a sparkle in their eyes.
Who would you quicker approach? Who feels safer to go up to?
When there is a smile on your face, or even just a relaxed disposition, you give off the message that you are open and able to be engaged with. It conveys warmth and and unconsciously gives the message that you are accessible.
If you notice you have a hard time staying connected and present, identify things that get you back grounded and connected with yourself and the here-and-now when you get fuzzy. Can you hold something sensory, a clip, feel a bracelet that you like, or smell your perfume. Or, can you notice a bright color in the room, go out to get some fresh air or take a few deep breaths.
Make sure you're present and connected so others feel like you are there. Fully there.
Call people by their name
Think about the last time someone called your by your first name. Now think about the first time someone you just met called your by your name- didn't that feel good? We like being seen, noticed and made to feel important to another person. Being called by first name portrays a sense of respect and thoughtfulness.
Remembering people's names can help you build stronger relationships and avoid awkward situations, so make a habit of remembering the name to the face you're interacting with. .
And,a tip for you: If you met someone you want to keep in touch with in the future, after you finish talking you can write their name down with a short description of who they are and how you met them.
I have the funniest names saved in my phone as reminders of who the person is and how we met, and I'll even joke with the person when we connect next "oh, you're saved as Jennifer from the pool birthday party with blond hair" and we both share a funny laugh. It's much better than "oh, who is this again?". You made an effort to remember someone you want to stay in touch with.
Be human. It's what all of this is about.
Practice your listening skills. Listen more than you speak. Yes, you can chew your friend's ear off after tough day, but that's when you're good buddies for some time. Building friendships takes listening and slowing getting to know one another.
If someone shares something personal about their day, their work,family life, something that's important to them, or says they aren't feeling too way, show a compassionate part of yourself. Lean in to how they are feeling. Let others know you are caring and can feel with them. This makes others feel like you can listen, respond and exchange the give and take of understanding that is important for building balanced relationships. On that note though, I don't want you becoming the other person's therapist - so check in with boundaries....
Practice good boundaries
We all want to connect. And at the same time there are healthy ways to connect with others. Some people jump into deep intensive conversations on their first meeting. That. Is. Too. Much.
I get how much you may feel like you click, but I'd encourage you to take things slow as relationships that last longer term take their time warming up and sharing appropriately. Make some small talk, see if you can have a good time besides for intensity and sharing your deepest darkest secrets. Be conscious not to make new friends into your therapist. It might scare them away, or you may be engaging in an enmeshed unhealthy dynamic (what's enmeshment? More on that here). Yes, friendships are meant to be supportive, but in a way where you are first, friends and second, supportive to one another. Keep it in that order. There is plenty of time to build a relationship. Take it slow.
Having good boundaries shows you know your value, and you take your time choosing who to allow in. Yes, be picky with you you allow in to your inner life. Also, be cautious of others who spill on you in their first convo. Compassionately listen and you can also close up a convo that feels like it's stepping over that line of healthy disclosure. Keeping things balanced will help you keep relationships healthy, enjoyable and meaningful.
None of us like being around people who complain all. the. freaking. time. It gets draining.
If you notice you've gone down the "negative nancy lane" that's ok. We all do that sometimes. If you see others getting distracted or looking bored, switch the topic and get back into a different zone and see how you can better connect on a lighter note :)
Make everyone feel included
It takes noticing all people in the room to keep everyone included. We all want to be included so if you're the one who is engaging with all people, or bringing the person from the sidelines in to the conversation, you're the comfortable person that others want to be with as they can sense you are looking out for them.
Be the one who includes others and you'll be unforgettable!
End a conversation right
The way we end our convo leaves a lasting impression-You can wrap up with a genuine remark like "I hope you enjoy the rest of your day," I really enjoyed meeting you", "Thanks for that great convo."
It's the small steps that go a long way.
What do you find keeps you connected to others?
Try one of these and see how much of a difference it may make. Wishing you a week with lots of connectable moments!