How to become a likable person
As a person with a permanent resting bitch face, coming across as likable is something I do need from time to time. No, I am not angry. No, I don’t dislike you (yet, haha). My face is just comfortable this way and I’m not sorry for the fact that it looks angry to you. The past week I’ve actually gotten an extra challenge in this department as I had a minor accident. Part of the recovery included healing stitches in my face, making it even harder to move the muscles in my face to look friendly.
In his book, How to make people like you in 90 seconds or less, Nicholas Boothman explains the subtle tricks of body language and making conversation to appear more likable. Something my stitched-up face could use. Therefore, in this blog post we’re digging into how to become a likable person, without using your face (too much).
Align body language
The first things a new person will notice about you are your body, eyes and facial expression. When it comes to your body, position it directly towards the conversation partner. This will communicate sincerity, full commitment to the conversation and an openness to connect. Then, look directly into your conversation partner’s eyes to establish trust and be sure to be the first one to smile and radiate a positive attitude. Furthermore, introduce yourself with a "hi" or "hello" in a pleasant tone. Lean slightly toward the other person to indicate interest and openness. A little tip here: try to relax your body while doing this for a more natural effect, otherwise you’ll look even more awkward, which will defeat the whole purpose.
Connecting through preferred senses
People are filtering the world through one of three different (preferred) senses. By matching your responses to a person's dominant sense, you can make them like you more. The senses can be explained as follows:
- Visually focused people - care about how things look, think in pictures, dress sharply and talk very fast.
- Auditory focused people - love conversation, have fluid melodic expressive voice and enjoy words as well as sounds.
- Kinaesthetic focused people - like solid things that they can feel, lower voice, speak slowly.
As for myself I could be grouped into the first category as I am always visualizing everything. When talking to me it helps to point out visual details and go through the story quickly. That’s when I am most captivated and unlikely to lose my attention. A little note from Ashley about me: “It’s not that you’re not visual, but there something to that wanting to feel everything too. Think I forgot about the stone dragon’s in Hong Kong you kept touching? Who are you kidding, you even like touching asphalt and concrete!”. Guess one can prefer more senses than one.
Key to conversation
Now that you’ve aligned your body language and will connect through preferred senses, it is time to actually make conversation. First off, it’s important to ask open questions, this way you’ll get your conversation partner to do the talking. Open questions usually start with why, how, what, when and aren’t answered with a yes or no. The second key is to be listening actively. Listening actively is trying to really understand and hear what your conversation partner is saying, not merely listening to answer. One can actively listen by:
- Using ample eye contact, without staring of course.
- Listening with your body by facing your heart toward them.
- Leaning in and nodding your head.
And that’s how I apply making people like me on the daily. Most important to say here thought that these tips and tricks won’t work if you’re not sincere, so don’t go overboard and pretend. At first it felt a little weird, even manipulative at times. But after some time, you get used to the things that work for you and make them your own. With that being said, what are your best tips to become a more likable person? Let us know in the comments below.