These Simple Strategies Will Make People Like You Instantly
Charisma: It’s one of those character traits that carries an element of intangible mystery and magic to it. The most charismatic people wield a certain social power that colors every interaction and each new introduction with an air of not only effortlessness but also a genuine interest and thoughtful intention. If you’re charismatic, people just tend to like you—and fast. That’s a powerful characteristic indeed, for both your personal and your professional lives (How to Win Friends and Influence People, anyone?).
If you are not divinely blessed with charisma, though, don’t despair. According to plenty of experts, there is much you can do with impressive ease to endear yourself to those you meet. Business Insider rounded up a list of research-backed tricks and strategies to make people like you, and they’re simpler than you might think:
Mirror them. When interacting with someone new, try to pay attention to their physical cues. Mimicking (subtly!) these subtle body language, gestural, and/or facial expression cues makes us feel at ease.
Compliment others. Simple enough—being a positive person makes people feel positive about you, whereas being a negative person makes people look at you more negatively. The phenomenon, called spontaneous trait transference, suggests that the adjectives you use to describe others actually become associated with how others will describe you. Choose your words wisely, friends.
Befriend their friends. Sharing a common social network with someone is thought to strengthen your bond with that person. The theory, called “triadic closure,” suggests that two people who share a common friend are likely to be closer than those who do not share common connections.
Spend quality time together. The “mere-exposure effect” suggests that people tend to like things that they are familiar with.
Be honest about your flaws. Being vulnerable and appearing human not only make people trust you but also encourage them to be vulnerable around you in return. Quite simply, vulnerability leads to deeper connections. So be honest and unafraid to make mistakes.
Smile. Smiling and exuding warmth go a very long way. What’s more, studies have even suggested that you’re more likely to be remembered after a first introduction if you were smiling!
Acknowledge shared values. According to the similarity-attraction effect, people who share similar values tend to feel more comfortable around each other. Finding—and acknowledging—common ground is a great pathway to friendship.
Let them talk. A Harvard University study found that when we talk about ourselves, brain regions associated with motivation and reward light up. So the next time you’re chatting with someone you want to befriend, give her the time and space to share her own stories. She’ll likely remember the interaction more fondly than if you hog all of the airtime.
Do you practice any of these strategies when first meeting someone? Let us know in the comments.