“Some people are inherently likable. If you’re not – work on it. It may even improve your social life.”Antonin Scalia
If you lack friends and you are socially awkward, it is good to know a few tricks to get people to take a shine to you and gain their friendship. I realize that you absolutely can’t force a person to like you, but you can increase your odds using the tips below. Some of the tips below you probably already know, but some you may not or haven’t really thought much about. At your next social gathering or interaction with a fellow human being, use some of these techniques and see what happens.
When you interact with people, you will help put them at ease when you smile. You will reduce their stress and anxiety because you will seem positive and friendly. You will also be viewed as more approachable when you have a smile on your face.
2) Be honest
No one likes a lying bullsh*t artist and if that’s what you are people will figure it out pretty quickly. People like people who are honest, so long as that honesty is not criticizing them.
3) Express Gratitude
People like people who appreciate them and are thankful for what they do for them. Being grateful shows manners and helps earn respect. Get used to saying Thank You and Please.
4) Don’t gossip about anybody
You are going to destroy your chances of making new friends once they know you as a gossip. You want to be known as an honest person like I mentioned earlier and a gossip will be seen as shallow and vacuous.
5) Focus on common interests.
When you have the same interests as others, they will be more willing to open up to you and more likely to spend time with you. Having a common interest, hobby or leisure time activity will give you and the other person something to talk about and a reason to develop a friendship.
“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”C.S. Lewis
6) Mirror people
Mirroring is when you mimic someone’s behavior such as gestures, speech patterns and attitudes, etc. and it is usually done unconsciously between close friends or family members. But you can use this technique to get people to like you as long as you’re not too obvious about it. They will subconsciencly find themselves liking you when you are mirroring them and they won’t know why.
7) Be good at what you do
People are more likely to gravitate to you if you are good at what you do. They make seek you out for help and advice when they notice you are competent at your job or whatever which you can then use as an opportunity to make new friends. Being good at your job or hobby, etc. will get people to speak highly of you, thus increasing your chances of others seeking you out.
8) Ask for advice
When you seek a person’s advice you are, in a way, telling them you value their knowledge, wisdom and expertise and they will like you more for it. Just make sure when you ask their advice, make sure to follow their advice (as much as you can) because people hate people who always ask for advice and never follow it.
9) Take pride in your appearance
You should look good and dress well because it will often get people’s attention fast. Taking pride in your appearance and grooming gives people the impression you have your act together, which increases your likeability. Lastly, a great outfit and personal appearance may make for a conversation starter.
10) Tell good stories
When meeting new people and in social situations in general, when you know a few good, short, and funny stories, you will gain their favorable approval of you. Stories can make a great conversation starter. A good story can also help put people at ease. Just be sure to know the appropriateness of your story and the right time to tell it.
“Inside each of us is a natural-born storyteller, waiting to be released.”Robin Moore, author
11) Remember their first name
When meeting new people, make the point of learning and remembering their first name. Use their first name as many times as necessary in conversations in talking to them. When you meet them later on be sure remember and call them by name. It shows you think they’re important enough to remember who they are.
12) Good hygiene
No one wants to smell someone else’s body odor or bad breath. Just like dressing well, smelling nice will attract some people to you and give them the impression you have your act together. Do I need to explain this point further?
13) Ask for a minor favor
It’s kind of a strange psychological trick, but when you ask a person for a small, innocuous favor, you are asking them to help you, and when you ask someone to help you, they tend to like you just a little bit more than they might have otherwise. For example, at a social gathering, you could ask a stranger you are trying to befriend to grab a glass of water for you on the way back from the restroom or whatever.
14) Speak respectfully
More people will be impressed and listen to what you have to say when you speak respectfully and listen well to them. People will grow tired real quick of a person who always has something foul to say about something and in particularly about others. Speaking respectfully shows you have a certain maturity that others will naturally like.
15) Be passionate about something
Have some motivation and goal in life and be passionate about it, such as landing that promotion at work, starting a business or helping the less fortunate. Goal oriented people are attracted to other goal oriented people. Keep in mind not to be too obnoxious with constantly talking about your goal or aspiration because people will take it that you only really care about yourself.
16) Be open to criticism
When you are open to constructive criticism it shows people that you are not perfect (which people like) and it shows you will listen. Also, it shows others you’re not quick to anger and you are willing to be a good sport about being criticized.
17) Don’t be perfect
The perfect person is scary to people. Everyone knows on some level they are not perfect so if they see someone who seemingly is perfect, they have a hard time relating to that and they might think you’re hiding something. So, it’s OK to show some minor character flaw or mistake you’ve made. It will make you more relatable to others.
18) Stop complaining
Some complaining every once in awhile is OK, but take care not to go overboard. Nobody likes a person who constantly complains. A negative, complaining, killjoy person kills the mood of any social interactions with others and will keep people away.
19) Sincere compliments
Every once in awhile you have to stroke the ego of others by paying an occasional complement. When you do so, make it is honest, thoughtful and as sincere as possible.
20) Be helpful
In my experience, one sure way to gain the trust and friendship of others is to be there for them when they need you. Be the helpful co-worker who helps with that project, or the guy (or gal) who helps someone with moving a couch or whatever. You’re more likeable when you’re more useful.
21) Let people talk about themselves
Most people’s favorite subject is themselves and like being helpful, it is another quick way to be more likable. Let the person speak, only interrupt to ask good questions.
“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”Dale Carnegie
22) Be a good listener
God gave you two ears and one mouth so that means you should listen more than you speak. Some people in particular value a person who really listens to them. It shows your interest in them and your willingness to be a friend.
“I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen.”Ernest Hemingway
The above list is by no means comprehensive. It’s just a guide for some condensed tips on increasing your chances of being more likeable.
There are great books out there that can go into allot more detail on the art of being liable and making new friends such as How to Win Friends and Influence People or The Social Skills Guidebook: Manage Shyness, Improve Your Conversations, and Make Friends, Without Giving Up Who You Are.
Take time to apply develop people skills, because making friends and dealing with people is just as valuable a skill as any and you will need it to go far in life. Anyhow, what do you think? What tips would you add to the list above to be more likeable? Let me know in the comments.