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Is Your Personality Flawed? Learn the 7 Ways to Be More Likable

Is Your Personality Flawed? Learn the 7 Ways to Be More Likable

I study great conversationalists for a living. The best conversationalists are all very likable. The reason many people struggle to acquire/maintain friendships, progress through careers, or find romance is often the result of one thing: their personalities are flawed.

The seven most likable personality traits are listed below. As you read each one, honestly assess whether you fall closer to the likable trait or the opposite side of the spectrum.

Be Humble

Admit your mistakes and don’t brag. Give others credit. Embracing your flaws is disarming. People will warm up to you quickly and more easily identify with you. Don’t be arrogant.

Example: “He’s an amazing artist. I still struggle drawing triangles!”

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Be Caring And Unselfish

Care about others and what they are saying, doing, and feeling. Ask follow-up questions, and reference something they said in the past. Share and relate to their feelings. Don’t be cold or self-centered.

Example: “You mentioned last month you were thinking of _____, did you end up doing that?”

Be Positive

Not many people enjoy hanging out with Debbie Downer or Eeyore. You increase your odds of being likeable by generally remaining optimistic and looking for the good in life. You will see more good in things simply by trying to see more good. Avoid complaining too much. Don’t be too cynical, negative, or bitter.

Example: “At least we were able to _____.” 

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Be Enthusiastic

Give your words and expressions some life! You don’t have to be a cheerleader, but if someone tells you some good news, be excited for them. Put some feeling and energy in your voice. Remember, if you aren’t adding energy, you may be unintentionally subtracting from it. Don’t be an Energy Vampire.

Example: “I love your kitchen… it reminds me of _____.”

Be Goal Oriented And Passionate

Have direction in life and be able to share your goals. Working towards goals will increase your inner confidence. People are drawn to success and passion. Develop hobbies and passions. Talk about them. Don’t be overly lazy and uninspiring.

Example: “This weekend, I’m volunteering for _____ / running a _____ / trying to build a _____.” 

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Be Playful

Lighten up! Humor and playfulness are critical to exceptional conversation, but also the hardest to achieve. For now, don’t be too serious all the time.

Example: “Even if I miss the game, I avoid everyone until I can watch it. I’m actually good at avoiding everyone. If there was a career for professional avoiders, I’d be a very wealthy man by now!” 

Be Flexible

Adapt to changing environments. Don’t turn cranky when something doesn’t go your way. Being flexible means being easy-going and going with the flow of conversation instead of stopping it. Play along with silly jokes. Don’t be rigid or defensive with friends.

Example: “It’s closed? That’s okay, I bet we can find some cool ____ over at _____ too!”

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Did you discover any traits you need to work on? Are there multiple areas for growth? If you aren’t sure, it helps to ask a friend or confidant. Honestly assessing your strengths and weaknesses now is crucial to improving in the future. When I work with my clients, I always start with non-verbal skills and the seven likable traits. Personality traits are easiest to assess, tweak, and evaluate. Spend some time over the next week thinking about these traits as you interact with others. Systematically work on improving one of the seven traits. Notice what happens. Notice how the other person reacts.

If you want to become more likable, you need to emulate the best. Compared to losing weight or getting rich, improving your personality is easy. You just need to try.

Featured photo credit: istock.com via istockphoto.com

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Gregory Peart

Gregory is the author of The Conversation Code: How to Upgrade Your Social Skills and Your Life. He regularly teaches adult social skills classes.

How to Have More Entertaining Conversations Is Your Personality Flawed? Learn the 7 Ways to Be More Likable

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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