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7 Secrets To Social Success

7 Secrets To Social Success

Have you ever witnessed somebody who is so confident and fluent in conversations that it’s actually really impressive? How do they do it? Well, David Morin of Dumb Little Man has seven secrets that can help to improve our chances of social success:

We all know people who are beloved by everyone and seem able to make friends wherever they go. Some regard them with admiration tinged with a bit of envy, then shrug their shoulders and figure those people are just born with that special “something”. It might be surprising to learn that being popular is a skill that can be learned like any other.

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Just as you wouldn’t expect to wake up one morning knowing how to play the piano, the key to success in making friends is setting goals and developing a game plan. Use these seven tips as the framework on which you build your skill set.

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  1. Be interested, not interesting. A widespread misconception is that popular people are the ones talking about their latest promotion or exciting vacation they took or wild party they attended. Hearing the occasional interesting story is fine, but most people become bored or resentful listening to these blow-by-blow accounts. It’s far more effective to take a genuine interest in the lives of others and get them talking about themselves. And remember that no word sounds as magical as one’s own name. Addressing people by name makes them feel special.
  2. Be positive – but not too positive. Think about people you’ve known who expect the worst from everyone and everything and aren’t shy about speaking up. Not much fun to be around, are they? This doesn’t mean you have to be constantly spreading false rays of sunshine. That’s nearly as annoying as eternal pessimism. Have a clear-eyed and honest attitude and people will come to value your opinions as trustworthy.
  3. Be charitable to others. Gossiping about friends and co-workers may gain you an audience, but it’s superficial and temporary. Those who indulge their pettier instincts trashing others aren’t the ones you want in your circle. Eventually even those people will realize that you’re just as likely to be talking about them in the same way and they’ll steer clear. It also translates as weakness and insecurity, trying to build yourself up by tearing others down. Take the high road and you’ll be seen as fair-minded.
  4. Be helpful and dependable. If someone you know needs assistance that you’re able to provide with a minimum of inconvenience, offer it. The key term here is “minimum of inconvenience”. Doing favors for others that involve more time and trouble than they would for the person themselves comes across as desperation. Giving aid when you’re truly in a position to do so communicates a sincere interest in the welfare of others. As a side note, be sure to follow up on any commitments you make. The damage to your reputation is doubly harsh if people can’t count on your word.
  5. Be a “matchmaker”. If you’re heading to the movies with a friend, invite another film-loving pal to come along. Love sports? Assemble a group to attend the big game. Spearhead gatherings at your home or a fun venue such as a wine bar, inviting at least a few people who are new to the group. Keeping your social network interconnected has a circular effect where you’re perceived as having many friends, thereby gaining you even more. Don’t forget your manners during impromptu meetings, either. When out with a friend, many people make the mistake of failing to introduce them to others they may encounter. By doing so you run the risk of coming off as socially inept at best and rude or uncaring at worst.
  6. Be your (best) self. Yes, it’s a cliche you’ve heard a million and one times, but ideas become cliches by standing the test of time. Insincerity is a huge turn-off and no matter how great of an actor you are, the pretense will catch up with you. The most attractive people, both physically and mentally, are the ones who are clearly comfortable in their own skin. Accepting and embracing your own unique qualities radiates a healthy confidence that’s magnetic to others.
  7. Be self-aware. Periodically step outside yourself to evaluate how you come across to others. Don’t mistake this for being overly concerned with their opinions of you. Taking stock of the image you project shows a healthy respect for yourself as well as for them. Another factor to consider is your body language. You may not even realize that you’re wearing a perpetual frown or creating a stand-offish posture with crossed arms and lack of eye contact. It’s a simple concept, but it can make a big difference with how comfortable people feel around you.

As you work on developing your social skills, keep in mind that these tips center around the saying, “To have a friend, be a friend.” If you let that advice guide your actions, you’ll develop that charisma that makes people want to be around you while also staying true to your own values and principles.

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David Morin runs SocialPro, an online resource for having more success in life trough mastering social principles most people don’t know about. Watch his free video course where he teaches social hacks.

Making Friends and Increasing Business Contacts is Easy If You Know These 7 Secrets of Socially Successful People | Dumb Little Man

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Siobhan Harmer

Siobhan is a passionate writer sharing about motivation and happiness tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on February 11, 2021

Easily Misunderstood by Others? 6 Barriers You Should Overcome to Make Communication Less Frustrating

Easily Misunderstood by Others? 6 Barriers You Should Overcome to Make Communication Less Frustrating

How often have you said something simple, only to have the person who you said this to misunderstand it or twist the meaning completely around? Nodding your head in affirmative? Then this means that you are being unclear in your communication.

Communication should be simple, right? It’s all about two people or more talking and explaining something to the other. The problem lies in the talking itself, somehow we end up being unclear, and our words, attitude or even the way of talking becomes a barrier in communication, most of the times unknowingly. We give you six common barriers to communication, and how to get past them; for you to actually say what you mean, and or the other person to understand it as well…

The 6 Walls You Need to Break Down to Make Communication Effective

Think about it this way, a simple phrase like “what do you mean” can be said in many different ways and each different way would end up “communicating” something else entirely. Scream it at the other person, and the perception would be anger. Whisper this is someone’s ear and others may take it as if you were plotting something. Say it in another language, and no one gets what you mean at all, if they don’t speak it… This is what we mean when we say that talking or saying something that’s clear in your head, many not mean that you have successfully communicated it across to your intended audience – thus what you say and how, where and why you said it – at times become barriers to communication.[1]

Perceptual Barrier

The moment you say something in a confrontational, sarcastic, angry or emotional tone, you have set up perceptual barriers to communication. The other person or people to whom you are trying to communicate your point get the message that you are disinterested in what you are saying and sort of turn a deaf ear. In effect, you are yelling your point across to person who might as well be deaf![2]

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The problem: When you have a tone that’s not particularly positive, a body language that denotes your own disinterest in the situation and let your own stereotypes and misgivings enter the conversation via the way you talk and gesture, the other person perceives what you saying an entirely different manner than say if you said the same while smiling and catching their gaze.

The solution: Start the conversation on a positive note, and don’t let what you think color your tone, gestures of body language. Maintain eye contact with your audience, and smile openly and wholeheartedly…

Attitudinal Barrier

Some people, if you would excuse the language, are simply badass and in general are unable to form relationships or even a common point of communication with others, due to their habit of thinking to highly or too lowly of them. They basically have an attitude problem – since they hold themselves in high esteem, they are unable to form genuine lines of communication with anyone. The same is true if they think too little of themselves as well.[3]

The problem: If anyone at work, or even in your family, tends to roam around with a superior air – anything they say is likely to be taken by you and the others with a pinch, or even a bag of salt. Simply because whenever they talk, the first thing to come out of it is their condescending attitude. And in case there’s someone with an inferiority complex, their incessant self-pity forms barriers to communication.

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The solution: Use simple words and an encouraging smile to communicate effectively – and stick to constructive criticism, and not criticism because you are a perfectionist. If you see someone doing a good job, let them know, and disregard the thought that you could have done it better. It’s their job so measure them by industry standards and not your own.

Language Barrier

This is perhaps the commonest and the most inadvertent of barriers to communication. Using big words, too much of technical jargon or even using just the wrong language at the incorrect or inopportune time can lead to a loss or misinterpretation of communication. It may have sounded right in your head and to your ears as well, but if sounded gobbledygook to the others, the purpose is lost.

The problem: Say you are trying to explain a process to the newbies and end up using every technical word and industry jargon that you knew – your communication has failed if the newbie understood zilch. You have to, without sounding patronizing, explain things to someone in the simplest language they understand instead of the most complex that you do.

The solution: Simplify things for the other person to understand you, and understand it well. Think about it this way: if you are trying to explain something scientific to a child, you tone it down to their thinking capacity, without “dumbing” anything down in the process.[4]

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Emotional Barrier

Sometimes, we hesitate in opening our mouths, for fear of putting our foot in it! Other times, our emotional state is so fragile that we keep it and our lips zipped tightly together lest we explode. This is the time that our emotions become barriers to communication.[5]

The problem: Say you had a fight at home and are on a slow boil, muttering, in your head, about the injustice of it all. At this time, you have to give someone a dressing down over their work performance. You are likely to transfer at least part of your angst to the conversation then, and talk about unfairness in general, leaving the other person stymied about what you actually meant!

The solution: Remove your emotions and feelings to a personal space, and talk to the other person as you normally would. Treat any phobias or fears that you have and nip them in the bud so that they don’t become a problem. And remember, no one is perfect.

Cultural Barrier

Sometimes, being in an ever-shrinking world means that inadvertently, rules can make cultures clash and cultural clashes can turn into barriers to communication. The idea is to make your point across without hurting anyone’s cultural or religious sentiments.

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The problem: There are so many ways culture clashes can happen during communication and with cultural clashes; it’s not always about ethnicity. A non-smoker may have problems with smokers taking breaks; an older boss may have issues with younger staff using the Internet too much.

The solution: Communicate only what is necessary to get the point across – and eave your personal sentiments or feelings out of it. Try to be accommodative of the other’s viewpoint, and in case you still need to work it out, do it one to one, to avoid making a spectacle of the other person’s beliefs.[6]

Gender Barrier

Finally, it’s about Men from Mars and Women from Venus. Sometimes, men don’t understand women and women don’t get men – and this gender gap throws barriers in communication. Women tend to take conflict to their graves, literally, while men can move on instantly. Women rely on intuition, men on logic – so inherently, gender becomes a big block in successful communication.[7]

The problem: A male boss may inadvertently rub his female subordinates the wrong way with anti-feminism innuendoes, or even have problems with women taking too many family leaves. Similarly, women sometimes let their emotions get the better of them, something a male audience can’t relate to.

The solution: Talk to people like people – don’t think or classify them into genders and then talk accordingly. Don’t make comments or innuendos that are gender biased – you don’t have to come across as an MCP or as a bra-burning feminist either. Keep gender out of it.

And remember, the key to successful communication is simply being open, making eye contact and smiling intermittently. The battle is usually half won when you say what you mean in simple, straightforward words and keep your emotions out of it.

Reference

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