10 small habits that make people instantly like you

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Ever walked into a room and felt like you just didn’t fit in?

We’ve all been there. But guess what?

Making friends and getting people to like you is less about big, showy actions and more about the little things.

In fact, it’s those small, everyday habits that can make all the difference. 

In this article, we’re going to share 10 simple habits that can make you the kind of person everyone wants to be around.

They’re easy, anyone can do them, and they work like a charm. No need for fancy tricks or acting like someone else, just good old being nice and considerate in your own special way.

Let’s get started. 

1. Smile More

A smile is like a magnet for friendliness. Think about it; don’t you feel a bit warmer and happier when someone greets you with a big, genuine smile?

I used to be pretty shy and nervous around new people. It felt like there was this invisible wall I just couldn’t break through.

But one day, I decided to try something different. I made a small change – I started smiling more.

Not just a little grin, but a real, honest-to-goodness smile. And you know what? It was like magic. That invisible wall? Poof – gone!

People started chatting with me more, and those awkward silences? They disappeared. It turns out, a smile is like an open door saying, “Hey, let’s be friends!”

When you’re meeting someone new or just going about your day, flash those pearly whites. It’s a tiny thing that makes a huge difference. Who knows, your smile could be the highlight of someone’s day. 

2. Really listen

Really listening to someone isn’t just about hearing words; it’s about paying attention and showing that you care about what they’re saying.

Imagine you’re telling a friend about your day, and they keep checking their phone or looking around. Doesn’t feel too great, right?

Now flip that around. Picture a friend who looks you in the eye, nods along, and responds to what you’re saying. Feels a whole lot better!

And it’s not just about being polite. When you listen – really listen – you get to know people on a deeper level. You learn what makes them happy, what bugs them, and what they’re passionate about.

When someone’s talking to you, put your phone down, give them your full attention, and show that you’re interested. 

3. Be Real

In a world where we’re often tempted to put on a mask and show off our best, most polished selves, being real stands out. It’s like a breath of fresh air.

I’ll tell you something; I used to think I had to be perfect to be liked. I’d nod and agree, play it safe, and hide the messy, imperfect bits of me.

But nobody got to know the real me, the one with quirks, flaws, and a weird sense of humor.

One day, I let the mask slip. I shared my clumsy moment of the day, laughed at my own silly mistake, and something amazing happened – people opened up.

They shared their own messy moments, and just like that, our connection grew stronger. It was raw, it was real, and it felt incredible.

Being real means letting people see the authentic you, imperfections and all. It means laughing at yourself, sharing your fears, and admitting when you’re wrong.

It’s not always easy, but it’s worth it. Because when you’re real, you give others the courage to be real too. And that’s where the magic of true connection happens.

4. Remember Names

Being called by our name makes us feel special, noticed, and important.

I used to be the worst at remembering names. I’d meet someone, and boom, their name would vanish from my mind like smoke. Embarrassing, right?

But one day I realized how amazing it felt when someone remembered my name. It was like I wasn’t just another face in the crowd; I mattered.

So, I made it my mission to remember names. Every time I met someone new, I’d repeat their name, jot it down in my phone if I had to.

It took some practice, but it worked wonders. Conversations got warmer, and friendships sprouted easier.

Give it a shot! Next time you meet someone, make a point to remember their name. Say it back to them, make a mental note, do whatever you need to do.

Because when you call them by their name the next time you meet, you’ll light up their world, and just like that, you’re not strangers anymore – you’re on the road to friendship. 

5. Give Compliments

I remember walking into a coffee shop one chilly morning, my mind buzzing with a mile-long to-do list.

The barista, a young lady with a beaming smile, handed me my coffee and said, “I love your scarf, it really brings out the color of your eyes!”

That small compliment didn’t just warm my heart, but it melted away the morning stress. I walked out of that coffee shop with a spring in my step.

That’s the power of a compliment. It can turn a regular moment into something special and make someone feel seen and appreciated.

And it’s so easy to do! It’s about noticing the little things – a cool shirt, a well-done presentation, or just a job well done, and speaking up.

Remember, compliments are like smiles; they’re contagious and have the power to turn someone’s day around.

So, why hold back? If you think something nice, say it out loud and watch their eyes light up.

6. Embrace Silence

Now, you might think, “Wait a minute, isn’t connecting with people all about conversation?” Well, yes…and no.

I used to be one of those people who feared silence. If a conversation hit a quiet moment, I’d rush to fill it with words – any words. Just to avoid that awkward pause.

But over time, I realized something powerful. Silence isn’t the enemy; in fact, it can be one of your best friends.

Here’s the deal – not every quiet moment is awkward. Silence allows room for thought, for breath, for the conversation to sink in.

It gives people space to process and respond. It shows you’re comfortable enough with someone to just be, without the constant noise.

Ever had one of those conversations where the words just flow, and then there’s a pause where both of you just soak it in?

That silence isn’t awkward; it’s golden. It’s in those quiet moments that the real connection happens.

When you find yourself in a silent moment, don’t rush to fill it. Let it breathe. You might just find a deeper connection on the other side of the quiet.

7. Apologize When You’re Wrong

None of us are perfect; we all make mistakes, say the wrong thing, or sometimes let people down. It’s human.

I’ll let you in on a secret. A while back, I messed up big time. Said something I shouldn’t have to a good friend.

For a moment, my pride stood tall and whispered, “Just brush it off; it’s not a big deal.”

But deep down, I knew it was a big deal. I’d hurt someone I cared about, and no amount of pride was worth losing a friend over.

Taking that step to apologize – boy, it wasn’t easy. My heart pounded like crazy. But the moment the words “I’m sorry” left my mouth, something amazing happened. The wall between us crumbled. My friend’s face softened, and just like that, the healing began.

Saying sorry doesn’t just mend wounds; it shows you’re real. It says you value the relationship more than your ego. It’s a bridge over troubled waters, leading back to trust and respect. So, when you’re wrong – and there will be times when you are – own it.

Say you’re sorry. It’s scary, but it’s also one of the most courageous things you can do. And trust me, it’s a foundation stone for relationships built to last.

8. Be Helpful

Here’s another gem – being helpful. It’s about lending a hand, stepping up, and being there for others in their time of need.

I remember a time when a colleague was drowning in work, stressed and on the edge.

We’ve all been there, right? A mounting to-do list and the clock ticking away. I had two choices: bury my head in my own work, or roll up my sleeves and jump in. I chose the latter.

I’ll never forget the relief that washed over their face when I offered to help. We dove into the task together, and not only did the work get done faster, but a bond was formed.

We were no longer just two colleagues; we were teammates, allies.

Being helpful isn’t about grand gestures or heroic acts. It’s about those small, everyday moments when you step out of your bubble and reach out.

It could be as simple as holding the door open, offering a ride, or just passing a piece of useful advice.

Every act of kindness, no matter how small, plants a seed. And those seeds? They grow into the strong, resilient tree of friendship.

So when you see someone in need, step in, be helpful. It’s a habit that not only makes you liked but truly valued.

9. Say Thank You

It’s two small words but trust me, they pack a punch.

I recall a time when a neighbor, out of the blue, helped me carry my heavy groceries upstairs. In the rush of the moment, juggling bags and fumbling for my keys, I almost forgot those two golden words.

But then I paused, looked him in the eye, and said, “Thank you.” Simple, but his smile told me it made his day.

Saying thank you is like sprinkling a little magic on your interactions. It shows you notice and appreciate the effort and kindness others sprinkle your way.

It’s a sign of respect, a nod of acknowledgment, a wave of appreciation.

So whether it’s for the barista who brews your coffee just right, the colleague who lends an ear, or the friend who’s always got your back, don’t skimp on those two words.

Say thank you, loud and clear. It’s a small habit, but one that can make you a whole lot of friends.

10. Know When to Step Back

In a world where we’re often told more is better, sometimes, taking a step back is the golden ticket.

Remember when being there, being helpful, and being involved are highlighted, there’s an unsung hero – the grace of giving space.

I learned this the hard way when a friend was going through a tough time. My first instinct? Jump in, offer advice, be the shoulder to cry on – be there 24/7.

But I quickly realized that sometimes people need room to breathe, to process, and to be on their own.

I took a step back. It wasn’t easy; it felt counterintuitive. But in that space, my friend found the strength and clarity to navigate through the storm.

And when they emerged, our friendship wasn’t weakened; it was stronger.

Knowing when to step back isn’t about indifference or abandonment. It’s about respecting boundaries, honoring privacy, and understanding that sometimes, people need a moment. It shows you’re attuned not just to their needs, but also to their silences.

It’s a dance between being present and stepping back, a dance that strengthens the bond.

Be brave enough to take a step back when needed. It’s a silent testament to the trust and respect that underscores true friendship, making it as robust as it is tender.

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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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