There’s no shortage of rude people out there, I tell you.
The world doesn’t need another nasty person because it has more than enough. What it needs are people who are polite, modest, agreeable, and kind.
In short, people who are charming.
The bad news is that some, if not most people, have trouble turning on their charm.
Now, what’s the good news? The good news is that a charming attitude is a skill that you can learn.
So don’t worry if you’re not innately charming.
Here are easy-to-master tips that can help you charm anybody:
1. Respect people
When people feel someone “gets” them, they will feel naturally drawn to that person.
When they find someone who respects their opinion, their point of view, their experiences, and whatever else they’re trying to communicate, it will make them feel important.
You don’t have to agree. Showing respect is enough.
“One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say.” – Bryant H. McGill
2. Show a little vulnerability
The beauty of showing vulnerability is that it makes us more humane. There’s no reason to hide it.
Charming people don’t try to win unstated competitions with the people they meet. There’s nothing more charming than owning up to your vulnerabilities and rising above them.
Charming people compliment, get impressed, ask questions, feel excited, and are willing to admit their weaknesses. In short, they don’t compete with other people’s achievements.
They are not afraid to let their defenses fall because they know their weaknesses don’t control them.
3. Talk less, listen more
One major signs of superficial people are talking about themselves all the time. But a charming person listens more than he talks.
For example, you can cut out all of the distractions when you talk to someone. By just listening to what the other person is telling you, you are giving importance to him.
When someone is talking, I know it can be tempting to interrupt especially when you have the same experiences. But, it is selfish and rude to do so.
By listening more, you will earn the complete trust of the person divulging sensitive information to you. And that is backed by research from the State University of New York.
Interpersonal communication skills are crucial if you want to be a charming person.
4. Remember people’s names
How awkward it is to forget other people’s names!
I’m sure you felt that sinking feeling when you forget someone’s name, especially if it is someone you really should remember.
Of course, our memory fails us sometimes. Nobody’s perfect, right?
However, charming people remember names. They try their best to remember even small details.
For the other person, there is nothing sweeter than hearing their name. It makes them feel they’re important enough to be remembered by you.
But, if forgetting names is really an issue that you deal with often, you can play the “name game”.
When you’re first being introduced to someone, repeat their name back to him or her. That’s enough to emphasize that at least you care enough to remember them.
You can also use rhyming and alliteration techniques. For example, if the name is Benny, you can use “Henny Benny” (from Henny Penny story) for the former and Bowling Benny for the latter.
I know, the process is not so nice. So don’t say it loud and just keep the words to yourself. What matters is you made an effort to remember.
5. Practice the right body language
Communication is not only through words – but it is also through using body language. In fact, I cannot express how important body language is to be able to communicate properly.
When talking to someone, a charming person’s body language exudes quiet confidence and openness. Their arms are open and their legs are relaxed, which makes them approachable.
If you have a problem in this area, work on being comfortable in your own skin. Most people who tend to cross their arms could be revealing insecurities and the fact that they are uncomfortable.
6. Use the right tone of voice
“It is not what you say that matters but the manner in which you say it; there lies the secret of the ages.” – William Carlos Williams
Your tone of voice is also incredibly important.
Communication experts always mention the “7-38-55 rule,” first posited in 1971 by UCLA psychology professor Albert Mehrabian: 55 percent of what you convey when you speak comes from your body language, 38 percent from your tone of voice, and a paltry 7 percent from the words you choose.
Therefore, avoid shouting or coming across as aggressive. You can do this by using a relaxed and gentle tone of voice. Be assertive but without being defensive or aggressive.
7. Use the right words
Keep conversation friendly and professional at all times by using polite language.
For example, you can’t just say ‘Ay up!’ to everyone. Saying ‘Hello’ is a better way to greet people.
Try and keep every word positive. Talking about polite, professional and happy things will draw people to you.
Whenever you notice yourself complaining or being negative, try to stop yourself and reframe it something more positive.
Overtime you’ll get in the habit of being more positive, and less negative.
“Your smile will give you a positive countenance that will make people feel comfortable around you.” – Les Brown
When you smile, others feel comfortable. Everyone loves a happy person, right? So smile and be happy to be around others.
Your happy state of mind will shine through and will make you very likable to others. Grumpy or disinterested people scare people away.
Smile because it’s free. You never know all the good that a simple smile can do.
In fact, a smile can literally rewire your brain to be more happy. Psychologists at the University of Cardiff in Wales found that people whose ability to frown is compromised by cosmetic botox injections are happier, on average, than people who can frown.
Likewise, NBC says that research suggests that a smile spurs a powerful chemical reaction in the brain that can make people feel better.
9. Praise others instead of getting involved in gossip
There will be a time where you meet people who love to gossip. These are people who talk about others in a negative way.
At the very first sign of gossip, run away. If you can’t, just don’t get involved. Instead, say something really positive about the person they’re talking about.
If you want to charm people, steer clear from backstabbing and gossiping. It’s not nice and it only creates toxic energy.
And don’t be afraid to compliment someone directly to their face. Research shows getting a sincere compliment gives us a similar positive boost as receiving cash.
“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” – Leo Buscaglia
10. Find other people’s interests
If you find yourself in a situation where the conversation is slow, try to discover the other person’s hobbies or passions. Make it about them and not about you.
“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
Ask about their hobbies. Do they like basketball or baseball? Do they like traveling?
You will know when you find a topic that they’re interested in because it makes their eyes light up. When you do, ask lots of questions and be genuinely interested in their passion.
11. Look for common ground, if possible
If you find yourself in a heated argument, take a step back and assess the situation more carefully. To avoid escalation, try to find some common ground.
Do not be too aggressive when other people don’t accept your opinion because they are entitled to theirs. Instead of arguing over your differences of opinion, you can agree to disagree.
“If you and someone you love have a difference of opinion on something, maybe its beset to let it stay that way. Respect each other’s right to believe what you believe. Respect each other. Agree to disagree.” – Karen Kingsbury
Charming people take time to put themselves in other people’s shoes. More agreeable people are viewed more positively than those who engage in arguments.
12. Do not use your phone when talking to other people
Your Instagram/Facebook/Twitter feed will survive without your careful supervision for five minutes. It is a basic social etiquette to not look at your phone every second if you are talking to someone because that’s rude.
Any situation that commands your entire attention should have it. For example, if you’re being confided in or someone asked for your advice on an issue, then give them your undivided attention.
This person trusts you – don’t blow it.
13. Mind your manners
There’s a reason why we were taught to say please and thank you. It makes us likable and charming.
So be appreciative of those actions that others do for your benefit. If not, the law of karma will get you.
The universe is based on fair exchange. What you give you will get – Guruji Sri Sri Poonamji
Have you heard of the “Waiter Test”? If you really want to know how an individual treats people, look more at how he interacts with the waiter than how he interacts with you.
This test says how you treat waiters and waitresses can say a lot about your own personality. Yelling and screaming at an employee serving you will make others around you think you’re an elitist jerk.
Charming people respect everyone, no matter what their status in life is. So treat everyone as deserving of your respect and kindness.
14. They use the power of touch selectively
When I say touch, I don’t mean sexual touch. That’s creepy.
What I am referring to is the non-sexual touch which is a powerful way to convey what you mean.
For example, when you’re congratulating someone, shaking their hands or patting them gently on the shoulder or upper arm can help reinforce the sincerity of your words.
Meditation is taking control of your mind. Practicing mindfulness to achieve a heightened sense of self.
Mindfulness will help you perceive and affect the emotions of those people around you.
In fact, researchers are Emory University have developed a form of meditation called cognitive-based compassion training which has been proven to increase empathy.
“After eight weeks of meditation, participants could more acurately intuit the expressions of the individuals in the photographs. The brain scans also demonstrated activity in parts of the brain associated with empathy.”
16. Be happy
Last but not least, being happy makes other people happy too. A happy person can light up any room that he walks into.
Nobody wants to surround themselves with negative and toxic people. On the other hand, everyone needs friends and allies who are positive and upbeat.
To be a charming person, always look on the brighter side of things. It’s because charm comes from all things nice and beautiful.
Charming people can woo and wow people, without overdoing it. They stay cool and don’t make life all about them.
They gladly avoid the center of attention and make the limelight shine on those who deserve it. They do not brag about who they are and what they can do.
And that’s why people love charming people.