Look, we all want to be loved, right?
But while the Beatles said, “Love is all you need,” knowing that you’re loved is also pretty darned important.
People might really like you, appreciate you, and even love you but rarely express it, so it can be hard to tell whether you’re actually getting that love you desire.
But I can tell you one thing – when you’re a person who cares for others and goodness into their lives, people are going to love you more than you know.
So rather than looking for confirmation that might be hard to find, start to look at how you’re living your life instead. It’s all about your actions and how they affect other people.
Look into the eight things you’re doing that make you more loved than you realize.
1) Smiling and being positive
Smiling is one of those universal human expressions that we do automatically.
Fetuses have even been imaged smiling in the womb!
Smiling is associated with happiness and well-being, so it’s no surprise that smiles are also infectious.
When someone smiles at you, it’s really hard not to smile back, isn’t it?
If you’re a smiley person, you can really make people feel happier. Smiling actually helps to reduce blood pressure and release endorphins that can improve a person’s mood.
So when you smile at others, and they smile back, you both get a shot of a happy hormonal cocktail.
But people are pretty adept at telling when a smile is real or when it’s forced or means something else, like the sheepish smile you make when someone asks, “Who ate the last cookie?!”
So when your smiles are authentic and backed up by real positivity, that’s when they have the biggest effect.
People will love you more than you realize for just being smiley and positive.
Can you blame them?
2) Using people’s names
A person’s name is a big part of their identity.
Whether it’s their full, legal name, a friendly nickname, or even a pet name, people like to be addressed and hear their own name in conversation.
It helps get their attention and draws their focus to what you’re saying. It also makes you seem like you’re being more affectionate and taking more interest in them.
Think about when you don’t use someone’s name.
This often happens when you’ve missed or forgotten their name, and you’re too embarrassed to ask again. But it can also be a power play, a way to distance yourself from them, or show a lack of interest.
Well, no one likes that.
If you take a real interest in people, which includes asking, remembering, and using their names, you’re going to find yourself being a lot better liked than someone who doesn’t.
3) Listening actively
When you’re talking to other people, there’s something they appreciate even more than hearing their own names.
They love being listened to.
Now, we’re always supposed to be listening to the other person in a conversation, but many times, we get distracted by things around us and, especially these days, by our phones.
But if you’re actually an active listener, you’re doing something that other people really find great.
Active listening means that you’re truly paying attention to what the other person is saying, and you can prove it to them.
You provide uh-huhs and oh-yeahs at the right times in the conversation. You ask them relevant questions that show you’ve been listening, and you respond to their questions appropriately when they ask them.
This makes people feel heard and important.
All of this adds up to excellent conversation behavior that people really appreciate, and it makes them appreciate you more than you realize.
4) Giving sincere compliments
Anyone can hand out compliments like, “Wow, you’re so smart!” and “You look great today.”
That doesn’t mean that they’re real and sincere, however, and people can tell.
Not that they don’t like to hear them anyway. It’s just that real compliments mean a whole heck of a lot more than fake, butt-kissing ones do.
When you give people real compliments that are unsolicited and not meant to advance your position or get you something in return, people can feel the pure positivity of what you’re saying.
This works as a real pick-me-up that people often need and can propel them through their day perfectly.
It’s especially true when you notice little things that no one else does, like the smallest little detail of how they look or the effort they’ve put into their work.
This really makes people feel seen and recognized, and folks love that.
If this is something you’re always doing, you’d better believe that people are really going to appreciate you even more than you know.
5) Handling criticism gracefully
One of the surprising things that people might really love about you is how you react when you receive criticism.
Even if it’s their job to do so, most people don’t like handing out critiques because they can be a source of friction and embarrassment.
It’s hard to tell someone that they’ve done something badly or altogether wrong.
And for the most part, people take criticism poorly.
It makes most of us prickly and defensive.
But not you!
If you’re able to take criticism gracefully, you’re doing a heck of a lot better than the rest of us.
When you receive criticism, you really take it to heart, and you also take the time to thank the person for their critique.
This shows a whole lot of maturity in that you’re aware of your shortcomings and that you also appreciate that the intentions of the other person are to help you and not hurt you.
This kind of graceful reception is rare and really impressive, and it makes you the kind of person that others really love to be around.
6) Apologizing sincerely
There’s little that people like more than sincerity.
In this age of post-truth and alternative facts, it’s so refreshing to see some actual real feelings.
Look, we all make mistakes, and sometimes those end up hurting others or causing problems for them.
No matter how careful you are, it’s still bound to happen once in a while.
There are people out there who make errors in judgment or act without thinking and then try to distance themselves from their own actions. They offer half-hearted apologies or fake ones like, “I’m sorry you feel that way.”
Some people take no responsibility at all.
You, on the other hand, do something that everyone loves.
When you make a mistake, you own up to it. You apologize to the right person(s), and you mean it when you do.
This is one of the things that makes people truly appreciate you.
7) Doing little things
A lot of people think that great big shows of affection are what really means something.
You know what I mean – throwing someone a huge party or buying them an expensive present.
But if I had to choose between the occasional big show and daily little things, I know which I’d choose in a heartbeat.
If you’re the kind of person who does lovely little things for others on a daily basis, you’re far more precious than you even know.
I’m talking about cleaning up after someone when they’re busy, buying someone their favorite snack, being there to listen, or just telling them you care.
These little things add up one by one to create a heap of positivity and make you a genuinely lovely and loved person.
8) Sticking to your guns
Aside from being kind and genuine, there’s another quality that most of us really appreciate in other people.
That’s being consistent.
But this is a quality that’s so often overlooked: the poor dear.
If you asked 100 people right now the top ten characteristics they like in people, I doubt this one would make more than a few lists.
And yet, when it comes down to actions and beliefs, consistency is always very much appreciated.
I’m talking about the kind of consistency that helps a person maintain their character, their beliefs, and their actions, even in the face of opposition.
So many people fold when pressured to change their ideas or go along with the group. But if you don’t and you stick to your guns even when the going gets really tough, people are going to really admire you.
This might not always be apparent, but in the long run, this is one of the qualities that you possess that people probably really love about you.
These eight things you’re doing that make you more loved than you realize.
You might not even be doing all of them, but when you put some of them together, you get a picture of a person who’s real, kind, genuine, and positive.
Try to point out anyone who doesn’t love people who are like that!