Highly likable people are able to make those around them feel relaxed and comfortable.
Many of these habits of extremely affable folks come to them naturally. It’s their natural instinct to get people to open up and feel at home.
By looking at these habits and behaviors, we can all learn to become even more likable and help others open up to us.
1) They’re full of contagious joy
First and foremost, likable people have a joy in them that reaches out to others.
This is much different than toxic positivity or that kind of fake cheeriness that can become wearing.
It’s more of an inner energy that boosts everyone else in the environs.
People like to be around this individual because he or she is a source of authenticity and a can-do attitude.
In a world of increasing apathy, this trait stands out!
2) They tell relatable stories and jokes
The next characteristic of likable folks is that they are very good storytellers.
They know how to drop a short and sweet anecdote or joke and leave people wanting more.
They share stories and jokes with others to add something to the experience of those around them, rather than to show off.
This is very different from those who tell anecdotes or jokes in order to, for example, humblebrag, get attention, seek validation or become popular.
Likable people don’t try to be likable: it’s just an inevitable side-effect of their likable behaviors.
3) They’re confident and straightforward
Next up: likable people are sure of themselves and direct.
They don’t beat around the bush.
They say hi, look you in the eye and smile. They speak up if they don’t like something or have an issue.
They communicate and are open about who they are and what they believe.
People like this, because it makes them feel like they can be more themselves as well.
4) They focus on the person they’re talking to
This may seem obvious, but it’s actually a key life hack:
Likable people focus on the person they’re talking to.
They don’t whip out their phone, look every which way but at the person they’re talking to or try to keep evading the interaction.
They give you their attention or they don’t, never halfway.
This is something other folks really respect and respond to both because it’s rare and because it encourages them to give reciprocal respect in return.
5) They’re good listeners who care about others
Likable folks are good listeners.
They devote their attention to hearing what somebody else is saying and they practice active listening.
This means that they try their best to find out why somebody is saying what they are, or what that person wants and needs.
Rather than just listening to the words, they listen to what’s behind the words.
People appreciate this and respond well to it: we all like to feel heard.
6) They always find a way to connect with people
Likable people are master networkers and extremely gifted at connecting to people.
They can always find a connection.
But unlike those who try to drum up some kind of link in order to sell something or get something, the likable person does so entirely to connect with somebody.
In other words, they find ways to relate to people (even those who are entirely different from them) but they don’t do so in order to get something.
They do so in order to give something (their friendship and collegiality).
7) They’re respectful of the differences of others
Likable people may have strong opinions and values, but they are not judgmental in a harsh or exclusionary way.
They are respectful of the differences of others and are able to express disagreement or an opinion without making it person or cruel.
They try their best to treat other people the way they would like to be treated, including in the realm of mistakes.
In other words, even when they see a person making a mistake or engaging in unhealthy or stupid behavior, they try to hold back on very harsh judgment.
After all, we’ve all been there and made mistakes that were foolish or even harmful at one time or another.
The most they can do, sometimes, is offer solid advice and leave it at that.
This relates directly to the next point:
8) They are supportive and give good advice
Whenever possible, likable folks are supportive and give good advice.
They will not be afraid to give tough love when necessary, but if they can they will be compassionate and empathetic to those around them.
Their first instinct on meeting anybody is to respect them.
They are slow to anger and try their best to be understanding and patient with people.
That isn’t always possible, of course, and they will stand up to abuse or mistreatment. But by and large they are resolute in trying to see the best in people and focusing on their strengths instead of their weaknesses.
9) They live with conviction and passion
Likable people live their own lives with conviction and passion.
They have a mission in their life and goals they’re pursuing that mean the world to them.
They also try to make other folks feel like they’re part of that and not just extras on set.
Those who are well liked by others are a net plus of energy and inspiration to people around them.
Even just saying their name brings to mind good images and sensations in other people who know them or have heard of them.
Which brings up the next point…
10) They’re active and include others whenever possible
The people who make the best impression on others tend to be very active.
They are also inclusive.
Whatever they’re doing, they do their best to include other folks in it and make it a group event.
Even if it’s a solo endeavor, they may ask for advice or talk about what they’re doing to make others in the area feel like they’re involved somewhat in what’s happening.
In this way, they create a sense of conviviality and everyone being welcome and needed.
Speaking of which…
11) They’re welcoming and hospitable
Likable people are welcoming and hospitable.
They’re generous, too, sometimes to a fault.
Being well-liked isn’t necessarily that complicated, and welcoming people and being generous with them is the shortest and most direct route to gaining their trust and affection.
To be sure, the likable individual has to balance their desire to welcome others with a healthy skepticism and fair boundaries.
But if they can welcome somebody in and be kind to them in any way, they will.
12) They look on the bright side of life
When at all possible, likable folks look on the bright side of life.
This doesn’t mean they’re a grinning Cheshire cat all the time and purring in the corner.
But it does mean they try to emphasize what’s going right instead of what’s going wrong.
It means they cheer others on and support them when times get tough.
It means that they add net value in a situation or group instead of detracting net value or being a drag on the group.
The secret to being a people person
The secret to being a people person and making others feel at ease is to be yourself and let others be themselves.
That’s really all there is to it.
If you follow the ideas above, people will respond with happiness. The more extroverted folks will open up to you, and the more introverted will still really appreciate it.
Giving people space to be themselves and connecting with them is much easier than it seems.