Be genuinely interested in people. You don’t have to love everyone, but you should be curious or fascinated by people in some way. If you’re empathic, maybe you’re interested in how people feel. Or you could be interested in how people work (psychology), or what people know (if you’re an avid learner). Learn how to ask questions based on your interests while being polite (i.e. without prying) and others will feel they are interesting.
Remember people’s names when you meet them for the first time. This takes an enormous amount of effort for most people. When introducing yourself, repeating the person’s name will help you to remember it. For example: «Hi, Jack, I’m Wendy.» Follow through with small talk and use the person’s name during your conversation. Repeat it once more when you say goodbye. Repeating someone’s name is not just about helping you to remember that person. The more often you say someone’s name, the more that person will feel that you like them and the greater the chance they’ll warm up to you.
Assume rapport. This simply means talking to a stranger or a newly met acquaintance in a very friendly manner, as if the person is a long lost friend or relative. This helps break down an initial awkwardness and speeds up the warm-up process when meeting new people. Soon, people feel more welcomed and comfortable around you.
Kindness, coupled with respect, makes others feel as if they are loved and cared for. This is a powerful tool during interaction.
Smile with your eyes. Scientists have pinpointed more than 50 types of smiles, and research suggests that the sincerest smile of all is the Duchenne smile — a smile that pushes up into the eyes. The reason it’s more genuine is because the muscles needed to smile with our eyes are involuntary; they only become engaged in an authentic smile, not in a courtesy smile. Also, if you look at someone and then smile, it will instantly charm them.
Take into account topics that interest those around you, even if you’re not so keen on them. If you’re in a sporty crowd, talk about last night’s game or the meteoric rise of a new team. If you’re with a group of hobbyists, ask about their hobbies and make pertinent remarks related to fishing, knitting, mountain climbing, movies, etc. Nobody expects you to be an expert. Sometimes you can build rapport just by asking questions, and not caring if you seem naive. There are people who like talking about and explaining their interests, and will like you for listening. It is your level of interest and willingness to engage in topics that makes you an interesting person to be around. Exercise an open mind. Let others do the explaining. If someone mistakenly thinks you know more about the topic, be genuine and simply say that your knowledge is limited but that you’re hoping to learn more about it.
Control your tone of voice. The tone of your voice is crucial. Voice should be gentle and peaceful. Articulate, speak clearly, and project your voice. When you say «You look nice today», it should be in the exact same tone that you would use to say «It’s a nice day.» Any variation from your normal tone will arouse suspicion about your sincerity. Practice giving compliments into a recorder and play it back. Does it sound sincere? Practice until you get it right.
Watch the way you phrase things. Be mature and have a touch of wise, polite language. Don’t you find people that say «Hello» are much more charming than people that mutter «‘Sup»? Here is another example: Change «It’s none of his beeswax!» to «It shouldn’t be any of his concern.» Of course, don’t overdo it, but try to be polite and turn every negative into a positive. It will really give you charm.
Issue compliments generously; this especially raises others’ self esteem. Pick out something that you appreciate in any situation and verbally express that appreciation. If you like something or someone, find a creative way to say it and say it immediately. If you wait too long, it may be viewed as insincere and badly timed, especially if others have beaten you to it. Because you waited, you are most likely not confident in saying what you thought; waiting will result in a less than enthusiastic presentation. If you notice that someone is putting a lot of effort into something, compliment them, even if you feel that there is room for improvement. If you notice that someone has changed something about themselves (haircut, manner of dress, etc.), notice it and point out something you like about it. If you’re asked directly, be charming and deflect the question with a very general compliment.
Be gracious in accepting compliments. Get out of the habit of assuming that a compliment is being given without genuine intent. Even when someone makes a compliment out of contempt, there is always a germ of jealous truth hiding in their own heart. Be effusive in accepting the compliment. Go beyond a mere «Thank you» and enjoin this with «I’m glad you like it,» or «It is so kind of you to have noticed.» These are compliments in return.
Avoid backhanding a compliment. There is nothing worse to a person complimenting than to receive the response «Oh well, I wish I were as ______ as you in that situation.» This is tantamount to saying, «No, I am not what you are saying I am; your judgment is wrong.»
Praise others instead of gossiping. If you’re speaking with someone or you’re talking in a group of people, and up pops the subject of another person in a positive or negative way, be the one to mention something you like about that person. Kind hearsay is the most powerful tool in gaining charm because it is always viewed as 100 percent sincere. It has the added benefit of creating trust in you. The idea will spread that you never have a bad word to say about anyone. Everyone will know that their reputation is safe with you.
Sometimes being charming is about simply being a good listener. Charm isn’t always an outward expression, but an inward one too. Engage the other person to talk more about his or herself, about something that they like, something they’re passionate about, about themselves. This makes the other person more comfortable to share and express themselves with you.
Smile at people you meet.
Always be you. If people like a fake you then you’ll twist yourself a web of lies and when it falls apart you’ll be left with nothing but angry and hateful people.
Do not avoid eye contact. Look into their eyes when you talk to them.
Be yourself and try adding your personality to the conversation but do not just talk about yourself. That would make you seem egocentric and uninterested in the other person’s feelings.
Do not assume that you have the right to include yourself in a conversation that is not addressed to you or you know nothing about. Expressing your opinion when it hasn’t been asked for just demonstrates arrogance and immaturity.
Improve your posture. Throw those shoulders back and let them drop (relax). When you walk, imagine you’re crossing a finish line; the first part of your body to cross should be your torso, not your head. If you have poor posture, your head will be pushed forward, which makes you seem timid and insecure.(If you’re female, push your breasts forward. Sounds odd but it has helped me learn proper posture)
If forcing good posture doesn’t look right, strengthen your muscles. These would include your upper back (traps & lats), shoulders, and chest. Your neck will fall into place and your posture will be perfect naturally.
Put some humor in the things you say. Most people love a person who can make them laugh.
Empathy is at the core of charm. If you can’t tell what makes people happy or unhappy, you have no way to assess whether you are saying the right or wrong thing.
Be kind and gentle; not loud and rude!
The degree of charm that you possess depends on the creativity of your praise. Say something that is not immediately obvious and say it in a poetic way. It’s good to have some premeditated compliments and phrases but the most charming people are able to invent them on the spot. This way, you can be sure that you are not repeating it. If you can’t think of anything to say, bring up a current event that is interesting.
Also, when you greet someone, make them feel they are the most important person to you. They will respond more nicely and always know what a great person you are.
Behave honestly; being honest will add points in front of others.
Do not always give advice unless asked. This comes off as being big headed.
Add a bit of humor to your conversation, but keep it civil.
Cursing is something to avoid doing; it puts a lot of people off, and it won’t make you seem like a charming person.
Have a soft voice, not loud.
Try things you normally wouldn’t do!
Try standing to the right of a person when you talk to them.
Be patient. Something may be obvious to you but not so simple to others. Understand that and help them out.
Every so often you will have no choice but to express an opinion that few others hold. That is fine. Consider expressing it in a humorous way. Humor is the spoonful of sugar that helps the medicine go down.
Don’t confuse being charming with being a people pleaser.
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