Deny it all you like, when people like you, things just seem to work better. And who doesn’t want to be liked? To go to an event where people are happy to see you makes it more enjoyable for you.
But what is it about people that makes them popular? Are they just naturally charismatic? One would think so, for very young children can turn on the charm when they want to.
That really isn’t it. Some people are naturally more gregarious than others, but the good news for you is that learning to be more popular, more likeable can be learned.
The first thing is to not judge others. Listen to their side of the story. Be sympathetic without taking sides. And whenever possible, try to hid how much you don’t like something. Look at all situations logically rather than emotionally. As soon as emotion becomes a component in a situation, all bets are off. At work, managers have to recognize that they will be unable to change the behavior of certain workers. They may be asked to, but instead of getting emotionally involved, they accept what is out of their control and move ahead accordingly.
Be genuine. Share events in your life, with a balance of good and bad. In this way, people can relate to you, know that you understand what they’re going through. Being genuine can make you vulnerable, but it also makes you very attractive to other people.
Get people to talk about themselves. This is one of the best techniques. Try it at the next gathering you attend. Rather than focusing on how uncomfortable you feel meeting all these people you’ve never met before, find a person to talk to. Start by asking them some questions about themselves, staying away from questions that can be answered with a single word. Then as they answer, really listen. Make eye contact, ask clarifying questions. Be yourself, but engaged. It was said that if you ever spoke with Jacqueline Kennedy you felt as if you were the only person in the room. That trait is the keystone to being a likable and popular person.