To have people warm up to you and prefer your company gives you an advantage. Here is how to be likable and build genuine connections with people.
Being likable is having a pleasant personality that is nice and agreeable to people that makes you socially accepted.
People want to be around you because they are comfortable or safe in your company.
Likeability is associated with having a warm, friendly, and cooperative disposition, and everyone is fond of you.
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It requires a lot of patience and psychological maturity to bring yourself to delight every person that comes across you. It has to do with something in your personality and how you handle and approach issues.
Likeability is natural to some people while others can learn how to be likable deliberately by mastering the psychology behind it and doing the little but potent things to attract people’s love.
Being a very likable person right from when I was a kid, I can say that it’s not hard to endear yourself to people.
Misconceptions about likeability
Likeability, contrary to what people think is not a weakness or becoming a people’s pleaser, but a result of knowing how to project yourself to others and come out as trustworthy and reliable.
It does not mean you have to sacrifice your core values or well-being in exchange for people’s approval.
Men especially are very sensitive to their social perception that they sometimes go against their hearts to appear more masculine and respectable.
But this sometimes puts their likeability on the line and limits the goodwill they receive from people.
Being likable does not mean you won’t have opposing views on issues. The way you disagree on issues is what makes you more likable.
What makes a person likable that people want to be in their company?
Our actions and behaviours around people determine how they see us. People either warm up to you and accept you with open arms or they avoid you or better still, stay neutral.
Whereas some people don’t care how they are perceived, some are sensitive enough to mould themselves to appear a certain way to people and yield the desired result.
While some people are natural at this, people can learn to develop the traits that can endear them to people.
Here is how I have done it for two decades.
1. Be the first to show love
A few people would take the initiative of being the first to be good to others. The majority of the people would rather not give until they receive.
If everyone has this mentality, we would have everyone waiting for a long time. Showing love first makes things easier for you and others because you have shown leadership and others would follow.
And even if they don’t, you continue to show love because you don’t do it because you want it back.
2. Be polite
Politeness can never go out of fashion. No matter the age of the other person, observing all polite courtesy will endear you not just to them, but to observers.
It does not take anything away from you to be polite, just know the right words and the best behaviour to put forward.
People being rude to you should not be an excuse to reciprocate on the same path. Win them over by being polite.
However, this does not mean you should let people trample on you. You can be polite and be firm as a rock.
3. Be respectful
It takes an emotionally intelligent person to be respectful to everyone, including people who have the tendency to be rude.
You are not being respectful because you want to impress, but because it’s who you are and what you chose. Of course, you know the benefits therein.
When you are respectful, you endear people to you and also show others how to be likable.
4. Have a pure heart
Having a pure heart is the first step to learning how to be likable to people around you.
If you don’t have a pure heart, there is no way you are going to project positive energy.
Our behaviours are a reflection of how our hearts are. If you harbour bitterness and contempt, that’s of course what your behaviours would show, no matter how you try to cloak it.
5. Love humanity
You must love humanity to be able to project love to everybody. Humans pick up positive energy from people by being intuitive, even if they can’t explain it.
This pure love makes your behaviours around them pure and transparent devoid of scheming. And it should be an all-around love extended both to animals and the environment.
Being unselfish will always disarm people around you, especially in our world today where self-interest rules.
Being unselfish and doing little gestures to people makes them comfortable with you.
It does not hurt to go out of your way to help others. It could be as simple as helping them pick up something on your way for them or giving unrequested assistance.
Scheming and always looking out for yourself would rather pitch you against others and deflate whatever positive reputation you have.
7. Have a positive intention
This is similar to having a pure heart, but it is specific to each encounter with people. With each encounter, don’t always antagonize people.
Even when you have to argue, let your argument be driven by the best of intentions according to the situation and not just to spite or win the argument.
8. Stand out from the bandwagon
Standing out from the crowd would always put you in the spotlight especially when you are standing out for good.
There is always a bandwagon belief on issues and people don’t seem to think things through so far others are going in the same direction.
Stepping back and having your own genuine opinion on issues will endear you to people.
Perhaps, this should have been number one on the list of how to be likable, because it plays a huge role on the emotional level.
Being able to have a finger on the pulse of other people’s emotions is the most important factor in being likable by people.
Of course, to inspire your behaviour in any given instance, you must know the mood and the feeling of others before pushing the most appropriate behaviour.
A lack of empathy makes people crack jokes when they should console, or pick offense where they should apologise.
10. Be humble
Being humble is being modest in the way you present yourself without flaunting status, wealth, or anything that makes you superior to others.
Instead of relishing in praises and being proud, a humble person will be embarrassed by eulogies and praises.
Being humble is simple and yet, a very hard thing for people to do. You endear yourself when you stoop low to people’s level for whatever reason without discrimination.
11. Don’t be combative or overly criticizing
Learning how to be likable is not complete without understanding that being combative or always critiquing people would rather push them away from you.
When you always fight people or point out their wrongdoings in a condescending way, you sow the seed of contempt in them.
If you must point out people’s misdemeanors, do that with respect and in love.
12. Be generous
A generous person is a person who is willing to give his resources – money, time, and themselves.
Being generous for something in return is not it, but being generous because you are compelled to be so from your heart without being manipulative.
When people see this virtue in you, they gravitate toward you in a likable way.
13. Disagree politely
Just as described somewhere above, being likable doesn’t mean you won’t disagree or have a dissenting opinion.
However, while disagreeing, you have to do so with respect and know when the situation is degenerating.
A likable personality would not trade his likeability on the anvil of petty arguments.
Tolerating people is hard these days with people becoming increasingly irritable and impatient.
This requires maturity, patience, and self-control to be able to understand people beyond their behaviours.
When you give people long ropes and tolerate their shortcomings, you endear yourself to them. This does not however mean you will ignore absolutely.
15. See everyone as a teacher
Don’t go parading yourself as ‘know-it-all’. Be humble enough not to flaunt your knowledge unnecessarily.
Always have the mindset that everyone has got something to teach. In this way, you will treat people with respect irrespective of their status.
16. Don’t compete with people
Competitiveness makes people see you as a rival. Everything in life should not be competition. There are times you let go especially if it’s a petty competition that won’t add value.
Competitiveness breeds toxicity and unnecessary animosity and scheming between people.
Doing away with your ego and instead making people feel better about themselves would endear you to them and become likable.
17. Forgive, even when they don’t deserve it
Do away with anger and grudges. Instinctively, humans are wired to retaliate when offended.
The average person would get his pound of flesh if he had the opportunity. But a likable person would ignore and instead do the opposite by forgiving.
This almost always disarms the other person and makes them indebted to you.
Instead of being retaliatory, show leadership and maturity by forgiving.
Benefits you get when you learn how to be likable
Being likable comes with perks that you might not know until you are in the shoes of a likable person.
My friends use to get into a fight or argument and all of them would bring the case for me to judge, currying my favour. This gives me a kind of status and importance I never asked for.
Here are some of the benefits you get when you are a likable person.
When you are likable, you enjoy a good relationship with people and have very potent channels both for business and favours.
Because you have shown to be reliable and dependable, people would be eager to reciprocate in whatever way they can.
More chances of success
Likeability brings about new opportunities because you would be recommended for your dependability.
Hinging on the genuine connections you have, it’s easy to expand the already-built circle to your advantage.
Less stress and greater wellbeing
Being likable improves mood and your mental state with a reduced risk of anxiety, depression and other mental-health-related conditions.
It also supports a stronger immune system and heart health with a low risk of diseases while extending your life.
Knowing how to be likable might not be your problem right now, but it sure helps to project a dependable personality.
The majority of the time, our success is at the mercy of our reputation and perception by others.
Waiting for others to extend their goodwill to you before you can do same is in bad taste. As a person who aspires to be likable, you should be the first to show you are ahead.
While you are at it, remember that life is short and should be spent majorly to make people happy and you will be remembered for that.
Thanks for reading. We accept corrections and suggestions in the comment box.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A Personal Development Content Creator and an author. I write about life ethics and love to document and share life hacks and experiences of people to help others make good life decisions.
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