I recently met somebody, and within minutes realized, I can't stand him. He's arrogant and keeps wallowing on a bad economy and bad luck. He keeps trying to make his problems our problems, and drag us down with him.
Many people seem to open a conversation with provocative or negative news. Yet, I don't think they actually mean to bring others down, they just don't know that it doesn't make them likeable.
Even if I share the same cynical perspective, I would be far more memorable and attractive to others if I am happy for others and delight in their success. According to Eric Barker in his interesting Blog, Barking up the Wrong Tree, Being happy for people during their good times is more important than how we deal with the bad.
In fact, what matters isn't how we handle the bad times, but how we appreciate the good ones.
Socially, we will make a more favorable impression if we contribute our good feelings in an active and constructive way to others success.
People need to maintain a positive sense of self, especially socially, and in comparison to others, thus if we can reinforce that, they will feel better around us.
When you genuinely take an interest in others, and want good things for them, they will really like you. Listening, engaging and supporting others turns out to be the best way to positively influence them.
Most people are starved for compliments, while it can be easy to overdo compliments, if you can do them authentically, you will be more likeable.
Remember, negativity is learned, and overall it doesn't draw people to you. Bragging about yourself will also put people off. However, being a cheerleader to others can really make a likeable impact.
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