One of the most important keys to living a happy, healthy and fulfilling life is your ability to build meaningful relationships. While there are many factors that influence the relationships you have with others, being a likable person ranks near the top of the list. Likable people are those who do the little things to connect with people.
The Importance of Being Likable
All the great teachers of personal achievement from Napoleon Hill to Anthony Robbins have talked about the importance of creating a likable personality. Dale Carnegie’s famous book How to Win Friends and Influence People was one of the best books I have read on the subject.
Generally speaking, people who have a likable personality enjoy greater success both personally and professionally. The logic is simple; people are subconsciously drawn to people who are likable.
Regardless of your career path, you can improve your brand and increase your value to the market by becoming a more likable person.
So, being honest with yourself, on a scale of 1-10, how likable are you? If your friends and business colleagues or your spouse and children were to rank your likability on a scale of 1-10, what would they say?
Answer these questions honestly to identify the areas where you can improve:
* When speaking with other people, are you genuinely engaged and interested in what they have to say?
* Does your smile communicate an authentic interest in the other person?
* When people are speaking, are you patient? Do you let them finish before responding?
* Will you get in the back seat of the car so your friend can sit in the front seat?
* Do you remember people’s names?
* Do you accept responsibility when you are wrong?
* Do you say please when asking people to do something for you, even if they are being paid to do it?
* Do you offer your sincere appreciation to those who have done something to help you, even if it’s within their job description?
* Are you friendly in your e-mails?
* Are you complimentary of others when they are deserving of one?
* Do you encourage others when given the opportunity?
* When having dinner at a friend’s home, will you pitch in and help do the dishes?
* Do you practice humility?
* Do you listen more than you talk?
* Do you offer a heart-felt apology when you have hurt someone without making excuses?
* Do you make people feel comfortable when they are around you?
* Do you try to maintain a positive attitude at all times?
This is just a short list of the actions we take on a daily basis that will determine whether people view us as likable. The great news is 100% of these things are within your control.
There is Always Room For Improvement
In thinking about this lesson over the past week, I have been extra intentional about doing the little things to be more likable. For example, I have been friendlier to the store clerks where I shop and have been more encouraging and complimentary of my own children. While I have known about the importance of being likable for many years, this past week has been a humbling reminder that there is always room for improvement and I am no exception.
Start By Doing the Easy Things
If you want to create a more likable personality, here is the key: you must be INTENTIONAL about doing the little things that will make you a more likable person. Let me offer you the same challenge I made my 16-year-old son this week.
Jake works at a local grocery store where he normally just focuses on doing his job. Four days ago I challenged Jake to go out of his way to be friendly. The first day he went out of his way to be friendly to two customers. On the second day, ten customers, the third day thirty-four customers and the fourth day fifty-four customers. Get the picture?
As a result of this simple challenge, he is standing taller, walking with a bounce in his step and taking more pride in the person he is becoming. In fact, I can’t recall any period of time in his life where I have seen his self-confidence grow more than in this past week. The store manager even noticed and told him what a great job he was doing.
Will you accept my challenge? Will you focus on becoming a more likable person?
What are some of the things that make people likable? Post your ideas in the comment section below.
People have choices. They will always choose to associate with someone who is likable. Are you?
About the Author: Todd Smith is a successful entrepreneur of 30 years and founder of Little Things Matter. To receive Todd’s daily lessons, subscribe here. All Todd’s lessons are also available on iTunes as downloadable podcasts. (Todd’s podcasts are ranked #27 in America’s top 100 podcasts and #1 in the personal and development field.)