Here's How To Make Yourself More Likeable

Let's face it, making friends aint easy.

When you meet someone new as an adult it can be terrifying.

WHAT IF THEY DON'T LIKE YOU?

It's a minefield of insecurity and anxiety -- if you're that way inclined -- as  you ask yourself, "Am I talking too much?" "Did I make too much eye contact?" "Too little?" "Am I boring?"

But there’s an easy way to get around this -- all you have to do is ask questions.

Yep that's it. Apparently it's the key to being likeable.

study published last year in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology looked at both conversations between platonic conversation partners who had just met, and face-to-face speed-dating conversations, and found that in both settings “people who ask more questions, particularly follow-up questions, are better liked by their conversation partners.”

Those follow-up questions, the study found, are helpful to increase how much we are liked because they show that we are listening.

According to Lysn psychologist Elyse McNeil, it's easy to increase your listening skills -- you just have to concentrate.

"Next time you have a conversation with someone, try to focus on listening to their words, comprehend exactly what they’re saying and give them time to talk. Before you even think about responding, either reflect back to them what they've just said (this is called paraphrasing) and check you've understood, or ask a follow up question to deepen the conversation."

See, those follow-up questions are the jam.

And you know what else? No one else cares whether you made enough eye contact or not anyway. A new study published in Psychological Science found that after initial interactions “people systematically underestimated how much their conversation partners liked them and enjoyed their company.”

So go forth and converse and listen to your heart's content. And while you're at it, use Elyse's other tips to make those connections.

Be positive

"Emotions can be contagious and when you’re expressing a positive outlook, it’s likely others will mimic that attitude" she told ten daily. "This means they’re likely to feel happy when they’re around you, and then without necessarily realising it, will like you more! This doesn't need to be effusive positivity, but an optimistic outlook and a general sense of warmth."  

Mimic the person you're with

"Studies show that mirroring a person’s behaviour can actually make them like you more," said Elyse. "We like to feel recognised and understood by others and mirroring is one way we experience this. Sometimes this is done automatically without consciously realising, but you can start by subtly copying their body language, facial expressions and gestures. Subtlety is the key here! Obvious mimicry will feel fake and strange to you and the other person." So no impressions, okay?

Reveal your flaws

Appearing human and flawed is one way to more deeply relate to others.  "Showing someone the more human and less perfect parts of you reveals a relatable vulnerability that encourages others to share in a more real way," said Elyse. "Shared vulnerability, assuming the person is a kind, safe person, really deepens how much you can connect with another, and the warmth they will feel towards you."

Compliment others

What you say about people influences how they see you. Elyse advised you try and be specific -- rather than "You look really good", try something like "I really like the way you always ask how I am and genuinely listen to my response, that means a lot to me". "Pick personality compliments over appearance and make it specific!" she said.

Give them your full attention

There’s something to be said for eye contact, body language and conversation that shows a person is fully attentive to you and present, according to Elyse. "Giving someone your full attention shows your interest in what they’re saying or doing and this will make them feel important, flattered and will likely make them want to be around you more often. This is especially true if they’ve got your undivided attention and you’re not distracted by things like your phone. This means eye contact, not playing with your phone, encouraging gestures like nodding your head as they speak, and ensuring your facial expression is consistent with what is being discussed."

Treat others how you'd like to be treated

The old saying of – ‘Do unto others as you would have done unto yourself’, holds a lot of value when it comes to making yourself more likeable. Be kind, be generous, and treat others how you’d like to be treated!