5 Habits of Likeable People

Being the type of person that others “like” is important to having good relationships.

Dr. Trish Henrie-Barrus is a therapist and adjunct professor at the University of Utah, who specializes in positive psychology. She breaks down the 5 habits of likable people.

According to happiness literature, having good relationships tops the list of what makes a person happy. And being the type of person that people like is important to having good relationships. According to advertising it seems like looks weight, status, power and money are things we need to have so others will like us. But according to psychologists and the research these things just aren’t that important.

If you want to be the kind of person that everyone likes, you might want to try some of the following:

Be positive. No one likes to be around those who are giving out negative vibes or who are sending negative messages. Positive thinking patterns increase intelligence, creativity, motivation and desire. These rub off on others and increase the “synergy” between people. Positive people tend to build others up and look for the good. They are fun to be around and are inclusive. They praise and encourage others and don’t mind sharing the spotlight.

Listen more than you talk. People like those who are genuinely interested in others and those who want to learn from them. Ask questions, maintain eye contact and smile a lot. Don’t give verbal responses as much but nod and respond nonverbally. And DON’T give advice unless it is asked for. This can indicate to others that your opinion is most important. Only speak when you have something important to say and define important as being what is interesting and important to others.

Be genuine. Don’t act self-important but focus on what you can give to a relationship. Giving is the only way to establish a real connection and relationship. And be sure to admit your mistakes, challenges and quirks. People love those who can laugh at themselves for this shows you are human just like them. Genuine people also use touch effectively. A pat on the arm or shoulder lets someone know you care.

Put your “stuff” away. Don’t check your phone. Don’t glance at your monitor. Don’t focus on anything else, even for a moment because this indicates to others that you really aren’t interested in them. You can’t connect with others when you’re busy connecting with your “stuff”, too. Give the gift of your full attention. That’s a gift few people give. That gift alone will make others want to be around you and remember you.

Don’t gossip. It is human nature to want to hear the dirt on someone. That’s why the reality shows are so popular. But we really don’t like and definitely don’t respect others who are “dishing out the dirt”. And we don’t trust them as we wonder if we are going to be their next victim.

Dr. Trish Henrie-Barrus teaches Positive Psychology at the University of Utah and has a private practice in Bountiful and Orem. She can visit her website at riverwoodsbehavioralhealth.com or call her office at 801-787-9855 for an appointment.

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