Ever notice someone at a party or in an office and they have what some people call the je ne sais quoi (direct translation: I don’t know what)? That magnetic personality?
Let me tell you a little story to illustrate.
When I was in high school there was a fellow my age who liked me, lets call him Patrick. Patrick had a crush on me for some time but I was not interested in him – his long hair, his introverted style, his small group of friends who always seemed a little moody, in the slightest.
Far from alluring.
In fact, the time that I’ve just taken to write these few words about Patrick would equate to more time than I ever spent even noticing him.
This all changed one day when Patrick took up rowing.
Now, you may think that rowing is not particularly sexy and I would probably agree. But it is not the rowing that matters here…
Be “Pro” Something
Patrick became immersed in, excited about and pro-something. When I saw him in our common room he was talking animatedly about his rowing adventures, his team, his sport. There was something magnetic that made me notice him and look at him differently.
After some time his appearance did, sure. He stood a little taller and walked with a bit more swagger. He may even have gotten into better shape but I did not really know for sure as I had never paid attention to him before.
Being Magnetic Comes From Within
The real change was internal. He loved something and had this new, magnetic personality because he was passionate about something.
He was giving something all that he had to give. The impact it had on him was impossible to ignore. It was not the same Patrick. Even a popular, pretty girl in the year below us took note – I once served them tea and chocolate cake at the café where I was a waitress. How didn’t I notice? Patrick was cute! And by then, he was long over me.
What I learned from this is that being pro something, a supporter of something, actively engaged in loving something, is sexy.
How many people still hold a candle for their engaging high school teacher? Or a former boss who made them enthusiastic and energized about going to work? Passion is very attractive and not just in a romantic sense. Our passions transform us and we become magnetic to everyone – friends, peers, even potential employers.
Your Perspective Matters
We can go from being detached, indifferent, even against stuff e.g. “I hate Indian food! I can’t believe that writer gets published, I would rather die than see another Anne Hathaway movie”, to “pro” stuff, e.g “I love sushi! I am totally lost in my currently book – Cheryl Strayed is remarkable. A Woody Allen movie just ends my weekend beautifully.”
Small or big subjects – being pro something wins.
People who are pro-stuff are magnetic and appealing.
We want to be around them.
They teach us things.
They are inviting and open and interesting.
People who are pro-stuff change the world as they infuse light into what they do and they bring intention to the choices they make. Who wants to sit for hours and hear someone talking about how incompetent their manager is, the intolerability of the winter or how unacceptable airport delays are? Count me out.
If you are not attracting people you may well be repelling them or even worse – you may be having no impact on others at all.
So please share with me…what do you feel are the qualities of a magnetic personality?