Marilyn Monroe rocked it like a boss. George Clooney possesses it effortlessly. Katy Perry sizzles with it, firework-style. But what is it, exactly?
Charisma, oh that elusive, beautiful quality that lights up a party, an office, a silver screen. It is defined as, “compelling attractiveness or charm that can inspire devotion in others.”
That sounds pretty damn accurate to me. Even after charismatic people leave a room they still manage to leave their imprint … their magic lingers, their energy is still felt.
We all know a charismatic leader, colleague or friend. Someone who we just love to be around. One who makes us feel good and light and engaged. One who makes any meeting or social gathering much more enjoyable.
The good news is, charisma can be mastered. Here are seven sneaky tricks that charismatic people know which skyrocket their allure from lukewarm to megawatt.
1. Be interested in other people
Asking questions and being curious about others is downright alluring. Egomaniacs and self-serve talkers are boring. And guess what? You learn nothing when you’re the only one talking. So ask people about themselves. They will love you for it and you can learn a lot from other people. Being an asker makes you appear more attractive because curiosity is sexy!
Maya Angelou summed it up beautifully – “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”.
Make others feel interesting and you’ll be the one that everyone remembers.
2. Be kind
Making other people feel comfortable is an alluring quality. We may think being snappy with a slow bartender exudes a sassy attitude but, in fact, you just look like a dragon. A high maintenance dragon. People will shy away from being burned by you. It ain’t cute.
3. Accentuate the positive
There is something so attractive about being around people who see the good in everything. Even saying something like, “that ice sculpture’s so crazy!” versus “that ice sculpture’s so tacky!” makes a big difference. Complainers suck the life out of us and the beauty out of their surroundings.
4. Be easy
It’s so fun to be around people who are easy to be with. Avoid being the lunch date who needs a no-gluten, low-fat/no-sugar balsamic dressing — oh, hold the nuts and eggs! — kale instead of iceberg salad, please. Oh, and wait … there is no diet ginger ale?! Make it easier for others to hang out with you. Once in a while you can be a little fussy, but over time it wears other people out.
5. Be researched
Charismatic types are social chameleons. They can fit in anywhere. They expand and invest in who they are and what they know. You can be authentic in lots of settings if you know a little bit about a lot. Read the news. Try a new book. Get to know the world. A wide and varied conversationalist makes you comfortable and engaging in wide and varied settings.
6. Have a signature something
Do you accessorize better than socialite Olivia Palermo? Could you put Amy Schumer to shame with your quick wit? Being known for something is a brilliant and easy way to always be remembered. Don’t be afraid to dial it up and dazzle people.
7. Love yourself
Nothing, absolutely nothing, beats being comfortable in your own skin. People who can just be who they are, unapologetically and without overthinking — exude a quiet confidence that we all secretly aspire to have more of. You just know they love and approve of themselves. You therefore naturally approve of them too.
Charismatic people have nothing to prove. They care about others. They are kind. They are optimistic. They are fun to be with. They are interesting. They own their talents and are OK with who they are. They strive to be a first-rate version of themselves, not to be a second-rate version of someone else.
The bottom line? If you want to be the person that everyone falls in love with, you have to fall in love with yourself first.
I’d love to hear your comments below.