It’s only natural that we want to be popular and liked by others, though this statement might ring the bells of neediness for some people. Others may not care at all what people think about them. However, research and common sense suggest that this sentiment makes us happier.
For most of us, not being liked is somewhat hurtful. And as humans, we are social species, so the need to be around people and the strong feeling of belonging are a very human need and a constant in our emotional wellbeing.
Naturally, building a sense of belonging requires a willingness to connect with similarities, appreciate the differences, and be amicable. Indeed, as intellectual beings, we need to learn traits that expand kinship and nurture reciprocal expressions of fondness.
Surely, we face difficult situations or we have to deal with people that drain our energy and leave us a nervous wreck. And these types of stress raise the risk of health issues, not to mention emotional exhaustion. But then again, the art of being social involves learning how to keep the balance between the relations that are pleasant connections, the challenging ones that make us grow, and the poisonous ones that need disconnection.
Having said that, building a social presence that moves us to the top of the desirable hierarchy of companionship calls for certain qualities, ones that boosts our confidence enough to nurture our attractive inner magnate.
1. A nonjudgemental attitude
This involves listening with empathy and respect by creating a safe environment for people to open up and feel comfortable. Be curious, be interested, and act as a detective—ask questions not to attack but to understand. These efforts to get on the individual’s wavelength will be cherished. Otherwise, being judgmental brings out animosity, as it takes the form of direct personal attack rather than addressing a situation.
This is one of the hardest qualities to develop, as it entails acceptance that you can be wrong and you don’t have all the answers. However, truly recognizing that every human is equally valuable and has an equal right to be heard is an excellent premise to cultivate such an important trait. Make sure to review your feelings against pride and arrogance, mostly when you have done something good to prevent acting pretentious and vain. Being real and not acting as if you have it all together makes you relatable.
The virtue of rational optimism empowers the mind to search and reach solutions to problems, and without a doubt, it is an attractive trait. Adopting a mental attitude that signals hope and confidence prepares you to see things or situations’ potential values and inspires others to do so. In contrast, pessimism and chronic complaining take you and others to toxic levels that prevent growth and noticing opportunities. Who would not want to be around someone who is forthright about the reality of difficulties but seek out the best outcome in every situation! One that draws a visual perception that setbacks actually change and reminds you that, through the process, the knowledge you attain will give you a clear idea of what it takes to reach your goals so that mountains will appear as molehills.
4. Acceptance of people without trying to change them
Helping others see their mistakes or faulty habits is a noble idea; however, many people are not receptive and have utter indisposition to do anything about it. Although specific topics are sensitive and will not always go smoothly, starting a dialogue that encourages reflection and not spitefulness brings the best in any relationship. The discussions should not be about fixing, demonizing, or shaming anyone. Instead, be a good listener, ask questions, recognize their perspective, and help them address their shortcomings, not with harshness or derision but in a Socratic manner.
5. A sense of humor
This is a gift, provided it is not intended to harm or get rid of many of your torments using buffoonery. Humor based on spite or to get a laugh by hurting others is a formula for resentment. Clearly, we all agree that sharing a laugh and introducing humor in our life boosts our coping mechanism and connects well with people. Still, the wit should be comforting and brings a smile to someone’s face. Make sure to think it over before delivering a joke, as humor indeed might be interpreted as offensive.
6. Sincere interest
Being sincerely interested in others is socially attractive. Initiating conversation to learn and expand your knowledge by hanging out with the different crowd with different outlooks in life makes you more interesting. Remember, you don’t have to be fascinated by everyone you meet, and sometimes a minimum exchange of pleasantries works wonders. Incidentally, going beyond small talk, as a self-assured person, you do not seek to impress anyone by highlighting how smart you are or making others feel good by letting them sound smart. What you do instead is make sure you say little, ask questions to learn, and point out the key elements expressed to show your interest in them and their conversation.
7. A sense of validation towards others
You don’t have to agree with people’s opinions and thoughts, but validating their perspective bridges individuals’ communication gap. Not acting on your inner impulse to reject someone’s thoughts or actions just because you disagree with them gives you a badge of the highest attractive person. Mind you, validation is not about abdicating your stance in life but being attentive and seeking to understand others’ aspirations or how they have come up with their ideas.
8. Body language that matches your words
The most important expression is to smile. It goes a long way; this happy facial expression suggests friendliness, generosity, and inspires trust. Matching it up with your body movement, postures, and eye contact to control the conversation flow are the nonverbal communication skills that support your intention to relate, expand, or strengthen your social relations.