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How do I gain charisma?

SUNDAY MAGAZINE
By Chris Hart | June 9th 2019

Hi Chris!

I always seem to have trouble getting on with people. It’s not that I’m shy or nervous, it’s just that my interactions in social situations always seem sort of flat, if you know what I mean. How can I get so everyone smiles when I start talking to them, and hopes I’m single!

Everyone Smiles

 

Hi Everyone Smiles!

What you’re talking about is charisma. That mix of social skills and sex appeal that draws people to you!

It’s not about having high social status. The Big Man and the Most Beautiful Girl are generally very self-centred people, and so no-one actually likes them. You need to be kind and caring to make genuine friends.

The key is looking at things from the other person’s point of view. So when you meet someone, imagine how they’re feeling and then say things that put them at their ease. It will make a real difference to how they respond to you. So no cynical or clever remarks. Hold eye contact with them for an extra second or so. Because that says you find them attractive, and makes an ordinary moment special. 

When you’re talking to someone of the opposite sex, you should tune in to their speech patterns.

So guys talking to a woman need to make polite comments or ask a few questions before saying what they want. Soften commands with phrases like ‘Could I ask you to...’ Interrupt a woman more politely than you would a guy. Use ‘feeling’ words and polite expressions like ‘What do you think?’ Talk this way, and a girl will feel you’re charming.

A woman speaking to a man should be more direct than with her female friends. So lower your voice and say what you want. No beating around the bush. Simple and complete sentences. Don’t start humble: ‘I’m sorry to bother you, but...’ State facts rather than feelings, and never apologise unless you mean it! Then he’ll really understand you and take you seriously!

Personalise your greetings, and try saying ‘Thank you’ more. Make sure your companion knows you really mean it by adding two or three words that give the reason why. Do all this and they’ll soon start smiling! You should smile a lot too. Slow, genuine smiles that involve your whole face, and tell your partner that you like them. And in potentially romantic situations, find the right moment to touch their hand. Touching evokes strong emotions, and a brief, delicate touch creates a subconscious bond between you…

All the best,

Chris

——

Hi Chris!

How can I help my children to be more successful in life? They’re bright, and my husband and I are pushing them to do well at school. But life’s about a lot more than academic skills, isn’t it?

So what else should we be doing?

Successful Kids

——

Hi Successful Kids!

You’re right, a successful life is actually mostly about being good at connecting with people. And that’s something you can start to teach your children, even when they’re only a few years old.

There are two skills that really matter. The first’s not being shy! Most tiny children go through phases of hiding behind your skirts. But that’s not cute! Because being shy is a real curse once you’re an adult. So how a parent treats a shy child has a major impact on their whole life. Because it’s best fixed early. All you have to do when they’re small is to help them to talk to other people!

So encourage your children to be confident. Be confident with other people yourself, even if you have to fake it! Encourage lots of small children into your home and help them play together. Because if your home’s full of family, friends and neighbours, your own will learn the skills of getting on with everyone. They’ll learn to make friends without even trying.

The other skill you should teach your children is to listen properly!

Especially how to be good at reading other people’s emotions - both children’s and adult’s - from their body language and tone of voice. The more skilfully they can do that, the more they’ll be liked.And consequently the more successful they’ll be as adults.

Teach them to watch whoever’s speaking very carefully. To respond first to their non-verbal signals, then to the way they’re speaking, and only after that to what they’re saying. Most people do all that backwards!

So play games with them like ‘Guess how I’m feeling’ and ‘Am I telling the truth?’ Pretend something like being sad or happy and ask them to guess what you’re feeling. Or tell a story with whoppers in it, and fidget or cover your mouth for each lie...

Once your children start to pick up cues like these, all the other children will love them. And you’ll have set them off on a very successful social life. Because we all feel close to people who listen with their heart and not just with their ears.

All the best,

Chris

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