Ah, charisma. That movie-star-like aura that gives you the power to walk into any room and light it up with your presence. But what is it really? And is it even possible to acquire it?
“Charisma is not so much getting people to like you as getting people to like themselves when you’re around.”—Robert Brault
We love that definition. When we’re with a charismatic person, they always have a way of making us the center of attention, no matter how important or busy they are. That makes us feel better about ourselves—and causes us to be drawn to them.
According to a great HubSpot article, The Nine Habits of Insanely Likeable and Charismatic People, charisma is definitely learnable. In fact, psychologists see it as a set of nine habits that we can all work on getting better at:
- Have empathy Whether it’s enjoying someone’s success or comforting a person going through a bad time, being sensitive to the feelings of others is an essential part of that thing called charisma
- Stay humble Being confident is great, but crossing the line over to arrogance is as about as uncharming as anyone can get
- Be vulnerable Overcoming our fear of being judged and honestly saying what we believe is a quality that people naturally warm to
- Laugh easily If charisma means being enjoyable to be around, having a great sense of humor works like magic
- Be present Giving all your attention to whoever you’re with may be the single-most important way to make a person feel valued
- Show interest in everyone Treating everyone the same regardless of their status shows a genuineness that people recognize and appreciate
- Avoid narcissism Sadly, talking only about yourself will quickly leave you with no one else to talk to
- Be generous Being a giver, not a taker, is our company’s most important core value because it is the generous person that everyone clamors to work with
- Share praise and take blame John Maxwell said it best: “A good leader is a person who takes a little more than his share of the blame and a little less than his share of the credit.”
So it turns out that having a magnetic personality isn’t something people are just born with after all. By focusing on these nine habits, there’s no reason why anyone can’t become a little—or even a lot—more charismatic over time.