How To Be More Charismatic
How to be more charismatic means having a presence that commands attention in any room. You don't have to be loud or boisterous to make others consider you charismatic. Instead, charisma comes from attentive listening, engaging directly with your audience, and maintaining a certain level of composure even as conversations dance back and forth through multiple topics.
In sociology, there’s an idea known as the presence of social contagions. When in a group of people your mood can be affected by how the people around you feel, in the same way, an illness can be easily spread in a group. Keep social contagions in mind when practicing how to be more charismatic.
When you are in a group, a failure to engage one of the participants can cause them to feel uncomfortable or awkward around you. You won’t seem charismatic, and others may pick up on their feelings, causing you to seem less compelling to the whole group.
You should always know your audience. Charisma is about how others perceive you. You should try to adopt a persona that doesn’t exclude others from a conversation, and welcome new speakers or ideas when engaging others.
This idea goes both ways. If you are uncomfortable or aren't attentive while others are speaking, it's likely people will notice. This will affect how they behave while listening to the same person. If you want to be charismatic, pay attention and listen in a way you'd want others to listen to you.
Attentive Listening And Engaging Conversation
One of the cornerstones of charisma is having a solid presence in any conversation. Have you ever heard the phrase “Listening, but not hearing”? Your posture, subtle actions, and more are being judged when you listen to others.
Attentive listening is a skill, but it's widely considered one of the most important for charismatic individuals. When learning how to be more charismatic, to practice attentive listening, you should learn to look the other person in the eye while they speak.
Focus on details of the conversation, such as who they’re talking about, where it happened, and why. When they pause, recite some of the information they’ve given, both to summarize it for yourself, and to show that you were engaged.
Being charismatic means having an enthralling presence. That can be much more difficult if you aren’t facing the person speaking to you. It’s even harder if you interrupt them by checking your phone, asking questions while they’re still speaking, or fidgeting in your seat.
One thing that helps to improve your charisma is to make sure that the subject of your conversation is something the listeners can relate to. You do this in everyday conversation through the use of similes, metaphors, and analogies.
When you take them to the extreme, too many comparisons can make your conversation hard to follow. Still, it is a necessary art to master if you want to be charismatic. If you try to explain a subject matter that's wholly alien to your audience, even the most charismatic person will only meet with partial success.
When you want to appear charismatic to another person, pause before you meet them or speak. Use this time to think about who they are, and what they’re familiar with.
If you need to relate information to someone that they’re unfamiliar with, think about appropriate references and metaphors beforehand. Charismatic leaders throughout history have often used analogies when speaking to audiences to relate the struggles of one group to another. This is a skill that people like Martin Luther King Jr., Vladimir Lenin, and even Adolf Hitler mastered.
This applies to more than conversation topics. If you plan to speak to someone who often meets with business owners and executives, you may want to adjust how you dress. A suit and clean shave may make them more likely to notice your presence and engage with you.
Knowing your audience is possibly the most important step to increasing your charisma. A common saying for young adults fresh out of college is to dress for the job you want when attending an interview, rather than the job you have. If you work in construction but want a desk job, don't meet the interviewer wearing a hard hat.
Everyone looks for similarities when engaging with other people. If others can find more similarities when engaging with you, the chance they’ll consider you a charismatic person will increase. Reflecting the mood of those around you can improve your charisma, and help you become the most important speaker in a group or organization.
Show Interest In The Topic At Hand
Both charismatic individuals and social wallflowers can have an interest in the topic at hand. If you want to know how to be more charismatic, the difference is often how you show or project your interest in a subject.
When in a small circle of people or personal discussion, ask questions as others talk about an issue. If you’re the one speaking, include details that you take particular issue with, and make your feelings clear on matters.
Just remember to keep the details that you engage with relevant to those you are speaking with. Being charismatic is a balancing act. Even when speaking about a topic that both you and your audience cares about, like clothing, your tastes will differ. A long-winded speech about articles they don't find interesting can quickly lose your audience's interest.
You can take steps to improve your charisma without saying a word. When you have to appear at a location or before a group of people, think about what that location means and how it relates to those you’ll be around. Wearing a local logo, visiting the site of a tragedy before speaking about it, and showing interest can make your words all the more compelling.
One example of this comes from the WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment). The wrestlers perform before large audiences every week. To engage their audiences, the villains of these shows often insult local sports teams or communities. These performers research the area they will perform in ahead of time, to make their speeches more engaging.
Maintain A Clear Mind And Attitude
Although being passionate about subjects will make you a more charismatic speaker, shouting and losing your temper can have the opposite effect. If you want to be charismatic, you must remember to listen intently even when confronted with different points of view or touchy subject matter.
Maintaining your composure will make you seem more charismatic. Accepting the opinions and information put forward by those around you will make them feel more actively engaged by you. If you change your mind or accept new details when others present them, express your change of heart and acknowledge their ability to influence your thinking or change your mind.
By that same token, you seem more self-assured when you maintain your stance while welcoming different points of view. You project a stronger aura of leadership when you can accept disagreements without losing your cool, and take your time to explore both points of view.
If you seem knowledgeable and self-assured, many people will place more weight on your opinion. If you brag when you’re correct or continue to berate others about an issue when you believe they’re wrong, however, you can seem less charismatic by comparison. An important part of being charismatic is learning when to stop speaking or drop a topic entirely.
When a conversation does become complicated or heated, remember the first tip; use details. When you address the members of your conversation by name, it acts as a reminder that you disagree with a particular detail or person, not the conversation as a whole. Using specific dates, naming people related to the issue, and other details also make your point seem more credible.
Have A Good Sense Of Humor
A good sense of humor is important to improving your charisma. Don’t mistake telling jokes and trying to be an entertainer with having a good sense of humor.
A charismatic individual makes others feel comfortable in their presence. A good sense of humor goes a long way in making others relax. When speaking about serious issues, remember to include a joke or two to lighten the mood, but don’t linger on them too long. Always focus on the topic at hand, and don’t ignore the most relevant issue to your audience.
Having a good sense of humor is about laughing at the jokes of others more than it is about amusing others. Even if you don’t think a joke is particularly funny, consider smiling or letting them know you appreciate their attempt at humor. Remaining silent or making others feel bad about their humor can cause them to feel enmity towards you, instead of awe.
If you’re a relaxing presence, you are more likely to be considered a charismatic person. Having an authoritative voice can be a key influence on how charismatic you are when you’re trying to change other people’s minds. In personal conversations and issues, however, sometimes it’s how you treat other people’s feelings that make them consider you a charismatic individual.