Charisma isn’t everything, but most of us want it, or wish we had more. In last week’s post, we discussed how improving your charisma can be seen as ABC – a relationship between your Aim, Behavior and the Chemistry between you and others. Today we’re going to deal with one aspect of the behavioral side of charisma.
Yes, there are changes you can make to your behavior which can greatly increase how charismatic you seem, but first I’d like to address the one thing you can do that will make every other strategy far more powerful, and incredibly easier to implement.
How do you feel about someone when you think they’re being fake?
Do you find it easy to like them?
How likely are you likely to trust them?
Now, I know it may seem corny to just say ‘be yourself,’ but let’s face it, the easiest way to be charismatic is to be real. Nobody likes a phony. Actor George Burns once said about honesty that ‘If you can fake it, you’ve got it made.’ The same holds true for authenticity. very few of us can be fake and pull it off consistently. The vast majority of us are nowhere near as mysterious as we think we are. If you were slick and smooth as a bag of greasy marbles, you wouldn’t be rearing this.
So, your first step in your journey to great charisma is to examine your character and personality. Who are you, really? Drop the socially convenient masks for a little while, and practice really being yourself.
I’m not saying you should lose all decorum and share your inner demons with the world, but rather that you give yourself permission to be you. It’s a lot easier than creating a facade. Try these simple questions to help define your most authentic self.
What did you LOVE doing as a child? Dig up old photos, videos, diaries, and other things which connect to that past before you learned to conform.
What are your values What matters most to you? Ask yourself where these values came from. Write them down and re-state them in a way that makes it really yours.
What’s fun for you now? What do you like to do but avoid doing because you think you can’t be good at it?
What are you drawn to? if you were going to have to spend the rest of your life on an island alone but could bring 10 books, what would they be?
What do you do because other people respond well? Would this change if you only ever had to please yourself?
What is your body telling you? What are the things which cause you stress, anxiety, fear? Why?
What are the ways that you function well, and not so well? For example, I do my best writing at around 4AM, regardless of what time I’ve gone to bed, so I try to get up then whenever possible.
What dreams did you have earlier in life? Not all dreams are necessarily destiny, but they can reveal patterns that will help you identify who you really are.
What is the underlying WHY In the things you do when you’re not acting out of obligation, necessity, social expectations, etc.?
When you start answering some of the questions, you’re going to find it easier to be yourself, and when people sense that you’re for real, they will tend to be more receptive to you and what you have to offer, and this receptiveness is what then will enable conscious charismatic behavior to work its apparent magic. We’ll talk about that next week.
Meanwhile, remember. An intention without a decision is just a wish, so decide today to unleash your most authentic self so that you can tap into the amazing power of your charisma.