It's only natural to wonder, on occasion, what makes you likable, lovable, or, conversely, intolerable. You question if that little quirk is actually adorable or if it's something that you should maybe sometimes try to rein in a little bit. Pretty much everyone craves love, but the good news is that there are a ton of little things you didn't realize make you more lovable. Some of the things that you might think are off-putting, embarrassing, or otherwise make you a bit flawed are actually some of the things that endear you to other people. To put it more succinctly, chances are, you're being too hard on yourself.
Many little things that you don't really consider, such as just being yourself, are things that can make you more lovable. Being authentically you, instead of focusing on what you think the people you're interacting with want you to be, can draw people to you and affect how likable you are. Some of the things that make you more lovable aren't even necessarily things that you specifically do in an effort to get people to like you, but rather, are things that are just part of your personality. You might think that how lovable you are has to do with your appearance, your sex life, or obvious characteristics that everyone is sure to love, but some of what makes you lovable just might be a bit more subtle.
1. You're Easily Embarrassed
You might think that being easily embarrassed is something to be, well, embarrassed by, but it's really not. In a 2012 paper published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, researchers found that other people find your feelings of embarrassment lovable, not awkward or cringeworthy. Long story short, you don't have to be embarrassed of how easily you show your embarrassment. It's much more appealing than you thought.
2. You Actually Listen
It seems like such a small thing, but in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change, author Stephen R. Covey wrote that most people listen thinking about what they'll say next, not in an effort to actually hear and process what the other person is saying. Additionally, love and relationship expert Elly Klein told Bravo's Personal Space that when you feel like you were actually heard, it can also serve to validate your feelings and experiences. It's nice to know that someone was actually listening to what you were saying and bothered to remember it.
3. You're Generous
Klein told Personal Space in the aforementioned post, "If you give more than you receive, you’re far more likely to be lovable." Being generous is about more than just giving good presents, however, it's about being there for your friends, partner, and family members and supporting them when they need it, even if it's not always 100 percent convenient for you. Don't let anyone walk all over you, but be generous when you can.
4. You're Yourself
Being yourself is usually far better than trying to be someone else, even someone who you think might be more likable. Sherry Beck Paprocki, a personal branding expert, speaker, and the author of Content Marketing: 50 Ways to Tell Your Story, told Inc. that being yourself and celebrating what makes you different than others can help you be more successful. While she might have been speaking about branding and marketing, the same goes for attracting people to your personality. Being the same as everyone else won't make you more likable, even if you sometimes think it will.
5. You're Sometimes A Little Klutzy
In a study published in the journal Psychonomic Science, researchers found that being a little bit clumsy if you're otherwise competent and successful can make you more attractive because it makes you seem more human and more approachable. Sure, you might feel momentarily embarrassed, but it probably didn't appear as awkward to other people as you thought it did.
6. You're Thoughtful
Being thoughtful is always appreciated. While you might think that you're just being kind, polite, or respectful (or, you know, yourself), being genuinely thoughtful leaves a positive lasting impression and lets the other person know that you truly care.
7. You're Good At Communicating
Communication is important in any relationship, whether it's between partners, friends, family members, or even coworkers. Klein told Personal Space in the previously-mentioned post that words, tone, and nonverbal communication all count. If you have all of that down, you'll be able to effectively communicate with others, which can make you come off as more understanding and more lovable.
8. You Don't Get Judgy
Face it: feeling like a friend or partner is going to judge you for something doesn't exactly make you feel inclined to share. Knowing that they can come to you, tell you anything, and you won't judge them or make them feel unnecessarily terrible, belittled, or put-down will endear you to them for sure.
9. You're Friendly
Don't overlook how much of an impact being a friendly person can have on how others relate to you. Friendly people are approachable. They're easy to spend time with because you feel like they want to know you and want to be around you. Friendliness makes you likable. It just does.
10. You're Able To Look On The Bright Side
In a piece for Business Insider, Richard Feloni combed the 1937 book Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill to determine the qualities of some of the most likable and successful people. Feloni wrote that Hill found that some of the most likable people are positive people and readily show that optimism to others. It makes sense. Negative people tend to bring everything down, while positive people tend to make everything feel lighter, more manageable, and more fun.
11. You're Empathetic
Being empathetic can make you not only more lovable, but also more trustworthy and approachable. In a post she wrote for Entrepreneur's website, business etiquette expert Jacqueline Whitmore said that most lasting relationships are based on empathy. Showing that you can empathize with someone can strengthen the bond between the two of you.
12. You Gossip Sometimes
Of course, too much gossiping — or comments that are too mean — is often off-putting, but it appears that occasional gossip can actually make you more attractive. If you're gossiping to help someone, that can be endearing, not unattractive. A different 2012 paper published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that sometimes gossip can have positive effects, including greater cooperation.
13. You're Reliable
In a piece he wrote for Forbes's website, Travis Bradberry, the co-author of Emotional Intelligence 2.0, said that being reliable and consistent can make you more likable because people know generally what to expect when they interact with you. If you always treat others respectfully and kindly, it'll reflect well on you.
14. You Admit It When You're Wrong
It can be difficult to admit it when you've made a mistake, but it's important if you want to be likable or lovable. Recognizing that you did something wrong, taking responsibility for it, and apologizing shows others that you're human and that you're committed to doing the right thing. In a post he wrote for Inc.'s website, Andrew Thomas, the founder of Skybell Video Doorbell, wrote that holding yourself accountable when you're wrong and apologizing are both things that likable people do. Don't think it's unimportant or no big deal. It really does make a difference.
15. You Smile & Put People At Ease
I hate being told to smile as much as the next person (because sometimes I just don't want to, OK?), but there's no doubt that smiling and putting people at ease can make you much more lovable. In his previously-mentioned piece, Bradberry wrote that since people naturally mirror the body language of the person with whom they're interacting, if you smile, they'll likely smile as well and leave feeling good about the interaction.
16. You're Honest
Of course, sometimes "honesty" can be hurtful, not helpful, but overwhelmingly, if you're being honest and expressing how you really feel, people are going to respond positively to that. In a 2010 study published in Personality and Individual Differences, researchers found that couples who were honest with one another were in healthier relationships than those who weren't. Honesty is lovable, even if you're sometimes a little bit apprehensive to share what you really think.
17. You Take Care Of Yourself
Taking care of yourself shows that you love yourself, which, in turn, can make you seem more lovable to others. Coach and online teacher Barrie Davenport wrote on Live Bold and Bloom that it can be difficult to love someone who very clearly does not love themselves. Knowing what you need in order to love yourself and generally be healthy can attract others to you.
18. You Open Up
In his aforementioned post, Bradberry wrote that people who are likable know when to open up and be vulnerable without oversharing. Oversharing can be off-putting, while being vulnerable can make you seem more human, more relatable, and more lovable.
19. You Have Flaws & Are OK With Them
Everyone has flaws. Recognizing yours and being OK with having some can ultimately make you more lovable. In an article for Bolde, Kate Ferguson argued that recognizing your flaws can make you more relatable, make people more comfortable around you, and let people get to know who you really are instead of the polished, perfectionist version that you want them to see. Being yourself is lovable and sometimes that means being OK with having flaws and letting others see them.
20. You Know Your Worth
Knowing your worth and what you deserve can definitely make you more lovable. You stand up for how you should be treated and don't tolerate anything less.
21. You're Confident
In an article for Entrepreneur, Michael Port argued that confidence — not arrogance — is attractive. Confidence can go along with knowing your worth and watching someone else have the confidence and self-worth to take a stand can make them come across as more likable.
22. You Look People In The Eye
In his previously-mentioned piece, Thomas wrote that looking people in the eye when you're speaking with them can make you seem more likable. It makes people feel important and like you're really paying attention and are invested in the conversation. That's one good way to endear someone to you. Just don't be too creepy about it.
23. You Can Laugh At Yourself — At Least Sometimes
There's just something so lovable about someone who can laugh at themselves. It shows that they don't take things too seriously, but it also makes them more relatable and more fun to be around.
24. You Remember People's Names
Aren't you impressed when someone remembers your name or the name of a friend or family member that they've only met briefly? In his previously-mentioned piece for the Forbes website, Bradberry wrote that likable people make an extra effort to not only remember people's names, but use them whenever they see them. It shows that you took the extra step and that you felt like that person was important.
25. You're Trustworthy
In an interview with Fast Company, Lou Solomon, founder and CEO of Interact, said that if you put effort into your relationships and make people feel like the priority, they'll likely find you more trustworthy and more likable. If people can trust you, chances are, that's something they'll like or even love about you.
26. You're Sincere
In a piece for Inc.'s website, contributing editor Jeff Haden wrote that extremely likable people are sincere. You can tell that when they say that it was wonderful to meet you that they truly meant it. Being sincere is important whether you're just meeting someone or they're someone with whom you have a close relationship. Sincerity and authenticity are lovable, insincerity is definitely not.
27. You Don't Need To Be The Center Of Attention All The Time
In his previously-mentioned post, Bradberry wrote that coming across as needing to always be the center of attention doesn't draw people to you, it pushes them away. People pay attention to you because you're easy to get along with or because you've achieved or accomplished something that garners attention, not because you're insisting that the attention be on you.
28. You Don't Need Other People To Make You Happy
Finding happiness within, rather than searching for external validation from others can also make you more lovable, whether you realize it or not. Seeking validation from other people in order to be happy just doesn't reflect that well on you most of the time. Of course, sometimes you want that validation from others, but basing all of your own happiness on it usually isn't doing you any favors.
29. You're Open-Minded
As Feloni pointed out in the aforementioned Business Insider article, Hill also found that people with open minds tend to be considered more likable. Being open to an array of ideas, opinions, people, and experiences can make you more endearing to others — and also help you grow as a person.
30. You Have Integrity
Integrity is lovable. In her previously-mentioned post for Entrepreneur's website, Whitmore wrote that having the courage to fight for what's right and do the right thing, even if you don't get credit for it, will win you friends and admirers. You might not think that it would make you more lovable, but it certainly can have an effect.
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