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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Being Likable and Making Life Easier for Yourself

Hound Notes: Last week I relayed an article about 6 behaviors that push people away. Below are the links to two more articles of advice related to behavior. These articles are intended to help you make positive adjustments to the ruts of bad behavior that we all are vulnerable to.

The first article describes what people do that makes them likable.  This article defines 14 characteristics/habits of likable people. These would be people that we would define as charismatic and if you practice these habits, then you can become more likable.

The second article describes "10 Ways You’re Making Your Life Harder Than It Has To Be". This article centers around how people make life harder on themselves by thinking the world revolves around them. You get in your own way (preventing success) by personalizing everything in your life.  The author describes himself as a social media consultant who through the creation of his website looked to establish himself as a "thought leader." He eventually decided to just start writing what he felt like writing; now characterized as a "Fleeting Thought Leader."

In reading the first article, you will take notice of some bad habits that you might be practicing that can turn people off. You also will have some 'a-ha' moments that will help you put a finger on what some others have done that turns you off and makes you not like them.

Like I said in the previous article, there is an epidemic of bad behavior amongst today's professional workforce. This translates into behavior associated with many of the politicians and other leaders of the current generation. I believe that the mindset of many of our leaders today is having a deleterious effect and is a reason for the bad behavior of the workforce (and the public) in general; It rolls downhill folks.

I am providing the bullet points to both articles.

The first set is what the author Richard Feloni conveys based upon Napoleon Hill's book "Think and Grow Rich"and his essay "Develop A Pleasing Personality," published in his forthcoming collection "The Science of Success." Please, if interested, go read both articles at these gentlemen's sites.

14 Habits Of Exceptionally Likable People - Business Insider - Richard Feloni - May 22, 2014 - Here are Hill's 14 habits of people who are so likable that others go out of their way to help them:
1. They develop a positive mental attitude and let it be seen and felt by others.
2. They always speak in a carefully disciplined, friendly tone.
3. They pay close attention to someone speaking to them.
4. They are able to maintain their composure in all circumstances.
5. They are patient.
6. They keep an open mind.
7. They smile when speaking with others.
8. They know that not all their thoughts need to be expressed.
9. They don't procrastinate.
10. They engage in at least one good deed a day.
11. They find a lesson in failure rather than brood over it.
12. They act as if the person they are speaking to is the most important person in the world.
13. They praise others in a genuine way without being excessive.
14. They have someone they trust point out their flaws.

The second set of bullet points:

10 Roadblocks to Happiness - Tim Hoch - June 18, 2014

1. You ascribe intent. - You assign bad intent to innocuous actions. You take it as a personal affront, a slap in the face. Happy people do not do this. They don’t take things personally. They don’t ascribe intent to the unintentional actions of others.

2. You’re the star of your own movie. - You are the star of your own movie. You wrote the script. You know how you want it to unfold. You even know how you want it to end.                    Unfortunately you forgot to give your script to anyone else.                  Lose your script. Let someone else star once in awhile. Welcome new characters. Embrace plot twists.

3. You fast forward to apocalypse. - I have a bad habit of fast forwarding everything to its worst possible outcome and being pleasantly surprised when the result is marginally better than utter disaster or jail time.                        Negativity only breeds more negativity. It is a happiness riptide. It will carry you away from shore and if you don’t swim away from it, will pull you under.

4. You have unrealistic and/or uncommunicated expectations. - Among their many shortcomings of your family and friends is the harsh reality that they cannot read your mind or anticipate your whims.                   Unmet expectations will be at the root of most of your unhappiness in life. Minimize your expectations, maximize your joy.

5. You are waiting for a sign. -I have a friend who won’t make a decision without receiving a “sign.”                            I’m not disavowing that fate or a higher power plays a role in our lives. I’m just saying that it is better to help shape fate than be governed by it.

6. You don’t take risks. - Two words: Live boldly. Every single time you are offered a choice that involves greater risk, take it. You will lose on many of them but when you add them up at the end of your life you’ll be glad you did.

7. You constantly compare your life to others. - A few years ago I was invited to a nice party at a big warehouse downtown. I was enjoying the smooth jazz, box wine and crustless sandwiches. What more could a guy want? Later in the evening I noticed a steady parade of well-heeled people slide past and disappear into another room. I peeked and saw a large party with beautiful revelers dancing and carrying on like Bacchus. Suddenly my gig wasn’t as fun as it had been all because it didn’t appear to measure up to the party next door- a party I didn’t even know existed until just moments before...                     Always remember what Teddy Roosevelt said: “Comparison is the thief of joy.”

8. You let other people steal from you. -  The one possession you have that is more important than money is time. But you don’t do anything to protect it.  Treat your time like Fort Knox. Guard it closely and give it only to those who deserve and respect it.

9. You can’t/won’t let go. - Sometimes you have to work at happiness. Some hurdles are too difficult to clear by simply adjusting your point of view or adopting a positive mindset.                    Do you need to forgive someone? Do you need to turn your back on a failed relationship? Do you need to come to terms with the death of a loved one?                          Life is full of loss. But, in a sense, real happiness would not be possible without it. It helps us appreciate and savor the things that really matter. It helps us grow. It can help us help others grow.                      Closure is a word for people who have never really suffered. There’s no such thing. Just try to “manage” your loss. Put it in perspective. You will always have some regret and doubt about your loss. You may always second guess yourself. If only you had said this, or tried that.                       You’re not alone. Find someone who understands and talk to that person. Reach out for support. If all else fails, try #10 below.

10. You don’t give back. - One way to deal with loss is to immerse yourself in doing good. Volunteer. Get involved in life.                         It doesn’t even have to be a big, structured thing. Say a kind word. Encourage someone. Pay a visit to someone who is alone. Get away from your self-absorption.                  

When it comes down to it, there are two types of people in this world. There are givers and there are takers. Givers are happy. Takers are miserable. What are you?

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