Develop Your Like-ability

As I wrote yesterday, you're going to have a very hard time enjoying networking if you "don't like people". Guess what. Other people aren't going to change. Instead, you must work on your like-ability. Not "likeability" as in how much other people like you, but your ability to like them.

It is possible - even with all those irritating people out there. Here's several keys to doing this.
  • Stop focusing on other people's faults. Oh, if you're perfect, you can ignore this.
  • Work on appreciating their positive qualities. No one is all bad.
  • Recast a slightly annoying trait into an endearing one. There's a limit to this, of course. You'll have a hard time convincing yourself that someone who constantly puts other people down or who tells you how to run your life is "cute".
Here's the most important way to increase your ability to like other people:
  • Find out what you have in common.
    • Especially if it's an unusual interest or hobby.
There's nothing more enjoyable than finding out that someone has the same passions that you do. You can have a whole conversation on that one thing, even if you're from completely different ends of any spectrum. Lifelong friendships have developed over something as seemingly small as an interest in the same author, or a fondness for an obscure movie producer. And, there's nothing like finding someone else who is a fan of your beleagured team who hasn't won in years. Any Michael Waltrip fans out there? Can't wait 'til next year!

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