What is charisma and why is it important? The Oxford dictionary defines charisma as: compelling attractiveness or charm that can inspire devotion in others. What a statement, and how true a statement! Women all over the world gush over guys with charisma. But why should we develop charisma? Well, you don’t really need to if you’re around old friends; they’ve already seen you at your worst self so there isn’t much to prove to them. With your family, nah, they’ve seen you mature from a scrawny guy with thick glasses and braces to the handsome young man you are now. The time you need charisma the most, however, is with people you hardly know or don’t know yet. Why? Because well, you never know! Maybe they will give you a lead on a job someday. Maybe they have someone to introduce you to. Maybe they are interested in you! The point is, charisma is all well and good, but it’s more important in specific situations for particular people.
But how does one develop this charm, inspiration, and devotion? Huge words to say the least but read on dear friend and find out how you can develop your own charisma.
CHECK YOUR POSTURE
Your posture says so much about you. How do you command a presence when you walk into a room? When you meet someone for the first time, how do you ensure you’re leaving a lasting impression? Asking yourself these questions every time important situations present themselves will help you slowly develop your charisma. The trick is simple, be conscious of yourself, but make it appear like it’s completely natural. Before you walk into a room, remind yourself to stand up straight. The next time you’re about to meet someone and shake their hand, make sure you tell yourself to look them straight in the eye and smile. When you’re sharing a meal with acquaintances or friends of friends on a table, sit up and spread out a bit; doing this will make you appear relaxed and confident. Stay thirsty my friends.
LEARN TO BE A STORYTELLER
There are many ways to get a point across; the best way is through story telling. No, don’t talk about the boring mundane stuff but do keep the story short, interesting, and to the point. When you tell your story, make sure you add tidbits of your personal life and events; add things about yourself that can interweave with the story and inject color and flavor to your overall point. Maybe it can be your adventures traveling abroad and what you’ve learned from them. That one time you spoke to a stranger about something and what that meant to you.
When I think of great storytellers, all of them happen to be charismatic. Charisma and storytelling go hand-in-hand. Jack Kerouac, Ronald Reagan, Paul Newman, and even Bill Clinton, they were all great storytellers and all their stories had a point.
“And as I traveled in that rusty pickup through the great American wilderness…” – Kerouac
“My adventures in Spain after the war…” – Hemingway
“We were both drunk on love and speeding down the highway…” – Newman
“I once met a girl in Arkansas…” – Clinton
These are just a few ways you can begin your stories. As you can see, they are all representative of the person, their upbringing, and their interests and you get a clear sense of the type of person they are or could be. Being a good storyteller is difficult, but with a little practice, some initial embarrassment, and a whole lot of confidence, this storytelling will add to you to your charisma.
Smiling fosters a sense of warmth and hospitality, it’s the first things people notice and the last thing they should see. And this one is the easiest to work on! When done poorly, smiling can come off as fake and disingenuous, so make sure you try and truly be interested in what the person is saying. Smile and ask real questions, everyone deserves a bit of your time, and this self-awareness is important when developing charisma.
BELIEVE IN YOURSELF
This is the most important; you must believe in yourself. If you don’t believe in yourself, who will? It’s not about how much you know, how much you make, or how much you say, it’s all about how much of a person you are. People will notice how much faith you have in yourself, and if you put faith in yourself, others will begin to as well. Charisma is about you so you need to do you first before others will.