5 Simple Ways To Become More Likeable

Do you remember the fun you had as a child?

The playdates you would have with your buddies? The adventures you would go on? The memories you created?

You thought they would never end. But they did…

Photograph by Sukanto Debnath

As you grew older, lots of changes happened.

You change schools. You start a family. You change jobs. You move away.

Each event can change the relationships you have. Especially your friendships.

Creating new relationships can be a struggle. Introducing yourself to new people can be scary.

But it all comes down to your likeability. People want to be around those that they like.

People like people who like them.
— Kare Anderson

Today, lets look at 5 simple ways to become more likeable.

  1. Smile: A smiling face is much more likeable than having a frown on your face.
    First, your smile will lift your mood. It puts a little pep in your step. Try it if you don’t believe me. Let me know what happens.

    Secondly, it raises the mood of those you meet. People react better to smiling faces. It lets them know you’re more approachable. Your smile is contagious.

    Think about people you like most. Do they normally walk around with a smile or a frown? Now, did you say a smile? I bet you did!

  2. Accentuate the positive: Don’t be a Debbie Downer. You know the one, something is always wrong or they’re always talking negative about someone.
    This turns people off! If you’re someone who is negative, stop it right now.

    Instead, start accentuating the positive. If you notice a co-worker doing a great job, say it. Let others know when they’ve done work that is awesome.

    Praise and lift them up.

  3. Listen: I have friends that hog the whole conversation. Every conversation is filled with their exploits. You cannot get a word in. I’m sure you know someone like this too.
    Don’t be like these friends.

    Instead of trying to hog the conversation, you need to listen to those around you. Let them open up and share with you.

    You will find new ways to serve them. You will find common interests that you did not know you shared. You will help by being a shoulder of comfort.

    You will learn so much by taking the time to listen. Give it a shot today.

  4. Assume the best: Many people assume the world is out to get them. If they let their guard down they will be taken advantage of.
    This is a mindset that I’ve struggled with and have started to overcome. To be honest, changing this mindset has been one of the most freeing and liberating things I have done.

    Instead of looking at the world as Me Against Them it has now become How Can I Help Others?

    With this attitude, it draws people to you. Assuming the best allows you to be open to others.

    True connections are made only when you are able to assume the best about another person.

  5. Have fun: Most of all, have fun!
    People like to be around others who know how to have fun.

    If you’re having fun, you will give off an aura of likeability.  Your body language will give those around you the okay to like you.

    Participate in the activities that bring you joy. Find a group that gets together regularly to participate in that activity.

    It may be an physical activity. Disc golf, mountain climbing, or geocaching are all great activities to do in a group.

    Or it could be something less physical. Knitting, board games, or a book club work well too.

    You’ll create new friends and memories with those that you meet in the new group.

These 5 simple ways to become more likeable can rock your world.

People will be more energized around you. They’ll be interested in the things going on in your life. And you can gain friendships like you had when you were growing up.

“Basically, likeability comes down to creating positive emotional experiences in others. When you make others feel good, they tend to gravitate to you.”
— Tim Sanders

Question: What other simple ways do know of to become more likeable? Please share your ideas in the comment section below.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Pegg Thomas

    I’m convinced you can win friends with fresh baked brownies. Your suggests are all good. Bake brownies and add them to all of the above to boost the effect. 🙂

    • I think you’re right Peg. Brownies are an effective way to win friends.

  • Encouragement goes a long way to tear down walls and build not only like-ability, but also friendship.

  • Great tips! For me, I like it when people remember my name and when they remember small things about me…therefore I try to share that curtsy with others. To treat them how I like to be treated. (the name thing isn’t easy for me though- I can remember a face but names are not my strong point).

    • Those are great tips TC. Remembering a name is a killer way to win likeability!

      • So true! I’m working on remembering names…God help me, it’s a major weakness of mine.

        • It can be tough but it is doable. How To Win Friends and Influence People had a few tips on to remember names.

          • That book is on my reading list!

  • E G Lewis

    As the old saying goes, “To have a friend, be a friend.”
    Peace and Blessings

    • Exactly E.G. You can’t keep them without being one back.

  • Deborah K. Anderson

    All great tips to keep in mind, Joe. Thanks for sharing this.

  • This goes along with some of your points but I would add having passion. Passion for life, what your doing, AND what the other person is doing. Passion tends to rub off onto other people and when they see you have passion your influence/ likeability will increase.

    Great points and post!!!

    • I like that point Dan. Passion is contagious and it draws people in.

  • I can’t think of any others. I agree. You want to be around people that make you feel good. Unless, of course, you don’t. 🙂

    • I can see that Larry. Those days when you’re down and you want everyone to feel just as bad as you. Not a good place to be but one many people find themselves in.

  • Victor Travison

    All of these suggestions are good. You mentioned “Smile,” to which I would add “Laughter.” When you laugh easily, people feel more at ease with you. Of course, you have to laugh at the right things! It takes discernment to tease, yet not have people feel picked on. If I laugh at something they’re sensitive about, it could backfire.

    But once you know the person and his/her sensitivities, it can be a great fellowship booster.

    ~ VT

    • I like your addition of Laughter, Victor. Laughing can be quite infectious and draw people in.

  • These are great to be more likeable. I would add to always be honest, no one likes a liar and the truth always has a way of coming out! Great and needed post Joe!

  • Tami Boyd

    Great post and great reminders!

  • I agree with you.

    I would add ‘Genuinely care about people”.

    Great post.

    • I like that Ngina. There’s an old saying “People won’t care what you know until they know that you care about them.” I think that applies in this case.

  • Be genuine. There is enough fake and phony people in the world. When people see a person that is truly genuine, they are drawn to that person.

    • Great point Bernard. If you’re fake, it will repel others.

  • Good stuff Joe, the only thing I can think of to add to this is to just be yourself. I believe that even if you are doing all of these good suggestions, sooner or later, if you’re not being yourself it will show…

    • True Chris. You can’t put on a mask and play these parts. They have to be part of you for them to be effective and long lasting.

  • mjph

    cool tips. I like the “assume the best” part. I have to tell myself to do this one, it does not come naturally.

    • Assuming the best can be quite difficult. I know it is for myself. It just takes time and a conscious effort.

  • Terrie Thorpe

    I agree with your points-the body language says more about what you are thinking than any words. The body can’t lie. Someone said to me “smile, even when you don’t feel like it” well I would be a lair, because my eyes and posture would tell the truth. If you want friends you must be friendly, be approachable. I’ve found that a genuine compliment goes far too in breaking the ice.

    • I agree Terrie. Compliments open the door!

  • Gary Chapman wrote a book titled “Five Love Languages”. Discovering these love languages of those around you and acting on this knowledge is one way to become more likeable – especially with those close to you.

    • That’s a great book Jon. My wife and I read it before we got married. Another great book was Love & Respect. Learning how men and women differed in their responses to love and respect was an eye opener.

  • This would make an excellent character study for a fiction project… 🙂 Great post, and SO TRUE! It amazed me how rapidly my mind would flit from person to person in my life who epitomizes these qualities (both negative and positive). Of course, I also looked at myself to see if I measured up. 🙂 We all still have a little work to do, right?

    • Yes Nona, we all have work to do on ourselves. But as long as we’re working on it and making progress, that’s what matters!

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  • When we genuinely like people, our focus is on serving others and adding value.

    Serving and adding value to the lives of others…that makes it pretty hard not to be likable 🙂

  • I totally dig this post. I was looking for this kind of information for a long time but most self help books are boring and tedious. Smiling is definitely contagious. It can disarm even the meanest. Great job!

    • Nice Bill! So glad I could help you out and provide the information you were looking for.

  • While reading your post I was again back into my childhood memories.. Really relationships get changed with time distances. But we can make new good relationships with our nice behavior.

    • You’re right. They do change and evolve over time. In what ways have your relationships changed over time?

  • RonnieTabor

    Shelley Gable in her research states that how we respond to someone when they share good news has the significantly more impact on building a close relationship than how we respond when they share bad news.


    I need an entire post to develop this not to mention share how powerfully it has worked in my life. But in a nutshell, there are four ways we typically respond

    Passive Constructive

    Out of these four responses, only Active Constructive Responding will build on a relationship. The other three tear down relationships, just at different speeds.

    Ronnie Tabor

    • That’s interesting research Ronnie and, thinking about it, I can see how that would be true. People enjoy having others celebrate and rejoice with them. How do you see this being applied to leadership?

      • RonnieTabor


        The application in leadership is what makes ACR so powerful. By using ACR the leader develops followers who want to complete the mission, forgive me for the military slang, from internal compulsion. Compared to a leader that develops followers that comply because of external (rules) compulsion.

        Followers that believe their leader is authentic can accept a correction when mistakes are made. On the other hand the leader that is not percevied as authentic has followers that will question their motive,methods and more.

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  • jeff

    All the suggestions seem to be built on top of Suggestion #5.  It seems to be the main reason why I haven’t become as likable as I could be and why I haven’t found it very genuine to be “smiling” all the time and “accentuating the positive: I can’t seem to determine what I like to do.  I know that I like writing or reading, but I haven’t found much else.  I just stopped enjoying things.  I just haven’t found what I like.  Why is that so hard?  And frankly, I don’t even “like” what I like — the things I gravitate to automatically.

    • Great observation Jeff. They do tend to build upon suggestion 5.

      I’m not sure why it’s so hard Jeff. Life can be weird and difficult and we can feel like we’re swimming in that sea of discontent.

      • jeff

        There is a shortage of fun things to do.  I feel like I don’t enjoy what I’ve done in the past.  It’s an uphill battle to find new enjoyments.

  • Wan Muhammad Zulfikri Bin Wan

    I find that I like people who is calm and relaxed all the time. I think Nelson Mandela has the calm vibe and that’s why people like him.

    • That’s a good trait to have as well. If we’re high strung all the time, it’s hard for people to like us. How do you keep the calm in your life?

      • Wan Muhammad Zulfikri Bin Wan

        If you ask me then the answer would having a problem solving mindset.

        Those who are calm seems to be relaxed because they put in effort to think of a solution despite the complexities of the problem. I guess by searching for solution, it removes the burden of the problems lingering in our mind.

        Then again, my own problem is I do not have a problem solving mindset but instead I can be apathetic and have this non-caring attitude. That’s definitely not a way to live because although it makes people think that I’m relaxed but the reality is inside me there is a person who runs away from problems.

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  • Thanks for the post… shared it and followed you on Twitter @jasonandchelsea.

  • RcMaFitness

    Joe, very, very nice post! What other simple ways do I know of to become more likable? Hm, thinking … thinking … Well, the number one thing I’ve kept in mind is to stay positive (looking at the bright side, even when facing true darkness). One can manifest positivism through a sincere hug, a cheerful handshake, an unpretentious smile, a very kind look, and giving a hand when needed/requested or expected. Of course, there are many more ways of becoming likable, but the number one thing is sincerity. All of us can spot a phony miles away, & that’s a turn off. Thus this I know: All of us are quite likable. So it’s a matter of allowing ourselves to enjoy the moment as well as each other’s company without ulterior motives (without toxic agendas). Oh, let’s keep in mind great sense of humor. Laughter is wonderful! 🙂

    • I lie the stay positive method. People don’t like Debbie-Downers and those who complain all the time. Keeping it positive keeps people around.