8 Ways to Make Someone Like You

8 ways to make someone like you

“Squints” from The Sandlot glancing at Wendy Peffercorn just before jumping into the deep-end

Squints was pretty bold when he faked drowning in the deep-end of the pool in order to get a kiss from his lifeguard crush Wendy Peffercorn. I can’t help but chuckle every time I watch this scene in The Sandlot. People will do the darnedest things to get someone to like them. Here are eight ways to make someone like you that may just work for you.

1. Be Fun and Play!

For example:

Pie fight

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Pie fight

Pie fight

If you have never been involved in a pie fight, now’s the time. Get outside your comfort zone! Have some fun. Play a little! No one wants to hang around someone who is perpetually solemn. Get your wiggles out. Everyone has wiggles. Playing helps your brain to learn and you are capable of learning your whole life. Most animals stop playing (and learning) when they reach adulthood, but the human brain is designed to learn (and therefore play) until it dies. 1 Why not take advantage of that capacity and play more often with someone you like?

There is a reason why prophets have preached about “wholesome recreational activities.” 2 Don’t be light minded or disrespectful, but DO be light hearted. Playing will make you healthier, happier and even smarter.

So play together and you will like each other.

2. Be Around Them a lot

rebecca black

 

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The first time I heard this song, I thought it was horrible and awkward. Then, every Friday at the office, someone would turn it on for a joke during lunch break. The more exposure I had to this song, I admit that I actually thought it was a little catchy. Then I couldn’t help smiling about it and I admit I even listened to is a few times when I was alone in my room (with zero peer pressure). This may be a bad example of the mere exposure effect, but there is a lot of research on this effect as well as “propinquity”. These data show that the more time we spend together with people, the more familiar we are with them. And the more familiarity there is, the higher the likelihood of becoming friends and getting involved in a romantic relationship. In fact the highest predictor of getting married is not personality type, it is proximity. 3

You want someone to like you? Get them familiar with you. Don’t be a creepy stalker or annoying, but be around a lot – in a natural way. It works.

3. Show Respect for Others (with them)

Showing respect for them is essential. Showing respect for others while you are together is even more powerful before, during and after any relationship has begun. I believe that in any relationship you don’t have to build love (you can have love for anyone unconditionally), but you do have to build trust. So if you show respect for others while you are with them, it will build their trust in you. Especially show respect for those in your family or even your boss. If you show disrespect for someone you have spent a lot of time with (like your boss, your mom, or your brother) it might make them think that once you know someone for long enough, it isn’t worth your time to treat them with respect. Not a good thing to demonstrate. This is a big turn off, no matter who it is.

Show respect for others and they will trust you and be more likely to like you.

4. Like Yourself

im the great bambino

No one wants to be around someone who doesn’t like themselves. If someone doesn’t like themselves, it will show up in almost every aspect of their lives and it will bleed over onto those who they interact with. You will be more liked if you like yourself first. Why? Because you will be happier and you will naturally attract happy people. If you like yourself, you will be confident, you will be less likely to get caught in harmful behavior, you will set higher goals and have a more purpose driven life, and you will treat others better. These are all very attractive attributes.

The happiest people have a healthy self-love. They know they are not perfect, but they chuckle about their imperfections and see the best inside of themselves. They accentuate the positive and eliminate the negative self-talk. They are their own biggest fan and they literally cheer themselves on. They do NOT sit and ruminate over what they could have become or should have done in life. They love themselves for who they are. No matter the size or shape of their body, they love themselves. If they don’t do something perfectly, they get over it instead of getting into a self-loathing fit. They smile at themselves in the mirror. The happiest people are their own best friend.

You’ll be much happier if you like yourself, and other happy people will undoubtedly like you. 

 

5. Let them Give to You

Once you have established a little bit of friendship and trust, and you have been the giver, let them give back. Don’t unnaturally force them to give to you, but allowing them to give to you will allow for equal exchange. Don’t be afraid of receiving. Remember, giving helps you feel good. As you give to them they will likely feel really special at first, but if you are the only one giving, then they won’t feel as invested and they may even develop some resentment because they feel like they owe you. Research shows that those who care, serve, give and help in an unsolicited manner feel more positive, alive and have higher self esteem. 4 So when they offer to help you or give to you, accept, because you aren’t just taking, you are giving them a gift of feeling good, which will ultimately build your relationship.

Let others give to you and they will invest more in your relationship, and like you even more.

6. Be Happy on Your Own

Jump in with all your clothes on

The happiest relationships are those in which both parties are independently happy before they find each other.  Be happy by yourself. Be a happy person. If you don’t feel like you are happy unless you have someone else in your life, figure out what makes you happy and what you don’t need to be happy, then be happy on your own. Do this first. Even if you don’t find someone who likes you, you will be happier either way. But when someone does come along that is also independently happy, you will more naturally like each other.  It is difficult to be attracted to a needy person who can’t be happy without someone else, who depends on the validation and approval of others.

If you do find that you are emotionally needy for a relationship, it’s okay – you aren’t alone. And, I would highly recommend reading this book.

Be independently happy and people will like you. Not only that, but your relationship will be better and so will your marriage (when that comes).

7. Possess Reverence

This goes right along with being respectful. I’m not talking about just folding your arms in primary. I mean having a profound respect for things that are venerable and sacred. Things that deserve to be admired. That feeling you get when all 21,000  in the Conference Center are jumbling around with a mild roar or small talk and all the sudden the prophet walks in and everyone stands and goes silent.

mormon-conference-centerShow that you have reverence for God’s creations, for the Scriptures, for the priesthood, for the temple, for the elderly, for great literature and art, for all things that deserve reverence. You may think this is obvious, but we live in a very irreverent world.

Have reverence in an irreverent world. It’s just a good thing to do.  You are attractive when you are reverent, but even if no one likes you, you should possess reverence anyway.

8. Be a True Friend

Be a True Friend

My wife and I are best friends and we have a lot of fun being goofy.

If you are a true friend, you’ll be attractive. But whether or not someone likes you, be a true friend anyway. What is a true friend?

Someone who really listens, who is your cheerleader, who sacrifices with you, hugs you, writes you letters with a pen and paper (not just a text or a facebook message), who is a goofball with you, reminds you of your highest self, prays for you and would be willing to clean up your throw-up if you got sick in their car. Also, a true friend never makes you choose between their way and the Lord’s way and with them it is always easier to keep the commandments. Elder Hales says it well: 5

True friends make it easier to live the gospel. They never make us choose between their ways and the Lord’s ways. They help us be the kind of person that attracts other true friends. And they help us become the kind of person a righteous companion can choose to be with forever. If you want those kinds of friends, ask yourself: “Am I that kind of friend to others? Am I the kind of person I want my eternal companion to be?”

If you are thinking: “I want someone like this.” The best way to find a true friend is to BE a true friend.

Be a true friend and you will be a happy person. AND you will attract a true friend that you can be with forever.  

 

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  1. See the great article by Eric Barker called: Why do we Play?
  2. See The Family: A Proclamation to the World. 1995.
  3. Just google “mere exposure effect Zajonc” or “propinquity studies” and you’ll find a host of research on this.
  4. Weinstein, N., & Ryan, R. (2010). When helping helps: Autonomous motivation for prosocial behavior and its influence on well-being for the helper and recipient. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 98(2), 222-244.
  5. Robert D. Hales, To the Aaronic Priesthood: Preparing for the Decade of Decision. CR, April 2007.

avatar Andy Proctor (42 Posts)

Andy is the creator of T​he Returned Missionary (this blog)​, encouraging the tens of thousands of LDS missionaries who come home every year to continue to be productive, hardworking, faithful, and happy long after their full-time mission has ended. His goal with this blog is to help people know how they can live the gospel while living their dreams. He just launched his first book for RMs, called ​Live Your Mission: 21 Powerful Principles to Discover Your Life Mission after Your Mission, which is the first book in the L​ive My Gospel​ book series. He also owns and manages the LDSmissionaries.com blog. He is a regular contributor to Meridian Magazine and has been featured on the Mormon.org blog as well as LDS Living and Deseret News.


6 Comments

  1. Fabulous, Andy. I loved every word of this. And I needed it! Thank you thank you thank you.

  2. I LOVE IT. I recently struggled a lot with relationships. Your post is a lot of help. Thanks so much. It’s very inspirational.

  3. avatar Anne Moulder says:

    This is a great article! I recently stumbled upon this blog and I have really enjoyed reading it! In fact I used one of the articles for a family lesson (we are doing in depth studies of the Atonement). Thank you for your insight!!

  4. i like this and agree but what if you don’t believe in God and the “scriptures”

    • Thanks Nick. Good question. Even if you don’t have reverence for God or the “scriptures” you can still show respect for things that should be shown respect, like if someone dies and you are at a funeral. Most people, no matter your beliefs can show respect and reverence for things that are venerable. I don’t believe in Buddha, but if I was in China, I would still be quiet and reverent at the sites that are sacred to Buddhists. Hope that helps.

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