Dale Carnegie is known as the “father of self help”, and for good reason too. Author of one of the most successful books in American history, How to Win Friends & Influence People written in 1936, his advice still rings true today. Here are 3 of his best tips to be the most interesting person in the room.
1) Show Genuine Interest in Others
“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”
Everybody’s favourite topic is themselves. Their experiences. Their interests. Their opinions. Asking people questions about themselves, listening carefully to their answers and showing genuine interest makes them feel good.
As we rarely come across people who show full, genuine interest in us, you’ll be well remembered for trying to. In fact, you could even find that once you get the ball rolling in the conversation, you may struggle to get a word in. But by just showing genuine interest in what the other person is saying, you’ll probably still be remembered as a superb conversationalist.
2) Don’t Argue
“The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it.”
It makes sense really. When you’re involved in an argument, you’re on the defensive. You want the other person to fall short and be forced to agree with your opinion in a bed of their own tears. Compromise is no option. And the other person probably feels the exact same way. This in mind, continuing any conversation that’s turned into a battle of two egos will inevitably spiral out of control and leave you both to wallow in anger or tears later. Better to avoid.
3) Use Emotion, not Logic
“When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion.”
No matter how much some may deny it, we’re emotional creatures. Although we can appreciate logic, emotion controls us. Think about when your friend asks you if they look good in a certain outfit. Even if by all logic they don’t- you’ll still probably say “yes”. And by saying yes, you’re addressing their emotional needs rather than any logic. But it works- they feel good and you feel good too.
The lesson to learn: before using logic to move forward in a conversation, consider what the other person wants emotionally. Then give it to them.