While people are just as charismatic and charming today as they were fifty years ago, there's no denying the fact it's becoming more difficult to slow down, be present, and
make genuine connections with others. And this is all thanks to our busy, hectic lives.
"Decades ago ... people were not in a hurry and as over-scheduled and overworked as they are today,"
psychic and spiritual counselor Davida Rappaport tells Bustle. "People called and visited their friends and families. People gave parties and attended them on a regular basis." And, they often took the time to pause and truly communicate each other — which isn't as easy to do nowadays.
It takes some effort slow down and
be charming and charismatic, what with all our busyness getting in the way. But it can be done. And, the effort is almost always worth it. "By being more charming or charismatic, you will feel more confident and comfortable in your own skin," Rappaport says. "You can also make someone’s day a bit better and attract a better group of people into your life as well."
Often, all it takes is setting the intention of slowing down, being present, making yourself available, and truly
hearing what others have to say. Here are a few more old time-y habits you may want to scoop up for yourself, in order to win people over and be more charming.
Be All About Those Manners
To really stand out, make a pact with yourself that you'll use more "hellos" and "thank yous" throughout the day — even if you're super busy.
"Take time to say hello and wish someone a nice day as they cross your path — in elevators, hallways, on public transportation, in restaurants and coffee shops, etc.," Rappaport says. "You will make their day brighter and with each subsequent encounter, they
will remember you as someone charismatic."
Chat With Those Around You
Yes, we should all say "thank you" when getting our change, or when someone holds open a door. But Rappaport says it can easily go beyond that, into actual meaningful conversations.
Whether you stop to say hi to a neighbor,
exchange niceties with someone in line, or ask a coworker about their day, you'll quickly become known as the most friendly person in town.
Keep in mind, though, that in order to truly make a connection, you have to hear and respond to what others are saying — not just wait for your turn to talk, as we are often wont to do.
Ask people questions about themselves," therapist Alisha Powell, PhD, LCSW tells Bustle. "Don’t be afraid to be creative and encourage people to talk about things they like. Engage in conversation with others and keep the focus on them." They'll remember that you did.
Throughout the week, look for ways you can help and encourage everyone around you, whether it's a roommate, neighbor, coworker, or family member.
"People used to always be there for their friends and family — no matter what," Rappaport says. "If you take the time to be supportive when someone needs encouragement and support, as long as you have healthy boundaries, you will be perceived as a charming or a charismatic person, in addition to having their gratitude."
Nothing's more charming than taking the time to drop some wisdom — in a kind way — when someone needs it. As Rappaport says, "If you take the time to share valuable (or even fun) information with others, whenever the opportunity presents itself, you will elicit a thank you, and over time, you may be viewed as someone who is charismatic and knowledgeable. People who have a lot of knowledge and are able to share it or take the time to mentor someone can be thought of as charismatic."
Take one look at old-fashioned magazines, and you'll see that great posture was a
big deal back in the day. And for good reason. When someone stands up straight and walks with purpose, they emit "a more charismatic vibe than someone who walks around aimlessly," author and natural lifestyle expert Jaya Jaya Myra tells Bustle. "Make sure to always stand up straight and walk in a way that exudes confidence ... Confidence is always a charismatic trait, so bring it to the table in all of your interactions through your walk, your stance, and your gestures."
Make Meaningful Eye Contact
Those who have
mastered the art of eye contact always seem like the most engaging people in the room. So the more you can practice it, the better. "It doesn't have to be a long gaze," Morgan Sheets, a certified wellness coach, tells Bustle. "Even one second can establish a connection."
To do so with meaning, set an intention. "Do you want them to feel that you respect them, admire them, see their humanity, have compassion? Decide what you want this person to know and then communicate it with your eyes when you make the connection," Sheets says.
If someone you know is going through a tough time, it can really help to give them a call — versus simply sending a quick text or email. "Most people nowadays rely far too much on technology to stay connected,"
Roy Cohen, a career consultant and executive coach, tells Bustle. "Information is communicated through sound bytes and symbols; and as a result, much of the compassion and charm are missing." When someone's down, actually hearing your voice can mean a lot.
Follow Through With Promises
These days, it's becoming a little too easy to cancel plans at the last minute, or flake out on responsibilities. So if you really want to be perceived as charismatic, make a habit of following through on all your promises.
"In this day and age, we all have good intentions, but little follow-through,"
Natalie Wise, modern lifestyle philosopher and author of , tells Bustle. You can really stand out from the pack by doing what you'll say you'll do, especially if it's in a timely fashion, Wise says. Happy, Pretty, Messy
To be more charismatic, charming, and engaging, often all it takes is an effort to be more present in the moment, and being as friendly and polite as possible. In a world where everything's so fast-paced, simple "old-fashioned" habits like these can
really make you stand out.