BY BECKY MILLER
Sometimes a person can be an object of indescribable hatred. Okay, maybe not hatred. Dislike, extreme dislike to the point where if given the chance I would probably punch you in the face and then laugh if you started bleeding.
There are some people that just deserve a little bit of pain. If you choose to be a misogynistic jerk, not to mention laughing when sexual assault is mentioned, you are not worth anyone’s time or effort. Crawl back into the little hole you came out of and please hit your head on the way out.
I have never claimed to be perfect and there are people out there who dislike me as well. Heck, sometimes I want to punch myself in the face. What keeps us from acting on these inhibitions? Better yet, what underlying primitive instinct encourages them in the first place?
Likeability is now determined by how well a person can “click” with others. There is a balance between being bland and lacking any personality and voicing opinions that make others instinctually want you knocked out with a sucker-punch to the jaw. Here are a few suggestions for avoiding the indifference, but mostly the wrath of others:
- Embrace the power of positive thinking: This can sometimes be difficult, but will help with your relationship with yourself and the projection of self you give to others. No one likes a negative person filled with bitter feelings and not a happy thought in his body.
- In conversation, avoid politics like the plague: Do not decide that the lunch table is a good place to talk about abortion or healthcare or waterboarding in Guantanamo Bay. Someone is going to disagree with you and having heated conversations is not really the best way to make friends.
- Shine with confidence, or at least try: Even if you are having a bad day, smile at everyone. It may not be scientifically proven yet, but smiles are contagious and make the world a happier place. Plus, the physical act of smiling will release endorphins into your own body and make you happier.
- Make fun of yourself, but not too much: The ability to laugh at yourself keeps the target from other people, but still allows you to be the life of the party. However, doing this too much can get annoying if you are not careful about timing.
- When someone is talking to you, pay complete attention: Put your phone down and make eye contact! Ignoring others—or looking like you are ignoring them—is not any way to gain affection from anyone.
- Volunteer whenever the opportunity arises: Helping others, whether it is serving at the soup kitchen or simply carrying a heavy box that some stranger was struggling with gains universe points. Plus, who can hate someone who helps a little old lady cross the street, right?
- Practice good hygiene: Brush your teeth, shower on the regular, wear deodorant. Very few people appreciate bad breath or body odor.
- When asking the question “How are you?” actually listen for the answer: This question has become a social convention and everyone is supposed to answer “fine” or “great” and then continue on with their days. Actually wanting to know about other’s days makes them feel valued. Everyone just wants someone to care.
- Do not give advice unless it is asked for: Being likeable will make you approachable. Sometimes people just need to vent and you pushing your opinions on them does not always help their situations. You are not all knowing, even if you think you are.
- Do not make excuses: Take responsibility for your actions. The dog that you do not have in your college dorm room cannot eat your homework. If you have to take a test hung-over, that’s your own fault for going out not your roommates for finding a party on a Thursday night.
These are just a few suggestions in improving your public image. If you want to improve your relationships with others, maybe give some of these a try.