Traits of Charming People

8 Defining Traits of Charming People
By Kelly Lam, Founder of The Whole Purpose, writing on the importance of nutritional, physical and emotional wellbeing in the workplace.

One of the easiest things in the world is to recognize a charming person when we meet one. They are confident, friendly and seem to exude positive energy that brightens the room. You may think that being charming is a trait that people are born with, but it is merely a series of simple and attainable behaviors. Here are some things that charming people do differently:

1. They make a strong first impression.
Charming people are always genuinely happy to meet you and be in your presence. They smile, have positive body language and focus on one person at a time. This focus makes you feel appreciated and heard, which in turn makes you like and remember them. In short, charming people bond easily to people around them because they genuinely care and appreciate your company.

2. They remember your name but don’t name drop.
It is always awkward walking into a conversation when someone doesn’t remember your name. It creates a tension that draws you into your own head and distracts from the bond that you otherwise would have created. Charming people avoid this whole situation by either remembering your name in the first place or asking early before it’s too late. Remembering someone’s name makes people feel like they matter and are worthy of being remembered.

The converse of this is the obnoxious person who will not let a conversation go by without mentioning some big important person that they know. This preoccupation with someone else diminishes the time that could be spent building a personal relationship with the person in front of you. Name-dropping gives off a try-hard vibe that is a huge turn off.

3. They treat everyone with respect.
A classic way to see the true character of a person, is to take them to a restaurant and observe how they treat the waiter. A true charming person will treat everyone, whether it is the CEO or the bus boy, the same – as deserving of respect. They say thank you, make eye contact and consider the feelings of others. This is impressive in a world of hidden agendas and will go a lot farther than being selective with kindness. People are more likely to create lasting relationships, whether business or social, with people that exude kindness and treat everyone around them with respect.

4. They are positive.
John Wooden once said that, “Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.” It may seem that charming people float through life with no hardships but that is because they never let anything deter their positivity. It is a contagious quality and makes a huge impression on people especially when being positive is the hardest thing to do. This display of strength and calm in the face of adversity makes charming people stand out in a crowd.

5. They know when to touch people.
It has been said that your fingerprints never fade from the lives you touch. All cheesiness aside, people often underestimate the power of touch. I’m not talking about running your fingers through someone’s hair or going for a handhold but a subtle touch of the arm can go a long way. It bridges a connection between people and makes you feel included and appreciated. Charming people can easily read whether or not someone is open to touch and uses it to bond and show openness.

6. They sometimes show a little weakness
There is nothing more intimidating that a person who does not admit to any flaws. It makes them seem unapproachable and unrelatable. Showing flaws and being able to laugh at one’s self for the sake of social bonding is what sets charming people apart. They understand that no one is perfect and bonding over those imperfections is an easy with to share a laugh. It has been proven that people will actually respect you more rather than less for their admitting to flaws. So tell the story about when you tripped at work or ripped your pants. It will only make you more charming!

7. They put away their phones.
There is nothing more distracting that trying to talk to someone who is multitasking between your conversation and their emails, Instagram, Twitter, etc. It puts a barrier between you that drains the bond that could have been made with just a couple minutes of uninterrupted conversation. Charming people make a point of putting away the screen, making eye contact and listening when someone is trying to talk to them. It seems simple but in a high-tech, “you-have-10-new-messages” world, it makes all the difference.

8. They ask questions.
Asking questions is an important way to express interest in the people around you. It shows that you are listening and focusing on the conversation. Charming people are not self-absorbed and do not rattle on about their mom and their cat and the horrible traffic that they just sat in. They realize that they will not learn anything new if they do not engage in other people’s lives rather than just their own. Charming people know what they know and want to know what you know too.

When it comes to being charming, it is all about the connections you make and the impressions you leave. Treating everyone as a potential new friend will not only give you a better social life, but will make you feel better about your ability to bond with people professionally and personally. Being charming is synonymous with being kind, compassionate and aware of how you are making the people around you feel.

Kelly Lam is the founder of The Whole Purpose, a company that custom designs wellness programs for individuals and corporations based on Mindful Wellness and Purposeful Communication.

She is a certified yoga teacher with over 15 years of experience, including a YogaWorks 500-Hour Certification. With many years in the wellness and nutrition sector, Kelly is also an experienced consultant and teacher of nutrition.
Kelly is also the host of “ActiveMe,” a television series produced by the City of Newport Beach and co-host of TuneIn Radio’s “Healthy Happy Hour,” a weekly podcast featuring celebrities and corporate leaders who discuss their secrets to healthy lifestyles.