How To Get People To Like You In 90 Seconds Or Less

  1. Dress appropriately. People judge on first impressions (and this includes your clothes) so make sure you dress appropriately for where you are. Nobody likes to see someone in home clothes at a fancy restaurant or someone with make up caked on their face at the gym. As much as we hate to admit it, clothes make up so much of what we think about people — it’s just so easy, we can’t help but automatically judge. So dress for the occasion, whatever it is.
    • Think of the small things, too. Men might forget what their flashy, shiny watch says about them and women about their long, dangly, feather-y earrings. Everything down to your shoes, your make-up, your hair-style, and your jewelry adds a data point others can collect about you. So pick out your outfits carefully if you’re looking to nail that first impression!
  2. Smile. Smiling makes you look friendly, approachable and cheerful. These are qualities that people generally like to associate themselves with, in case you didn’t already know! Turns out no one likes approaching strangers and putting themselves out there, so smiling is the first thing you can do to show them you’re not scary. Even the most confident of people find it reassuring. And it doesn’t cost a thing.
  3. Mirror them. That’s when you do just that — you adopt their body positioning and/or facial expression like their reflection in a mirror. It unconsciously tells the other person that you’re like them or that you feel the same way.[2] Ever been to a rock concert and you leave feeling that rush of being with 1,000 others all feeding off each other? It’s because you’re all swaying, moshing, and rocking out together. The same goes in a normal, everyday conversation! Very few words (or none) can be exchanged and you can still feel a bond.
    • If you purposefully go out of your way to do this 24/7, you’ll probably be caught. But for 90 seconds, you’re good to go. So mirror the angle of their body, put your arms in a similar position, and mirror their face, too. You’ll probably feel the exchange of energy, too.
  4. Make eye contact. Imagine meeting someone who is constantly looking three feet over your right shoulder. You’d practically have to trick yourself into not waving your hand over their face and screaming, “Buddy! I’m over here!” Save them the temptation and make good eye contact. It tells them that you’re listening, you’re interested, and you’re engaged with them and the words they’re saying. Not making eye contact is usually mistaken as just being rude.
    • If this is an issue for you, try tricking yourself by staring at the top of their nose, or only looking at them when they’re talking and taking breaks while you’re talking. You don’t need to be looking at them 100% of the time. That’d be intense!
  5. Open up your body language. This is important to show that you are polite and respectful — if you don’t, you risk looking rude and unapproachable. To paint the right picture in your head, imagine seeing someone with their arms and legs crossed, sitting in a corner, with their eyes glued to their iPhone. Would you approach that person? Would you classify them as “likeable?” Probably not. So make yourself open and available — even when you think no one is looking!
    • A good portion of this — besides just uncrossing your arms and keeping your head up — is just staying engaged with the world and people around you. When your phone rings, ignore it. Show the person your time is being spent on them. Don’t glance at your watch, or revert your gaze to your computer. Live in the moment with the people around you. Your phone will be there when they’re gone, believe it or not.
  6. Use the power of touch. Imagine Joe Schmo, your coworker says hi to you as he walks past your cubicle. You’ll forget about that in about 5 seconds. Now imagine that Joe walks past your cubicle and quickly touches your shoulder as he greets you. Which feels more genuine and which makes you like him more? That’s the power of touch!
    • Now imagine that Joe says, “Hey, [your name here]! How’s your day going?” as he touches your shoulder. He’s combined touch with your name and a genuine, interested greeting. And now? We like Joe Schmo. We like him a lot.
  7. Make sure your tone, gestures, and words match. This is especially important when you’re in a position of power or seeking a position of power — namely, in the workplace. But it’s also important when you’re trying to persuade people or even just get a point across. If you want to be trustworthy and seem genuine, everything about you will be consistent. Think of your honey saying, “I love you” between gritted teeth and fist pump. Wait, what?
    • This is seen most often with politicians. Failed ones, that is. It’s not uncommon to see an old white guy saying, “I’m in touch with the youngest generation. I know what matters to them,” as he’s shaking his fist, pointing his finger, and furrowing his brow. Nah. That just seems fishy and we can just sense it. It’s a simple mistake that makes all the difference.
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