Why Knowing Who You Are Ups Your Likeability (and Hire-ability)
This may feel like a strange exercise, but I want you to think about someone you really don’t like. Think about a person you avoid when possible, the person at work that seems to cut your fuse in half.
Got them in your mind?
Now, I want you to think about a characteristic in them that makes them so unlikeable. Try to think of deeper ones, not the fact that she keeps her desk messy, or the way he eats his lunch.
Now I bet I can pinpoint the cause of most (if not all) of their frustrating, unlikeable behavior.
Are you ready?
That person has no idea who they are.
Think about it for a moment. When you feel insecure, what do you do? You assert your opinions extra loudly, trying to compensate for the smallness you feel on the inside. You become bossy or controlling. You become needy, looking for affirmation anywhere you can find it. You apologize constantly or ask for reassurance often. You try to put on a mask, hoping that will help you fit in.
These are all characteristics of someone who doesn’t really know who they are and who is looking for affirmation and belonging.
Have you ever been this person? I have.
The hard part about it is that these characteristics don’t make us more likeable, they are actually really frustrating for the people in our lives. They make us seem bossy or inauthentic, like we’re trying too hard. Our attempts to fit in end up pushing people further away. It’s hard for those people but even harder for us.
If you, like most of us, want to become more likeable, the thing you really need to do is figure out who you are.
You need to ask God who you are and what you’re worth.
You need to embark on a journey of self-discovery, figuring out what you’re good at, what you have to offer and what you believe to be true about the world.
When we know these things about ourselves, and we have God breathing our worth into us instead of asking for it from the world, we become much more likeable.
We no longer feel the need to be pushy or to prove we’re smart/powerful/capable enough. We are able to listen to people instead of doing all of the talking. We are able to be in real relationships with people instead of constantly trying to gain their approval, get their affirmation or convince them we are someone we’re not.
If we want people to like us, we first need to know us.
It’s a process, and not an easy one. But it’s a worthwhile venture, a path that will take us to a place where we are not only more likeable, but we like ourselves more.
And when we come across these people who frustrate us, what if we saw them through eyes of compassion instead of being frustrated by their behavior? They’re on a journey of discovering their worth just like we are.