Social situations are among the most important in our lives. Yet,there is a huge chance that you are oblivious to the plethora ofunwritten social rules that structure everybody’s behavior. Failing tocomply to these cultural imprints can cause irreversible damage. Justfollowing them blindly will not get you ahead. Hacking them, however,will give you the best results possible. Therefore we bring to you these –
10 psychological life hacks that will help you gain the advantage in social situations
1) Assume comfort in any interaction.
Our brain is an incredibly complicated instrument. Our relationshipwith it, is a love-hate one. We think we have control over it butusually something unconscious dictates our actions.
In most of our social interactions, we find it difficult to feelcomfortable among strangers because our brain tries to protect us fromexposure.
This however isn’t helping us when trying to be social and meet new people, is it?
This is why assuming comfort is so powerful. Commanding your brain to feel that you already know the person you are about to meet puts you in a position of advantage. It increases the chances of people showinginterest in you and consequently even liking you.
2) Pay attention to people’s feet when you are approaching them.
Interrupting people when they are in the middle of an importantconversation is one of the most annoying things to do. It shows that you have zero knowledge of social dynamics which will lead to unpleasantsocial situations.
When you approach a group of people while in a conversation, payattention to their bodies. If they turn only their torsos and not theirfeet, it means they are in the middle of an important conversation andthey don’t want you to interrupt them.
If they turn both torso and feet, it means you are welcome. This isextremely important, because the right timing in such situations may put you in a position of advantage, especially if the conversation wasboring for both sides.
3) Whenever you have an argument with someone, stand next to them and not in front of them.
We’ve all been in situations where out of nowhere the conversation started escalating.
Unless you love drama, I would suggest you to avoid these situations. You might have the best argument in the world, but usually people getirritated when they feel they are wrong.
So, whenever you feel that the argument you have with another person(especially friends – it’s not cool to fight with friends) createstension, move next to them. You won’t appear much of a threat, and theywill eventually calm down.
4) Whenever you need a favor, open with “I need your help.”
Admit it. We all love to get others to do stuff for us. Eitherbecause we are lazy, or because we really need some help to complete atask.
Social dynamics show that when it comes to platonic relationships,nobody really likes an asshole. So whenever you need a favor, start your sentence with “I need your help.”
In most cases, people will accept your request and help you out. This occurs because we don’t really like the guilt of not helping someoneout and we do like to be the one who is capable of helping.
5) If you want people to feel good, give them validation. Rephrase what they just told you.
We love validation. Most of our actions are the outcome of our need for validation. So what is the best way to get people to like you? Give them what they need of course. A simple example, is when you arein a conversation with another person and he says something reallyimportant for him. After he finishes, rephrase what he just said in your own words. This will make him think that you are a good listener andthat you are really interested in him. It makes him feel he is thecenter of attention. That’s validation right there.
6) If you want to get a positive response from someone, nod while you talk.
This one is extremely powerful and also a bit manipulative especially if the person is suggestive. So use it with your own responsibility and in an ethical way. Getting a positive response from someone is usuallywhat we want. Whether it is making a sale, or promoting a viewpoint, wealways want people to get on board. Nodding while you try to deliveryour message is a powerful way to get the person to agree with you.People usually like mimicking, so they will most probably nod back while you talk. This will subsequently communicate to their brains that theyhave to agree with you.
7) Want to see if someone is paying attention to what you are saying? Fold your arms.
Usually when we are in the middle of a conversation and especially if we talk about something very important to us, we get lost in ourtalking and rarely pay attention to whether the other person isfollowing or not. So instead of losing time talking to a person who isdistracted and might not even be interested in what you are saying, dothis. Fold your arms while talking and see if the other person followsyour move. If the other person is observing you and pays attention, they will most likely mimic you.
8) Having trouble remembering names? Repeat the other person’s name during the conversation.
I suck at remembering names. I usually don’t even listen to the other person when he says his name the moment we get introduced to eachother. So usually, I ask a friend to introduce himself to the person so I can listen to his name. But then I forget it again. Awkward.Remembering names is very important because we feel important whensomeone mentions us. So the moment you meet someone repeat his name.Example: “Hi my name is Alex” “Nice to meet you Alex. So, Alex how doyou know John?” And continue to repeat his name throughout theconversation.
9) If you ask someone a question and they only partially answer, just wait. They will keep talking.
This is a very common situation when you don’t know the other personthat well or your question wasn’t clear enough. If they finish theanswer without providing a full answer, just wait. Stay silent and keepeye contact. If the tension becomes unbearable, raise your eyebrows. Itputs a bit of pressure on them but it communicates that you showinterest. It also sub-communicates that you are a person that usuallygets what he wants.
10) People usually focus on the emotion and not on the subject.
This is very useful in public speaking but also in building rapportwith an acquaintance. Whenever you introduce yourself to new people,most probably they have already heard what you are about to say. Wellthat’s not a problem. Even if you want to talk about the most boringtopic in the world, make sure of one thing: Always try to evokeemotions. From my experience the 3 emotions that you want to evoke are: • Excitement • Laughter: Everyone likes to laugh • Intrigue: Leave alittle mystery so the other person has to invest energy to hear more.Don’t be purposely distant, but avoid verbal diarrhea.
There are many techniques to turn a boring conversation intoan exciting and intriguing one, but here are a couple of my favorites:
- Pause: A lot of the time when we want to keep someone’s attention, we tend to talk reallyfast, but this subcommunicates neediness and nervousness. A well-placedpause can create tension that makes your words have more gravitas.
- Tone and Inflection: No one finds monotone exciting. Switch up your tone of voice from deepfor declarative statements, to high inflection when you want to leavethem guessing.
- Paint pictures and compose symphonies in their mind with sensory details: When telling a story, take the person you’re talking to on an emotional journey by describing the colors, sounds, textures, tastes, smells, and how they made you feel. This will cause their mirror-neurons to fireoff, making it easier for them to imagine actually being there with you.
So if you want to be memorable, focus on the emotion behind thewords. People may forget what you say, but they will never forget howyou make them feel.