There is an epidemic even more threatening than the flu that’s going around. It’s the same thing that got everyone who isn’t a series star on ‘The Walking Dead’. It’s turned vast swaths of the population into that flat girl from those “Don’t Smoke Marijuana” commercials.
It’s the epidemic of boring.
Boring kills dates, networking events, sales and deals. But when we fight dullness, we become veritable superstars — more attractive, more memorable, and more likable.
Here’s how to combat the boring:
Engage the Brain
Our brains are like toddlers – easily bored and demand to be fed with entertaining nuggets.
New York Times best-selling author and developmental molecular biologist, John Medina discovered that the brain has a very short attention span. Our brains are attracted to intriguing, interesting, engaging people and things.
Luckily, you are an intriguing, interesting, engaging person! Here’s how you can prove it…
Turn People On
Use – to your comfort level – what turns people on emotionally.
Most interactions look like a flat line graph. People go through the motions of a conversation and it‘s dull, “What do you do? What brings you here?”
So, to stop being boring you have to cause more emotional excitement in your interactions. And, by the way, this is also more emotionally exciting for you and will help keep you more engaged.
Here are some ideas for how to get that emotional excitement going…
Stop Using Social Scripts
During most social interactions, you might find that you ask the same questions over and over and give the same answers.
So if you want to be engaging, break that mundane snooze-fest bs and start asking questions that matter. Here are three ideas for you:
- What has been the best part of your week?
- Besides work, what gets you up in the morning?
- Working on any passion projects at the moment?
Be Interested to Be Interesting
Leading psychologist John Dewey discovered one of the most fundamental aspects of people. He found that there is one thing that every person on this earth wants:
To feel important.
Once someone has the basics of shelter and sustenance, all they want is to feel cherished, valued, and worthy.
When we are interested, people find us more interesting!
Here’s a challenge: Next time you are at an event or out with a friend, approach all conversations with one goal: Get to know the other person as deeply as possible.
How can you go about that? Ask questions about what they find important; advance their ideas a step further; ask why and how more than what and when.
Here’s a cool nonverbal tool:
Use a triple nod.
Studies have shown that people will speak 3 to 4 times longer if you do three slow nods in a row when they have finished speaking. It’s like a nonverbal “…”
So, when someone finishes their statement, look them in the eye and nod three times as if to say, “keep going.” They often will continue and you end up having a much deeper conversation. (And if they don’t it’s no big deal, just take a sip of your drink and ask your next question).
The thing about “the boring” is: combating it is a self-immunization process…
As we’ve become more screen-facing and less outward-facing, the boring has become more pervasive. People have become more self-centered & in really lame ways.
Engaging people, helping them forget all the crap in the world and reminding them how to have fun is where it’s at.