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A Short Course in Human Relations

February 23, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 90

Dealing with people is an ongoing exercise for ninety nine percent of us for ninety nine percent of our lives. Handling it successfully improves life.

Great, I've heard that since I was a kid. Some people seem to be born with the knack and are popular and successful. Others, like me, aren't so lucky. I'm always struggling to keep my foot out of my mouth. I guess it's just not one of my strong suits. Sound familiar?

Getting along comfortably with others is not rocket science. Take a look at the habits that lead in that direction and write down which ones you really can't handle.

1. Greeting people. Say hi, or hello, good morning, nice to meet you, nice to see you again. Maybe just nod or wave. Make it cheerful and see if it doesn't make you both feel better. When you send the message that you're happy and glad to see them it's hard for them to respond negatively. You're setting the right tone.

2. Smiling. This is a friendly gesture. When somebody smiles at me I find myself automatically smiling back. I don't have to run around grinning like I'm off in a dream world but if I want to be in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere a little smile here and there helps.

3. Use people's names. If I can remember your name the message is much more well received. If I can't it's like getting a birthday card addressed to occupant. Next stop waste basket. Forming the habit of remembering names is not tough. Making up your own memory tricks helps but mostly it's just paying attention. If I want you to be friendly and relaxed around me I have to act like you are an interesting equal. What was your name again? Wrong message. In fact, I find that most people are interesting and equal in lots of ways once I get to know them a little. This habit is well worth working on.

4. Look at people and listen when they talk to you. This is a very simple but important habit. If you're looking elsewhere you're not really paying attention and I know it. How does that make me feel? Unimportant? An irritation? If something urgent is happening how long does it take to look at me and say something? Maybe four seconds? I'm sorry but I need to take care of this right now. Can we talk later? Much better.

5. Be generous with praise and stingy with criticism. There are lots of good things about the people I meet if I just look for them. Pointing them out is music to their ears. Everybody has different habits and faults too. If I decide to correct someone it says two things. Both bad. You are not acceptable the way you are and I'm going to instruct you on how to act. If I send that message regularly I'll spend lots of time alone.

6. Be considerate. Being careful about offending or hurting the feelings of people is not weakness. It is maturity. Learning this is another thing that makes us both feel good.

7. Think. Can I make people like me? No. Can I act in a way that is likeable? Yes. What kind of people do I enjoy being with? Those who act like they are interested in me and what I have to say. Those who don't act superior or threatening in some way. Those who smile, relax and are interesting equals.

If working on my habits makes a steady improvement in my life why would I not? Have I got something better to do?

Ken Lind

Veteran, husband, father, grandfather, Marketing Management major, fifty two year history in business, author.

Source: EzineArticles
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