A friend of mine was asked to change a presentation by a senior leader within her business, because he didn’t like a particular section… It wasn’t feedback to make the presentation better, he just wanted it removed… The presentation wasn’t even for him.
What would you have done?
Even though the removal made the presentation worse and although the section she was asked to remove linked directly with her personal values – she changed the presentation.
Her desire to be liked was greater than her belief in her presentation.
She is not alone – We all have an innate desire to be liked, especially by those who appear more important. In fact some of us have such a deep need for approval, that we will act against our own self interest in the hope we will be seen in a more attractive light.
It is okay to want to be liked, it is a normal human need… but when it penetrates our values and actions in a way that doesn’t allow us to be ourselves, that is simply wrong.
What if we could live in a world where the most authentic and best version of you was all you ever needed to be?
“I will never let anyone walk though my mind with their dirty feet”
When we desperately seek approval, we are solely focused on other people’s agendas and being seen as someone whom they approve. In basic terms we try to fit in by thinking and acting like them.
However we are kidding ourselves -you are not just like them. You can only ever be just like you.
When we try to imitate and replicate others, we will end up feeling drained of energy because attempting to second guess what someone else is thinking is ridiculously hard. Not only that, but you will likely fail in your goal of being liked – rather you will be perceived as unauthentic.
We need to come to terms with the fact that the only thing in this universe we have control over is our thoughts and our actions.
Absolutely nothing else is within your control – especially the thoughts of other people! The bottom line is that you cannot force anyone to like you.
You can be authentic and they will choose to like you or not.
You can try to trick them into liking you and they will still choose to like you or not. The only difference is, if they like the false version of you, what do you think will happen when they discover you deceived them? How will you feel having to live a lie?
What to do
There is no magical formula I’m afraid.
I wish I could create five steps to be liked by everyone and anyone, but I can’t. Nobody can – it doesn’t exist.
I can offer my advice:
Aim to be the best version of you.
- Live your values in everything you do.
- Allow your voice to be heard – what you have to say is of equal value as anyone else in the world.
- Be true to who you want to be – the best you. You have access to that person right now, you just have to choose to step up, feel a bit vulnerable and show who you are.
This advice is easier said than done. It will feel scary, you will feel vulnerable and it will be challenging. But when you represent your authentic self fully, the connections and relationships you build from that will be the most magical and special of your entire life.
There will still be some people who don’t like you. Even the best version of you!
Don’t worry about these people – really don’t! Just think about these people for a moment… people who don’t like you for being you…do you really want that type of negativity in your life?
You are worth more than that – shine like the light that you are, the people that matter will be drawn to you!