How about you and me do a mind meld? Nah, I’m not Spock. Yep, we don’t have the power of mind control—uhh…yet—but the power of psychology is almost as good! Yep, if you know what to do and what to look for, you can get exactly what you want from others… Here’s my list:
1. When you need to get some info If you ask someone a question, and you feel like they’re holding something back or not telling the whole story, keep nice long eye contact with them and stay quiet. The long and silent stare will make them uncomfortable, and they’ll do anything to break that awkwardness. You’ll get your answers in no time.2. You’ve got a song stuck in your head, and it’s getting annoying! This is called an ear-worm. I know we’ve ALL been there! Think of the END of the song. Your brain will interpret this as, “Okay, the song is over!” and will reset itself. Something called the Zeignark effect says that thinking about unfinished things or business usually leads to thoughts about other incomplete or unresolved problems. Your brain will get totally distracted from that song!
3. Get someone to agree with you Do a lot of nodding while you’re making the point that you want someone to agree with. It might not work on everyone, but nodding gives the impression that you know what you’re talking about, and that you’re passionate about it. They’ll start to believe what you’re saying is true!
4. When you feel like you’re being watched… Do you know how yawns are contagious? You can use that to your advantage! If you feel like someone is watching you, make yourself yawn. Make sure they SEE you do it. After your yawn, look and see if they’re yawning too. If they are, now you know that they’ve been watching you. Maybe it’s a crush?
5. Stopping an argument Say you’re hosting a party and a group of people starts arguing. It’s getting pretty intense. What should you do?? Go grab some food for them! Eating has a calming effect, and everyone loves a good snack. They’ll subconsciously start to feel happier and more comfortable. Getting them to eat should break the tension.
6. Win Rock, Paper, Scissors – every time! Maybe you play this game when deciding who should do a task that no one else wants to do. Here’s a secret that will help you win so that you never have to do those tasks again! Just as you’re about to start the game, ask your opponent a question. Right after your question, start the Rock, Paper, Scissors chant. Your opponent will most likely pick Scissors! Try it and let me know how it goes in the comments!
7. An extra trick when trying to keep eye contact We’ve all heard that keeping eye contact is important when you’re in a situation where you’re trying to gain trust. Not sure if you’re keeping it long enough? Try to take note of the other person’s exact eye color while you’re talking AND listening to them. Not just that they have blue eyes: is it one shade of blue, or does it get lighter around the pupil? Do their eyes seem to change color? The amount of time this takes is the acceptable length of eye contact.
8. How to tell if someone is lying—this one might surprise you! Yeah, we’ve all heard the most popular tried-and-true tricks of how to tell if someone is lying—if they don’t make eye contact, if they’re fidgety, etc. But how about this one: someone is probably lying to you if they leave out what is called sensory details. Honest people will include explanations of how something sounded, smelled, looked, or felt like, and these are often the most important parts of the story. If someone is lying, they’ll leave out these little details.
9. Gauging the relationships within your friend group This works great with co-workers, too! When a group of you is together and laughing, pay attention to who looks at you the most, and who you’re looking at as well. While people laugh, they tend to look at who they feel they have the closest bond with! Bond. James Bond.
10. How to tell if someone likes you This can work with friendships and romantic relationships. Pick a random word or phrase, and every time the other person uses it, or something close to it, smile and nod. If the other person keeps using that word or phrase, that means they like you! 11. If you need help carrying something from someone who doesn’t pitch in Say you and your roommate are grocery shopping, and you have a lot of stuff! You’re talking and laughing through the aisles and it’s time to check out. Hand your roommate some of the grocery bags while continuing your conversation. They won’t even notice that you’ve handed them anything because you’re talking to them. They’ll take them and you can carry equal loads to the car!
12. Showing someone you’re a great listener (or at least, making them think so) Whatever your friend or date just said, paraphrase it and say it back to them. It will tell them that you’ve really been listening to them and paying attention! Because you have been! This is a great way to have a terrific and honest conversation.
13. A simple way to tell if someone doesn’t like you Ask them if you can borrow a pen or pencil. It’s such a small favor that if they REALLY don’t like you, they’ll say no. On the flip side, they might decide to help you out (it’s such a small thing, after all) and decide that you’re not all bad!
14. If you want to forget something unpleasant We all have moments we’d rather not remember…so all you have to do is replace it with something positive that you DO want to remember ASAP! For example, if you have a bad day at work, come home and cuddle with your partner or your pet! Physical touch has been proven to be a serious mood booster. Grab ahold of something like their shirt (or fur)—this makes the moment much more tangible and easier to remember.
15. Know whether you’re welcome in a conversation If you approach a group of chatting co-workers or friends and they see you coming, pay attention to their feet. If you’re welcome to join the circle, their torso AND feet will turn toward you. If they turn their torso toward you but not their feet, they’d rather you not join in. It could also point to whether they were gossiping about you. Just saying…!
16. How to seem charming and irresistible! When you meet someone for the first time, try to remember their name AND use it in the conversation that follows. People love nothing more than the sound of their own name! It might be hard, but it comes off super personable and thoughtful. You might have noticed that car salespeople use this technique a lot.
17. Are they being genuine with you? If you’re talking and the other person is smiling at you, check for crinkles around their eyes. If they’re being fake, there won’t be any. This works the same way if you’re trying to tell if your friend really thought your joke was funny—if they’re genuinely laughing, there will be crinkles around their eyes. If not, they’re faking it!
18. If you get nervous in social situations, chew gum! Chewing gum makes you look engaged, and it tricks your brain into feeling comfortable. Your brain will send a message like, “We must be fine because if we were in real danger, we’d be running!” Plus, you’re doing something when you’re chewing gum, so it will make you feel more relaxed.
19. Make your boss let you off the hook—at least in public A must-know for the office! Have you ever messed up at work and know you’re going to be called out for it at the next meeting? Sit right next to your boss, or next to that co-worker who’s mad at you. Your physical closeness to them will make them uncomfortable, and they’ll be less likely to yell at you or create any more conflict.
20. Making a memorable impression This technique works great on first dates or in job situations. It’s been said that people remember the beginning and end of something—a date, an interview, a meeting—the clearest. Try to be interviewed either first or last. Be the first or last to give your presentation. Plan your date for the beginning or end of the day. You’ll get that callback! Bonus: Make sure your hands are warm! When shaking hands with your potential future boss, having warm hands gives exactly that impression: that you’re a warm, kind, and open person! It will make them feel comfortable, too! Hey, if you learned something new today,