Make the First Move

What determines whether you hit it off with someone? It’s not circumstantial; rather, it’s a matter of you taking charge and setting the tone to be friendly and open. Most people treat others like strangers and thus won’t become friends. So change that script from the very beginning, put people at ease and let them be comfortable around you.

The first way to set the tone is to speak like friends: topic-wise, tone-wise, and even privacy-wise. People will go along with the tone you set as long as you aren’t outright offensive. A powerful aspect of this is showing emotion as friends do, instead of filtering yourself and putting up a wall for the literal purpose of keeping people insulated at a distance. And stop being so darned literal and serious. A conversation does not have to be about sharing facts, and some comments can be used solely for the purpose of seeing how the other person will react.

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