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You might have noticed sometimes that it is really

difficult to someone to say no to certain people even

if you really dont want to do the favour that they are
requesting for. Now there is a science behind why it
happens, one of the reasons might be that the person
asking you the favour that is really persuasive
naturally or maybe he knows the way to persuade
PERSUATION is a technique to make people say
yes to your request or idea and make them do what
you really want them to do. Its one of the most
powerful skills to learn and master if you really want
to achieve success in any field of your life.
Persuasion techniques are used everywhere now a
days by people ranging from a normal sales man to a
millionaire for selling their products and politicians
CAUTION: please dont use the information in this
book to manipulate people in wrong way or for any
evil purpose.
if you want long term success use it for mutual
so lets begin.
During the course of evolution humans have
developed shortcuts for making decisions quick and
save energy of the brain. These shortcuts are
In todays world our brain uses these triggers more
than ever. As our brain if flooded by information
through various sources and we dont have enough
time and energy to analyse all the information that
comes to us. We hugely make decisions on the base
of this triggers and not real facts as we think we do.
And it all happens at subconscious level of the brain,
so we are not aware of it.
Now basically 8 triggers discussed in this book which
make us take decisions and are used for persuasion.

Its been very difficult for our ancestors, the most
important resources for survival were very scarce so
naturally humans developed attraction towards scarce
resources as we need them urgently. After thousands
of years that sense of urgency is still present in our
brain. We are more likely to get attracted to certain
things whose availability is limited and we mostly
take actions to get it if we feel that we may lose that
thing... marketing, companies use this fact to a great
extent, example companies make limited edition
products not because they cant make more products
but it triggers the customers to buy it since it is scare
and not available in abundance, similarly big
restaurants usually offer less food on the plate,
advertisers use terms like hurry offer valid only for
today. This concept can be used in all aspects of life...
considering love life, dating gurus give important
advice to people that they should not be always
available for their crush mainly during the initial
period to build attraction and avoid the curse of
getting friend zoned.

Its a really powerful mechanism of brain, humans
have a deep internal need to settle things with each
other to make things fair. So if you do a favour to
someone then the will return it with a favour but if
you do something bad you can get a much worse in
example: if you get a gift by someone on your
birthday then you more likely to give the person a gift
on their birthday.
now for a business example: there is a multimillion
dollar organisation Hare Krishna which makes a lot
of money through donations. One way of getting
donations is that
at the airport they approach people and pin a flower
at their cloths, even if you say you dont want they
insist you to take it as a gift and after you accept that
gift they immediately ask that if you would like to
donate some money for their organisation. Now it
really becomes hard for the person to say no as we
have that urge to settle things with each other and
mostly people donate due to this fact.

Example for concession from the book explains it
clearly, once when the author was at airport a boy
came to him and asked him to buy a ticket for an
event but as the author was not interested so he
refused. After the denial the boy asked him to buy a
chocolate instead which was way cheaper than the
ticket the author took the chocolate without any
hesitation.... but after the boy left he realised
something strange as why he bought the chocolate
when he not really liked chocolates that much in the
first place. This concludes the concept of concession
that when someone ask you for a large request and
after you deny counters it with a smaller request, and
we are more likely to accept that smaller request.


People also have a desire to appear consistent in their

behaviour and also thy appreciate consistence in
others. If you make someone commit to small
initially you will be more likely to make them
commit to bigger actions later on. Using these facts
persuasion is possible.
example: an experiment where a group of people
given a cancer awareness button and requested them
to wear it for a week it was a harmless request so
most of them agreed. Sometime later these same
people were request to give a donation to help fight
cancer. Not surprisingly these group of people not
even just donate but with an amount much more that
that of the other groups.
why? Because in wearing the button for a week,
cancer fighting had become a small piece of their
identity. They are now more likely to behave like a
cancer fighter would.
Similarly a charity gets people to sign a petition not
much so much to influence others but to increase
their commitment to the cause similarly when toy
companies use this principle... what happens is that a
toy gets heavily advertised, children get excited by it
and they approach their parents about buying it for
the Christmas or their birthday. After some
consideration parents agree and make the
commitment to buy it. When they go to the store they
discover that the toy is out stock. So they check out
other store and then discover that it is simply not
available anywhere, this is done purposely but the
companies an stores. So now they do is simply buy
other toys to compensate and apologise to the child.
Suddenly in January that toy arrives in store, child
notice this and tell their parents to buy, this is the
time when consistency kicks in and parents go to buy
the toy... the toy stores now not only sold that toy but
other toys as well using your commitment and

You might have notices something like in this
example, a study in new York was done where people
were told to look up to the 6th floor of a building,
continuously and see what happens Forty-five percent
of passersby stopped if one person was looking up,
while 85% of passersby stopped if 15 people were
looking up. A similar experiment was aborted when
so many people were looking up that they stopped the
this principle is based on the fact that we copy what
others do, especially when we are unsure what to do.
If situations are critical, we follow anyone who seems
to know what they are doing. So basically Show
people how others already do what you want them to
do. In an alarming research, it has found that highly
visible news about suicides results in an increase in
the suicide rates.
this type of suicides are called copycat suicides,
happened even in India some years ago, where news
particularly about children committing suicide due to
depression increased the number of children
committing suicides. On a positive side this principle
of social proof was used to treat young children who
were afraid of dogs. The treatment was very simple,
they merely watched a boy playing happily with a
dog for twenty minutes a day. After only 4 days, 67%
of children got over the fear and started playing with
the dog themselves. When everyone is laughing you
also laugh... canned laughter that we hear in most of
the comedy shows actually helps the joke to appear
much funnier that it actually is. Advertisers even tell
us that their product is largest selling, fastest
growing... etc; these are all implications of this.


We refer to people who seem superior to us, we are

we are brought up to obey authorities, initially
parents and later teachers, police, politicians and so
on. Such authorities have the power of command,
telling us what to do. A key reason we do this is
because we believe that there would be a negative
consequence if we disobey which is not always true.
There are three factors that triggers the authority
a)titles: A title before a persons name increases their
persuasion capabilities. Titles like Dr., Prof., Ph.D.,
Chairman, Founder, CEO, experts have an impact on
b) cloths: Certainly people wearing certain uniforms,
suits, religious outfits also impacts.
c) trappings: these are certain accessories that define
certain position/role or a person like badges,
expensive suits, nice cars, etc.
they give us the feel that the person using them is a
authority who needs to be obeyed.
now looking for an example for it, The expert behind
these principles of persuasion Robert Cialdini PhD, is
a fine example. Those who read about him for the
first time would instantly perceive him as a person
with extensive knowledge credibility in psychology
due to the PhD before his name, even without
knowing what he wrote about. In an experiment
nurses were told to do certain things which are
completely against the hospital rules but they still did
all of them. Its just because they were told to o by a
doctor, who was actually a fake doctor used just for
experiment. This shows how people easily gets
manipulate by this trigger. Business related example
for using this concept is when companies use experts,
engineers, doctors, etc; to advertise their products.

Its so hard to say no to a beautiful girl or a cute boy
asking you a favour just because people are more
likely to be influenced by things or people that they
like most. Since liking has such a fundamental impact
on relationships it is often used as a powerful tool for
persuasion. You can dramatically increase the
chances of making people comply to your request,
sell or persuade them if they like you at first place.
Now comes the main question how to make someone
like you; there are various factors on which you can
physical attraction: try to always look as good as
possible, because good looks suggest other
favourable traits, like honesty, humour,
similarities: Find similarities between you and the
person, we like people similar to us in terms of
interest, opinion, personality, background, etc;
compliment: giving compliments, people love to
receive praises, and tend to like those who give it...
surprisingly even if they know if its false.
contact and cooperation: how often they see you
can also have an impact and how well you co operate
with them. A real world example of our irrational
thinking because of this principle is our love towards
pandas. They are cute, fluffy animal on which
billions of dollars are spent as to save them from
going extinct. Now its a holy deed that even I dont
want to see a world without pandas but the real
problem is that the fact that there are many other
species that are at the edge of extinction. Many of
that other species are easier to save and are much
important for our eco system and indirectly ourselves
but we are not getting enough money and resources to
save them.
why ? Just because they are not as cute as pandas
are. Thats how liking works.

When asking someone to do us a favour we will be
most successful if we provide a reason with the
example: A hardware psychologist made an
experiment where she approached people in a line
who were just about to use the Xerox machine and
requested that person to let her use the Xerox
machine in three different ways which got her
different results. In the 1st way she asked can I use the
machine as am in rush... 90% agreed in the second
way she just asked can I use the machine? and 60%
agreed thats its always better to try and ask in the
3rd way she asked can I use the machine to take
Xerox. Surprisingly 90% again agreed. So it
conclude that giving a reason increases the chances of
your request getting accepted. Even I have personally
used the power of reasoning on many occasions and it
really works. Once I had to visit a doctor when I went
there, too many people were already waiting I had to
prepare for my exams so I didnt wanted to waste my
time, I requested them to let me go first as I wanted to
go an prepare for exams with just a small bit of
hesitation all of them agreed. These are the 8 triggers
which I discussed in this book. Its been 80 years
humans are behaving modernised as reacting to the
consequents which is right and which is right. The law
of attraction (LOA) is the belief that the universe
creates and provides for you that which your thoughts
are focused on. It is believed by many to be a universal
law by which Like Always Attracts like. The results
of positive thoughts are always positive consequences.
The same holds true for negative thoughts always
leading to bad outcomes. But the LOA is much more
than generalizations; thinking about red Lamborghinis
will bring you red Lamborghinis always. To the
believers, questioning the validity of the LOA is akin to
heresy and blasphemy; it creates religious fervor. To
the uninitiated, it may seem silly to discuss even the
possibility that such a law could exist.

The first article about this was in Psychology Today -

Throw Away Your Vision Board. After a quarter
million hits and much hate mail, I wanted to make sure
that I had a thorough LOA understanding so I read
every book from the originators of the law in the late
1800s and became a certified Advanced Practitioner of
the Law of Attraction by one of the authors of "The
Secret." I then wrote Throw Away Your Vision Board
2. This time the feedback was a little more positive. I
recently published the book, Throw Away Your Vision
Board: The Truth About the Law of Attraction. This
article will summarize 14 reasons why there is no LOA.

As I am starting to receive many emails regarding this

article, realize that I may not be able to answer all of
the comments. In addition, if you are close-minded and
believe that the LOA exists irrespective of data or
information to the contrary, then this article is not for
you. Thanks for visiting - now you can go back to your
LOA abundance. This article is intended for those who
are new to the LOA, those who don't know about it, and
those who have not succeeded in using it and are
open-minded and looking for answers.

1) Metaphysical Pseudoscience: LOA proponents

claim that it is based on scientific theory. It is at best,
metaphysical pseudoscience with conclusions based
on erroneous, unfounded, and often incorrect
assumptions. The list of incorrect scientific information
that is suggested by LOA creators is way too long for
article (more details check out Throw Away Your
Vision Board book. Here are a few of their scientific

a) Electrons have positive charges. b) In physics Like

always attracts like. [magnets?] c) Thinking burns
up brain matter. d) Only ether (not air) conducts light
and thought. e) Ether connects all minds together.
When 2 or more minds come close together, mind
stuff mixes, and creates a third, master mind. f)
Higher altitudes have more oxygen, better air for
breathing. g) Vibrating sound more quickly turns it into
heat, then light, than thought. h) Thought energy is
40,000 Hz to 4 X 1014 Hz or above 7 x 1014 Hz. In
reality brain waves are slow 1 100 Hz. i) The universe
hears nouns, not adjectives or qualifiers or only sees
pictures of your thoughts. j) Every thought you have
(about 70,000/day) has a specific frequency or
wavelength of energy. Thought Stuff leaves your
brain, travels through the ether around us and causes
Formless Stuff to create whatever you are thinking

Why are any of these important? Because it is these

scientific truths that form the scientific basis for the

2) No Purpose: Material abundance and wealth are the

most important manifestations to attract. The Universe
sets your life purpose. You pick the specific goal based
on wants; not values. This is one reason there is less
passion driving goal completion because these are not
deep-seated principled goals.

3) No Action: The only way to manifest your thoughts
into things is to believe and live as if youve already
accomplished your goal. LOA guru Esther Hicks said,
You did not come into this environment to create
through action. Action shows the Universe that you
know you dont have it and that you doubt its ability to
manifest it for you. While it is obvious to most that
action is a necessary component of goal achievement,
it is completely inconsistent with a belief in a LOA.

4) No Plan: If the best way for me to achieve my goals

is to live as if Ive already achieved them, then there is
no reason to make further plans to do so! Making plans
shows the universe that you doubt its ability and lack
faith. Doubt is negative and you will then attract more
negative and not get your desired item. In the book The
Secret, Jack Canfield proposed, Our job is not to figure
out the how. trust that the Universe will figure out
how to manifest it. Studies show that this way of
thinking results in greater short term satisfaction, but
less motivation and lower chance of achieving goals.
Curious that Jack Canfields website sells a program to
teach you how to make an Action Plan.

5) No Date: When you live as if you have already

accomplished your goals, there is no reason to
establish deadlines or timelines. As Secret author

Rhonda Byrne stated, It takes no time for the Universe
to manifest what you want. While goal setting research
supports the importance of establishing timelines to
achieve success, LOA experts assert that it would be
inappropriate to set a deadline for the universe to
achieve your goal.

6) No Challenges: Challenges are considered negative

thoughts and are to be avoided. Besides, if youve
theoretically already achieved your goal, there could
not be any challenges. As Esther Hicks, has stated,
Once you have recognized that thinking of what you do
not want only attracts more of what you do not want
into your experience, controlling your thoughts will not
be a difficult thing There are many goal-achieving
benefits to acknowledging and planning for challenges
that may arise. Unfortunately, a belief in a law of
attraction does not allow for you to accomplish this.

7) No Compassion: Dont get involved with anything

negative like charity or helping the needy. This will
attract more negativity and poverty. Wallace Wattles, a
LOA founder wrote, Do not talk about poverty; do not
investigate it, or concern yourself with it. Do not spend
your time in charitable work, or charity movements, all
charity only tends to perpetuate the wretchedness it
aims to eradicate. and Give your attention wholly to

riches; ignore poverty. Rhonda Byrne in The Secret
takes this a step further, If you see people who are
overweight, do not observe themIf you think or talk
about diseases, you will become sick. What you think
or surround yourself with good or bad, is what you will
bring upon yourself. If you believe in a LOA avoid any
of the helping or health professions such as physician,
nurse, hospital worker, clergy, psychologist, police
officer, paramedic, etc. Avoid professions in which you
deal with poor people such as accountant, mortgage
broker, banker, lawyer, etc. While research shows that
charitable work, empathy and volunteering is beneficial
to both the giver and receiver, avoid these things if you
believe in a LOA.

8) No Support: Since you will always attract what you

think about, you need to avoid any type of support
groups for people with mental or physical illnesses or
for people with similar experiences. Research shows
that support groups such as alcoholics anonymous,
weight watchers, or breast cancer support are
beneficial. The LOA incorrectly predicts that you will
make your problems worse.

9) Mindless: To invoke a LOA, you need to live

continuously in an unreal future as you anticipate that it
will be once youve achieved your goal and only

visualize a successful outcome. This shows faith in the
universe. Thinking about plans, actions, and challenges
are discordant and negative so skip the process and
focus on the result; live without regard to the present.
This is the definition of mindlessness. Being fully aware
of and attentive to the here and now is mindfulness and
has been shown to produce powerful health and
wellness benefits such as greater life satisfaction
and happiness.

10) Blame Yourself: As the LOA is supposed to be a

perfect, universal law, positivity should ALWAYS attract
more positivity. The corollary of this is that you alone
are completely responsible for any goal that was not
successfully achieved, no matter how unrealistic the
goal. This assumes that you not only control your
thoughts and actions, but also those of everyone
around youand nature. The fact is, that you dont.
Sorry to break that to you.

11) Blame the Victim: The only reason that anything

bad could ever happen to you is because you were
thinking bad thoughts. If someone rear-ends you in a
car 100% your fault. If you get breast cancer 100%
your fault (not genetics). If you get raped or abused
100% your fault. Children getting killed by terrorists,
sick babies in the intensive care unit, victims of floods,

hurricanes, natural disasters, the Holocaust yes, their
fault. We all know deep inside that this is ridiculous to
even suggest. However, it is a basic, fundamental
premise of the LOA. You NEVER attract something you
are not thinking about. When anything bad happens to
anyone, they are to blame. Dont feel sorry for anyone
who has cancer or a disease or starving children in
poverty, they brought it on themselves. What
causes obesity? Slow metabolism? No, fat thoughts.
From LOA experts, Disease cannot live in a body
thats in a healthy emotional state. (Bob Proctor). You
cannot catch anything unless you think you can, and
thinking you can is inviting it to you with your thought.
(From The Secret). Good thoughts and actions can
never produce bad results; bad thoughts and actions
can never produce good results. Suffering is always the
effect of wrong thought in some direction. (James
Allen). If man will think only thoughts of perfect health,
he can cause within himself the functioning of perfect
health (Wallace Wattles). Every individual creates
every aspect of their experiences we are in complete
control of our health throughout our entire lives. There
are no accidents. (Esther Hicks).

12) Were Not Perfect: The LOA is a perfect law and

should result in a perfect life. We are told that no goal
is too big if you can think it; there is no such thing as an

unrealistic goal. From The Secret You can think your
way to the perfect state of health, the perfect body, the
perfect weight, and eternal youth. You can bring it into
being, through your consistent thinking of perfection.
Reality check -life is not perfect. It can be great,
fantastic, amazing, incredible, even optimal. But
perfect? Wont happen. Whats the problem with this
way of thinking? Why not expect perfection?
Fantasizing and striving for perfect makes you feel
better in the short term but actually reduces your
chance of attaining your goals and results in more
unhappiness and blaming. If you are only going to be
satisfied with perfect results perfect health, perfect
body, perfect family, perfect marriage, perfect
friendships, perfect kids, perfect house, perfect job,
perfect life; you are in for a perfect disappointment.
Research studies support this.

13) Placebo Effect: Placebos are inactive, ineffective

substances to which a positive effect has been
attributed. The greater your expectations and beliefs
that something will be effective, the greater chance it
has of creating a positive response. The mind is a
powerful tool. We can increase or decrease our heart
rate and blood pressure through visualization. A few
individuals using a LOA have a firm belief that it will
work and so it does. People tend to have more success

with the LOA for smaller items for which they did not
make a vision board; finding money on the street,
getting a check in the mail, hearing from a long lost
friend, etc. Is a belief in a law of attraction any better
than rubbing a rabbits foot, tossing a coin in the
fountain, or pulling apart a wishbone? Test it yourself,
the answer is no!

14) Anecdotal Evidence: Evidence that the LOA is an

effective way of attaining goals is anecdotal, non-
scientific and self-reported. This fact does not prove it
doesnt exist. But closely scrutinize whether you want
to invest time, money and energy into something that is
ineffective and potentially harmful. People are much
more likely to publish successes than failures. We also
practice apophenia (the belief that there is meaning
behind random data) when we focus on coincidences
without regard to the much greater number of times that
we do not experience coincidences. How many times
did you think of that person and they didnt call you? Of
the two thousand people I thought of today, only two
actually called. Thats not a great percentage 0.1%.
But if I think of it in terms of the people that called we
get a different story. I thought of Bert and he called me
thats 100%!

If you read LOA websites and posts, youd guess that it
is might be over 90% effective - everybody seems to be
achieving their goals this way. Talk to experts who deal
with the general public trying to use a LOA, theres a
completely different story. The failure rate is huge! In
fact, LOA expert John Assaraf estimated that the
success rate is about 0.1%!! We believe this number to
be correct.

Im sorry for the doom and gloom in this article. But

these things need to be said. Millions of people are
wasting time, money, and energy into an ineffective and
detrimental system.

I do remember walking up to a girl I liked at my high

school but something terrible happened as even though I
imagined the moment frequently in my mind how it is to
play out perfectly when its the time to play the interaction
started like: hi we arent introduced before? My name is...
and that was where ended an the thing is that the problem
I had was sustaining the conversation weak, I mean for
her. For some reason I didnt think about that what might
come after. As so many people do have poor social skills
use to encountering of experiences which echo in their
negative activities. They feel like some kind of
abnormality or something like that. I feel like its never
been to late to master the ability to talk anyone and once
you get the specific psychology of social interaction you
will sure stop feeling anxious during the conversations and
to get a great thinking about the talk without thinking it for
looking back on it.
we o love our alike family and whatever may be the
reason we been never taught about the basic psychology
and interactions.
for example: I was never taught when someone asked me
how you doing? the casual response is to say well, am
doing great, on the line as this results in my more
subjective social interaction than I care I remember. As
some point the family gatherings at someone in the family
try to get a conversation get going with me and even
though I wanted to talk and find out how everyone was
doing. I really didnt know the basics of keeping the
conversation going.
If this sounds like you, let me tell you from personal
experience that things can change in an instant. Once you
understand the basic psychology in social interactions and
actual put information in real world things can change for
you so rapid than you know. What most people dont
realize is that the brain is constantly changing an rewiring
itself with every single thought, every single action and
your brain is physically analysing synaptic connections
and forming the new connections to suit your behaviour. I
learned this the hard way from my subjective thoughts, I
had been working on documenting and publishing my
articles for internet, while working up on my ideas I
focused many times on mainly focusing on getting things
done and trying to reach new heights and when all this
started I spent less time talking with my friends and skills
to hit. Before starting my ideas I was analysing retail with
the public and I wasnt great master of conversation I had
no trouble with small talk an keeping a conversation
going. After several days of focusing on my analysing day
in and day out synaptic connections in my brain told me
how to act and what to say during conversations had
became dominant and formed new connections that helped
me avoid conversations for people in general because I
dont want anyone to pull me away from pursuing part of
my dream at some point I came to the realization that my
declining social skill were starting to become a problem
and thats what I started taking into actions for awaken the
old connections in my brain that handles my social skills
an ability to conversate with others before you talk to
anyone you need to realize that your brain is an incredible
piece of machinery in fact it wants you to win it doesnt
want to see you in a pain every time you try to socialize an
fall flat on your face, imagine your brain is like a garden
when you socialise with people and practice the basic
techniques you are about to learn its like planting seeds in
your garden as long as you take care of your seeds or use
the skills regularly and you will be able to reap the
awesome rewards that comes with it, when you dont take
care of the seeds or use your social skills often enough
your brain sends in this little angry farmer guy to chop
down the plants. Your brain is constantly setting this little
farmer guys into the garden asking itself that which plants
are need to be removed and the plants that chooses to
removed are the ones that you dont use often enough such
as social skills. Over a period of several moments my
brain slowly got rid of my social skills because it assumed
that they would get jumped as I barely use that, the point
here is that once you learn how to talk to anyone you need
to actually do it often.
Before we get started, its important to note that none of
these methods fall under what we would term the dark arts
of influencing people. Anything that might be harmful to
someone in any way, especially to their self esteem, is not
included here. These are ways to win friends and influence
people using psychology without being a jerk or making
someone feel bad.

Trick: Ask for way more than you want at first then scale
it back later.

This trick is sometimes known as the door in the face

approach. You start by throwing a really ridiculous request
at someonea request they will most likely reject. You
then come back shortly thereafter and ask for something
much less ridiculousthe thing you actually wanted in the
first place. This trick may also sound counter-intuitive, but
the idea behind it is that the person will feel bad for
refusing your first request, even though it was

unreasonable, so when you ask for something reasonable
they will feel obliged to help out this time.

Scientists tested this principle and found that it worked

extremely well as long as the same person asked for both
the bigger and smaller favour, because the person feels
obliged to help you the second time and not anyone else.

A name is the core part of our identity, and so hearing it
validates our existence, which makes us much more
inclined to feel positively about the person who validated
But using a title, or form of address can also have strong
effects, according to the as if principle. The idea is that if
you act like a certain type of person, you will become that
person, its a bit like a self fulfilling prophecy. To use this
to influence others, you can refer to them as what you
want them to be, so they will start thinking of themselves
this way. This can be as simple as calling an acquaintance
you want to be closer to friend, or mate whenever you
see them, or referring to someone you want to work for as
boss. But be warned: this can come off as very corny.

This one may seem obvious at first, but there are some
important caveats to it. For starters its important to note
that if the flattery is not seen as sincere, its going to do
more harm than good. But researchers have studied the
motivations behind peoples reactions to flattery, and
found some very important things.

To put it simply, they found that people tend to look for

cognitive balance, trying to always keep their thoughts and
feelings organized in a similar way. So if you flatter
someone who has high self esteem, and it is seen as
sincere, they will like you more, as you are validating how
they feel about themselves. However, if you flatter
someone who has low self esteem, there is a chance it
could backfire and cause them to like you less, because it
interferes with how they perceive themselves. That, of
course, does not mean you should demean a person of low

Mirroring is also known as mimicry, and is something that
some people do naturally. People with this skill are
considered to be chameleons; they try to blend into their
environment by copying other peoples behaviours,
mannerisms and even speech patterns. However, this skill
can also be used consciously, and is a great way to make
you more likable.

Researchers studied mimicry, and found that those who

had been mimicked were much more likely to act
favorably toward the person who had copied them. Even
more interesting was their second find that those who had
someone mimic their behavior were actually nicer and
more agreeable to others in generaleven those not
involved in the situation. It is likely that the reason why
this works is that mirroring someones behavior makes
them feel validated. While this validation is likely to be
most positively associated with the person who validated
them, they will feel greater self-esteem and thus be more
confident, happier and well disposed towards others.

Trick: Ask for favours when someone is tired.

When someone is tired they are more susceptible to
everything someone may say, whether it is a statement or
a request. The reason for this is that when people are tired
it isnt just their physical body, their mental energy levels
drop as well. When you ask a request of someone who is
tired, you probably wont get a definite response, but
probably an Ill do it tomorrow, because they dont want
to deal with decisions at the moment. The next day, they
are likely to follow through because people tend to keep
their word; its natural psychologically to want to follow
through with something you said you would do.


Trick: Start with a request they cant refuse and work your
way up.

This is a reverse of the door in the face technique. Instead

of starting with a large request, you start with something
really small. Once someone has committed to helping you,
or agreeing to something, they are now more likely to
agree to a bigger request. Scientists tested this
phenomenon in regards to marketing.

They started by getting people to express support for the

rain forests and the environmentwhich is a fairly simple
request. Then they found that once they had gotten them to
express their agreement to supporting the environment,
they were much easier to convince when it came to buying
products that supported rain forests and other such things.
However, dont start with one request and immediately
assail them with another. Psychologists found it much
more effective if you wait a day or two to make the second

Trick: Dont correct people when they are wrong.

Carnegie also pointed out in his famous book that telling

someone they are wrong is usually unnecessary and does
the opposite of endearing them to you. There is actually a
way to show disagreement and turn it into a polite
conversation without telling someone they are wrong,
which strikes to the core of their ego. This is called
the Ransberger Pivot, invented by Ray Ransberger and
Marshall Fritz. The idea behind it is pretty simple: instead
of arguing, listen to what they have to say, and then seek
to understand how they feel and why. Then you explain
the common ground that you share with them, and use that
as a starting point to explain your position. This makes
them much more likely to listen to what you have to say,
and allows you to correct them without them losing face.


Trick: Paraphrase people and repeat back to them what
they just said.

One of the most positive ways to influence others is to

show them that you really understand how they feel, that
you have real empathy for them. One of the most effective
ways to do this is by paraphrasing what they say and
repeating it back to them, also known as reflective
listening. Studies have shown that when therapists used
reflective listening, people were likely to disclose more
emotion and have a much better therapeutic relationship
with the therapist.

This easily transfers over to talking to your friends. If you

listen to what they say, and rephrase it as a question to
confirm that you understood it, they are going to be more
comfortable talking with you. They are also going to have
a better friendship with you and be more likely to listen to
what you have to say, because you showed that you care
about them

Trick: Nod a lot while you talk, especially when leading
up to asking for a favour.

Scientists have found that when people nod while listening

to something, they are more likely to be in agreement with
it. They also have discovered that when someone is
nodding a lot in front of them, it is natural for them to do
the same. This is understandable because humans are well
known at mimicking behaviours, especially those that they
consider to have positive connotations. So if you want to
be extra convincing, nod regularly throughout the
conversation. The person you are talking to will find it
hard not to nod themselves, and they will start to feel
agreeable toward what you are saying, without even
knowing it.
When someone is talking, their subconscious is on the
look out to see if people are interested or not. It's a defense
mechanism to ensure we don't get embarrassed or hurt
from our environment. Our brain will look at everything
from body language, facial gestures to the words that are

When listening to someone, your eyes should never look

away for longer than a few seconds. The minute you start
staring at other people, TV screens or constantly looking
elsewhere, you are sabotaging the conversation. It makes
the other person feel like what they are saying is not
important and can be a real shot to their confidence. Be
aware of how you listen to others, a good idea is to ask
close friends and family if there are any things you do that
throw them off when they're speaking.

If you are in a conversation and someone is talking, let

them have the stage. Many people feel that by
interrupting a story and relating it to their own life, is a
good way to enhance the connection. While this is true
when done sparingly, there is nothing more frustrating
when it's overdone.

You can't build trust with someone if they feel that every
time they start talking, you are going to jump in. Not only
does it interrupt their focus and retract their emotional
investment in the conversation, but going forward they
will be hesitant to talk at all.

I have a close friend who I love calling out when he does

this. I will be chatting with him on the phone or in person,
and despite his best intentions, it is incredibly obvious
when he stops listening.

He tends to overuse filler comments that don't align with

what I'm talking about. Filler comments are typical things
we say to show someone that we are listening such as
"yeah," "oh cool," "gotcha," "interesting," etc. However,
when they are used to pretend like you're listening, it can
be very obvious and distracting.

With multi-tasking at all time high, we've all been

conditioned to do this at some point. However, if you are
not called out on it, you may never realize how
disrespectful and obvious it is to the other person. As a
general rule: Always listen to others, the same way you
expect to be listened to.

When talking with others, we often want to show that we
are educated and knowledgeable. It can be hard for some
people to admit they are learning something new for the
first time. Many leaders find it difficult to take advice,
because they feel they should know everything and be the
one giving guidance.

On the other side, most employees are eager to prove

themselves, so they try not to expose any of
their weaknesses. However, we have all been in a
conversation where we think we are bringing up
something important, only to hear the other person barely
acknowledge it.

It doesn't matter your title or experience, if you want to

connect with someone or influence them, you must make
them feel valued. In his book, How to Win Friends
and Influence People, Dale Carnegie's principle #9 is as
follows: "Make the other person feel important and do it
sincerely." When you let someone know they are
providing value, it makes them feel good and enables them
to open up more. So be aware of your ego, and try to stop
it from controlling your behaviour.

If you are someone who gets nervous or freezes up during

conversations, plan your questions in advance. This isn't to
automate your interactions and turn you into a robot. It's to
ease your mind so you can get out of your head, be
confident and enjoy a natural free-flowing conversation.

You can get through any conversation by asking the right

questions. So have three open-ended, thought-provoking
questions for every situation you may be in. You could
split the potential interactions into:

Rule 1: No one is interested in you

The quickest and easiest top tip to remember is this no

one cares about you. They don't want to know about you.
They're not bothered about where you're going on holiday.
They're not impressed that you once interviewed Will
Smith (I did, you know). They don't even care if you've
got an upcoming operation All they care about is

With this in mind, become the kind of person

who is interested in other people because we all love the
opportunity to talk about ourselves so imagine how
popular you'll be if you're allowing others to talk as much
as they like!

Ask lots of questions, be genuinely interested, ensure the
conversation revolves around the other person, retain eye
contact, smile, ask further questions most importantly,
enjoy listening. You might not end up saying much, or
talking about yourself but it doesn't matter. This is all
about charm, and allowing people to chat about
themselves is the easiest way to win them over.

Rule 2: If people ask you questions?

If you've followed rule number one and have allowed the

other person to do all the talking, they might ask you
questions in return. In which case, be prepared to charm
by following these simple tips always keep things
relatively short and sweet; don't go into unnecessary
details or waffle; be humble and don't show off; and
finally, don't bring up anything negative, political or
inappropriate keep things light, fun and interesting, and
you can't go wrong.

Rule 3: Use the sweetest sound in the world

When you first meet someone, repeat their name to

remember it and then drop it occasionally into the
conversation. So for example, 'Hi Tom, I'm Katy', and

then use their name again if appropriate. Repeat it once
more when you say goodbye. The sound of our own name
is the sweetest sound in the world, and people will really
warm to you if you say their name and remember it.

Rule 4: Weakness is off-putting

People can always smell weakness, particularly if you're

shy or lacking in confidence. They'll sense something isn't
quite right and might take an instant dislike to you. Work
on your social skills and become comfortable in your own
skin. Walk into a room with your head held high, become
extremely confident around other company and speak up.

You are worth a hell of a lot, and you deserve just as much
success as anyone else. So stand tall and be bold. If you're
struggling, think of a confident role model and copy their
body language and mannerisms. Soon enough, you'll be
boldly walking up to people and introducing yourself
without a care in the world.

Rule 5: Get your body language right

Body language is very important, so practice in front of a
mirror or with a friend until you get it right. You want to
ensure arms are open and not crossed; that legs are relaxed
and not crossed and that overall, you look relaxed and

Best way to achieve great body language? Work on

feeling relaxed and comfortable in your own skin. People
who tend to cross their arms or cover their mouths or
fidget could be revealing lots of insecurities and that can
be off-putting.

Rule 6: Use the right tone of voice

Tone of voice is just as important as body language. You

want to avoid shouting or coming across as aggressive by
using a relaxed, gentle tone of voice. You also want to
practice the art of assertiveness, i.e. getting your point
across confidently without being defensive or aggressive.
Work on your self-esteem as well and get used to hearing
the sound of your own voice.

Rule 7: Use the right language

Keep conversation professional at all times by using polite
language. For example, never say 'Ay up!', always say
'Hello' instead. And don't forget your manners. Also, try
and keep everything very positive. Don't bring up the
awful time you had on holiday or complain about the state
of the economy. Charm people over by talking about
polite, professional and happy things.

Rule 8: Smile!

A smile is infectious. Everyone loves a happy person, so

smile and be happy to be around others. Your happy state
of mind will shine through and make you very likeable. If,
on the other hand, you're grumpy or disinterested it will
be obvious and you won't leave a very good first
impression, so smile!

Rule 9: Praise others instead of getting involved in


Whether you're at a networking event or in a meeting,

people can sometimes talk about others in a negative way.
To combat this, don't get involved. Instead, say something
really positive about that person or company.

This attitude is the way I live my life and I always find it
works very well because it shows how sincere and
trustworthy you are. I hate gossip and I get a very bad
impression of people who bitch. If you want to charm
people, steer clear of the backstabbing and become a nice
person instead.

Rule 10: Find their interests

If the conversation is quite slow, try to discover the other

person's hobbies or passions. Do they like football? Are
they into Formula1? Do they have a tan Ask them if
they've been on holiday. When you find a topic that makes
their eyes light up, ask lots of questions and be genuinely
interested in their passion, even if it's something you're not
bothered about. They'll love you for it.

Rule 11: Don't people-please

There will be the odd occasion when you need to speak

your mind or share a point of view that others might
disagree with. In which case, still keep things light but be
open and honest. You have to remember that being
charming isn't about 'people-pleasing'. You still have to

believe in yourself and your own principles. People will
always respect your opinion just make sure you express
it in the right way.

Rule 12: Remember the little details

To stay charming, write down the little details about

people so you remember them for next time you meet. For
example, a new client might tell you about his wife and
new baby so next time you see him, ask how the baby
and mum are doing. This is a great way to show people
you care while making them feel important.

Professional interrogators use a number of psychological

levers to get people to talk. Among them are techniques
designed to instill fear.

But for those of us who arent facing hardened criminals

and suspected terroristsfor example, we might instead be
conducting interviews in the business worldwe can rely
on certain conversation motivators that dont involve fear
to uncover the truth.

These eight motivators have a foundation in military



A good questioner is purposeful and provocative. The

questions lead somewhere and they stimulate interest in
the person being questioned. In terms of seeking the truth,
therefore, we can view curiosity as a two-way street. You
are driven to know something, but the person who is your
source of that information will probably have questions
rushing through her brain as well: Why do you want to
know? What else do you want to know?

You can exploit the fact that your questions arouse

curiosity in your source. You may be asking the questions,
but those questions suggest you may know something that
she wants to know, too.

When people feel they have gap in their knowledge, its

like an itch that must be scratched. The more you can
stimulate a persons curiosity, the stronger the itch.
2 . I N C EN TI VE S

Human beings are more inclined to want immediate

gratification rather than wait for an incentive that comes
latereven if its better than the quick choice.

Studies involving brain scans indicate that decisions about

the possibility of immediate reward activate parts of their
brain associated with emotion. Consideration of a long-
term reward option activates brain systems associated with
reasoning. For a lot of people, the emotion-related parts of
the brain win out over the reasoning-related parts of the

An important thing to note about the first two motivators,

then, is that both often relate to satisfying a desire for
something as soon as possible. Another important link
between them is that one of the strongest incentives is
sometimes providing information that satisfies your
sources curiosity. This is the foundation of the quid pro
quo, a Latin phrase meaning something for something.
You tell a harmless secret of yours and you might get a big
secret in return.


Think in terms of positive emotions and negative emotions

and how you can use your awareness of them in others to
get them to tell you the truth. Also think in terms of a
desire for pleasure versus an aversion to punishment.

Theres a big reason why it may be easier to get your

source to cooperate if hes motivated by anger, disgust,
hurt, or anything else in the family of negative emotions:
People tend to spend more time and energy thinking about
events that evoke strong negative emotions than strong
positive ones.

On the positive side of the equation, love is thought by

many experts to be the most powerful motivator of all. But
not just any lovethe kind of love that stimulates the same
reward centres of the brain as cocaine is romantic love, not
selfless love like your kindergarten teacher gave you.

Romantic love is an addiction, and we all know what

diehard addicts will do to get a fix: anything. Sometimes
anything means telling the truth.

4 . B O OS TI N G E G O

You may be cynical and say that flattery from an auto

salesman about your good taste in cars is supercilious
junk, but this technique works. Flattery is a tactic that
makes people more positive about and cooperative with
the source of compliments.

At the heart of this phenomenon is the simple fact that

people enjoy feeling good about themselves. Our brains
are fertile ground for compliments, and people who
understand how and when to plant those compliments gain
a psychological advantage over others.


Done well, attacking a persons sense of self-worth

enables you to move the person into a vulnerable
emotional state and make him more compliant. Its often
best used in conjunction with another technique that later
makes him feel better. You use the desire to reconnect
with you to get your information, and then you bring him
out of his self-esteem slump.

Done poorly, you could easily alienate the individual if
youve misjudged how far to go with that person. And you
might get by crossing the line from ego deflation to insult.

Watch the body language of someone you use a deflating-

ego technique with. If you see the person close uparms
folded in front as though shes hugging herself, slight
slump of shoulders, head downyou know youve
succeeded in undermining her sense of self-worth. At that
point, give her an immediate path to reconnect by
providing you information.


Mitigating or removing the fear of someone that you want

to confide in you is one of the most powerful tools in your
arsenal of conversation motivators. There are many
possible situations at a workplace, for example, where
someones competence or honesty comes into question,
and the prospect of being fired makes him close up and
not want to divulge anything about himself or others out of

Offer protectionemotional, psychological, and, if

necessary, physicalto help boost the persons feeling of

security and trust in you, and then carry on with the


Projecting certainty about what you know can another

person to talk openly. This is the value of doing your
homework about your source: You can go into a
conversation with a level of detail on at least a few issues
that suggest you know more about the person than you do.

A person feels a little off balance and out of control in the

face of uncertainty. If your source is in that state of mild
confusionnot completely disoriented, but a little off
balancethe information youre after may leak out because
the person has less control over what he says.

8 . SI LE N CE

Japanese call it shiin. Its that awkward silence in a

conversation that causes people to glance at their laptops,
shift their posture, and look at the door as though they
hope someone will enter the room and end the tension.
Finally, someone cant tolerate it any longer and says

Creating silence in the modern world is intentional. Even
in a room full of people experiencing shiin, anyone has the
option of speaking up, even if its just to beg, Somebody
please say something! To many people, if not most,
silence is unsettling, and someone will say something; it
may even contain some substance.


Dont - Say things like Im not sure, Im up for

anything, I dont care what I do. These phrases are a
turn-off for recruiters. We want to hire you, tell me why
we should!

Do - Show some personality and sense of humour.

Depending on the day, that friendly recruiter youre
talking to may have spoken with several hundred people
by the time you get to them. We appreciate a good joke or
funny personal story, and it helps make an impression.

Dont - Be unprofessional. Recruiters talk to people for a

living, its our job. No matter how friendly the tone,
remember the conversation is strictly professional. Never
ask a recruiter out on a date or put them in an
uncomfortable situation. Recruiters want to see if youre a
fit for their organization and thats it. All business.

Do - Ask questions. Recruiters dont expect you to know
everything there is to know about our organizations. We
are more than happy to answer questions and help you
learn about the company. I love it when a candidate asks
me, What do you like best at Google? and then follows
up with, and what do you like least? Recruiters like
thoughtful and interesting discussions. Engage us.

Dont - Make assumptions about what you think well

want to hear. Nothing will drive a recruiter crazy faster
than when someone drops a bunch of cliche, elevator pitch
lingo into a conversation. Be thoughtful and genuine and
recruiters will return the favour.

Dont - Stress. Recruiters dont care if you stumble over

your words or forget our names or confuse us with other
companies. We get it. Looking for a job is stressful and
sometimes stress causes us to do funny things. Take a
deep breath, it will all be fine.

How to Start a Conversation With Anyone

Pinging is a multiple stage way to initiate a conversation.

Anyone who is naturally good at starting casual
conversations follows this process subconsciously.
I think the scariest part of becoming one of those crazy
socialites who can talk to everyone is the first step; just
saying the first couple words. Pinging is great because it
lets you separate the first step from everything else. You
dont have to worry about what youre going to say next,
what good conversation topics are, or how youre going to
see the person again if the conversation goes well.

Heres a quick example. Imagine me sitting in a coffee

shop obnoxiously typing away on my laptop and suffering
from an excess of caffeine. A twenty-something guy pulls
out the chair next to me and puts his own laptop on the
table. I notice a sticker for a marketing company Im
familiar with.

At this point, habit is what causes me to ping. The

likelihood that this person is interested in talking and is
actually someone Id like to know are slim, but I might as
well give it a shot. I know its only going to take a couple
minutes to figure it out anyway.

Hey, youre into Moz?

To Determine Interest, you just need to say something.

Pretty much anything. Id recommend a question or
statement related to why you noticed them in the first
place, but a simple, Hi, works just as well.
Yeah, I work in the industry so I pretty much have to
follow them. Hes just settling in. Im trying to determine
how interested he is in chatting, so I go through a quick

1. Did he give a terse or one-word answer when they

could have given a full one? If so, RED.
2. Did he give a full response? If so, YELLOW.
3. Did he expand their response or try to involve me? If
so, GREEN.
4. Well, he could have just said, Yeah. He didnt,
he continued to tell me why hes into Moz. But he
didnt ask me why I care, or if Im in the industry
as well. So well say hes YELLOW. Cool.

5. Now I could try to just pop right into a

conversation by, say, asking him a question. The
problem is that, when were in conversation,
asking a question is kind of like borrowing
moneywere hoping that the question will lead to

an exciting topic, but if that doesnt work then
weve just wasted the first minute or so of
conversation and come across as boring.

It takes a fraction of a second for me to consider whether I

want to move the conversation forward, transitioning into
Small Talk. Hes obviously in my industry, has a decent
sense of humour, and Ive shown him that Im interesting
and funny, so hes got a good reason to chat with me as
well. Were technically on a conversation topic, but it
could easily end here. To transition to small talk, the
trick is to decide to pursue the conversation. That
sounds silly, but its not. Its a commitment to keep trying,
taking responsibility for every aspect of the process.
I promise to myself not to let awkward silences last. I
promise to myself to be interested in the other person, and
to find out more about them. I promise to myself to be
open and give my conversation partner several topics to
ask me about.

Throughout the rest of the conversation, Im looking for

the absence of red lights. If he does or says something that
is obviously intended to end the conversation, or shows
that hes uncomfortable or not interested in the
conversation anymore, then Ill relent.

If he doesnt show any red lightseven if I cant read his
thoughts and see his level of interest in the conversation
Im going to assume that he wants to keep talking.
Otherwise I might give up on my promise without giving
the conversation a chance.

The next article will bring more light, happiness

and smiling face emojis to the forefront when I
discuss how to effectively set and attain goals.