It’s a common misconception that charisma is the luck of the draw. Many people believe that you are born either with or without it and that you can’t teach it.
There are people who claim to teach charisma and will focus on tips on body language, eye contact, voice tonality, appearance and so on. While all of this might make you look more confident, if it is not aligned with who you are at your core, it will appear fake and contrived.
Politicians for example, are often taught to appear more ‘charismatic’ to better connect with the electorate. However, put them in a heated TV debate and the polished veneer will often crack as the true character starts to bare his/her ragged teeth!
Theresa May in her famous Conference speech introduced her humble background as a way of connecting with her party and the electorate. Whilst the notion set up to show a more ‘human’ side of her, she is normally so detached from her emotions that she alienates her audiences.
Politicians like Barak Obama and his wife Michelle, on the otherhand, have charisma in abundance.
When they speak, they totally engage their audience and have us hanging on their every word. They exude sincerity and we believe in them and trust them to make the world a better place.
So what is charisma?
“Charisma is an authentic power that captivates the hearts and minds of others.” (Nikki J.Owen)
The key word there is ‘authentic’, when we are being true to who we are at our core, when we recognise and celebrate our uniqueness, we exude a magnetic energy that is totally irresistible.
So why develop our charisma? What difference will it make to our business and our life?
Charismatic people are known to be happier and healthier than their less charismatic counterparts; value themselves and are comfortable in their own skin thereby making people around them feel comfortable in their presence; find doors opening for them that remain closed to others; experience opportunities lining up almost effortlessly; and are remembered long after an event and are far more likely to be contacted and referred to ideal connections.
So how can we become more genuinely ‘charismatic’?
I am sure you will have heard the phrase – ‘thoughts become things’, but what does that actually mean?
Our brains go through the various stages of absorbing, filtering and processing information, which then results in the behaviour and energy we exude in our interactions with others.
So if we spend our time watching news from war-torn countries, despairing over politics and the socio-economic issues all around us and engrossed in violent, distressing TV, it will occupy our thoughts, our dreams and ultimately impact on the way we feel and behave.
Similarly, if we spend our time with negative, ‘glass half empty’ people, they will feast on our natural energy like vampires at a Halloween party and leave us feeling lifeless and depleted.
We in turn will then drain the energy of the people we interact with.
When we are happy, motivated, living in ‘flow’, doing the work we love, we feel and look well and we exude a glowing energy. This draws people to us who just feel good in our space.
One of the bases of real charisma is ‘self-esteem’, and only when we fully value ourselves, and the unique gifts we have to offer, can we truly shine as the person we were born to be.
Some people see taking time for themselves every day as being selfish – it is actually absolutely essential.
When we take time for ourselves we are subconsciously saying ‘I matter enough to take time to be the best version of me’.
This is a bit of a soapbox topic for me because it has made a massive difference to my life, my business, my friendships and relationships. So rather than writing another list of top tips, here are some of the things that work best for me:
I start every day early with meditation, yoga, toning exercises, fresh vegetable juice and then a nutritious breakfast, so by the time I get to my desk or work with clients, I am feeling amazing
I plan my time carefully using a daily Greatness Business Planner so I feel I am getting the most out of my working day and moving my business forwards
I take proper regular breaks, and get out in the fresh air as much as possible
I eat and drink well throughout the day
I get 7-8 hours sleep every night
I work with a business coach/mentor to redefine goals, track progress and keep me accountable for actions
I network extensively and surround myself with positive, inspirational people who motivate me to keep on stretching and growing
I am constantly learning, investing in training and increasing my knowledge and skills so I have more to offer my clients and prospects
I have a wonderful virtual team who help and support me every day and do many of the tasks that take me out of flow and drain my energy
This may all sound rather ‘selfish’; however, I find that taking proper care of me means I have so much more to give to others and it increases one of the other fundamentals of charisma – ‘sensory awareness’.
When we feel valued, safe and supported we are much more aware of the feelings and actions of people around us. We have much more to give and our presence and energy will leave a lasting impact on them.
When we are in growth, feeling good about ourselves, fired up and working towards our vision, we effortlessly exude that magnetic energy that is totally irresistible.