We all have the same tools for socializing with others.
Body language, voice, and words. We can use these to our advantage or for our downfall.
After many years of fine tuning this science in our classes we are seeing students finding the best ways to match those social tools with their personalities. Their skills are improving during quarantine while the rest of the world’s social skills are diminishing.
A good example can be relating the expression of music with the tools of music. Then matching those to the musician’s personality. Jimmi Hendrix and Jerry Garcia are arguably a couple of the most influential guitarist/songwriters of the past half century. Their guitars were basically an extension of their bodies, it was how they expressed themselves.
Musician’s persona → Guitar (Scales and notes) → Music
Both Jimmi Hendrix and Jerry Garcia each used the guitar and its scales and notes to match their personalities to their advantage. Yet, they were both very different from each other.
Jerry tended to use them in a cooperative, less gregarious, and emotionally flowing and stable manner. Jerry loved rhythm, jamming with others, and using uplifting major scales.
Jimmi, well, was Jimmi! He loved wildly soloing and mostly used rebellious blues scales. He led the charge on stage and changed the tune whenever he wished and hoped anyone playing with him caught up.
They had the same tools and scales available but told very different stories.
The same can be said about socializing. Empathy, assertiveness, flirting, and humor are different scales you can use.
When you use your favorite scales and notes in conversations you’ll find your real fans. Listen to others enough and they will find a fan in you.
When it comes to your social life you have much more influence than you think, and you can connect better with others by matching your personality to the social tools that already exist.
Maybe you are more agreeable and don’t like playful teasing humor but love being silly. Or you may be very extroverted and high in openness and enjoy groups and novel topics. Maybe you are low in extroversion and high in openness and love going on an adventure with one other person while exploring conversation with storytelling. There are endless matches you can make.
When you find your natural social combinations, you find social freedom.
John Cacioppo says it best:
“Heritability sets the course but environment and behavior strongly influences the final destination.”
Written by Eric Waisman and edited by Fayette Fox