🤗 Social

Updated at 2022-07-29 05:16

People aren't against you; they are for themselves.

This note is about human social interaction. Related to public speaking.

If you make an eye contact with anyone; you should say hi. Otherwise, you share that mental awkwardness between the two of you. Just say it, it won't hurt anything else except your self-esteem if you don't get an reply.

When you forget someone's name, ask for it. You signal that you are interested in them. Which is great even if you are not.

I'm so poor with names, what was your name again?

Introduce yourself to strangers. You have both been invited to attend the same event or are in the same location so you must have something in common to talk about.

When you meet somebody, check their eye color. In reality, you are making a mental impression of being more interested in the person.

You can overcome shyness by acting like someone else. Also, appear interested in other people, even if you are not.

Always show up on time. It's a way of showing respect in most cultures. Being late is rarely a good thing; it means that something you planned went wrong (incompetence) or that your priorities were somewhere else than the meeting (ignorance).

Your reputation is more important than what you are. Live in such a way that if someone spoke poorly of you, no one would believe it. There will always be some unflattering speech behind your back.

Your Reputation > Why You Do It > How You Do It > What You Do

Compliment people when possible but never without a reason. Kindness is a hard ability and requires courage.

Avoid people that make you feel bad. Spend less time with people that make you feel negatively. Spend more time with people that are honest and make your life happier. Evaluate all your classmates, friends, relatives and even family.

Avoid seeing people being selfish or as objects. Recognize that people have their own needs, wants and fears. They should never solely be a means-to-an-end.

Don't use others misbehavior to reason your misconduct. You are then inflating your values to justify your cause.

If somebody is not getting along with you, try to sit right next to them. Turning to you makes it annoying to argue, and they might start feeling bad as you are making a peaceful gesture. You should sit opposite to the people that you get best along with.


Get to know people around you. Get to know your neighbors, coworkers and especially their pets. Make friends with at least one bartender in your three favorite bars. It's enough if they remember you.

Maintain inactive relationships. Keep in touch with everyone you want to keep in touch. Seems obvious but most people forget this. Small and unexpected personal gifts go a long way. The more personalized the gift is, the better.

If Jack likes whiskey, buy him a bottle on his birthday and mail it.

Start organizing weekday feasts with your friends. People will look forward to these events, and it helps you to keep in touch with your friends.

Taco Tuesday.


There is a fine line between confident and cocky. Focus on natural confidence, not overconfidence.

Get to the same height level. Hunch down and try to get on the same level or lower when shaking hands. But you need to do this with subtlety.

Watch people in the eyes. When you look into a mirror, stare at your own eyes for a while. Helps you familiarize watching into other people's eyes. Never look at your own feet. Try to memorize eye color of other people.

Avoid breaking the eye contact with the person you are speaking to. The subtle domination that gives the appearance of confidence. If you cannot get this done, stare at their forehead, close enough.

Keep your body language as open as possible. Stand as tall as you can, pull shoulders back and look straight. Most confident hand gesture you can do is having your both hands in front of your torso, fingers touching and palms facing each other. Always point your feet in the direction of the person you are speaking with.


Focus on your purpose: communication.

  • Listen to understand. Don't say "yeah" or "uh-huh" while another person is talking; people perceive you more stupid when you do this. Pay attention.
  • Speak to be understood. Wait for at least two full seconds before responding, you get time to think what you want to communicate. Don't just fill up the silence.

You become interesting if you show interest. Ask details about what they just spoke about or add your own experiences. Act as if the person you are talking to is the most critical person in the world.

1:  I just was on holiday in Sweden. We had such fun at the spa hotel!
2A: Oh there are spa hotels? What does that mean? Do they have outdoor baths?
2B: You were with Eric or your fiancee?
2C: Is it true what they say about Swedish people? I think it is...

Avoid short answers. Think it like adding more information to the conversation that other participants can expand upon.

Where are you from?


Finland; it's quite cold up there like you could imagine.

Smile while you are speaking. Your tone of voice becomes more pleasant to listen to. Avoid smiling too wide though; you might seem creepy and sound arrogant.

Prepare people to listen. To make people hear better, use hand gestures just before you are going to speak.

Avoid offending people, even if it's the truth. Not all thoughts need to be expressed. First, think if the slightly offensive remark you are about to make has any meaning or are you just being annoying.

Avoid arguments and debating. If you are caught up in a debate, yield gracefully and change the topic before you get angry. If you notice getting angry, force another question or keep silent.

Avoid taking sides when other people are arguing. Except when it is your spouse; always support your spouse.

Avoid talking mean things about a person that is not present. Honesty is an expensive gift, don't expect it from cheap people. This will crumble your reputation a little by little.

Avoid focusing on unimportant details. People focus on grammar or vocabulary related details when they are covering something or want to show off. Don't get sidetracked by people who are not on track.

Avoid steering conversation to your profession. It isn't engaging to change subject to your domain.

Avoid bragging. Never talk about how much money, connections or luxuries you have. Only talk about your experiences and opinions.

Avoid interrupting other people. Never try to raise your voice to drown other person's voice. Do not finish other peoples' sentences.

Avoid being arrogant. When another person is making a long speech, it is rude to look your watch or cell phone.

When comforting someone, prefer empathy over sympathy. Empathy is creating a connection between other people, whereas sympathy is trying to make another person feel better. Usually, sad people need the bonding, not advice.

  1. See misery from the perspective of the subject.
  2. Recognize the emotional state.
  3. Stay out of judgment.
  4. Sincerely mirror that emotional state to the subject.
  * "It's that bad, huh?"
  * Uses remarks that start with "at least."

I think my marriage is falling apart...
    -> (empathy, good)
       I don't even know what to say right now.
       I'm so glad you told me.
    -> (sympathy, bad)
       At least you have a marriage, right? Look at me!


People are easily deceived. Most people think that meeting face-to-face would help the assessment of trustworthiness, but it really doesn't.

Human vs. AI competition who to let on bail. 25% less further crimes if were chosen by the AI. And the AI had less information, just the age and the past sheet, no information what happened in the court room or what they look or sound like.

Famously bad negations where Chamberlain never could read the real intentions of Hitler before the WW2. Halifax, the Holy Fox, also got outplayed. Chamberlain even got a peace signature from Hitler, the war started 5 months after the signing, he was just playing for time. But Eden and Churchill could see what a thug Hitler was.

Understand the Truth Default Theory:

  • We assume that people are honest by default.
  • People have an average deception detection accuracy of around 50/50.
  • You need to have enough doubt to trigger yourself out of the Truth Default.
  • It is even harder to get over the Truth Default when you have prior belief about the person being benevolent and via versa.

Understand the Facial Expression Trap:

  • Television is deceiving us. Film emotions are way exaggerated.
  • Surprised people don't usually look surprised, this is backed by research.
  • Terrified people don't look scared.
  • Emotionally unstable people rarely look the part.
  • We believe it is obvious when people are having these feelings but that is not the case.

Nervousness, guilt, shame and remorse are all seen as less believable. But none of those have little to do with the truth. Confidence is obviously more believable, but likewise, it has little to do with the truth.

Avoid crossing arms or placing then in front of you. That is a natural defensive position.

Avoid comfort gestures. Don't scratch your head or ears. Don't rub your hands together. They are signs of confusion, absence, and stress.

Understand the Illusion of Asymmetric Insight: We perceive that we have more knowledge of others/ourselves than they have about us/themselves. This makes you underestimate how much other people know about you.

Spontaneous answers to questions are more impactful than you might think. Using positive words make you seem positive and the other way around.

Avoid lie dodges. When you make a lie, don't change the subject or draw away from the situation. It's one of the few obvious indicators of lying.

Your best lie-detection tool is to keep shaking gently. If you suspect somebody just told a lie, they might be off their composure. Try asking another question related to the lie.

Empathy is frequently used as a weapon, like it or not. Making other people relate to you makes them more agreeable; and understanding how other person feels makes it much easier to manipulate them.