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They’re the friends whose presence at a dinner party guarantees that everyone is going to have a good time. They exude warmth, playfulness and self-confidence, and people always appear happy to have them around.
• They’re spontaneous.
• They’re at ease with themselves and comfortable in their own skin.
• They’re not afraid to be silly.
• They’re not afraid to try new things and to be a beginner.
• They’re not afraid to be vulnerable.
• They’re appreciative of the small things.
• They find joy in being alive.
Being appealing has also got to do with the way the fun folks made other people feel in their presence. For example:
• You never feel judged by them.
• They make everyone feel included.
• They’re considerate of others’ feelings.
• They get excited with you.
• They create wonderful, shared memories.
Very few of the characteristics mentioned were genetically determined and you don’t need to be extroverted to be considered fun. For instance, you do not need to be the life of the party to make other people feel included, or to create wonderful memories, or to appreciate the small things in life.
In fact, many of the qualities people mentioned — such as being considerate of other people’s feelings — are things that introverts do naturally. They are the result of choices and habits, practiced over days and years. Being a “fun” person is a skill we can develop.
The primary thing that separates people who attract fun from their peers is their attitude. They approach life in general with a “fun mindset”.
Having a fun mindset refers to the habit of intentionally approaching and reacting to your life in a way that is attractive to fun — or, more specifically, true fun, which is the confluence of playfulness, connection and flow.
The secret to developing a fun mindset is to deliberately seek out as many opportunities as you can in order to create or appreciate playfulness, connection and flow.
The easiest way to have more humor … is not to try to be funny; instead, just look for moments to laugh.
We all enjoy spending time with people who make us laugh and who laugh a lot themselves. The easier you are to laugh (and the more things you can find to laugh about) the more attractive you’ll be, both to other people and to fun. And, to point out the obvious, you’ll also spend more time laughing, which in itself will make you feel good.
'Yes, and” is a technique (and philosophy) derived from improv comedy in which you respond to new ideas and suggestions by agreeing with them (the “yes”) and building on them (the “and”).
You are supposed to agree and then add something of your own. If one person says ‘I can’t believe it’s so hot in here,’ and you just say, ‘Yeah … ’ we’re kind of at a standstill.
But if you say, ‘What did you expect? We’re in hell' or ‘Yes, this can’t be good for the wax figurines.’ then you are agreeing and adding value.
Another way to develop a fun mindset is to regularly — and explicitly — ask yourself, “How could I add a bit of playfulness, connection or flow to whatever I’m doing or experiencing right now?”
You can do this whether you’re with other people or alone, and your ideas don’t have to be earth-shattering to be effective
Figuring out ways to add even teensy bits of playfulness, connection and flow to your everyday activities can also help objectively non-fun activities, such as chores, feel more tolerable.
In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun. You find the fun and, snap! The job’s a game.
Another way to build a fun mindset is to create more moments of everyday connection by sending out more play signals — i.e., things we do to let other creatures know that we are being playful and that our intentions are friendly, and to invite them to respond with playfulness, too.
One of the play signals dogs use is the bow they perform when they try to get another dog to play with them — they lunge onto their front elbows, stick their bottoms in the air, and wag their tails.
People don’t want to have a boring life, or even a boring conversation. They’re just risk averse. If you create an environment where there’s no reason to be afraid, all of a sudden, things loosen up.
Everyone wants to have fun; they just don’t know how.
The more you cultivate your own fun mindset, the more fun you’ll attract — and the better equipped you’ll be to invite others to join you.
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