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How To Win Friends And Influence People 

"It's More Than Being The Life Of The Party" 

By:Tim Taylor 

The most simplest, yet, profound answer to this question is found in a great religious book, yet, is applicable to all mankind in any walk of life. It comes from the Judeo Christian bible. Proverbs 18:24 reads~ A man that has friends must show himself friendly and there is a friend that sticks closer than a brother. Sadly, for fear of discussing something as personal and volatile as religion, many will be turned off by that response. However, the applications of that verse are grounded more in the realm of universal logic and common sense than anything else.

There are those that want to be popular and will go to great lengths to attain that status. The average person just wants to be socially acceptable without losing sight of themselves. At the risk of further offending, I'll borrow another passage from the Christian bible. It's in the gospel of Mark 8:36-37 For what shall it profit a man if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul. At this point, you should be realizing that the bible has more implications than just the spiritual. Taking those two pieces of advice, you can begin your quest to win friends and influence people.

You can't buy, con, or beg friends into your life. Oh, sure, you can take those routes to get bodies surrounding you, but a real friend takes more intent and involvement. Hollywood's landscape is strewn with those who thought their money and fame would afford them the best level of friends only to expose the truth that flashy, superficial trinkets won by being fake does little in the way of attracting friends. Being friendly to others is the single most effective way to win friends. Don't mistake being friendly with being a suck up, yes man or brown-noser. A friend can be brutally honest with their personal opinion while giving you the same right to have your own, too.

Selfishness is not a trait that most people value, yet, it's needed in order to be able to help anyone else. There's nothing wrong with being selfish. Just don't be that way to a fault. If you don't know how to look after yourself, how can you help someone else do it? Military soldiers are trained to get aid for them self first before trying to help other wounded. What good are you to others who need medical aid if you're weak from ongoing blood loss? Stop your bleeding and then help someone else; unless you're in to the martyr scene. The same goes with making friends. Don't look for outside stimuli, find out why you don't attract true friends and begin to make amends.

I hesitate using the term "true" friend because either someone is a friend or they're not. The word friend is inclusive of any positive adjective you attach to it. "Bad" friend is more of an oxymoron. You can't really have someone who's consistently bad for you and a friend. They're more of an enemy with benefits. There's something about them that fulfills a need in your life, so you tolerate their presence. The problem with that is your denial and refusal to correctly label and categorize them for your own safety. A person who wins friends and influence people is someone who's in touch with their own character. They have a good grasp on their wants and needs. They're in control of their emotions and they know how to leverage all that in a format that allows them to totally be themselves while being honest with those they want to include in their chorale of friends.

Once you're able to define who you are and what you're bringing to the table that will profit a potential friend, you can begin to influence others in the way of believing you're worth investing their time, effort and space. Making friends is simple. Not necessarily easy, but definitely simple. One of the main keys is patience. If you're not very social, don't count on having many friends. That's not necessarily a bad thing. I'd rather have two awesome friends than a room full of mildly pleasant acquaintances any day of the week. So you have to decide whether you want friends or to be popular. You can become popular overnight. A friend takes a little more time and work. 

There are books that can fill a library on examples of how to win friends and influence people, but the real task at hand is discovering why making friends isn't natural to you. As toddlers, we instinctively gravitate toward each other, so why is it so difficult to do as teenagers and adults? There's obviously a block placed there by something or someone. Find and eradicate that and you'll flow in this area. In closing, I'll allude to yet another biblical passage. It's known around the globe. "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Makes good sense.