When I meet a person and he tells me he plays the violin, I become fascinated. The first thing I want to do is hear him play. When I meet a person and he tells me he’s a painter, I instantly want to see his paintings. I want to ask him about what he paints, what his lifestyle is like. I want to ask him why my paintings look like I’m five years old. If I meet a doctor, I instantly want him to tell me his craziest patient stories. I want to know what his schedule is like. I want to know how that affects his family. But was I always like this? NO! I used to be interested in only one sport, one instrument, one profession, one everything. And it was obviously the one thing that I did. If I didn’t do something, it couldn’t possibly have value or be interesting. I would sit there and pretend I was listening when all I really did was think about the things I was going to say when the other person was done.
And once the person was done, I would unload all my really interesting and important stuff onto them. If your social interactions suffer, one of the biggest reasons might be this. You need to become genuinely interested in other people. By doing this, you will create a beautiful variety in your life, and also have great social experiences because you won’t be sitting there creepily excited about what you’re going to say when the person is done talking. Do you ever meet a person, and almost everything he says is wrong? As an economist, this happens to me all the time. I used to confront it, and I never really changed anyone, but I did create a lot of unnecessary arguments and hostility. Telling a minimum wage worker about the inefficiencies caused by the minimum wage won’t get you too far. Trust me on that. There are settings where you could do this, but in general… you simply show respect for the other man’s opinion. You never tell a man he’s wrong.
The next little milestone that I have set for myself is to reach 1,000 subscribers to my channel. However, would I ever make the mistake of approaching my viewers from that perspective? NO! If I came to you and said, “Hey, everyone! I’m trying to get to 1,000 subscribers. Please subscribe to me!” That doesn’t mean anything to you. My social IQ would be non-existent in that case. Yet, look around. Most people do exactly this. So instead, how do I approach you? Well, if you’re watching this video, it’s pretty safe to assume that you are interested in self-improvement ideas. Then, in the best possible way I can, I present to you an idea that can really impact you. After I have done all this, I tell you, “If you want to see more big ideas when they come out, you can subscribe.” Now, if these are the ideas that you’re interested in, and assuming that I did a decent job at presenting them, the chances of your subscribing increase dramatically.
This is called talking in terms of the other man’s interest. Carnegie uses a great metaphor for this. He says, “If you were going fishing, you wouldn’t take cherries as bait.” Yet, we do this all the time. It’s absolutely ridiculous. And then we complain about how anyone could pick worms over cherries. You have to talk in terms of the other man’s interest, if you’re to going to influence anyone. Anyway, these are just three big ideas that I use all the time from How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie.
I’m sure most of you who are into self-improvement have already read this book and not just once either, but if you haven’t definitely read it because there are so many other cool ideas in the book..