Have you ever met a really interesting person? So what was it about them that provoked your fascination? Often, it’s the people who at first appear least enchanting who actually prove most intriguing. An unexpected fact or facet about a person’s life can stir the mind to curiosity. I remember meeting a man whose humble and ordinary lifestyle gave nothing away of his formidable accomplishments (which I accidentally found out about). He rarely talked of them and in a strange way, this made him all the more compelling.
Becoming a more interesting person has nothing to do with projecting an image which tries to make us appear more gripping than we actually are. This is a common 21st century misconception which is one of the downsides of the social media age. It’s too easy to filterize shallowness, lack of substance & dearth of genuine conviction. When seen for what it is, the exposure of such tedious self obsession ultimately leads to indifference from others. Whatever you do, don’t be THAT person!
Genuinely interesting people have genuine interests. Those interests go far beyond themselves.
Here are 5 ways to be more interesting:
1) Read Widely
It’s important to read widely. It stretches your thinking. This is always healthy. It’s good to read devotional books which inspire your faith. But it’s also good to read books which provoke thought and challenge your preconceived ideas. The latter requires profound security and depth of character.
2) Think Deeply
Everyone needs thinking time. This is all the more important in our fast paced world which affords little room for thought & reflection. Social media illustrates this powerfully. While there are so many great things about social media, too often people use it thoughtlessly, laying bear their raw emotions and writing the first thing which comes into their head (much of it based on ignorance). This is extremely unhealthy. The more thoughtful our minds are, the more measured our words will be. It’s good to think deeply about life. In the Psalms, this is often referred to as ‘Selah’, a word which conveys the idea of stillness, quietness and thoughtfulness.
3) Enquire incessantly
People who are truly knowledgable are more than aware that what they do know pales in comparison to what they don’t know. That’s why truly knowledgable people are rarely arrogant ‘know it all’s’. Decide in your mind that you will be a life long learner. There’s ALWAYS something new to learn. It’s good to maintain a teachable spirit no-matter how old we are. Remember, remaining interested will keep you interesting.
4) Avoid pettiness
Don’t be dismissive of other perspective’s which are different to your own. Be strong enough to stay true to your convictions whilst being open enough to listen to other opinions too. Relish conversations that stretch your thinking. Be sure not to take every disagreement as a personal attack. This kind of pettiness is never helpful.
5) Embrace challenge
Be open to new experiences which don’t compromise the principles by which you live. Never take yourself too seriously in the process. Oscar Wilde once said ‘Life is too important to be taken too seriously’. Interesting people just get ‘stuck in’ and embrace the challenge of new experiences. It’s this kind of healthy curiosity which keeps us riveting and engaged.