How to Win Friends and Influence People PDF [Book Short]

If the Golden Rule was turned into a book, this would be it.

Before we can win friends and potential influence people with our beliefs, we must understand basic human nature.

When dealing with people, let us remember we are not dealing with creatures of logic. We are dealing with creatures of emotion, creatures bristling with prejudices and motivated by pride and vanity.

Basically, everyone is walking around with their best interests front and center in mind.

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You and I are selfish, prideful, and sensitive creatures. So if you want to appeal to anyone other than yourself, you’ll have to appeal to their egos.

Therefore, put your ego aside and learn the subtle art of not being a selfish prick. Walk a moment in their shoes…in fact…walk days in their shoes and really understand where they’re coming from and find common ground that makes them feel important.

And if you want to persuade someone, don’t argue. Don’t contradict. Instead, don’t be a dick. Find common ground between you and them and focus on those aspects of your engagement. The person in control is the person listening, so let them do the talking. If you have ideas, don’t bother preaching, it won’t be as effective as subtly planting the idea for them to come up with on their own. Put your ego aside, and let them take credit for it…take pride in where that leads both of you to a better place than you started.

You might be thinking…isn’t this a bit…shall we say fake?

Well, it can be if your sole objective is to get what you want without thinking about the other person’s desires. This book states that you must be authentically interested in finding a true win-win otherwise these tactics turn into shallow flattery, which is not good for anyone.

Taking a step back, it feels a bit cynical that people only care about what they want and are defensive to those who challenge their beliefs…but it’s becoming clear that’s how we are.

“People are not interested in you. They are not interested in me. They are interested in themselves — morning, noon, and dinner.”

This reminds me of the new Netflix show, Bill Nye Saves the World. I have been a pretty big fan of Bill since I watched Bill Nye the Science Guy growing up. But his new show is cringeworthy. I couldn’t even finish the first episode and after rereading this book, I know why.

His writers break so many rules from this book…no wonder it’s getting slaughtered in the ratings. Rule number 1, don’t criticize, condemn, or complain…that’s pretty much the premise of the show…to do that to the group who don’t accept scientific truths like global warming.

They don’t make their target audience feel important…and their target audience shouldn’t be those already in favor of science, it should be those who need a reason to care about science and the betterment of our planet. I must say, it was dead on arrival.

Another rule I see broken that affects our daily lives are the proliferation of news debates. Dale states that to win people to your way of thinking, the only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it. No matter who wins, in total we all lose. Either the other person will feel humiliated or will double down on their position…worst of all, the same is true for those backing that debater.

Basically, if our society needed a booster shot of societal etiquette, look no further, this book serves it with grace.

How Does Dale Carnegie know?

He’s one of the fathers of the self-help industry. This book has sold over 30 million copies and he used to teach a very successful course which this book is based on. Warren Buffett even has a certificate for completing the course in his office.

Even in 2011, Time still had this book in the top 20 of the most influential books. The insights stand the test of time.

Actionable Nugget

When you listen to someone speak, do you really listen intently? Or are you thinking of the next thing to reply to them with?

This has really helped me lately feel more engaged when someone talks. It takes a bit of practice but looks into their eyes and try to absorb the other person’s words. The speed of response isn’t a factor so if they ask you something, take your time to respond…the point is that your listening intently.

There are so many other great nuggets in this book, so I highly recommend you pick it up or listen to the audiobook.

And at the very least, smile more…it just might help you win a new friend.

Stay Thought-full.

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