Maxie is one of the most interesting people I know! Before I even met her, I knew a lot about her. While we started working for the same company at the same time, she was working remotely. My coworkers who knew her would constantly talk about all these cool Maxie things. I was dying to meet her because she just seemed so interesting. Meeting her in person did not disappoint. But sometimes when I’m around her I feel un-interesting. She’s off in Bali, having sold all her possessions, learning how to surf, starting a new business, you know… normal stuff. It’s crazy to me that she ever felt boring!
How to Be Way More Interesting
Guest Post by Maxie McCoy
Once I was sitting at a table with two of the most fascinating, entertaining people I know and had a total self-conscious moment that I was mind-blowingly boring.
B O R I N G. I felt so boring compared to them. I didn’t want to be that person who brought nothing to the table. Even though I know this was just a weepy, weird self conscious moment (I’m not boring and I know it), I began to take note of all the people I know who blow my mind – they’re fascinating, quirky, engaging, memorable, and contagious with their energy. And why.
The cool thing about being interesting is that anyone can cultivate these qualities. You can expand to go from someone who just floats along in the crowd into creating an identity that is a full expression of who you are. And newsflash – when you’re being fully yourself, you’re typically hella interesting. It’s only when you wall up and try to be something you’re not that you become that rather lame person.
Becoming more interesting is an experience and a journey into getting really comfortable with who you are, which is why it’s oh so important. Rock with these little commonalities of interesting people and you’ll be the best version of yourself in no time:
Be open and above all curious.
Interesting people are always into cool stuff. It’s not because they’re more interesting thus they find cool things to care about. No, rather, they have a vast sense of curiosity for this world they’re living in and they explore it… which makes them more interesting. Whether it’s geeking out on quantum physics, learning to play the trumpet in their twenties, starting improv classes, or obsessed with ancient maps – interesting people notice their sparks of curiosity and they do something about it. Find what lights you up in weird ways, whatever it is, and pursue it. And above all, stay blindingly curious about the places, people, and things around you.
Listen. Ask. Repeat.
Part of being “interesting” is your relationship to other people. The curiosity stems to your engagement with what other people know and wanting to hear from them even more so than you want to share. The genuine interest in others is what leads them to assess you as an interesting individual yourself. So ask good question. Inquire. Have follow up questions to the things they say. And be a present listener so you know what to ask to begin with (yes, phones down. Eyes up.).
Tell really good stories.
Part of the definition of “interesting” is to be able to catch the attention. There’s no better way to do this than by developing an amazing talent for storytelling. Whether it’s about the things you’re curious of or the people you’ve met or the things that have happened to you, learn how to tell better stories. Doing that begins with showing someone what happened, not just telling them. It’s the difference from mentioning you had a knife pulled out on you on a boat in Bali, and going into a 5 minute play-by-play of your most recent boat ride, a story that starts with “you’ll never believe what happened to me yesterday…” (PS. yes, this happened. yes, I am fine.)
Most Importantly… Harness authenticity, have opinions and quit caring what people think.
Aiming to be interesting probably won’t get you across the line. But a goal to be engaged in life, always curious and always in action, genuinely interested in others and having such a good time telling stories probably will. Above all, when you’re straying from the norm, you must minimize the level in which you care what people think. You have opinions and learn to express them (kinda like this), and you get really clear with who you are what makes you different from others. That difference makes you you (and yes you have it!). That authentic identity is always what will make you the most interesting person in the room.