Accentuate your best features

In my time at bars, I have found that people (particularly the opposite sex) provide the best guide on how to be charming. That is, generally, people will tell you what you best features are. Though I would like to say I have a good grasp of how this would work for women, I really don't, I don't think anyone does. As such this is from my perspective as a male. Also, if you think this WU is "wrong" in an amoral way, please read the conclusion before you down-vote me.

Assemble "the list"
Assemble a list of things people compliment you on. It can range from a nice smile, to your eyes, your intelligence even your clothes. Develop the list over time, you don't necessarily need to write it down, just make a mental note when someone is specific about their compliments. Even vague comments can be helpful, most people aren't going to walk up to you and tell you have a nice smile. Instead, look for patterns. Look for compliments on your white teeth, someone smiling when you smile, staring at your eyes, grabbing your butt and saying "oooh!" Once you have noticed a discernable pattern in compliments, add it to your list.
On fishing for compliments: don't. If you ask someone about what they like about you they will strain for an answer. The one possible exception is an individual who is obviously enamored with you, they may have already picked up on your best feature and will fire it back at you. If they take a second to look you over, forget about whatever they say, its a garbage compliment.

Case Study
My "list" has been developed over the past several years of social interactions at various clubs and bars

  • Smile
  • Eyes
  • Build
  • Butt
Note: this is in no particular order as I get more compliments about my butt than the others. And I am sure everyone here wanted to know that little bit of information.
Also note that the list isn't very long. If you have a list of 10 things, you are going to want to pare it down to something more manageable, unless you want to spend the entire night pulling a piece of paper out of your pocket.

Working with the list
The list isn't anything that is automatically going to get other potential mates to approach you. It has to be worked with, all you have is the list of what people like about you. In order to put those features to work, you need to figure out what it is that will help you accentuate them. Essentially there are two areas that can help you accentuate those features - your surroundings and your personal aura.

Your surroundings
This is where you are trying to charm target individuals, and must be chosen carefully. Trying to charm people at a red-neck sports bar when your list consists of: "income, intelligence, taste in clothes" is not going to produce the results you desire. More than likely you are going to end up on the bad end of some guy named "Bubba". Which bad end depends on your sex (or perhaps it doesn't).
Some (decent) matches:

  • Bars: This is pretty much a catch-all and a cop-out, but be sure to choose a bar with an atmosphere that matches your list (i.e. our previous example would do better at a nice Martini bar)
  • Library: Intelligence, believe it or not this is a pretty good place, just spend a lot of time in a section that you are knowledgeable about.
    Note: spending all your time in the sports section means that you probably should change your surroundings.
  • Community/Technical College courses: A great way to meet people outside your normal circle. Complimented on strong hands a lot? Try a massage course!
  • Dance Clubs/Halls: Pretty specific, for those who have been told they are great to dance with, just make sure you match the genre to your style.
For those of you wanting to charm someone you already know (i.e. charming a girl on the first date), some of the above descriptions won't help you. But you should spend time considering where you are going to take the individual, or if they are taking you somewhere spend some time considering how you can bring out the best in you in those surroundings.
Choose what you do in your surroundings according to what you know as being your best features. In some situations (such as our muscle-handed friend at the massage class) the activities are pre-set. But what about the bar scene or the library? The bottom line is be creative in your hidden mission to show off your best features.

Case Study
Generally speaking I hang out in bars, I know, a self-described cop-out but it works well for me. At the bar I generally try to hang out in larger groups of people, but I go it alone on occasion. People like laughing and smiling, groups provide the best opportunity for this. Since "Smile" is on my list it gives me the opportunity to smile the most. I'll even participate in light-handed jibes, taking the opportunity to deaden the blow with a broad smile and a laugh. Fortunately I have been told the smile sets off my eyes well - so I get a two for one deal on this. As for the butt, I offer to play darts - you gotta pick them up at some point!

Your personal aura
Aura sounds very corny, but I had a hard time coming up with something that covers everything from the way you carry yourself, your "personal" activities and your attire. Depending on your surroundings and your list your aura should vary accordingly. Trying to show off your butt in a library isn't going to go over too well.

"Personal activities"
Make sure what you are doing what "nobody is watching" matches well with your list, because someone is watching. If you are by yourself, consider using props. For example: someone with "Intelligence" on their list, might try bringing some work to their surroundings. Whether it is school work or other, it doesn't matter. As soon as it takes affect it will be pushed aside and ignored. But make sure it is something you know, nothing is worse than being asked about your "work" and all you can do is drool. Last, always look up from your personal activity. If you look too involved in it you won't appear approachable. Also, is generally better to look at someone than say a clock.

Case Study

  • Smile: as I pointed out in the section on surroundings, I try to smile as much as possible. From jokes with friends to smiling hello to a stranger. Not is it only on my "list", people like being around happy people.
  • Eyes: I don't hide them by sitting at the bar hunched over a beer, I try to look around as much as possible, nodding hello to people I know. Note, I try not to look shifty, more casual and once I have "engaged" someone I commit my eyes to them so they (my eyes) can have their greatest effect.
  • Build: I am not a "huge" guy, but I am 6' and an ex-hockey player (thus all my nodes on hockey). I generally wear things that make me look larger, like a thick sweater with my coaching jacket over the top. Also I carry myself "big", shoulders back, chin up, etc...
  • Butt: Again my attire plays big here. I avoid warm-up pants and loose fitting jeans. Dockers are my friend, thin enough that they allow me to accentuate another thing on my list without much effort while out on the town, yet refined enough to match my "your mom will like me" look.
For those that are in the first date scenario described above, your "target" is already chosen. You should try to think of things that will bring out the best in you and choose your surroundings accordingly. If you are having them chosen for you think of what you can do there that will help you to further your cause.

Once you have found out what is on your list, and how you are going to bring out those features you are set. Go forth and charm people! Some parting notes and advice though. As a generally outgoing individual this works well for me (now if I could just master the whole relationship part). If you tend to be shy you might have to work on it a bit more. Also some features are easier to bring out than others. If you have "Income" on your list, dropping hints about your BMW and you condo at Red Mountain might make you look piggish, so be careful that you aren't too obvious. It has to look natural. If it looks like you are playing a part, you aren't going to charm anyone except those that are too shallow to notice. Also, this may seem like I am promoting the shallowness that I have just derailed, I am not. I am not trying to encourage people to become something that they are not. That is why it is important for other people to point out your assets in a natural way (remember the fishing for compliments bit?). As soon as you start trying to bring out things that aren't really you, it will feel awkward. If you start feeling awkward with what you are doing to bring out something on your list, change what you are doing. If you always feel awkward trying to accentuate it, take it off your list - it isn't you. Lastly, choose surroundings according to what you are looking for. If you are looking for intelligent people, WWE events aren't for you. Once you get your surroundings and your charm in hand, everything should start to fall into place.