“You aren't learning anything when you're talking”. - Lyndon B. Johnson
I was doing some digging last week about the past presidents of the United States. Specifically about how many had died in office. I found out that eight had died in office, four were assassinated and four died of natural causes.
As I was digging into the details I also started learning about the vice presidents that took over as president. When I got to Lyndon B Johnson I was surprised at how much experience he had as a politician and I was extremely impressed with his “Ten Rules” that guided his life.
His ten rules were reminiscent of the 14 leadership principles that Amazon leads with or with the principles that Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius led with. In fact, Lyndon B Johnson was an amazing connector of people and that’s why I want to share these with you. To help you grow into these rules that he used to better connect with the people around him.
Lyndon Johnson's 10 keys to success
- Remember names. I can tell you right out of the gate that I need to practice this one and the importance of this one is immense! People are not only impressed with the fact that you remember their name, they feel a connection with you because of it.
- Be Comfortable. Be an old-show, old-had kind of individual. What he meant by this is that people can connect with us when they sense that we are authentic and sincere. No one wants to talk to someone who is showing off or pretending.
- Acquire the quality of relaxed easy-going so that things do not ruffle you. This one I’m great at and can attest to the fact that people love this. When those around you can sense that you are easy-going and calm there is a deeper connection with you because they also sense that you won’t be one that brings drama to any situation.
- Don’t be egotistical. There are times we can rub people the wrong way just because we didn’t look them in the eye or because we moved on too quickly to the next person. Take time to acknowledge everyone and connect with people on one, even if it’s just a few seconds. People often sense a feeling of ego from you if they think you don’t have time for them.
- Be interesting so people will get something of value from their association with you. This one reminds me of something that FBI Hostage Negotiator Chris Voss said in his book if you are interested in people will find you interesting. The key to this is to sincerely want to get to know people, learn about them, and ask them more questions about what they are talking about. You will be the life of any party when you are truly interested in listening to what people have to say.
- Get the “scratchy” elements out of your personality. This is easier said than done. It takes practice, but first, it takes awareness and sometimes it takes your friends telling you that you have a problem and you must listen! Don’t take it personally if you want to grow. Your job is to connect with as many people as possible and leave amazing impressions with most of them, but you won’t be doing that if you don’t enhance your personality. Always look to better your approach so you can connect more sincerely with people.
- Sincerely attempt to heal every misunderstanding you have had or now have. Many of us lead a life of moving on without fully closing out any misunderstandings we had in our past. Number 7 is clearly saying don’t burn bridges, make sure you leave as many situations as possible in a friendly way, even if you disagree with the other person.
- Practice liking people until you learn to do so genuinely. I laughed out loud when I read this one because I know it’s a struggle for some of us. This is not easy, but if you practice doing this with enough people that you don’t like then you start creating a habit of looking for the things that you have in common even with the people you don’t typically get along with.
- Never miss an opportunity to say a word of congratulations. I’ve been practicing this for a few years now and I’ve gotten into the habit of doing this with anyone that has any good thing happen to them. When you spread cheer it comes back to you.
- Give spiritual strength to people and they will give genuine affection to you. Lift up people and empower them. Make them feel like anything is possible. You do this with enough people and eventually, they will begin to lift others up. When people feel good around you because you make them feel good about themselves the word starts spreading.
These 10 rules that President Johnson had were absolutely great! I shared them with my kids earlier today. Think of how amazing your life would be if you practice these principles daily and begin to internalize them. If you want to change your life it starts with how you function in your head, what thoughts you have, and how those thoughts translate into actions. Make sure your actions are those that connect deeply with people. This life is a life of relationships, don’t forget it.
Thank you for reading A Brilliant Tribe.
Written by Tristan Ahumada
(CEO of Lab Coat Agents)