T Nation

Charisma or Something Else?

Hey guys,

I was wondering: why do some people have this vibe of…I don’t know intensity, charisma or just all-round mesmerising magnetism around them?
It’s just like whatever these people are going to say is going to be worth listening. When they speak to you, you just feel like the only man in the world (no homo). Even when they just enter the room, they radiate their presence like a stove.

It’s a phenomenon I can’t wrap my head around just yet.
Something that might be worth noting: when people are singing/speaking very good it can really amplify the feeling. Man, I recall a time a very timid girl started singing at school camp, and I couldn’t but cringe by the power she seemed to hit me with across the room!

Spill some thoughts!

dunno, mate. I was just born with it…

It’s just confidence. If you don’t have it - learn to fake it.


Some of those people who are super-charismatic are also psychopaths.

I think it comes down to a few things:

  1. They are attractive
  2. They are confident
  3. They lack fear or are willing to do what other people are afraid to do

Definitely charisma IMO.

I’d also say with regards the timid girl who really blew you away, sometimes, when a shy person knows exactly what’s expected of them they can be very confident which in turn can facilitate a really charismatic performance (the same can be true of a lot of actors & comedians).

This is a question only SexMachine can answer.

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but only very slowly, because he’s so high-status

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This is how I feel when I’m near the leader. By my deeds I honor him. I live, I die, I live again.

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Sincerity is everything, and once you can fake that, you’ve got it made.


People telling you blatant lies with a straight face, trying hard to look sincere and relying on that straight face to make you swallow them, which happens mostly in work situations is one of the most disgusting thing you can come across.

If I ever have a hint that someone is doing this they lose 100% of any respect I had for them, forever.My brain will wake up and find ways to screw them.

I can’t tell if you’re unaware that my statement is an old joke or if you just felt the need to rebut said old joke.

After all these threads I started, I finally made one that is semi-derailed by semi-constructive replies :’)

Dial-up y’all, party like it’s 2005!

Unaware of english old jokes, your post just made me think about something too common. Those people think they are charismatic too.

After meeting several charismatics I tend to go towards to Aero and Jasmincar’s assessment.
Very few of these people are unable or unwilling to abuse their power. Think JFK, with his public persona, vs his private.
They make great conmen/women are usually extremely sexually attractive, to the opposite sex.
I was quite shocked both at the time and afterwards when I met a pair of right wing politicians, at a gun show. They were a couple at the time. Impeccable dress sense and manicuring. Despite my rational mind telling me otherwise, I felt like I was in the presence of higher beings. Otherworldly magnitude like Frodo in the presence of Galadriel. I felt blessed that they deigned to talk to me.

In time, in the media they both turned out to be pretty untrustworthy, unlikeable individuals and either their interest in politics waned, or they lost popularity with their core supporters and they disappeared back into anonymity.

If you can get a bit a distance, when the irrational feelings start its easy enough to see they are “all show and no go”. Mainly image, with a conman underneath, tapping into something primal, and trying to manipulate you.

That being said its not always bad I remember being in a cafe with my then girlfriend. There was a group of really good looking women, I thought models. Even though I would have said all the other women in the group were beautiful this one seemed to radiate an aura, and seemed a magnitude, head and shoulders above the others or indeed any one else I had seen in my entire life. I was probably drooling, my girlfriend said something
like “It’s alright, I don’t mind you looking at her, I can’t stop looking at her and so is everyone else in the room”.

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Like anything else I think charisma is relative to the individual. However from what I’ve read and what I’ve witnessed charisma usually comes down to a combination of status/power, presence, and authenticity.

Those who possess the true charm of charisma never feel the need to say, “no homo.”

I have been told I have the gift of gab. I think that even though I’m not very handsome (do we still have pics in our profiles from before the site changed?) but i seem to have a face that expresses easily and seems to make people feel open to talking with me.

Knowing what to say is hard. I’ve been asked a couple of times about what to talk about and I’ve said it’s hard to know because the conversation can branch of really fast so quick thinking would of course help.

Certainly the most comprehensive post till now. I think now the perspective of a few posters before you are falling into place.
I have been backstabbed a few times. What I most noticed was a few real hot girls who new how to get things done for them (AKA being on the hook). Well, I think ‘hot’ is not the best way to describe them…they were definitely physically attractive, bot nothing extraordinary when looking back…they knew when to laugh, how to laugh, how to position their bodies, how to look me in the eye. Like models. (who aren’t really physically hot on average).

Boy, most of the girls I fell in love with aren’t keeping up Kardashians or make Hellen of Troy pale in comparison, but they just were so magnetic. The most telling story was when I was 13 or 14, and I was in the same class as this one girl. And at one point, I glared at her (having known her for a couple of months) for a hour straight it felt. She was talking with her friends and cracked a laugh: I just went drooling by the way her eyes shone, her laugh was perfectly measured, her limbs contorted in the most aesthetic way possible. The love for her wasn’t long or deep, but every time I speak to her I recall what I liked about her. BTW she screwed with me a few times by making me run some errands. I’ve come a long way.

As another BS-ish anecdote: my macho barber (yes, they seem to exist) told me he saw a local soap-actress at the bar. She might not be the hottest girl you ever seen, but she turned all heads effortless.

Get out. Your a damn handsome looker. The only reason people let their conversation with you meander on is to have a chance at knocking boots.

Kidding aside. I know what you mean. But a part is factors that determine chemistry. Some people you can just yap on with, while non of the speakers really are natural conversationalists.

While the outlay is bright and shiny now, this stays grungy T-nation: their where dudes admire each others scantly clad bodies. It isn’t optional to keep stating the straightness of what you said.

I would echo most of what has been said, but also add that the way any specific individual with “charisma” is being perceived and treated by the others in the room can add to your perception of them.

I’m much better in one on one situations than group settings when it comes to conveying my point or just making good conversation in general (I’m sure that’s a very common attribute), in general having that charisma that you speak of. I think that if everyone else in the room is paying attention to the person or giving them an extra bit of respect then we will subconsciously follow suit, unless we are consciously forcing ourselves not to.

Certain people can learn how to play the room or the group they’re interacting with. I think that comfort level has a lot to do with it, too. Someone who is comfortable in their own skin or in that specific situation (like a politician talking to a crowd of people, for example) can elicit the group’s feelings towards them. Get them into a quiet room with just the two of you and they may very well seem like a completely different person.

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