How to Win Friends AND Influence People
How to Win Friends and Influence People is one of the best self-help books I have read. I’ve heard people mention it for years and years, and one of my good friends has been encouraging me (forcing me to be exact!) to read it for so long. All thanks to RIGSS, I finally got around reading it and here I am ‘TRYING’ to review it. Now that I am done reading it, I finally understand why my good friend has been after the life of me to read it. It is especially meant for a socially-awkward (sort of) person like myself who is constantly on the look-out for self-improvement and interpersonal relationships.
First published in 1936 by the famous Dale Carnegie, as the title suggest, it is a book about winning friends and influencing people from the heart. This book covers a wide range of topics such as how to motivate people, how to win them to your way of thinking, but also covers small and often overlooked things such as the importance of remembering someone’s name (and tips for how to do so).
Carnegie in this book recommends six ways to make people like you, twelve ways to win people to your way of thinking, and nine ways to change people without resentment. Applying these principles can (I think) will help you make personal connections with people in just a few moments, and increase your skills in negotiation, leadership, diffusing tough situations, and dealing with people’s emotions and egos.
To me, personally, what makes the book so valuable are the examples, stories, phrases and snippets of encounters from Carnegie’s interviews and research of kings, generals, and famous personalities like Franklin Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. Here are just a few of the nuggets in this amazing book I really liked:
o The only way on earth to influence other people is to talk about what they want and show them how to get it.
o 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.
o You will never get into trouble by admitting that you may be wrong. That will inspire your opponent to be just as fair and open as you are. It will make him/her want to admit that he/she, too, may be wrong.
o Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain—and most fools do. But it takes character and self-control to be understanding and forgiving.
o Criticisms are like homing pigeons. They always return home. Let’s realize that the person we are going to correct and condemn will probably justify himself or herself, and condemn us in return.
o There is a certain degree of satisfaction in having the courage to admit one’s errors. It not only clears the air of guilt and defensiveness, but often helps solve the problem created by the error.
o To be interesting, be interested!
The key takeaway for me— and where I really want to improve — is to try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view. As Dale Carnegie puts it, “one of the fundamental keys to successful human relations is understanding that other people may be totally wrong, but they don’t think so”. As he rightly put it, this is so simple, so obvious yet 90 percent of the people on this earth ignore it 90 percent of the time.
This book is a MUST read for everyone, who in their daily lives like myself are struggling on interpersonal relationships. I would highly recommend this book to anyone because it teaches everyone valuable lessons about human interactions.