Be Popular

What do all popular people have in common? Do they all wear the same clothes? Have the same hair? Say the same things? Of course not. There are popular people all over the world, enjoying their social status at school, work, and wherever they go. There's no magical quality that can make you popular, but if you work on getting noticed, being social, and getting involved, you'll improve your chances of turning heads and getting smiles everywhere you go. If you want to know how to be popular, just follow these steps.


Get Noticed

  1. Be confident. Nobody's perfect. Therefore, you don't have to be perfect to be popular. Even if you feel that you're far from ideal, the first step to gaining confidence is to believe in yourself.
    • Don't hide in the corner. Get up and bask in the spotlight, if the moment is right. If you spend all of your time worrying about how you look or what other people think of you, you won't get very far. Instead, work on loving who you are and what you do. If you love yourself, everyone will want to join in.
    • In class, also get noticed, raise your hand, and finish your work on time. People will get to know you better, Never be afraid to speak!
    • Fake it until you make it. Even if you don't feel confident, just acting confident is the first step to making you feel good.
    • Confidence has a lot to do with body language. Walk with your head high and your arms at your sides instead of crossed over your chest. Don't hunch.
    • Develop your confidence by excelling at the things you love or developing new interests. If you find something you really care about, you'll be more likely to feel good about yourself.
  2. Put yourself out there. This usually means to be willing to step out of your comfort zone. If you're not popular, it's because you're not comfortable doing the things that popular people tend to do, such as:
    • Making conversation, cracking jokes, flirting, and in general, engaging people. Remember that popular kids are popular only because they are known by (and get the attention from) others.
    • Remember, if it isn't yet working out, don't wait for someone to come talk to you, you might as well talk to others you never did before.
    • You may be introspective, shy, or quiet, but in order to get what you want, you need to change how you interact with people.
    • At first, that might feel like you're being shallow or fake, but remember that being yourself is, at its core, all about knowing what you truly want out of life.
  3. Find your own style. To get noticed, you don't have to dye your hair pink or get a tattoo on your face. What you should do, however, is find your own look and style and let people see that you're comfortable being yourself.
    • If you're hiding behind a pair of gray sweatpants, you won't get noticed—at least, not in a good way. So, find a look makes you comfortable, whether you look preppy, hipster chic, or grungy, and own it.
    • You don't have to buy the trendiest clothes that everyone else is wearing unless you think you can really look good and comfortable in them. If you're buying the same Converse that everyone in school is wearing but they just look wrong on your feet, everyone will notice.
    • Whatever you wear, have confidence in it. Don't check yourself out in the mirror or ask everyone in your path if you look okay, or people will know that you doubt yourself.
    • It's great to pay attention to your looks, but looking like you're trying too hard to be popular is worse than looking like you don't care. So, if you're not really into makeup, don't slather your face with it. If you don't like popping your collar, don't do it just because that's what everyone else is doing.
    • If you want to get trendy clothes but don't have the budget, check out stores that have cool clothes at an affordable price (especially during their sales). Check out Aeropostale, American Eagle, or even Forever 21 to get some great deals.
  4. Take risks. To be popular, you're going to need to take a few chances on a social level that may normally feel uncomfortable to you. So be prepared to be bold.
    • Take risks by introducing yourself to someone you haven't met, going to a party you were invited to (even if you don't know many other guests), or by making statements that make you stand out in a crowd.
    • If you get used to taking risks (without putting yourself in danger, of course) you will definitely get noticed more.
  5. Don't act like you don't care. Yeah, if you go around acting like you're too cool for school, people may notice you, but it won't be in a good way. Though you may not want to be the teacher's pet and answer every question right, participating in class and making an effort will get you more positive attention than shrugging or being rude if the teacher asks you a question.
    • Part of looking like you're ready and excited for whatever life throws at you is to smile more. You don't have to smile like a maniac; however, you should smile when people greet you, or even be the one to smile first. This will make people want to get to know you.
    • If you're in high school, then you may be at the point in your life where most people around you think it's cool to look bored or totally uninterested. However, you'll get noticed even more if you go against the grain here.

Be Social

  1. Be interested, not interesting. Don't try to act interesting to get other people's attention; act interested in them. Ask them how work or school is going, how their family is doing, how that situation they mentioned a while back turned out, and so on. Then relate. Talk to them about how you or someone you know had something similar happen to them, and how they dealt with it.
    • Stop thinking about yourself and how you can impress others. Of all the people skills that popular people have, the one that none of them can do without is empathy. How well do you relate to other people?
    • Stop worrying so much about how you look, how you sound, how you compare, and start thinking about how other people are doing.
  2. Be friendly. Popular people are on friendly terms with pretty much everyone—not only their peers, but also the teachers, the supervisors, the grocery store clerk, the janitor, the parents, the kids, and generally anyone who's even the tiniest bit nice. They're on good enough terms that they can hold a short, friendly conversation with anyone in the room. There's no reason you can't do that, too. Being friendly doesn't take a big effort, but it makes a real impact.
    • Keep it casual. Small talk is all about sticking to "safe" topics. Stay away from anything controversial, like religion or politics. By expressing your views on a controversial topic, you're bound to be unpopular with people who disagree. Keep the topics "light".
  3. Don't butt in. There's a difference between being friendly and going where you're not wanted. Respect people's privacy; don't pry. Learn to read body language so you can see when your questions are starting to make them feel uncomfortable. If a person is backing away or leaning away from you, checking his phone every five minutes, or talking quietly to another friend before you approach, it may not be the best time to talk.
    • Don't invite yourself anywhere, don't stalk, don't brag, and don't interrupt. In other words, don't be annoying.
  4. Help People Popular people don't just know everyone—they're on good terms with everyone. They establish those terms by helping people out, and they don't do it in particularly noticeable ways. They do little things to establish rapport (in addition to some big things, like volunteering). They offer someone a pencil when they need it. They close the neighbor's gate when it opens after a strong wind. They hold the door open and wait for the person behind them. But most often, they listen to people when they talk, and they offer to help somehow.
    • If you truly empathize with people, you'll want things to work out for them. If there's nothing you can do to help then, at the very least, let them know that you're hoping the best for them.
  5. Be yourself—for real. This may sound trite, but people who are truly popular don't worry about what they should do to "fit in", because they really do just because they're comfortable with who they are. You might think that in order to be popular, you need to be attractive and talented, but while it's true that those qualities are more likely to make you a hit with people, there are extremely popular people who are otherwise quite average, and there are extremely good-looking and talented people who are anything but popular.
    • Remember, the only thing you need in order to be popular is a good set of people skills. The remainder is all yours to mold as you see fit, regardless of what anyone else thinks.
    • Part of being yourself is knowing yourself well enough to laugh at yourself. Show people that you recognize your quirks and don't take yourself too seriously, and they'll be impressed.
  6. Don't try too hard. Surprisingly, many "popular" people don't put too much conscious effort into it. They simply are themselves. If you're desperate to be popular, it will show in your actions, and people will think you're a poser, or worse, a freak. One way to make friends is if you find a group of friends that shares your interests, whom you can easily be yourself around. Then as you become more and more accustomed to hanging out with people, you can branch out and start talking to different people.

Get Involved

  1. Join a team. You don't have to be Lebron James to join your school basketball team. Joining a team is not only a great way to exercise and feel good about yourself, but it's an awesome way to broaden your horizons and make friends. If you're even a little athletically inclined, it's worth it to try out for one of your school's sports teams or to join a casual sports league in your neighborhood.
    • Joining a team will expose you to more people and will help you learn how to get along with a variety of people that you might not otherwise encounter in your classes or daily life.
    • Joining a team will also improve your social life. You'll be more likely to make plans for what to do after the game, or to go to pre-game dinners and other activities with your team.
    • Joining a team is also a great way to put yourself out there and to let more people know who you are.
  2. Join a club. Joining a club is another way to broaden your horizons and to meet more people. You may not meet the same kind of people at the school newspaper that you'd meet on your soccer team, so it's a great idea to join a club and a team if you have the interest and the time in your busy schedule. Find something you're interested in or even just curious about, and try to put yourself in a leadership role in the club once you've gained enough experience, so you're more comfortable being a leader and know more people.
    • Don't worry about a club being "too nerdy" for you. Doing something that you love and meeting more people will make you more popular.
  3. Get involved in the classroom. You don't have to suck up to the teacher or have your hand raised in the air the whole time to stand out in the classroom. Just be friendly to people when they sit down next to you, answer your teacher's questions without being overbearing, and generally show that you care without being so absorbed that you don't notice the social dynamics around you.
    • If you're more active in class, more people will know your name and recognize you if you come up in the conversation.
  4. Maintain a variety of interests. Don't just be a jock or get obsessed with the school yearbook. Instead, maintain a variety of interests by having a few irons in the fire at once. Though you shouldn't spread yourself so thin that you don't have time for yourself, being more involved in more activities will help you get recognized, put your name out there, and get to know more people from different walks of life.
  5. Get involved in your community. Getting involved in your community will not only help you improve the life of people who are in need, but it'll help you learn how to interact with a larger number of people from different backgrounds, ages, and financial situations. The more people you know how to get along with, the more adept you'll be at meeting new people and making them feel welcome when the time comes.


  • Be friendly to those you know. Smile, say hello, and if they greet you back, ask them how they're doing. No matter where you go, make it a habit to chat with strangers and acquaintances alike, even if it's just for a few minutes.
  • If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all. That might sound like something you would hear from your grandmother, but it is good advice. Even if people around you are denigrating someone, avoid being drawn into negative gossip. If pressed for an opinion just say something neutral like "Well, she's always been nice to me, so I don't know" or "Maybe he has personal issues that we don't know about. Who knows?"
  • Look approachable. Pleasant people are a joy to be around. People who always walk around looking like their dog just died aren't. Give people a chance to warm up to you.
  • Join a sport! Usually, all the more popular people are athletic and play sports! Cheerleading, gymnastics, and dance are obvious ones. If you're not into those, you could try field hockey, lacrosse, swimming, track, basketball, volleyball, or soccer. Almost all sports teams have popular people on it.
  • Realize that popularity doesn't define who you are, but simply shines the limelight on who your are, so don't think you have to become a whole new person when you become popular.
  • Although, in some communities, you might have to be mean to the "unpopular". This is most common in middle and high schools. If you live in this community, think carefully before trying because you might permanently lose one of your friends.
  • Keep your phone on. People who aren't reachable aren't very well-liked.
  • If you have a Facebook account, you can add your school friends if they have a Facebook account too. Always talk to them. But don't get on and start saying, "Hey I'm bored." Then they respond, "Me too." Then that would seem lame. So have something to say when you start talking to them.
  • Whatever you do don't become a popular mean girl. Everyone hates mean girls and no one in your school would like you if you are mean to everyone.


  • Don’t think too hard. Being popular is as much a state of mind as anything else. If people see you trying too hard to be popular, they will usually dismiss your efforts. Popularity, in the end, is only partly about how others see you. Your reputation may fade and change over time, and the only thing you can control is how you treat others.
  • Guard your privacy. When everyone knows you, it means that there's a greater likelihood of nosiness and gossip. Think of how famous celebrities have someone prying into their personal lives at all times. You'll also need to be prepared for people starting conversations with you while you're running errands or sitting down reading a book at the park. It comes with the package. Handle it gracefully.
  • Don't be upset if you're not the most popular person in school. Sometimes it's better to have good friends that care about you and are fun to hang out with, than being a cool kid. Because after all you need some good buddies.
  • Realize that popularity has its ups and downs, and may fade very quickly when you start at a new school or job. Every situation is different and sometimes you need to start over.
  • Don't be disappointed if you fail. Popularity can be easy for some and practically impossible for others. There are many factors which can prevent a person from being outgoing and well-liked, but that does not mean the person is worth any less.

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