The Charisma Challenge

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charisma myth book cover

Inspired by Claire Bell’s article on charisma, I decided to undergo the charisma challenge.

I borrowed The Charisma Myth by Olivia Fox Cabane from the library and recruited several work colleagues.

The challenge was to practice a charisma exercise each week and compare results.

After a month we found the following things:

Colleague 1: More people smiled at her during the week. Charisma Total 4
Colleague 2: Forgot to complete the exercises: Charisma total 0

My Charisma

  • People returned my smile.
  • A work colleague who had ignored me for four years initiated a conversation of several sentences.
  • I laughed more.
  • I bonded to the colleagues undertaking the challenge.
  • I stayed more focused on the moment.
  • I temporarily enjoyed my job.
  • Interactions with work colleagues increased and were positive. Many spoke about personal issues and stopped by my office for a chat.

Charisma total: 8

Overall, the challenge was successful.

Unfortunately, old habits resurfaced once the challenge finished.

Charisma is hard work.



About the author

Sue Bell is an entertainment writer and author of Backpacked: A mostly true story, Beat Street and When Dreamworks came to Stanley.

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