Thoughtful Thursday: Target Demographic

September 19, 2013

Thoughtful ThursdayWe have a houseguest right now. He and my husband have been friends and colleagues for many years and speak on an almost daily basis, but he has only met Burrito and Tamale once before, last year. Even so, when he arrived today, both Burrito and Tamale were clamoring to show him around the house. Burrito, who normally takes hours to get comfortable with a new person, within a few minutes was literally leading our guest around the house by the hand.

After the children went to bed, I commented to our guest, “Wow, Burrito likes you so much. He is never so comfortable with someone so quickly.”

Our guest responded, “Children and dogs are crazy about me. Adults, not so much.”

I replied, “I’m exactly the same way! Except for the dogs.”

In fact, neither of our statements is quite true. Everybody likes our houseguest; I’ve never met a person who had a bad word to say about him. Children and dogs just like him even more. A mutual friend had a dog who barked viciously at everyone except her immediate family; the teenaged daughter of the family had a boyfriend who was only accepted by the dog after 2 years. The first and every subsequent time that the dog met my houseguest, she was snuggling him and licking his face.

As for me, I’m also a pied piper with children. Not all children, but most. Recently at a birthday party, a 2 year old who is hesitant around almost all adults was literally pushing my children out of the way so that she could sit next to me.

I’m also pretty popular with older people. I’m calm, listen attentively, show excellent manners. People my age? Hit or miss.

The same principle applies professionally. I’m a great mentor/supervisor. Bosses love me. Peers? Iffy.

Which types of people (or animals) are particularly drawn to you? What types of people are tougher for you to charm?

7 Responses to “Thoughtful Thursday: Target Demographic”

  1. St. Elsewhere Says:

    I get comfy with children and older people far more easily than with people of my own age.

    I find it difficult to break out of my shell, if I consider the other person glib, fake or if I have some sort of negative preset in my mind.

  2. Mina Says:

    The children don’t come to me as first choice, but when they do, they do not want to leave me anymore (of course, I am not talking about my children here). 🙂 My peers though, they think I am rather aloof. At least they used to, now I no longer have inside knowledge to what the others think of me (talking with adults now rarely involves confessions regarding how and what they or anyone else think of me). Although I have little reason to think that changed.

  3. Sara Says:

    Um, wow. I don’t know.

    I guess I get a long pretty well with kids? They aren’t especially drawn to me, but I can be left with a kid who doesn’t know me very well w/o tears or hysterics, and I can get random kids to smile at me on the train, etc.

    My bosses generally like me since I have a ton of self-motivation and can get my work done with little supervision or direction (thank you, 12 years of being home-schooled!).

    I can usually coax cats to come and be petted, even relatively feral strays. 🙂

    Most people, most animals, I guess, are pretty ambivalent about me, which is fine, because it’s often reciprocal.

  4. Cats love me. I do not return the favor.

    I’m better with adults than with kids. Maybe it’s because I put in more of an effort. My own kids seem to tap out the bulk of my kid-energy.

    You’re a hit with me 🙂

  5. strongblonde Says:

    hmmmm. gosh. i suppose i do best with smaller groups. i feel comfortable with kids and they seem to like me…but i wonder if that is just because i have children, so i know how to interact with them? i am hit or miss with people my own age. i think that people feel that i am standoffish or condescending, but that is actually shyness. i think most older people like me, but i usually figure that is because i have some experience with some of their major medical concerns 😉

  6. strongblonde Says:

    also, i feel like dogs try to be around me, but i’m allergic, so it cant be because i’m super dog-friendly! maybe i just have a dog vibe?

  7. Elana Kahn Says:

    Geeky people like me because I’m the biggest geek ever!!! I was never really liked by the popular crowd until I became an adult, and now most people seem to like me – or at least tolerate me. I try to be as friendly as possible, so the people who don’t like me are people who are annoyed by friendliness, I guess. 🙂

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