There is a variety of entities that make up “great people”. I hate to say so, but there are people who are more enjoyable to talk to than others and there are people who are nice and some that are not so nice.
There is a plethora of research and semi-reseaarched books out there that tries to find elements that connect these “good” people. Be it mirror neurons, continuous states of FLOW or a healthy family background. The more studies are conducted, the more elements will be found.
Yet there’s one element that I feel such people have in common and which is a highly underrated one: Asking questions.
People who are compulsively and vehemently insiting on their opinions and views on the world and on certain topics, rarely sit back and listen to others. Not listening to others, although they might know “less” on certain topics, is a failure. Growing and prospering is crucially interlinked to listening to others and not dogmatically imposeing one’s opinion over another one’s.
Whenver I meet new people I feel that the more they listen, the more questions they ask, the more I sympathize with them. This might not always be easy but on the long run you can only win. People who’ve accomplished things in their lives that one might consider aspiring to in western cultural terms (money, love, health, family) are usually the ones that do not need to prove anything and who stopped answering, but started asking.
It seems so obvious and simple but when you carefully watch and observe you’ll notice that only a minority of people actually act that way and I believe if one did a randomized, double-blinded cohor study then I am pretty sure that the results will be somewhat signifcant that people asking questions will be considered as more “pleasant” people than others.