Perfect People Finder – Exercise #1

We talk a lot here about our perfect people and why it’s important to identify them, but to date I have only shared my secrets for finding your perfect people with my coaching clients. When I decided to transform my coaching business, I promised to share with you these secrets at no cost. Today we’ll go over the first exercise you can use to begin to uncover your perfect people.

Everyone has an inner critic. Much of the time this critic is telling us what we’re doing wrong, what we’re not doing enough or, simply, why we suck. There are ways to quiet this critic and these methods will be revealed in an upcoming ebook I’m working on. However today, we’re going to shine the light on that critic and let her take center stage.

Your inner critic also makes judgments about other people all the time. Good manners and the need for a serene life teach us to quell those judgments and keep an open mind about others. We learn to respect others, even when they make look, act or smell different from us.

In order to accurately identify your perfect people, I’m afraid you are going to have to let your critic speak openly…only for a short time…then you can go back to being all-loving and all-accepting, okay?

As we approach people in our daily lives, we begin making subconscious judgments about them almost immediately. Think of the last time you were in the grocery store. As you walked up to the check-out person you already made an unconscious decision about whether you were going to meet his eyes with a smile or whether you would keep your head down and try to get through the transaction making as little contact as possible.

Why do we diss some people and not others?

Sometimes it’s PMS, or that we’re in a rush, or that we’re particularly self-absorbed at the moment. But many times it is because something about that person turned us off. Whether it is their greasy hair, beady eyes or the wiff of Italian hoagie when the lift their arms, for whatever reason they are not someone we feel instantly connected to.

Yes, this is a shame. Yes, we are all interconnected. And yes, it is important to transcend these types of judgments if one is to live a life of virtue and compassion.

That said, this type of information about who turns you on and off is absolutely critical in determining who your perfect people are. The whole point of this is to identify the people who get you excited about meeting them. The people you want to invite over for lemon drop shots on Saturday night.

There is no one who feels this way about everyone on the planet. No one.

And that’s okay!

Over the next few days, allow your inner critic to speak about the people you encounter throughout your day. Take notes! Jot down your gut reactions to people and reflect on what, exactly, turned you on or off about them.

We’ve become used to not paying attention to, or arguing with, these types of judgments…and for good reason. But I promise you, you will uncover some extremely valuable clues as to who your perfect people are precisely if you follow this exercise for a week or two.

After you feel you have a good handle on the personality traits that you are most drawn to or disgusted by, go back to working on keeping that inner critic quiet. We don’t want to stay in this hyper-judgmental state for too long, just long enough to really take a look at what makes us tick with the people around us.

Return to a compassionate state of being and try to be as friendly as possible to everyone you meet.

You might even be surprised at how much easier this is once you’ve allowed yourself to honestly examine your subconscious reactions to others.

Please share some of your immediate reactions to what turns you on/off about people in the comments section below. It may very well help others open up this pathway to their perfect people!

16 thoughts on “Perfect People Finder – Exercise #1”

  1. Being friendly is natural for me.  It’s natural for me to ask someone how their day is going or to compliment a nice pair of shoes or whatever.  Though I do notice the response I get differs…. it feels like older people tend to be much more receptive to friendliness/politeness, whereas it feels like people my own age and younger are a little distrustful, uncomfortable, or maybe just dismissive of it.

    Which ultimately, I think, shows more about my perception of my own age group.

    For example, at times I feel inauthentic when being friendly to an attractive woman thinking she’s going to judge me because she assumes my motives are wrong (which they’re not, since I’m friendly to everyone). Then I feel ashamed because either I feel judged (for crappy motives), or I simply am not friendly to them which also feels inauthentic.

    1. I know what you mean, Jesse. I’m a naturally friendly person as well (despite what people might tell you about me 😉 and sometimes I make it a game to see how many people I can draw a smile out of. 

      In addition to differences in ages, I find vast differences in geographical areas, too. Philadelphia, notso friendly. Detroit, even less so. Here in LA people are crossing the street just to say ‘hi’ to you. In the UK, omg SO friendly! And oddly enough, I found taxi drivers in NYC to be the friendliest I’d ever encountered.

      Aren’t we a fascinating species?

      1. looks like I missed this post when it first came out…really made me think as my concern when I meet people is usually what they will think of me…:) I;ve always had a big thing about not judging people…but in terms of thinking about my perfect people its very interesting…looks like people I can trust to see me in all my weirdness and not think any less of me, in fact, recognise my innate genius would be my perfect people. 🙂 and there are a few….but running with the exercise….
        I unsusbscribed from lots of blogs too, but because I felt I was making reading other peoples blogs my main activity and doing nothing about my own stuff…
        By the way, no-one should ever subscribe as an act of friendship…not really…I wnat my subscribers to be there because they are into what I have to say..even if there’s only ten of em 🙂

  2. Eek!  I loved this exercise when you had me do it!  I’m a loving type, but yeah, I have a hard time with people who don’t want to try anything (there’s a reason why they can’t, can’t, can’t), people who talk loud on their cell phones in public places, and fast talking hustler types.  Underneath this practice, I feel the real sense of being able to make real connections and not be an “I’m doing what I do for everyone” person with no focus…I am so glad you put this out there.  I’ve gotten a little off track!

    1. Jen, I’m so glad you joined the conversation here! Not just because it’s always awesome to hear from you but also because you’re already familiar with the process. You really took this exercise and ran with it, and I love that about you. Now…back on track, baby! Let’s do this shite 😀

  3. This is a fantastic exercise, and for anyone who is already ultra-friendly, flexible, and open… consider establishing *SOME* boundaries 😉

    1. Hai Jason! Yes, because most of us tend to suppress our judgments of others I really encourage people to let it all hang out for a few days (I know my perfect people are already very kind, friendly and compassionate). 

      The only boundary I would STRONGLY suggest is to keep all those not-so-nice thoughts very private. To not actually act on them but rather observe them as if observing another’s behavior/reactions. 

      1. And it’s great encouragement. In my experience, most friendly, kind, compassionate people tend to get walked-on / taken advantage of / energy-vamped … hence the boundaries comment 🙂

        In my experience, being friendly is great. Applauded, and encouraged. I wanted to offer a bit of a balancing perspective. Being giving with every moment indiscriminately, without discernment or boundaries… is a sure-fire way for friendly people to fall, hard. :DNon-judgment is absolutely brilliantly fantastic. Non-discernment is killer.

  4. Right now I have realized I became overwhelmed from being friendly to everyone and signing up for everything that I had to actually garner courage to check my overflowing in-box of newsletters. I’ve unsubscribed and deleted and mentioned in the comment that Its simply too much for me. I am not apologizing for unsubscribing, only honoring myself in that I can’t have this stress of keeping up with everyone, even when I like/love them!

    I can totally appreciate this exercise in the respect that its about honoring yourself first. Honoring the synergy you have with others and allowing that to grow. Being clear about the types you want more of around you, supporting you and that you support in turn, is a much better equation for having a healthy life and biz.

    Thanks for sharing this Jenny 🙂

    1. I can totally relate Emily! OMGosh I can’t even tell you how many email subscriptions I’m on right now…but I have this (irrational?) fear that as soon as I unsub, I’ll miss something juicy LOL

  5. Jenny, you are wonderful. I just wanted you to know that. : )

    Your statement “it is important to transcend these types of judgments if one is to live a life of virtue and compassion” resonates with me on a sub-sub-sub-atomic level. That’s one of my core beliefs — and, of course, one I often find most difficult to put into practice. Simply the way you phrase it is encouraging and infuses me with hope that, more and more, I can live that virtuous and compassionate life.

    But, of course, that’s not the crux of your post! So, on that:  What will turn me off about someone in an instant is bitter negativity. I’m not talking about the “I’m honestly not having a good day–may I please tell you about it” sort of negativity. I’m talking about the bitter rage (tightly controlled or not) that heaps blame on another without taking responsibility for any part of the problem, while building a wall meant to keep out true empathy and viable solutions.

    I can understand needing to vent. I cannot understand immuring self against all willingness to change things for the better.

    Whew. It drains me of energy just to write those two paragraphs! I guess that’s a pretty good indicator of what really turns me off!

    1. You are equally, if not far more, wonderful than I Courtney! I’m with you on the negativity turn-offs. Thanks so much for your thoughtful comments <3

      PS: I'm reading your book Colors of Deception right now and it's such a page turner!! For the rest of you…get Courtney's book the next time you want to lose yourself in a great novel…like, right now for instance:

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