11 signs people admire you more than you think, according to psychology

Who looks up to you? 

If you’re like me then the answer may be a very brief list. At least at first. 

But pondering on it more I realized that many people admire me more than I think. 

Psychology has mountains of research backing up the fact that sometimes we’re our own worst enemies:

We undervalue ourselves, often due to internalized beliefs of being low value or unwanted that we absorbed as kids. 

But the truth is that people may admire you much more than you realize. 

Let’s take a look at the indications that you’re a person people look up to. 

1) They have positive body language around you

Positive and open body language is the first indication that you’re well looked on by others. 

This includes many body language indicators, which are most meaningful when observed in clusters (many of the signs at the same time or same occasion). 

These include things like: 

  • Steady eye contact
  • Feet and body oriented towards you
  • Subtly mirroring your posture and way of speaking
  • Seeking you out in a crowded room or group

As Professor Emerita Susan Krauss Whitbourne PhD. writes:

“You may think that you only show your emotions through your face, but that is only the tip of the iceberg. Your entire body participates in the business of either showing or hiding your mental state.”

2) They give you lots of specific compliments

Compliments can be handed out a bit easily, and they’re not always genuine. 

But nonetheless, if somebody is often giving you many specific and quite thoughtful compliments then it’s something to take seriously. 

It means they value you and notice you. They may be attracted to you, or they may just admire and look up to you. 

You’re certainly on their radar, and they like what they’re seeing. 

This brings me to the next point:

3) They ask for your advice

People don’t ask for your advice to be polite, they do so because something you have to say matters to them. 

It may be your experience, your insight, or your intellectual or emotional intelligence

It may just be that they like you and are curious to get your thoughts on something and see your unique perspective. 

Whatever the reason, when you’re being asked for advice by quite a few people it’s a definite thumbs up. 

In many cases they will also ask you quite a few questions and be curious about your opinion on a diverse range of subjects. This is admiration talking:

“Asking questions gives you a full picture, gives the recipient a sense of your genuine interest in them and their situation,” note Shoba Sreenivasan, Ph.D., and Linda E. Weinberger, Ph.D.

4) They ask what you’re interested in

When people admire you they take an interest in your interests. 

This holds true for romantic and sexual attraction as well as friends, colleagues and strangers. 

When people are drawn to you and want to know more about what you like, they’re asking for more of an insight into your world. 

They want to be part of it, or at least understand more about what you love doing and why. 

They admire you much more than you might think, even to the point of emulating you and taking up some of your hobbies and interests. 

5) They value your time and contributions

Not everybody respects the time and contributions of others. 

When people around you are highly appreciative of the work and time you put in, that means something. 

In fact, it means a lot. 

It means that they admire you and know that your time and energy is limited. 

They are genuinely grateful that you gave of your resources and time to help out or be involved, and they show it. 

As psychology writer Steve Stosny, PhD. notes:

“On a deep, visceral level, we continually draw energy from—and contribute energy to—a dynamic web of emotion that consists of all people we interact with and everyone with whom they interact.”

6) They support you when you’re down

When you’re down, struggling or having a hard time, not everybody is going to be there. 

Not only are people quite busy, they also have plenty of their own challenges to deal with. 

When somebody voluntarily gives of their time and resources to help you out when you’re down (even just with a shoulder to cry on), it means they admire you quite a bit. 

They want to see you back on their feet, so they’re doing their part to help out and be there for you. 

7) They include you in their plans and events

Another key sign that people admire you more than you realize is that they always go out of their way to include you in their plans and events. 

You’re at the top of the invite list, even to events you may not have known about:

They reach out to see if you’re interested and invite you along. 

Because they admire you, they want to see more of you and have you around. Plus they want a chance to get closer to you and introduce their friends and colleagues, too. 

As author and psychology writer Priya Nalkur Ed.D puts it:

“Inclusion emphasizes empathy, respect, and inviting diverse perspectives to ensure that people feel valued, understood, and an important part of a whole.”

8) They listen closely to what you say

When somebody is speaking that you don’t find very interesting or smart, what do you do?

If you’re like me, you let your attention wander and only listen to whatever is absolutely necessary. 

It’s the opposite when somebody is speaking who you respect and admire. 

The same goes regarding people’s behavior towards you. If they listen when you talk, then make no mistake: 

They admire and respect you much more than you might think. 

9) They talk well about you to others

When the subject of you comes up, who’s on your side?

It may be more people than you think, especially if you tend to be down on yourself or have a modest self-image. 

The main way you will know what somebody is saying about you, of course, is if friends or acquaintances tell you or if they say it in front of you. 

Either way, when somebody’s tooting your horn it definitely means they admire you more than you might realize. 

This ties into the proceeding point:

10) They defend you from false accusations and rumors

When gossip or rumors are flowing, they go to bat for you. 

If you’re looking for a positive reference or a person who always sees your best side, this is the person. 

In some cases when you may have a negative self-image it’s easy to imagine that one or two haters represents the crowd’s consensus on you:

In fact, the majority like you and are defending you from any trash talk. 

11) They help you network and find career opportunities

There are few more powerful indications that somebody admires you than the fact that they want to boost your career. 

When they introduce you to important people who can help you out in your profession, this is more than just idle help:

It’s a kind and affirmative gesture which recognizes both that you are worth helping and also that you are able to move up in your career. 

It’s yet another example of how much people admire you and want to be a positive force in your life. 

Picture of Paul Brian

Paul Brian

Paul R. Brian is a freelance journalist and writer who has reported from around the world, focusing on religion, culture and geopolitics. Follow him on www.twitter.com/paulrbrian and visit his website at www.paulrbrian.com

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