Captivate – Chapter 14 Engage, how to turn people on

The author explain about the science of popularity. It seems that popular people are more attuned to people’s popularity. Popular people makes us feel good.

You impress people by mentally turn on their reward system. The key to this is Attunement: When we attuned we are more aware of those around us. To achieve there are 2 action to take.

1.reciprocity effect, we like people who likes us, we give back what we received.

This whole book is built around this, to summarise :

  • hack #1 – social game plan, how to interact
  • hack #2 – triple threat, how to be confident and build trust
  • hack #3 – conversational spark: How to make others to respond in kind
  • hack #4 – highlighter: brings the best out of people
  • hack #5 – Thread theory:inspired people for a “me too” moment
  • hack #6 – Decoder: incentivise people
  • hack #7 – speed read : show how we like to be treated
  • hack #8 – appreciation language : How to appreciate others
  • hack #9 – primary value: respect other people’s values
  • hack #10 – story stack: How to trigger conversation with others
  • hack #11 – own it: empower others
  • hack #12 – Franklin effect : the more vulnerable we are the closer we can get to others
  • hack #13 – Nut job: How to be calm, direct communication
  • hack #14 – Attunement : pay more interest in someone

2. Belonging. We want to be valued, needed, understood, accepted for who we are. As a human being we have 5 basic needs : Physiological, safety, love belonging (having commonality), esteem ( meaningful conversational sparker), self actualisation (find primary value & help them realise it)

3. Curiosity. We can have our curiosity cured.

Captivate – Chapter 13 Protect, how to deal with difficult people

The aim of this chapter is to prevent good people become difficult people, and prevent difficult people becomes impossible. This is usually due to fear. The gremlins inside is makes us awkward, muddle up or charisma.

At high level there are 4 category of people based on fear :

  • Downers : always complain, pessimistic, fear of rejection
  • show off : this type always brag, fear of being forgotten
  • Passives: this type do not contribute, fear of criticism, always shut down
  • Tank: explosive type, bossy, overreact, fear out of control

Thus fear processing can be:

  • Low road: quick reaction, primitive, make us safe, protected and secure
  • High road : slow reaction, logical, good decision, protect our social interest.

So quite often we are being highjack by our low road because that is the one that react faster and this is how we had been wired, in order to control this we need to give a bit of time for our high road to kick in.

In order for us to handle other person’s fear we can use the hack called “The NUT job”, N for naming, U for understanding, and T for transform or facilitate resolution.

Captivate – Chapter 12 Reveal, How to built a long lasting relationship

From time to time we need to be vulnerable. When you share your secrets, and being vulnerable, this is the key to connect with people fast, this is called the vulnerability effect. Each of us is the centre of our universe. Vulnerability is attractive, mistake humanise us. Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage.

The author also explain about the Franklin effect. The Franklin effect is when you had done something for other people and you thank them, they are more likely to help you again, or do you a favour.

Captivate – Chapter 11 Empower

The author goes on explaining the importance to delegate a task, skill solicitation, use people skill to delegate task. It goes on explaining about the science of ownership, we value the things we built, this is explained through the “ikea effect”, this is because we see our creation as extension of ourselves.

If you are a leader in one area, you are a leader in other area.

We can motivate people by giving “buy in”, control and ownership. Figure out how to give them ownership.

We want to believe there are reasons to everything we do. This is the base of emotional “buy in”, use “because” and try to tie to as many emotional reasons as possible.

Captivate – Chapter 10 how to speak so others listen

The secret is to tell stories. When we tell stories we give other people a chance to say “me too”. When we listen to other people stories our brain actually sync up with other person. Story bonds the teller and listener.

The author go in to explain how we need to have a story stack, which have a trigger topic and followed by boomerang to get the story out of the other person.

Captivate – Chapter 9 Primary Values

In this chapter the author explain how we need to give others more primary values.

The primary values are:

  1. Love : feel worthy when liked, want to feel accepted, liked or belong
  2. Service : feel worthy of assistance, support me, feel happy when does someone a favour, feel happy when cared for someone
  3. Status: feel worthy when praised, have power or credit, feel happy when in charge, feel happy when respected
  4. Money: feel worthy when bank account is full, have lots of money, feel important when financially stable, work for money, need money to be happy
  5. Goods: feel worthy having home, office or assets, typically collect things, give or buy gifts, object in home have emotional meaning
  6. Information : feeling worthy when having lots of information at hand, always in the know, give advice, teaching and learning

The is also what is called “situational Value”: value that can change from situation to situation.

By knowing other people’s primary value we can interact better with them because we know what is their expectations and what they value and want.

We might have different primary value in the social, professional and romantic circumstances. Look into yourself and decide on what is your primary value in the three occasion above.

Captivate – Chapter 8 Appreciation matrix

This chapter describe how we can get the best out of people. We need to appreciate others more. The author goes on describing the different love language. The 5 different love language are:

– word of affirmation : spoken or written language

– gifts : giving small gift

– physical touch

– act of service : doing things for others

– quality time, be present : people time, be with people

Captivate – Chapter 7 Cracking personality

The author describe how the key to solve the people puzzle is to understand people. It goes with trying to decode their emotion. Sometime people might be saying something but he expresses a micro expression that tell us the opposite.

The micro expression is a brief intense emotional expression.

Some of the people flavors are:

openness : How approachable and open to new idea, how curious a person is

conscientiousness : approachable to get things done, self discipline

extroversion : How your approach towards people, talkativeness

agreeableness : How to approach cooperation and working with others

neuroticism : How to approach worry

The author also goes on explaining how to speed reading other people’s matrix.

Each one of the personality traits above have high or low.


  • High open people enjoy change, novelty and adventure. They are open to new idea, curious and a dreamer
  • Low open people savour tradition, routine and habits


  • High contentiousness people love to do list, organisation and schedule, attention details and making things perfect
  • Low contentiousness people embrace big idea and strategy


  • High extroversion people draw energy being with people, having social time
  • Low extroversion people crave lone time, draining when they are with people


  • High agreeableness people are empathetic and caring for others
  • Low agreeableness people are more analytical, practical and skeptical, default to no


  • High neurotic people usually have mood swings and worried
  • Low neurotic people are more calm and stable, less mood fluctuation

Depends on the compatibleness of the personality matrix you will need to either optimise or compromise.

To put this into practice, you can draw your personality diagram and compare them with your spouse.

Captivate – Chapter 6 The decoder

In this chapter the author describe some tips and tricks to decode people’s personality. The key is to listen by feeling and hearing. The author go in depth explaining how to decode the facial expression when someone is angry, content, etc. We can mimick these expression and learn to understand and decode the facial expressions. There are 7 facial expression that we need to master, they are :

– Anger

– Happiness

– Contempt

– Fear

– Surprise

– Disgust

– Sadness

Once we can identify the facial expressions, we can then attempt to decode the micro expression.

Captivate – Chapter 5 How to be likeable

The author talk about how to make yourself be ridiculously likable. In conversation we need to thread commonality, this means that we are trying to find what do we have in common with the other people. When we find the commonality suddenly the conversation gets easier and we both connect at a deeper level as we can relate to each other much better. Use the following conversational phrases “me too”, “teach Me”, you can also adopt the 5 why, to get to know the topic better.