In less than one-tenth of a second of seeing someone for the first time, our brain processes information about the person’s face—which leads to quick conclusions about a new acquaintance’s qualities, including trustworthiness, competency, friendliness, honesty and morality.
It’s important to first consider where you are trying to make a good impression—whether it’s a formal job interview or a dinner date.
Context matters. It gives you cues as to how you should dress, speak, look and behave, in a way that matches the setting you are entering to. That is a key aspects of making a good impression.
Try not to look bored, rude or hostile.
A useful attitude is welcoming, curious and enthusiastic: smile, make eye contact long enough to notice the color of that person’s eyes, sit without crossing your arms or legs. This project a positive, open warm impression.
We tend to like people who are a little bit similar to us.
Start with your shared environment, ike commenting on the weather or something you notice in your surroundings, then move to facts, ike the reason you’re gathering or a recent news story. You’re likely to find something you both connect with.
People always remember how you made them feel.
Taking the focus off of yourself and putting it on someone else can help others perceive you in a better light: make someone feel appreciated, find a point of commonality to bond over or share something interesting you’ve learned.
While appearing overly fatigued might not be an accurate portrayal of who you are, it can adversely contribute to people’s first impression of you.
And multiple studies suggest poor sleep cand lead others to perceive you as less attractive, less smart, more depressed and less healthy.
If you’re constantly worried about whether or not you’re doing or saying the right thing, you could appear insincere or too strategic.
And if your nerves are getting the best of you but the setting allows for candor, admitting to your nerves can help show your true self and may be used to your advantage.
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