Keys To A Good First Impression
“You can’t judge a book by its cover”. “Don’t make assumptions about people”. Do these statements sound familiar to you?
I know they certainly do to me. I’ve heard these and countless other similar sayings about how we shouldn’t judge people until we get to know them throughout my whole life.
Here’s the reality; you, I and every other human being under the sun make all sorts of judgments about people within the first 5 seconds of laying eyes on them.
And here’s what’s even more interesting; we couldn’t stop even if we consciously tried. Wanna know why? Because we’re not doing it consciously. We’re doing it subconsciously.
You see, when you meet someone for the first time, millions of neurons in your brain begin firing and your brain begins the process of categorizing this person. It typically does it by cross-referencing this person with everyone else that you’ve met in the past. And it all happens on a subconscious level.
Once the initial comparison has been made, the brain moves to the category of status placement where it determines if this person has a high or low status in society. This is an important point to remember because both humans and animals seek and are attracted to those that are considered to have higher status and power.
Another category that the brain begins placing people into is based on their physical attractiveness and whether or not they pay attention to their physical appearance.
Ultimately, the brain wants to place the person into a “yes” or “no” category. But sometimes the brain gets mixed signals and experiences conflict when trying to categorize. For example, let’s say you meet someone who dresses really nicely but they have a tattoo on their face or perhaps they are very attractive but their clothes are dirty. This poses a challenge for the brain in terms of categorizing and ultimately leaves you thinking things like “there’s something about this person that I just can’t put my finger on”.
Men and women also decipher first impressions differently.
Men see the body of a woman first and then her face whereas women do the complete opposite.
Truth be told, it takes a huge amount of work to overcome these instant impressions that are formulated in the minds of others. And I know it may seem weird, unfair or politically incorrect that someone would pass judgment on you like that in virtually any situation including a date, job interview or friendship introduction. But the bottom line is that it is in fact happening so the best thing you can do as an effective influencer is prepare for it.
First is your physical appearance. Like it or not, your perceived physical attractiveness will play a crucial role in various aspects of your life so your best bet is to invest in it as it will change the thoughts and desires of everyone you come into contact with.
One of the best ways you can invest in your physical appearance is by keeping your weight down. One of the biggest evaluation factors for people is a small waist on another person. Obesity is very unhealthy and most people are aware of it’s risks like heart disease and cancer.
Since we have been wired to want to build relationships with health people (especially on intimate levels) you can imagine the types of subconscious thoughts that run through someone’s mind when they seem someone who is perceived as unhealthy.
Most researchers agree that body language and physical appearance make up anywhere from 50 – 80 percent communication between 2 people.
Your clothing, glasses, hairstyle, jewelry, coat, shoes and just about everything else about you can dictate the direction of a relationship between you and someone else before you utter one single word.
Here are 3 simple rules to follow to make sure that direction is favorable for you:
1.) Make sure you are absolutely immaculate when meeting your target for the first time. Get a haircut, dry clean or press your clothes, have facial hair trimmed and smell clean.
2.) Ask your target how he or she knows when their expectations for value have been met. When they tell you, ask them how they determine the value on that item.
3.) Pay close attention to your target’s pace of speaking and listening. In most cases, they are identical. Once you’ve indentified both, match them as closely as you can.