Almost always, we judge people by first impression; whether it is right or wrong, it is another question. Somehow, the first impression is the strongest. For many people it is the main in forming opinion about the person.
There are two opposing points of view about the first impression. One states that the first impression is true; the other insists that the first impression is misleading and superficial. I think that everyone of us met a man who immediately caused strongly positive or strongly negative feelings. Sometimes we even can not answer why we like or dislike a person. May be the reason is face, figure, manner of speaking, style of clothing? It is difficult to point out one thing, it is rather a set of qualities by which we decide whether we like a person or not.
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I won’t make a mistake if I say that each of us has experience of disappointment in a person who at first seemed to us almost an angel. We believed him, but it turned out that in reality he is not what seemed to us. Perhaps the opposite situation is when we first met a man who has not made a positive impression on us, and then we became good friends. Yes, of course, this also happens. None of us is immune from mistakes.
Only the first impression is based on our intuition, but the following are based on mind. The person who used to trust his instincts, intuition unlikely will open his heart to a man whom he did not like from the first sight. And those who used to judge people on specific actions don’t pay attention to the first impression.
We judge and analyze based on our own ideas and principles. So, everything depends not on the people around, but on us; what we are and what is our environment. The best way is to give the man even if we didn’t like him, the second chance. Each following impression will give us a confidence in forming an opinion about a person. Thus, we can avoid mistakes in the perception of people.
If to talk about the importance of the first impression, we need to say that there is well known 90/90 rule. Its meaning is that 90% of submission about someone is formed in the first 90 seconds of communication.
Creating the first impression is rather complex process, which has a psychological structure, dynamics and feedbacks of all kinds.
The psychological nature of the first impressions formation. If you want others to like you, we should talk about what they love, to avoid disputes about the things they are indifferent, rarely asking questions and never give reason to think that you’re smarter.
The interpersonal evaluation is a psychological essence of the impression formation. It is connected with the formation of the image of another person with whom you will have mutual activity or communication. The main task of evaluation is to identify features, based on which the image of another person will be built. This image helps to predict the behavior and the sequence of actions.
A great role in interpersonal estimation is the process of stereotyping. Every person under the influence of many factors, mostly the experience of communication with people, formed the specific standards, stereotypes of other people. The formation of these standards often not realized by a man, but they seriously affect and control the evaluation process.
There are three main groups of standards-stereotypes: anthropological, emotional-aesthetic and social. Each of them reflects some features based on which evaluation is made.
Anthropological stereotypes associated with the external appearance of a person, his image. Social is connected with his status and kind of activities. Emotional-aesthetic stereotypes are created by own experience, worked out by sense of proportion and beauty.
Important role in forming first impressions is played by appearance. Here we see emotional-aesthetic stereotypes in work. They are based on some kind of informational factors, such as:
Physical attractiveness. Indeed, it is noticed that “what is beautiful, is also good”. It means that the effect of beauty can ascribe to the other party, without any factual basis, only positive character traits and moral qualities.
While evaluation of attractiveness, a particular attention is gives to a face. The role of posture in the physical attractiveness is also important. We know that good posture associates with confidence, optimism, inner strength and dignity. The bad posture is perceived as a sign of self-doubt, dependence and subordination.
Self-presentation. Self-presentation is the ability to concentrate the attention of others to your undoubted strong sides and take away the partner’s attention from negative features. This mostly depends on the ability to own psycho logistic initiative, of witness, expressiveness and some kind of artistry.
Style clothing. The choice of the clothes style usually tells a lot about the owner, about his self-understanding. During evaluating the style of clothes we pay attention to the following features: how much clothing matches the case; how neat clothes are; how much clothes matches our stereotypes.
In the perception of clothing style there are a lot of stereotypes. Thus, for the representative of the business world, the conservative style is preferred. This also applies to such details as: watch brands, lighters, ties, etc. For members of the artistic sphere individuality and independence are preferable.
Experienced emotional condition. Strong emotions provoked psychological contamination; I mean that situation in which emotions and feelings of one person can influence other people.
We shouldn’t forget that a good first impression is usually made by people who generate inspiration, optimism and other positive emotions.
It is believed that the first impression is often misleading. Very often we think that a person with whom we recently met is bully or poorly educated, but in the future our opinion of him changing for the better. Why does it happen? It happens because some people don’t know how to express themselves well at the first meeting, how to make a good impression.
Here are some advices how to make a good first impression:
- Behave natural in all situations.
- Remember the name of a person you meet with. Make sure you have memorized the name of a presented to you person. If you can not remember his name at the next meeting, this person may get the impression that you were not interested in acquaintance with him. Contact with a person, not knowing his name, will also be difficult, because you’ll look like a complete idiot.
- Be punctual. Punctuality is also very important. The delay will create a bad impression about you even before people meet you; this is not a good start of a meeting. Your punctual shows that you are organized and know how to appreciate your own time and someone else’s.
- But do not come too early either. If you go to a business meeting before the appointed time, you will have to wait in the office, and this may bring inconvenience to you, and others. Coming ahead of time is terribly impolite.
- Do not go into extremes. If you’re too tense and stiffness, the first impression of you will not obviously be the best one. Or, on the contrary, if you will be too much looseness or familiar, you can insult his interlocutor with your behavior.
- Don’t be too serious and show that you are too smart and too busy man.
- Be interested in other people, their businesses and problems.
- Be decent and tactful.
- Expresses sincere appreciation. Pay attention to everything that you like in a person, and tell him about it.
- Smile to your companion and bend a little to him.
- If you are standing, fully turn to the person with whom you talk.
- Ask questions; respond to comments, expressing their opinions.
- Do not interrupt.
- Speak vigorously.
- At least in the beginning of the conversation say something positive, and only then proceed to criticism or complaint.
- Talk about different topics.
- Express your opinions on current events.
- Tell about your hobbies and interests.
- Do not tell about the details of your private life.
- Do more compliments.
If you want to endear a man whose attitude to you is negative, make him a compliment about his abilities, which you do not have. Compliments require special tact. Every compliment should be without double meaning so it couldn’t be interpreted as a positive and a negative.
Do not make a compliment about those qualities from which a person tries to get rid of. Sincere, devoid of exaggeration compliments are always pleasant. In some cases, unspoken compliment can be close to incivility.
Listen to the interlocutor with attention. Watch his non-verbal behavior.
Pay attention to your appearance
Give sufficient attention to your clothes, it must be neat, look good, make a good impression and be according to the situation. This means that for a business meeting is better to choose suits, for meetings with parents of your lover is better to choose neat cloths, for interviews at the advertising agency choose creative, bright attire. Regardless of the style of your clothes, one thing remains unchanged – it must be clean.
Give a little gift
In most cases, a small gift presented at the meeting, will be a nice gesture. It is not recommended at any interview or if you try to get a job, because it can be understood as a bribe. But how about a box of chocolates for your client or a bottle of wine for hostess if the party to which you are invited?
Monitor your speech
While communicating with unfamiliar people carefully monitor your speech. Try not to use it in black humor, curses, etc. This is especially true while communication with older people and business partners. Remember that the same joke told during a meeting and outside it, can be interpreted differently.
Many people frighten others because they constantly grumble. Even if you were forced to commit terrible journey to get to the meeting, or if you have any problems to health, your new friends shouldn’t necessarily know about it in detail. Stay optimistic and people will like you.
Try to find something in common between yourself and your interlocutor. Never look for differences. People prefer to communicate with those to whom they feel sympathy, and while communication with which they feel inner harmony.
There is such a concept as reflection in psychology. In order relations be smooth, free, open, reliable, people need to try to create an atmosphere of “reflection”, in which everything that your partner does, hears, seems right to him. It is important to demonstrate to your interlocutor those aspects of your character, which are very close to your companion. Consciously apply to reflection. This can be achieved in three ways:
- Through body language: gestures, posture, gait, facial expression, breath and clothes;
- Through speech: speech tempo, voice, intonation, usage of the same words and expressions;
- Through the senses and feelings.
The most vivid example of unconscious reflection can assume the relationship between lovers. They copy each other in everything. They say the same, using the same words, have the same opinion and so forth.
Make only positive signs of attention, such as praise, gratitude, grateful glance, and so forth. Positive signs of attention will bring joy to your interlocutor; strengthen his confidence in his strength.
A person, who receives too little positive signs of attention, shows discontent towards others. He blames his guards, bosses, government in his bad life, and often becomes depressed.
Avoid the negative signs of attention, such as a contemptuous look, shrug, an expression of distrust, ingratitude, ridicule.
Gestures and postures of people can make a positive and the opposite impression on the interlocutor. Don’t forget to smile and shake hands at the beginning.
Many gestures are not fixed consciousness, but fully convey the mood and thoughts of man.
The raised shoulders of your companion tell that he is tense, feels the danger coming from you.
Raised shoulders and lowered head tell that your partner is closed, constrained. He is either unsure of himself, or afraid of something, or not satisfied with your conversation, or feels humiliated.
Omitted shoulders and raised head are a sign that your partner is set to success, he controls the situation.
Bowed his head to one side tells that your partner is interested.
Here are several basic gestures and postures that explain the inner feelings of people.
Gestures of openness help to endear the interlocutor; start a frank conversation and leave the most favorable impression of you. The gestures of openness include gesture “open arms” when the interlocutor has his hands palms up, and a gesture of “undoes jacket”. When agreement is reached between the interlocutors, they unwittingly unbutton their jackets.
Gestures of suspicion and secrecy tell that the person doesn’t feel like to talk. These gestures include rubbing the forehead, temples, and chin, involuntary covering the face with hands. If the person turns his eyes, it is the clearest indication that he is hiding something.
Gestures and postures of protection indicate that the person feels a danger that is coming from you. The most common protective gesture is hands crossed on a chest.
If your partner has crossed his hands, it is better to finish the conversation. And if he has also clenched his hands into fists, then this indicates that he is in extremely hostile mood. In this case, you have to slow down your speech or better change the subject.
Gestures of reflection and evaluation show that the conversation is interesting for both partners. To the thinking gestures we can include “itchy nose, pose” and pose of “thinker”, when the other person backs cheek with a hand.
Gestures of doubt and uncertainty tell that for interlocutor there is something unclear in the conversation, or that your arguments don’t seem to him convincing. Such gestures include rubbing with forefinger of your right hand a place under the ear lobe or the side of the neck, rubbing the nose by forefinger.
An offended person often lifts his shoulders and lowers his head. If your companion has just such a pose, then the subject should be changed.
By the gestures and postures that express aggression include closely interlaced fingers, especially if the hands are on the knees, clenched fists.
Disappointment is expressed by: scratching the neck, undoing the shirt collar and tapping of foot on the floor.
A person who wants to end the conversation lowers his eyelids. If your companion wears glasses, he would remove his spectacles and put them aside.
When your partner is scratching his ear or sipping earlobe, it means that he is tired of listening and wants to express himself. If your partner is walking around the room, it can be understood as something that he is interested in the conversation, but he needs to think carefully before he decides. If your partner is standing, putting his hands on a table or chair, then he is not sure if you listen to him attentively. A man who is smug and arrogant usually folds his hands together.
If your partner is suddenly began to collect lint from clothes, while he turned away from you or he is looking at the floor, this means that he does not agree with you and do not want to express his opinion.
The man, who during a conversation is holding his hands on the side edge of a chair or keep his hands on his knees, doesn’t want to continue the conversation, you should stop talking if you want to make a good impression.
If your partner is smoking, then, by the way he produces a smoke you can determine his attitude to you and your conversation. It the smoke comes up constantly so your partner likes a conversation. But of smoke is directed downward, a partner feels negative, and the faster it produces smoke, the more he dislikes your talk.
To determine the condition of someone’s mood is possible watching his gait. The man who keeps his hands in his pockets or wave them badly, look at his feet is in a depressed mood. Fast gain with waving hands tells about self-confidence.
Facial expressions tell a lot about a condition of a person. Tightly pressed lips tell about closure. Omitted corners of the mouth tell about frustration.
During the conversation, try to draw visually a triangle on the face of a partner, in which you should look. This will help you get concentrated.
In order you to be understood as a bred man, you have to get rid of such qualities as excessive curiosity, temper, touchiness and vanity.
Curiosity is present in every person. Healthy curiosity liberalizes and promotes intellectual development. However, if a person takes an interest in other people’s affairs, eavesdropping conversations, looking into in keyholes, so such curiosity is a demonstration of extremely bad manners. It prevents communication between people.
Hot temper never helps to attract the interlocutor. The man who does not know how to argue, without passing on the higher tone, destroys relationships. Do not justify temper by natural weakness, hot temper is means a lack of education.
Touchiness irritates people around you. Everyone in the presence of a touchy companion feels stressed. Touchy person is always complaining on his miserable life, easily infects others with his bad mood.
Vanity is one of the worst evils. Often vain people occupy ruling positions and are endowed with certain authority. They need constant confirmation of their superiority over others. If you find in yourself the signs of this disease, try to get rid of it until t passed into the chronic form.
So, to make a good first impression is very important. It will help you in further relationships, business, workâ€¦ It is said that you can spoil the first impression about yourself during the first 4 seconds, but then you will need 4 years in order to change, to fix it. So, better keep all rules that were written above and first impression about you will be always positive.
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