You don’t get a second chance at a first impression. But there are good news. You can use a few strategies to make it not just a good, but a great and unforgettable impact on the person you meet. Here are ten easy solutions.
Remember their name
One of the best ways to make a first impression is to show yourself as an attentive person. An easy way to do this is to pay attention to the name and other details of the person who gets introduced to you and repeat it back to them.
Many people immediately forget the name or ignore it, so remembering it can help you stand out from the crowd right away.
Respect their time
Show up on time, not late, but also not too early. This helps you prove that you respect the other person’s time and that you are a reliable individual. Also, be sure not to take up too much of their time either.
Go to the point without losing your manners. It can be frustrating to have someone we don’t know take up too much of our time, so this will make a good impression.
You don’t have to always wear a suit or an evening gown, but looking polished makes a difference. Have clothes that fit you and look good and mind the details, like buttons, stains, loose hairs, and so on. This attention to detail can help you look put together and appear more trustworthy and engaged.
Politeness is an important element for a good first impression. Even if you are having a bad day, try not to show it during introductions.
People will judge you by how you first appear, so if you seem grumpy, they might label you as a negative person, and that opinion will be hard to change later. Appear positive and polite.
While you should be appear overtly negative, a good first impression should not be based on something that is fake either. Other people can sense when we are not being authentic and that can push them away. Show who you are in a genuine way rather than try to pretend to be someone you are not.
Listen first, speak later
We all like to talk about ourselves. This makes listening a rare skill, but one that is sure to make a great impression. We like people who can hear what we are saying and let us talk, so focus on this for your first interaction. This doesn’t mean you should be silent, of course, but you should let the other person talk more and pay attention to what they say.
Listen in an active way and show that you are engaged with the conversation.
Mind your body language
A lot of the communication between two people happens on the non-verbal level. It’s important to pay attention to your body language. Smile and keep an open posture; avoid crossing your legs or arms, as this suggests defensiveness or isolation. Make eye contact but don’t stare.
Allow yourself to be relaxed, as too much tension can be obvious and look unappealing or weird. Focus on your smile and keep a pleasant tone as well.
Take a deep breath
Relax and breathe easily. Even if this is an important meeting, you won’t do yourself any favors if you become too tense or too anxious. Take a few deep breaths before and keep breathing deeply as you engage with the person. Breathing is the easiest way to relax your body a little.
Avoid contentious subjects
For a first meeting, it’s best to stick to small talk and non-controversial topics. You might not predict the other person’s response or beliefs, so steer clear of things like politics, religions, and such.
Also, avoid topics that are too personal, like health, which can make the other person uncomfortable.
Not everyone will like you. That’s OK, and it doesn’t mean that you should go out of your way to change who you are. You have worth, and you can find a lot of confidence in this idea.
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