Whether you're on a date, attending a job interview or perhaps meeting your new love interest's Parents finally - first impressions are important to get right.
Although research shows our initial impressions of someone can and do change over time, how we feel and think of someone in that crucial first meeting really sets the tone for the future.
These 7 super simple tips will help you to do yourself proud and make a great first impression!
I've learned that people will forget what you've said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel
- Maya Angelou
The first answer to the question ''How do I make a great first-impression''? is under our noses.
Smiling (even the nervous kind) can help to lift our mood and settle any nerves, plus we perceive people who smile as more Confident and Trust-worthy compared to people who don't.
2. Eye- Contact
Giving eye-contact is the easiest way to communicate you're listening and present.
You'll know how much eye-contact is enough eye-contact in the moment, find the right balance between being a rare-glancer and a stary-Mary.
Bonus Tip: When shaking someone's hand, always look someone in the eye!
3. Be Present
There's nothing worse than speaking with someone who is pretending to listen to us!
We've all experienced and hey, we're human, we've all been that person too, right?
In a world where so much of our communication is virtual, every real-life conversation is an amazing opportunity to get really present and connect with someone on a deeper level.
Bonus Tip: Get present by using body awareness (keeping some of your attention on your feet, for example), returning to your breath, and listening deeply to the person when they're talking.
4. Address people by their Name.
When meeting new people, I used to be terrible at remembering names. So terrible, I'd ask for someone's name and I'd forgotten it before they had a chance to answer. Because I wasn't present! I was too busy lost in my thoughts. When someone shares their name with me now there are two tricks I use to make sure I hear (and remember their name).
1. I'll repeat the name back to the person and say something like ''Jane, nice to meet you, Jane''. Then I'll make sure to address Jane by name a couple more times throughout the conversation (definitely when bidding farewell).
2. I'll think of a fun way to remember the name. For example, with Jane, I might imagine in my mind's eye for a few moments, her standing with Tarzan in the jungle. This may sound stupid but it works!
5. Be interested, not Interesting.
When meeting someone for the first time, we can often put a lot of pressure on ourselves by trying to appear Interesting. What is far more effective is to be Interested rather than Interesting.
Be curious about the person you're meeting, show a genuine interest in them!
Ok, so if you're in a job interview it may be inappropriate to ask the interviewer about their personal life but you can still be interested in their role in the company or the company generally, so be interested by asking questions!
Shine the limelight on the person in front of you, get them talking about themselves or something that really matters to them and you'll leave them feeling great!
Bonus Tip: Rather than asking ''so what do you do''? ask ''How do you spend most of your time''?
Asking what do you do steers the conversation towards work and it may be the person has just lost their job or hates their position! Ask someone how they spend most of their time and you'll learn more about the person, their passions, their projects, their family, far more interesting than learning their job title, right?
6. Use Open Body-Language
Within the first few seconds of meeting someone, we're subconsciously asking ourselves ''Can I trust this person''? Given that the majority of our communication is non-verbal, make sure you're displaying open body language by keeping your palms visible, keeping arms and legs uncrossed and generally communicating you are someone who is open and honest.
7. Be your 'Best' Self
What would your Best-Self do?
The bottom line is, we're human. There will be first meetings when we don't do ourselves justice.
It's no biggie, real-life communication is raw, messy and imperfect, just like us!
What we can do is set the intention of showing up as our 'Best' Self.
Before meeting the hottie at the cafe for a coffee or entering the boardroom for the interview, take a moment to consider how your Best Self would show up.
Tip: Picture in your mind how you would like the first meeting to go.
How would you like to look?
How would you like to sound?
How would you like to feel?
Set a clear intention and do your best to create this.
Thanks for reading!
Let me know your favourite Tip be leaving me a comment.
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