Whether you’re going on a first date, heading to a job interview, meeting your partner’s parents or even just meeting your BFF’s friends, one things for sure: you probably want to make a good first impression.
First impressions are obviously important because most people will judge you based on how you were when they first met you. They’re especially important when you’re doing something like an interview, where you really only have one chance to win someone over. But the pressure of making a good first impression can be a lot to handle, and so a lot of us end up making mistakes.
I’ll be honest with you guys, I’m pretty bad a first impressions. It’s probably because I’m quiet and generally awkward, and I never really know how to act around new people I don’t quite feel comfortable with yet. I’m sure a lot of you are in the same boat. If you’re like me, here are 10 things you’re probably doing that are making a bad first impression – you might not even realize it’s happening!
Crossing Your Arms Over Your ChestA very smart guy I dated a while ago once gave me a piece of advice I will never forget. I'm a shy girl, and I have a bad habit of standing in a public place with my arms crossed over my chest - it makes me feel safe. But one day we were out, and he pulled me aside, and said, "Why are your arms like that?" I had no idea what he meant, and he said, "Never stand with your arms crossed. It makes you look unapproachable, and you're not unapproachable! It makes people feel weird about getting to know you because it seems like you don't want to get to know anyone." I was a little taken aback, but I knew he was right. Body language is really important. Standing with your arms tightly crossed over your chest makes you look closed off - and when making a first impression, you want to look open and friendly. Source: ShutterStock
Staring At Your Phone The Whole TimeIt's rude to sit there and stare at your phone in any kind of social situation, but it's especially rude when you're in a situation where you're first meeting someone and trying to make a good first impression. If you're giggling at text messages or scrolling through Instagram, you look like you have zero interest in that person and what you're supposed to be doing. You look like you would rather be anywhere else. Even if you are listening, it seems like you're not. Put the phone down and focus your attention on the person, or people, in front of you. They'll be flattered that you seem interested, and that makes them like you. Source: ShutterStock
Acting Fake and Trying Too HardDon't act like someone you're not to try to impress anyone. People can sense when you're trying too hard (even if you think you're being slick), and no one likes it or appreciates it. Be yourself! It's more genuine, and people can also sense when you're being genuine - and everyone likes that. If someone doesn't like you for who you are, then whatever, who cares. Source: ShutterStock
Looking Like You Just Rolled Out Of BedAs much as I'd like to say appearance doesn't matter, the fact is is that it does. People will judge you based on what you look like, and if this is someone you're really trying to impress, you should try to look presentable for them. It shows that you respect them and their time, and it also shows that you respect yourself enough to put a little time into your appearance. This doesn't mean you should dress up like someone you're not. Stay true to your personal style, but wear something a little special. Basically, stay away from sweatpants. Spritz yourself with a little perfume. Brush your teeth. Fix your hair. Easy stuff like that. Source: ShutterStock
Making Inappropriate or Rude JokesWhen you meet someone for the first time, you have no idea what's going on in their life. You don't know what makes them angry, you don't know what is a trigger for them, and you don't know what kind of tough stuff they have to deal with. So it's best to steer clear of anything that could come off as offensive or inappropriate. Be polite. Don't make rude jokes that might portray you in the wrong way. Try not to be ignorant. Source; ShutterStock
Not Making Eye ContactNumerous studies have shown that making eye contact is super important when trying to make a good first impression. So, obviously, if you don't make eye contact, you're not going to make a good first impression. This one is really hard for me because I think eye contact is so awkward with anyone other than my boyfriend. But I just force myself to do it. It gives off an air of confidence and makes it seem like you're interested in getting to know this person. You shouldn't sit there staring into their eyes throughout the entire meeting - that's weird. I try to hold eye contact for about 30 seconds, let my eyes flit around the room, then go back to eye contact. Source: ShutterStock
Not SmilingStudies also always show that smiling makes for a good first impression. I mean, who thinks great things about someone they barely know who just stood there looking miserable? Not many people. You don't have to stand there with a huge grin on your face the entire time, but smile when you make introductions, and when it's appropriate throughout the conversation. Also, keep your face generally pleasant even when you're not grinning. Try to avoid bitchy resting face, something I struggle with. Source: ShutterStock
Invading Someone's Personal SpacePersonal space is important to some people, not so important to others. But you don't know what this person's deal is, so until you do, respect their personal space. I'm kind of okay with a stranger hugging me hello or goodbye, but a lot of people aren't. Just be polite without being too handsy. Source: ShutterStock
Gossiping Too MuchGossip is a guilty pleasure of mine (don't tell anyone), and something I have to remind myself not to do when I'm around new people. Gossip, especially mean gossip, makes you seem catty and bratty. It's not a good look. If you start gossiping about someone's horrible new haircut in front of new people, they're going to be like, "Wow, this girl seems kind of awful." Hold it in. Source: ShutterStock
Not SpeakingAs a shy girl, I never really realized how rude it seems when you barely talk when first meeting someone - until I met a super quiet girl who rarely speaks. At first, I thought she was so rude and snobby, and I didn't like her. It took a while to realize she's just quiet! Even if you're shy, push yourself to talk and engage in conversation. Even if you're not talking because you're nervous, it's going to come off as you seeming like you just don't care. Source; ShutterStock
What is your tip on making a good first impression? Have you ever done any of these things? Tell me in the comments!