Research suggests that most people form an initial impression of another person within seconds, so making a good impression is really important. Whether you’re going for a job interview or you’re meeting somebody for the first time and you’re out on a date, it’s important to know how to create a positive and long-lasting impression.
Studies suggest that body language is responsible for forming up to 90 per cent of a first impression, as most people create an opinion before the other person has even completed a sentence.
When it comes to face-to-face meetings, body language is essential and there are certain ways you can increase the chances of making a great first impression. Here are some tips:
Make sure you have good posture
Posture is very important as it affects the way you carry yourself, which can be a major indicator of confidence. If you hold your head high with your shoulders back and a straight back, this will make you appear much more confident and self-assured than if you are slouching or bent forward. Slouching can make you appear disinterested and bored, which is the last thing you want when you’re on a date or you’re going for a new job.
Sit up straight
This is linked to posture and is particularly important in an interview or business meeting setting. Sitting up straight makes you look confident, but it also makes you look keen and interested.
Eye contact is essential for building relationships quickly and you will appear much more approachable if you look the other person in the eyes. Don’t stare, but be prepared to glance at the other person from time and time. It’s particularly important to maintain eye contact when you shake hands and when you are making important points, for example, if you are doing a presentation.
Greetings can be awkward because there is no set way of greeting another person in the UK and it can be difficult to work out whether to shake hands, kiss on the cheek or even hug. Generally speaking, if it’s a work related appointment, go for a handshake and if it’s a date, go for a kiss on the cheek or if you’re very nervous, a handshake. Make sure you have a firm handshake, but don’t be aggressive.
The way you walk can say a lot about you. Walking tall with your back straight, your shoulders back and your head up conveys confidence, while shuffling, walking very slowly and holding your head down portrays the opposite impression.
Smiling is one of the best ways of making an instant impression and it’s especially important in social situations. With a smile, you can make the other person feel instantly at ease and you can also show off your personality.
A smile makes you come across as warm, kind and approachable and it’s a really good grounding for the rest of the meeting, date or gathering. Studies show that your smile is usually the first thing people notice about you, so show it off! If you’re conscious about the look of your teeth, this can really hold you back and it may be worth discussing possible treatments with your dentist. Discreet braces such as Damon Braces can straighten the teeth faster than tradition orthodontic systems. If you love your smile, you are likely to feel much happier and more confident when it comes to showcasing it.
*image on this post is provided by the guest author
This guest post is written by Richard. He is a Manchester based writer focusing on self improvement and dental health. Currently he is working with the dental professionals at www.bracesdublin.ie to educate people on the importance of a healthy smile.