For many people a new year means many firsts. First time traveling somewhere, first time exercising, first time meeting people, etc. First impressions are also something that is VERY important. It’s the reason I remember waking up extra early all through grade school (and even in college) to look my best for the first day of classes. My dad always makes the joke: why do you brush your hair before you go to bed?
Answer: to make a good impression on your pillow
Jokes aside, impressions are important! They can make or break relationships, jobs or daily life situations. I find fashion is a key element in a first impression.
I have a crazy good memory when it comes to people so I usually am very good at when I meet people for the first time. I can remember how they looked, what they said and sometimes even what they wore! Because of my experiences, I have always wanted MY impressions on others to be very positive. Obviously a bad first impression won’t entirely break a situation, but it can. There have been people I met who gave me a very negative first impression. After many more meetings, my view changed but I still remember! And then there are others who made a very positive impression on me. Each time I see them their actions are able to back up the first impression they gave me.
As you may remember, I was so nervous about my job interview at Lilly. I ended up changing my outfit a couple times before I felt totally comfortable. I wanted to become an employee of Lilly Pulitzer and knew it was important to look the part so my interviewer could envision me as an employee. It worked!
I always think about how my parents met at a grocery store. I have no idea what my mom was wearing but I know if I were to meet a guy at a grocery store I would NOT be dressed my best! My ideal grocery shopping outfit is a long-sleeved t-shirt, leggings and boots. Make-up optional. Regardless of my style, my parents have lived happily ever after for years after their grocery store meeting.
I may not always be dressed to the nines when I am leaving my house to do menial tasks like errands, groceries, school (just kidding on that last one!) I do try to look presentable. I always think “would I feel comfortable seeing someone I know?” Seeing someone isn’t even as bad as meeting someone for the first time that I DON’T know!
There are five guidelines for making a good impression!
1. Look polished. Nobody wants to be remembered as the girl with the wrinkled clothes, unkempt hair or mismatched shoes/socks.
2. Be polite. Impressions deal with attitude too! Even if it’s just the produce guy at Wegman’s, always be friendly! Who knows, he could one day be your husband!
3. Make eye contact. This is important for any situation. It makes people feel important, respected and heard. I HATE having a conversation with someone who can’t keep eye contact or is just looking around the room. Girls, if you are on a date and he is searching around the room…it is more likely he is looking for someone else! Drop him!
4. Feel good! I find the only way you can truly look good is if you personally feel good.
5. Smile! A little smile never hurt anyone!
Remember, you can never re-do a first impression!
Enjoy your new year and may there be many good firsts to come!