Monday, October 12, 2015

First Impressions...

I happened to watch a reality show last night. The contestants had an option to choose their partners. They would be shown AVs of two individuals and had to make a choice of partner amongst the two, relying solely on their introductions. The first guy was a confident sounding, good looking hunk, and the other a more homely, or rather what you’d call husband material. The first lady choose the homely guy over the hunk. Then walked in a second lady and was given the option to choose between the hunk and another guy who spoke of how being a dad was his greatest achievement ever, and needless to say, the daddy got chosen by the lady. In walked the third lady, and the guy giving competition to the hunk was a man mired in controversy. And yet again, the hunk was rejected and the other guy got selected for “being honest.”  When it happened again for the fourth time and the fifth time, and it was evident that people were reluctant to choose him, the hunk was finally given a choice to choose among two women. The sad part was when neither of the women seemed happy to be his partner, but one of them had to relent because he had the right to choose!

Poor guy!

I couldn’t help but notice how slowly but steadily his self-esteem had begun to crack under that tough, confident avatar he wanted to show to the world. That made me wonder what was so unlikeable about the guy that six women rejected him in a row!!

Positive attitude v/s arrogance-

People love individuals who have a positive attitude but when that attitude borders on arrogance, it can repel people more strongly than the like poles of a bar magnet!

The hunk went on and on about his achievements and though he probably intended it to be a statement of his winning capabilities, he came across as being completely arrogant.  

God’s greatest gift to mankind-

Yea, there are people like that! People who think they are god’s greatest gift to mankind and without them the human race would almost be extinct!

This guy behaved like one of those kinds, heaping mounds of praise upon himself and listing what he would hate in his probably partner. No one likes a perfect person, because people believe there is no one who is perfect. If you are a human, you are bound to have your shortcomings. Perhaps that is why even a guy with seemingly questionable character got picked over this hunk, just because he was honest enough to admit he had his short comings!

Also, nothing puts off people more than telling them, don’t be my friend if you don’t have these qualities. It is like putting a pre-condition to a relationship. Some might feel being frank is a good thing, but again, there’s a thin line between being frank and being rude.

Confidence v/s over confidence-

Confidence can be a great quality in a person. It makes people around you appreciate you more, but when it starts hovering on the ‘over confidence’ side, it can be really damaging. Over confidence often reeks of insecurity, it more like the fake smiles people sport to hide their hurt, or the excessive talking people do when they are lying or hiding a truth.

It was no wonder then, that simple looking guys got picked up over that good looking hunk, people who didn’t seem to have achieved much got picked over this guy who had won lots of competitions, humble dads and committed boyfriends got picked over this single-and-ready to mingle guy, even guys with questionable character got picked over this seemingly perfect hunk.

I am not saying, the hunk is a bad guy. He could be one of the best. Maybe all the women made wrong choices by not choosing him. But that is price you pay for making the wrong first impression. It’s good to think highly of oneself. But if that doesn’t translate to others thinking the same about you, then you have failed miserably.

Yea, I know there could be another debate about “I don’t care what people think about me”. And that is fine if you aren’t competing. But when you stand in a competitive field, be it a reality show or a job interview or are making that all important sales call with a new customer, first impressions do matter. 

A lot.  

I met a group of virtual friends for the first time yesterday. I tried to think of what kind of first impressions people made on me. For instance, I thought of Sid who quietly went about charming his way into everyone’s heart, making everyone comfortable, seeing to it that everybody ate well, being ever so gentle and yet never over bearing. He was easily the apple of everyone’s eye! Then there was Vidya, motherly, gentle, sweet, witty and caring. She spoke less, but whenever she did, I loved her more!

First impressions do matter. They often get etched into people’s minds. How they interact with you after that, depends a lot on that first impression. And I think the key to making that awesome first impression is by being you.  Not trying to be someone you would like to be, not imitating someone else, not coming across as fake, not being arrogant or bitchy.

I wonder what kind of first impression I make on people. 

Hmm…point to ponder.  
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