It takes less than 60 seconds to make a first impression. This probably isn’t a news flash to you, is it? We’ve all heard this statistic before.
But let’s really think about it—in less than 60 seconds, a new acquaintance is deciding:
Is this person smart, kind, wise? Trustworthy? Someone I’d like to get to know better?
Whatever situation you’re in- job interview, neighborhood party, PTA meeting, work conference-it’s always smart to do your best to make a great first impression. Teach this one social skill to your children and they will always set themselves apart from their peers (in a good way!). Keep reading and you’ll find tips on how to teach this important skill to your family.
In this post, I’m going to give you my #1 tip for how to make a great first impression. Are you ready? Pay Attention.
- Eliminate distractions. Your smartphone should be set to silent and not be in your hand. Look at your new acquaintance- not over her shoulder to see who is coming in the door.
- Repeat your new acquaintance’s name in your small talk. Check out this post for tips and tricks on remembering names.
- Ask questions. Listen to her answers and ask follow up questions.
- Smile and have good engaging posture. Your body language should show you are interested.
It’s really pretty straightforward and simple to make a great first impression. Just slow down and pay attention. Focus on the person you’re meeting.
Yes, there are other factors in the mix of making a great first impression such as your handshake. However, if you don’t master the art of paying attention than the other factors really don’t matter.
Tips to help you teach this social skill at home:
1- When you’re talking with your kids do your best to be looking at each other. Break the habits of glancing at a screen while chatting or doing dishes while talking, etc.
2- Your full attention is a gift you give others!
Use gentle reminders to help your kids learn to focus. Try a little humor like, “Hey, show me those beautiful brown eyes!” or “I can’t hear you because you aren’t looking at me!”
3- Let your family know that paying attention and focusing on others is a skill you all will be working on. Kids love to be “in the know” and part of a mission. Have a dinner table talk about why it’s important and how it feels to when someone truly pays attention to you. Decide as a family that you all will help each other improve and make it a family project!
4- Set some no screen zones and times. Think about when and how screens are interfering with your conversation and family time. Some ideas: no screens during meal times or during car rides to school and practice.
I have more actionable advice and tips for you and your family!
Be sure to check out my FREE guide, “The Busy Mom’s Guide to Raising Confident, Considerate and Mannerly Kids”. You’ll get my best scoop on how to teach your family good manners in a fun and stress-free way. Simply enter your email below and your guide will be delivered to your inbox.