When I was a kid, teachers made us submit a ‘self-evaluation’ with major projects. There were three possible outcomes to the self-evaluation process:
1) You write a a crap project, and give yourself a good evaluation. Outcome: Teacher does not like.
2) You evaluate yourself accurately. Outcome: Teacher likes.
3) You write a good project, and give yourself a mediocre or bad evaluation. Outcome: Teacher sort of doesn’t like, but also realizes that you are a special snowflake with self-esteem issues, and needs to have all the negativity hugged right out of you.
(Yes, our schools are run by stupid hippies. But that’s not the point of this post.)
You submit a self-evaluation to the eyes of the world every day. It’s in how you speak, how you walk, how you dress, and how you behave.
A man who works out, dresses well, stands confidently, holds eye contact, and takes social risks, is sub-communicating: I am a man. I am a force to be reckoned with. Love me, hate me, fear me or respect me. But do not ignore me.
A man who acts timidly and limits his speech and actions to the socially appropriate and uncontroversial is sub-communicating: Don’t mind me. I’m just along for the ride. I just hold up the scenery in this Act.
But your self-evaluation isn’t just your clothes, physique and body language.
I was at a party the other day. A group of people arrived, including one young guy who didn’t know anyone else there. Everyone but him went through the standard greetings of Salut!, kisses/handshake, name.
But he announced to everyone in turn, in a thick Russian accent: “So sorry, no French, from Russia, pleased to be speaking English with you.”
Then he gave double cheek kisses to all the men. This is not, to put it mildly, the typical French custom.
Five minutes later, he starts speaking perfect French to me. I laugh and ask why he pretended to be Russian.
He smirked and answered: “Because nobody forgets the crazy Russian guy!”
Then he smacked the bottom of his beer bottle on the top of mine and the two girls next to me, making them foam up and over. He leaned back and laughed his ass off, then walked away.
I thought: Who the hell is this kid? He’s five and half feet tall. He’s missing one of his front teeth. He’s dressed like a bum. He just disrespected two hot girls and (not to brag or anything) a big, scary-looking guy who he’s never met before. I didn’t even feel angry at him for tooling me. I was just in awe. He had just arrived at a house full of strangers, and withing five minutes, everyone knew him, and everyone was intrigued by him. On the surface, he looked like a below average guy. But through his actions, he announced: “Love me or hate me, but you sure as fuck aren’t going to ignore ME, people at this party.”
This blog post would have a better ending if the guy had gone on be awesome all night and bang the biggest-tittied girl at the party, but sadly, he just got mad wasted and flamed out early on. All Swedish, no Finnish. But the lesson remains.
So: What does your first impression announce to the world? Are you satisfied with it?