What pops into your head when you think about ways people impress other people?
Money? A ‘prestigious’ career? A beautiful face? Being famous?
If so, think about what could hide behind these top four ‘impressive qualities’. Behind the Money: loneliness, lack of genuine relationships. Behind the Career: a CEO can hate a ‘prestigious’ career as much as a toilet cleaner can hate cleaning toilets. Behind the Beautiful Face: constant fear of getting older and losing ‘impressiveness’. Behind the Fame: addictions and insecurity.
The scenarios above are not, of course, always true; there are many happy millionaires and beautiful people. More importantly, we’re not here to impress others and I’d be willing to bet the happy millionaires and beautiful people know this. Read Michael Newton’s, ‘Journey of Souls’ and Bronnie Ware’s, ‘The Top Five Regrets of the Dying’ for a deeper understanding of why we are here.
To sum up the main point though – we’re here for one reason only. To impress ourselves by learning to be the best that we can be. One way we can do this is by learning we don’t need to impress others, but, by impressing ourselves, we often automatically do exactly that.
Listening is, without a doubt, the number one skill a person can have when interacting with others. It’s also, oddly enough, a rarity. The irony is, busy minds race ahead to think of impressive and witty responses, and therefore fail to fully concentrate on the information being presented. It’s not very impressive when you don’t receive a reply to your heartfelt expression, but, instead, get a witty antidote about the other person’s situation.
This results in unimpressive conversations all round, as it’s very obvious when someone can barely contain the need to talk, rather than listen, (I’m reminded of that kid in school with his hand up, face red, straining against the desk in desperate urgency to deliver the answer to the teacher, meanwhile missing much of the lesson).
Maintaining eye contact, staying present and being truly engaged in what another person is saying will impress them – 100% of the time – because it makes them feel special. And chances are, you’ll learn something valuable also.
Be Good at what YOU do
This doesn’t mean you have to be a hotshot lawyer, athlete or movie star. Throughout history, the careers, hobbies and other pursuits of the human race have been judged differently by different societies. Being a good housewife in the fifties was to uphold the ultimate image – every girl’s dream of nice appliances and a husband with shiny teeth. Yep…moving on. Suffice it to say, society’s benchmarks for impressiveness are as fickle as teenage fashion states it to be.
If you make the best potato salad ever, you’ll forever impress people with that skill. If you maintain a gorgeous garden, hold the best parties, give the most knowledgeable advice, if you can fix anything and everything – whatever it is, if you’ve made a point of excelling at it, it’s impressive and you’re impressive to the people enjoying your skill!
Maintain Your Individuality
We’re all of interest to each other because of our differences. ‘Fence sitting’ within conversations, agreeing with someone when you don’t and pretending to like things that you don’t may feel like the easiest option at the time – but it never is.
Most importantly, you’re unlikely to feel impressed with yourself when you go along with everything for the sake of fitting in, and secondly, the courage to express yourself freely and embrace responses from others is what actually impresses others.
Be a pioneer for individuality and acceptance of such, admire those very qualities within yourself that express your uniqueness and delight in the flood of admiration you deserve to receive as a result.
Always Follow Through
No matter where you are – at work, at home, overseas, flying to the moon – always do what you say you’re going to do. The mere fact that many people don’t, is sometimes what makes this quality so impressive.
Quite simply – walk your talk – words really don’t mean anything, it’s the actions behind the words that impress others and it’s your actions that heighten your own experience.
You always know when someone is being sincere or not. The funniest, liveliest, most fascinating people are often that way, because they are being blatantly honest.
Whether it be with or about yourself, to others, in regard to the state of the world or your house or your boyfriend’s annoying habits – honesty doesn’t have to mean cringe-worthy confrontation – most often, when it really is sincere honesty, it means a good belly laugh at how seriously we take ourselves.
For some, smiling is the natural state of the face. For others, a smile only tugs at the cheeks when watching something funny.
A smile can come with you to any meeting with any person. A smile is always an amazing and impressive thing to witness. A smile always makes people feel comfortable, special and welcome. If you don’t already make a point of smiling each time you say ‘hello’ – not just to people you know who make you smile, but to strangers as well – try it and see what happens.
Passion, Enthusiasm and Excitement are Cool Emotions – Express Away!
The ‘too cool for school’ attitude is like a rampant weed suffocating the life out of all things fun. Not just in high-school either, adults play the game just as well. This attitude comes from people not wanting other people to think, that they think what the other person has or does is cooler than what they themselves have or do…make sense?
Passion, enthusiasm and excitement for and over anything portrays a happy life, a happy person – these emotions only spring from impressive desires, thoughts and acts. There’s really nothing ‘cooler’.
This one is as simple as remembering how you feel when you’re complimented on anything, whether it be a new dress, a cake you baked, the colour of your eyes or a job promotion.
Think about it. Take time to do it. And mean it. Everyone has something they can be complimented on, and, beyond anything else, it’s the compliment they’ll remember you for.
When you make a point of thinking positively – at least, initially, about the’ little things’ until you realise that everything’s a ‘little thing’ in the grand scheme of ‘things’ – you become very surprised by the ‘things’ people spend a lot of time whining and complaining about.
Like what Angelina Jolie is wearing and, “how dare she?” Like the weather, “It’s too windy,” “it’s too hot.” Like what the neighbour said, and again, “how dare they?”
Even though many professional complainers may think they really want you to buy into their whinge fest, they don’t. A simple reminder is needed of the myriad of topics you could be enjoying having a chat about, to help them change their negative thoughts to positive ones. Don’t be tempted to join in just to keep them quiet – you’ll only be sucked into the vortex of complaints-ville, which is only a never ending merry-go-round of manifesting negative scenarios for yourself.
What is impressive, is to create a ‘no whinge zone’ around yourself, and to help others know what it feels like to quit whinging.
Hang Out With YOU
Last, but perhaps the most impressive, is the ability to be alone with yourself. The ability to have fun on your own, to be quiet, to contemplate, to run, laugh, swim, go out – anything at all – but in your own company.
Come on, admit it, when you hear stories of people trekking around the world on their own, even going to the movies on their own – you’re a little bit impressed and intrigued, right? How are they so confident and without fear of judgement?
When you are completely confident with YOU, the inner you shines through the outer you. You project sincerity and love. You project your soul freely, and, in turn, you are rewarded with seeing the truth behind the barriers hiding the souls of others.
And there’s nothing more impressive than seeing another’s soul, and knowing you are living directly from your own.
Author: Nicole Leigh West
Wouldn’t we all be much happier if we spent less time trying to impress others and more time getting to know our true selves? Like you said, when we learn to be the best that we can be, more often than not, we attract people to us who are “impressed” by who we really are (not by the money, prestige, beauty, fame…). Nicely written, Nicole.