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You Are Judged Based on These 2 Things When People First Meet You

You Are Judged Based on These 2 Things When People First Meet You

Ever felt like you were being judged and you wonder why is it that they can’t seem to get along with you? We’ve all been in that situation where you might be a new-comer in a company or a new person introduced into your friend’s groupie and it turns into an awkward ride.

But just remember these 2 important things that people judge you on first impressions and you’ll be scoring points faster than consecutive bonus tunnel hits in a pinball game. People value trustworthiness and respectability. If you fail to appeal to these two qualities, there is no new friend to make at the end of the day.

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Why Do People Value Trustworthiness

Harvard School Professor Amy Cuddy said that although competence is an important factor, people would evaluate you based on trustworthiness from the get-go due to our survival instincts. “From an evolutionary perspective, it is more crucial to our survival to know whether a person deserves our trust.”

And by putting things into perspective, it does really make sense. Think about the cavemen days as it was all the more important to find out whether your partner was cunning enough to steal all your valuables when you’re not looking than whether he was competent enough to make a fire.

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Why Do People Look Out For Respectability

The saying that goes “respect needs to be earned,” has more meaning than you’d have thought. And respect has to do with whether you can keep to your promises, do what you’ve been expected to do and to be truthful at all times. Breaking any of these three will jeopardise the respect that people might have of you.

But when meeting people for the first time, we get too anxious on wanting to win trust in by revealing all of our competences in that limited timeframe of being in their presence. In this case, Cuddy had warned that focusing on winning people’s respect without gaining their trust can backfire as you might come across as manipulative.

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Five Practical Ways You Can Enhance Your Trustworthiness and Respectability

So how exactly can we win the trust and respect from people during first impressions? Here are 5 practical ways that you can apply in any social setting, even for a short interview that you need to prepare for and effectively win your potential employer’s trust and respect in a short span of time with him or her.

1. Always Be Truthful

Lying can be tough work and if you’re not good at it, it’s best not to try it when you meet someone for the first time. Seasoned interviewers might be experienced enough to spot a liar, especially one who’s not good at lying. Signs like taking longer to respond, blinking or touching of the nose can depict a lie and it easily breaks the trust between you and the other party. Hence, the best policy is to always be truthful.

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2. Be Vulnerable

A new book called Friend and Foe, written by psychologists Maurice Schweitzer, Ph.D., and Adam Galinsky, Ph.D, revealed that showing our vulnerability proves to be an effective technique to gain trust in the shortest possible time. By dropping a pen or spilling coffee and then making a joke out of it makes us vulnerable and warm at the same time. However, an important point to remember is that competence has to be displayed first before you can demonstrate vulnerability, otherwise it wouldn’t work.

3. Hand Positioning

Dressing up for a first date or interview is very important. However, most overlook the importance of body language. Just the simple positioning of your hands during the first meet up can give away signs whether you are nervous or unconfident or whether you come across as a cunning person or a genuine one. Steepling your hands or putting your hands on the table with open palms can make you look more approachable.

4. Eye Contact And Blinking

Maintaining eye contact 80% of the time is the ideal amount when you talk to someone for the first time. This gives the impression that you’re actively listening. Not only that, blinking is also very important. According to Michael Argyle, a well known 20th century psychologist, 7-10 seconds of holding eye contact at a time shows that you are trustworthy, any lesser than that and it shows that you are not. Excessive blinking can also make us look very suspicious as we blink more when we become nervous.

5. Mirroring Movements

According to a research done, MBA students were instructed to mirror their partner’s movements, for example, if the partner puts their elbow on the table, they should do the same too. And the other half of the students were told not to. The results were striking. 67% of those who mirror movements struck a deal with their partner and only 12.5% reached a deal for those who didn’t mirror movements. Simply mirroring movements can help to build rapport with one another.

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Last Updated on October 17, 2018

7 Natural (And Highly Effective) Ways to Improve Memory

7 Natural (And Highly Effective) Ways to Improve Memory

How is your memory? Is your cognitive function as strong as you’d like it to be?

If not, then you’re definitely going to be interested in the memory improvement tips I’ll be sharing with you in this article.

Despite what you might think – or have been told – improving your ability to recall information is certainly possible. You just need to know the right ways to do it. (Don’t worry, as you won’t need to make any significant lifestyle changes.)

So how to improve memory? Let’s dive straight into the first of seven easy ways to improve your memory significantly.

1. Meditate

We live in a world of non-stop, 24/7 information. It’s like a waterfall that’s endlessly pouring news, data, facts and figures into our conscious minds.

Unfortunately, our brains are not designed to absorb this tremendous amount of information. It’s no wonder then, that most people struggle to remember information and recall things.

Even if you believe you have a good memory and are comfortable with multi-tasking, you’ll also be aware that there’s only so much information your brain can process at one time. And research suggests that the more information and distractions, the harder it is for you to transfer information to your long-term memory.[1]

Fortunately, meditation can help you out.

Even if you just meditate for 10 minutes per day, you’ll boost your ability to focus, which in turn, will make it easier for you to remember important facts.

If you need help in shifting into a meditative state, I recommend trying an app like Headspace – which can assist you to achieve this in a convenient and structured way.

And don’t forget, meditation doesn’t just have to be closing your eyes and sitting in a lotus position. Some people prefer to simply take a short walk in nature. This clears and calms their mind, and still provides the all-important boost to their focus.

2. Get plenty of sleep

If you’re sleep deprived or have not been sleeping well, then I’m guessing you’re not remembering well either. This is because sleep and memory are intimately connected.

If you have a busy life and regularly find yourself not getting enough sleep, then this will negatively impact your cognitive abilities – including your memory.

How much sleep should you be getting?

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Well, according to the National Sleep Foundation, you need a minimum of seven to nine hours of sleep per night. If you get this amount of sleep regularly, then within just a few days, you’ll see a tangible improvement to your ability to remember and recall things.

Now, I’ll be honest with you, maintaining a proper sleep cycle is not always easy (especially when the latest Netflix series has just been released!). But if you care about improving your short-term and long-term ability to remember things, then it’s critical that you try to get at least the recommended amount of sleep every night.

Are there ways to hack the sleep cycle?

Yes, there are.

Try these three things:

  • Have a fixed bedtime (preferably before 10pm)
  • Don’t eat too late
  • Make sure your bedroom is as dark as possible

Sleeping is a precious activity. It regenerates your body, clears your mind, and helps with the storing and retrieval of information.

However, don’t sleep just yet, as I want to tell you about another great way to increase memory…

3. Challenge your brain

When was the last time you challenged your brain?

I don’t mean challenged in the sense of overeating or undersleeping. I’m referring to stretching your mental capabilities through things like crossword puzzles, Sudoku and memory games.

To expand your memory bank, and to make your recall razor-sharp, you need to continually challenge your brain.

Feedback from Lifehack readers such as yourself, has suggested that brain training apps are a super-effective way of doing this. Used regularly, these apps can enhance your focus, attention span, problem-thinking ability and memory.

There are hundreds of these apps available (most of them for free), but I recommend starting out with one of the big three:

  • Peak (Android/iOS, free, 10 million+ downloads)
  • Lumosity (Android/iOS, free, 10 million+ downloads)
  • Elevate (Android/iOS, free, 5 million+ downloads)

If you normally spend a chunk of your week playing computer games, then instead of shooting and killing your enemies, why not let some of them live – while you put your attention into boosting your brain power!

Challenging your brain will strengthen your neural pathways and enhance your mental abilities. But don’t just take my word for it, try one of the apps above and see the positive benefits for yourself.

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4. Take more breaks

When I think back to my days as a budding entrepreneur, I distinctively remember working all the hours under the sun – and many under the moon too!

At that time, I believed that breaks were for the weak, and to become wealthy and successful, I needed to shed blood, sweat and tears.

However, I was wrong.

Taking regular breaks is the best way to keep yourself productive, creative and alive to opportunities. It’s also the best way to learn new information.

Let me explain.

Typically, when studying lots of new information, most people will spend hours reading it – in an attempt to learn and remember the content as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, they’ve overlooked something.

Namely, extended study sessions are rarely a good thing, as your ability to retain information naturally declines after a certain period of time.

It’s similar to physical exercise. You wouldn’t attempt to train vigorously for four hours in a row. Instead, you’d take regular breaks to give your lungs, heart and muscles adequate time to recover. Failing to do this will result in muscle cramps and overexertion.

It’s the same with your brain. If you overload it with information, you’ll suffer from mental fatigue.

What’s the answer?

Make sure you take regular breaks when learning new information. I recommend at least a 10-minute break every hour. (You may also want to take a look at the Pomodoro Method.)

If you don’t want to be as regimented as that, then take breaks as soon as you find yourself losing the ability to focus on the new material. Your brain will thank you – and your learning aptitude will move up a level.

5. Learn a new skill

I love this quote, as it’s 100% true – but frequently overlooked:

“Learning never exhausts the mind.” – Leonardo da Vinci

From my experience of helping to develop the careers of dozens of Lifehack employees, I can definitively say that participating in meaningful and purposeful activities stimulates the mind. It also reduces stress and enhances health and well-being.

Let me give you an example of this:

Imagine you work for a global financial institution in one of their call centers. You take over 100 calls a day – many of them complaints. When you started the job a few months back, you were excited to be in full-time employment and working for a household name.

Unfortunately, your initial enthusiasm quickly turned into frustration.

The endless complaint calls began to take their toll on you. And the supervisors irritated you too, as they were far too interested in micro-managing you – rather than letting you work in your own way.

Now, in the story above, the ending could be that you put up with a job you didn’t like, and led a dull and frustrated working life for years and years. However, an alternative ending is this: you channeled your dissatisfaction in to learning a new skill (computer coding). It took you a year or two to get up to speed, but it allowed you to successfully upgrade your career – and the ongoing learning made the call centre job much more bearable.

Clearly, learning new skills gives you impetus, focus and something to aim for. Your brain loves to learn, and you should tap into this by always seeking our new information. And when learning becomes a habit, you’ll find your ability to remember and recall things effortlessly, becomes a habit too.

6. Start working out

If you’re not already working out regularly, then here’s another reason to do so:

Exercising for 20-30 minutes three times a week will improve your long-term memory.

Regular exercise increases blood flow in your body and supplies the brain with extra oxygen and nutrients. And a well-nourished brain is a well-functioning brain!

“But I just don’t have the time?,” I hear you say.

Not a problem.

A research has shown that a daily burst of 60 seconds of high-intensity exercise, offered many of the benefits of the longer exercise routines.[2] So, if you’re short on time – now you know what to do.

Interested in getting started?

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Here are five different ways that will help you work out:

  • Join a gym
  • Join a sports team
  • Buy a bike
  • Take up hiking
  • Dance to your favorite music

7. Eat healthier foods

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression: “You are what you eat.”

This applies to your brain too.

The food that you eat helps determine your brain’s capacity to store and recall information. A poor diet (think junk food + soda!) harms not just your physical health, but your mental health too.

Fortunately, there are several foods that are especially good for your brain and your memory. These include: blueberries, celery and dark chocolate. But anything high in antioxidants will have a positive effect on your brain and memory.

Conversely, highly-processed foods and those loaded with sugar will have a negative impact on your memory. This is due to them providing insufficient nutrients for your brain – leading you to easily suffer from mental fatigue.

Want to be mentally healthy? Then eat and drink an abundance of these for brain health:

  • Turmeric – helps new brain cells grown
  • Broccoli – protects the brain against damage
  • Nuts – improves memory
  • Green tea – enhances brain performance, memory and focus[3]
  • Fish oilfish oil supplements can increase your brain power

Here’re more brain food options that improve memory!

Final thoughts

I sincerely hope these seven memory boosting ways that I’ve covered in this article will be of help to you.

You don’t need to implement them all. I suggest just trying the ones that appeal to you.

But, if you’re serious about dramatically improving your memory, then make a start right now on adopting one or more of the ways I’ve suggested. I’m confident you won’t regret it.

Featured photo credit: Eric Ward via unsplash.com

Reference

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