Remember: Please share if you found this article helpful!
A wise man once said "put your money where others can see it."
As humans we are tribal creatures and we are constantly judging and placing value on each other on a social scale.
Some people we meet score high on the ladder, others score low on the ladder.
All of this value is calculated and determined within seconds of meeting; aka: a first impression.
We are able to calculate social value extremely quickly and can determine if we want to further associate with a new prospect within 30 seconds of meeting them.
There is an unwritten rule in dating, networking, relationships and business that states:
- 3 seconds will buy you 30 seconds
- 30 seconds will buy you 5 minutes
- 5 minutes will buy you 30 minutes
- 30 minutes will buy you 2 hours
- 2 hours will buy you a day
There are many variations of this rule, but the concept is always the same.
When we meet people, we run a series of subconscious tests to see if we find enough value to bring our new prospect into our social circles.
If we find a person's appearance to be inoffensive, we will give them 30 seconds. If we find them to sound somewhat intelligent in an introduction, then we will spend 5 minutes with them. If we find them interesting, we will spend 30 minutes with them. If we feel good after 30 minutes, we will spend two hours with them. If we still like them after 2 hours, we will spend a day with them.
Every single person works the same way, we are constantly screening who we will and will not accept into our social circles.
The question is, if you had to invest money into yourself, would you invest in the first 3 seconds of yourself or would you hold back and invest later in your social process?
Although some may argue that "getting to know a person on the inside" is true value, we all behave the same way when we go on a first date. Even idealists who believe in "truly" knowing people on a deeper level invest heavily at the beginning of the relationship.
A wise man once said "If everyone kept the promises they made on a first date, there would be no such thing as divorce."
Lets consider a first date...
The man puts on his cleanest, best clothes, shaves his face, washes his hair, puts on cologne, shines his shoes, tucks his shirt in, brushes his teeth, cleans his car, shows up on time, holds the door, pays for dinner and drives his date home as a gentleman.
The woman puts on her best dress, shaves her legs, washes her hair, puts on perfume, picks out the most sexy shoes, tucks her stomach in, brushes her teeth, shows up on time, acts like a lady, says please and thank you and gives her man a modest good night kiss.
These two people have invested heavily at the front end of the relationship because they want to give a good first impression.
They want to impress their date in the first 3 seconds to earn 30 seconds. They want to hold their date's attention for 30 seconds to get 5 minutes, they want to say the right things in five minutes to earn 30 minutes, they want to be interesting enough to last two hours and eventually spend a day together.
Out of the whole process, however, the most important part is the first 3 seconds.
If you don't look appealing, confident, happy and successful, the rest of the social process is difficult and potentially impossible.
If I am going to invest money into myself, I will stack all of my dollars in the first 3 seconds to create a great first impression.
10 WAYS TO CREATE A GREAT 3 SECOND FIRST IMPRESSION:
- Be well groomed (hair is trimmed, styled, no facial hair)
- Shoes are shined, appropriate for the setting (Lace-up oxfords are very versatile and so are dress loafers... wingtips are good too). Your shoes must communicate social value. Shoes indicate how you spend your time, what your profession you are in and are a primary indicator of social status. Spend some money on really good shoes - it's worth it.
- Pants are pressed, tailored and "break" only once.
- Shirt is clean and pressed, white collar is stiff, shirt is appropriately buttoned for the occasion.
- Tie is tied, selected and worn appropriately for the occasion. Tie bars may or may not be fashionable, depending on the setting/demographics of the room.
- Blazers have appropriate color and lapels for the current fashion and setting. There are over 9 types of common lapels. Spend some time to learn about lapels, they are extremely important for social status. Men's magazines like "GQ" can give you an idea of what messages different lapels give and which ones are relevant today.
- Your wrist watch must fit well and be appropriate for the setting. No cheap watches. If you don't want to spend thousands of dollars on a watch, pick a fashion brand that at least lets people know that you know a fashionable name for a few hundred dollars.
- Jewellery is kept to a minimum and is kept tasteful. No costume jewellery.
- If you are wearing a suit, it MUST be tailored, no exceptions. Nothing looks worse than an un-tailored boxy suit from Moores.
If you can follow the 10 rules above, depending on your geography, you will automatically be in the top 80-95% of people for giving off a clean, professional appearance which is invaluable in today's social market.
Social opportunities are always offered to those that look clean, professional and successful. Maintain your appearance and invest in your first 3 seconds because it only takes 1 person or opportunity to change your life. Remember, you only get one chance to make a first impression.
Thanks for reading,
P.S. Please share this article if you found it helpful!