Psychology First Impressions Essay

Psychology First Impressions Essay-48
  And so we've evolved to let our unconscious minds handle first impressions, along with a lot of other things, because our conscious minds are easily overwhelmed with just talking and trying not to spill coffee on ourselves.How does the unconscious mind handle those first impressions?We develop the differences between surprise and fear and between anger and disgust, more for social reasons than survival ones.

  And so we've evolved to let our unconscious minds handle first impressions, along with a lot of other things, because our conscious minds are easily overwhelmed with just talking and trying not to spill coffee on ourselves.How does the unconscious mind handle those first impressions?We develop the differences between surprise and fear and between anger and disgust, more for social reasons than survival ones.

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That sounds like a lot until you know that our unconscious minds can handle 11 millions bps.

And so we've evolved to let our unconscious minds handle first impressions, along with a lot of other things, because our conscious minds are easily overwhelmed with just talking and trying not to spill coffee on ourselves.

We used to identify six possible emotions for people to spot in (and leak to) one another:  happy, surprised, afraid, disgusted, angry, and sad.

But the Glasgow scientists found that our actual unconscious retinue of emotions may be simpler even than that.  In fact, we may have four basic emotions, according to the study: happy, sad, afraid/surprised, and angry/disgusted.

We’re hard-wired to want the answers to a few vital questions based on those first impressions – such as, is this person that has just come into my field of view a friend or a foe? In a variety of others, people have assessed the honesty, suitability for partnership and parenthood, and so on, based on the now-infamous thin-slicing of Blink fame. Are audiences going on instantly-formed first impressions of how interesting a speaker is likely to be and if so, what can we do about that?

Our conscious minds can handle roughly 40 bits of information a second.  Since both anger and disgust share a wrinkled nose, and both surprise and fear share raised eyebrows, the study finds that they are actually the same deep down in our unconscious minds.  We develop the differences between surprise and fear and between anger and disgust, more for social reasons than survival ones.That means at a deep level, you’ve got basically four ways to show up in front of an audience in making your first impression, and your facial expressions will signal one of those four to the waiting unconscious minds of the audience before you.  Three of the four are negative.  And given the tendency of all of us to be afraid before we start to speak, the odds are good that we’ll signal and transmit that emotion – unless we work specifically on showing up with one of the others.After all, a bad impression can seldom be remedied.A business runs on personal communication as much as it does on money, and if you want to be successful, it is vital that those who have cause to connect with you receive the very best impression from the outset.Aeon email newsletters are issued by the not-for-profit, registered charity Aeon Media Group Ltd (Australian Business Number 80 612 076 614).This Email Newsletter Privacy Statement pertains to the personally identifying information you voluntarily submit in the form of your email address to receive our email newsletters More generally, when visiting the Aeon site you should refer to our site Privacy Policy here.How about showing up happy, rather than sad, afraid, or angry?   By focusing on that emotion the way an actor does preparing for a scene.  Recall a time when you felt that emotion strongly and naturally.  Use all your senses to bring that memory and emotion back.  How did it smell, taste, feel, sound, and look?  If you do that work thoroughly and well, you’ll crowd out the fear with that other one you’ve picked and you’ll transmit that emotion powerfully to the audience.Your first impression will kill, as the comics say, and they mean that in a good way.A part of this post is adapted from my new book,  Power Cues:   The Subtle Science of Leading Groups, Persuading Others, and Maximizing Your Personal Impact, published May 13, 2014 by Harvard.    "How much do first impressions matter? When we say first impressions matter, we don't know the half of it. In one study, participants picked the future winner of a political race based on a quick look at the candidates’ photos.

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