Lady Margaret Thatcher once said:
“I usually make up my mind about a man in ten seconds, and I very rarely change it.”
Have you ever heard the expression. . .you only have one opportunity to make a good first impression?
That’s true. I will tell you that you can’t always judge a book by its cover. . .but the look of that cover may keep me from ever finding out what’s in the book.
The late Maya Angelou said:
“When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”
First impressions are important. But frankly, I’m more interested in learning to how to make a good Godly first impression.
Here are seven keys to help you.
1. Have fun and recognize every moment as an opportunity.
From the time my feet hit the floor in the morning until my eyelids close at night. . .I’m looking to rejoice in every moment and opportunity that God gives me. . .and, by the way, have fun in the process.
My ability to have fun. . .is not determined by the day of the week. . .or even whom I’m around.
I will look for the humor in every situation because the scripture says in Proverbs 17:22 which says:
“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.”
The Contemporary English Version of Proverbs 17:22 says:
“If you are cheerful, you feel good; if you are sad, you hurt all over.”
Proverbs 17:22 in the Amplified Bible says:
“A happy heart is good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing, but a broken spirit dries up the bones.”
Let’s see. . .if you’re merry, cheerful and happy. . .then you’re having fun in whatever you’re doing.
However, if you’re not having fun. . .then you’re sad, hurting all over, with a broken spirit and sick.
I chose to have fun. . .whenever possible.
Even when someone does something stupid or if you prefer a kinder retorts. . .I could say. . .even when someone does something unintelligent.
Too many people, especially believers, wake up with a wrong attitude.
You hear people say;
“Good Lord, it’s Monday morning and I have to go to work again.”
Truth of the matter is that in today’s world economy. . .the thankful attitude should be.
“Good morning Lord, it’s a Marvelous Monday Morning and I get to go to work.”
If you’re not having fun at work. . .it’s time for you to find something else to do for a living. . .because you’re not living the way God intended for you to live.
Ecclesiastes 8:15 in The Living Bible says:
“Then I decided to spend my time having fun because I felt that there was nothing better in all the earth than that a man should eat, drink, and be merry, with the hope that this happiness would stick with him in all the hard work that God gives to mankind everywhere.”
Truthfully, I don’t really want to do anything I can have fun at.
Can I have fun in every situation I have to deal with? No! But that doesn’t mean that I won’t be looking for fun or finding a way to laugh at the devil.
My real fun is doing the will of God and embracing the life He planned for me.
Proverbs 10:23 in The Living Bible says:
“A fool's fun is being bad; a wise man's fun is being wise! “
Be wise. . .have fun. . .live life the way God intended and create that good first impression.
2. Smile. . .let the fruit shine through
Proverbs 15:13 MSG
“A cheerful heart brings a smile to your face; a sad heart makes it hard to get through the day.”
Have you ever read an email telling you to smile if you want to be lazy because it takes few muscles to smile than frown?
I can recall a half dozen or more different totals on the muscles used to smile or frown. In my research I found out that the medical opinions on the exact number of muscles to smile and/or frown. . . are as varied of the number of medically-approved diets.
However, there is one consensus among the medical authorities. It does take less muscles to smile than frown.
However, I think the late great Louis Armstrong sang the greatest to smile in the first two lyrics from one of his more famous songs.
“When you’re smilin’ keep on smilin’
The whole world smiles with you.”
Here are seven reasons why you should smile.
# 1 You’re uglier when you frown.
I have no scriptural basis for this reason. . .just the opinion of someone who has literally met hundreds of thousands of people in his life.
Hears a revelation for you: Even ugly people look better when they smile.
# 2 God smiles. . .so you should too.
Numbers 6:25 in the God’s WORD translation says:
“The Lord will smile on you and be kind to you.”
# 3 When you smile. . .the Lord sends blessings your way.
Numbers 6:25-26 in the New Living Translation says:
“May the Lord smile on you and be gracious to you. May the Lord show you his favor
and give you his peace.”
# 4 When you smile. . .mercy comes your way.
Psalm 31:16 in God’s WORD translation says:
“Smile on me. Save me with your mercy.”
# 5 God is smiling on you. . .when you’re learning His Word.
Psalm 119:135 in God’s WORD translation says:
“Smile on me, and teach me your laws.”
# 6 When you’re down and out. . .God can make you smile again.
Psalm 43:5 in The Living Bible says:
“O my soul, why be so gloomy and discouraged? Trust in God! I shall again praise him for his wondrous help; he will make me smile again, for he is my God!”
# 7 When you smile. . .favor is in your life.
Psalm 67:1 in the New Living Translation says:
“May God be merciful and bless us. May his face smile with favor on us.”
Smiling always creates a good first impression. . .and it’s clear from scripture. . .that’s what God wants you doing.
3. Dress for success.
Your personality is the first thing people see when they meet you.
Coco Chanel said:
“Dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they remember the woman.”
Rightly or wrongly, we often form an opinion of someone by the way they dress long before they ever open their mouths to speak.
Years ago, I remember interviewing a young woman who scored the highest score we had ever recorded on a typing and ten key test. It was off the charts and with no errors…that’s an absolute impossible to achieve. . .but she did.
The young woman was efficient and very attractive. . .but I didn’t hire her.
The simple reason is that she was wearing what my grandfather would have called a duck dress (not going to explain that. . .you figure it out).
I knew that when the other women in that department saw an attractive woman wearing a miniskirt. . .she would never be given a chance to survive. The fresh impression created by her dress would minimize her effectiveness . . .I didn’t hire her.
I felt bad about my decision. . .talked with my fine wife Bev. We called the young woman back in and explained the logic behind our decision. She was so appreciative as she was a single Mom with two small daughters.
This woman became the most efficient employee we ever had. To this date, she is a close family friend who often counsels on women on how they should look when seeking employee. And by the way, she loves God with all her heart.
However, her dress. . .almost cost her a job.
1 Timothy 2:9-10 in the New Living Translation says:
“And I want women to be modest in their appearance. They should wear decent and appropriate clothing and not draw attention to themselves by the way they fix their hair or by wearing gold or pearls or expensive clothes. For women who claim to be devoted to God should make themselves attractive by the good things they do.”
4. On Time
When someone is late. . .they’re sending you a message about themselves. And, I will tell you it’s a message that doesn’t convey a good or Godly first impression.
Being continually late reflects a lack of planning, a poor attitude, a lack of respect, a lack of organization and/or a lack of good habits.
When a person is late it’s either a habitual or character problem. Either way, it’s not impressive.
If a person does not value my time. . .they do not value my life. . .because my time is my life.
“Yes, but I got caught in traffic.”
I can understand a person being late once because of traffic but any more than that and it becomes an excuse. If traffic causes you to be late once. . .then you should always be planning ahead accordingly.
“Yes, but boss my son/daughter woke us with a fever this morning.”
If you have children and you have a job. . .there is going to come a day where one of your children may be sick . . .so you should always have a Plan B. Maybe even a Plan C.
If you’re continually late to the job. . .regardless of the reason. . .you’re going to get a reputation you don’t want. . .one that doesn’t lead to bonuses and promotions.
Ecclesiastes 3:11 in the New Century Version says:
“God has given them a desire to know the future. He does everything just right and on time, but people can never completely understand what he is doing.”
Jesus does everything just right and on time. Should we do anything less than our role model?
You will impress more people by your ability to listen than by the words you speak.
Everybody likes to have their opinion asked and valued.
If you want to make a good impression. . .listen for and remember the name of every person you meet.
The reason most people have difficulty remembering the names of the people they meet is because their focus is wrong.
When the average person meets someone new. . .they’re focusing on how they look, how they’re being perceived and wondering whether or not they’re making a good impression.
Just relax. . .when you meet a new person call them by name. . .several times during the conversation. . .either orally or mentally. Repeat their name to yourself as they walk away.
If you learn to listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit. . .then you will automatically become a better listener in life.
Genesis 27:8 in the New Living Translation says:
“Now, my son, listen to me. Do exactly as I tell you.”
Jeremiah 22:21 in the Amplified Bible says:
“I spoke to you in your [times of] prosperity, but you said, I will not listen! This has been your attitude from your youth; you have not obeyed My voice.”
Learn to listen to who and what is important. . .that always make a great God impression.
And by the way, there is a lot more to listening. . .than just waiting for your turn to talk.
6. Be a diligent worker
A quick scan of Proverbs reveals several reasons everyone should be a diligent worker.
I discovered something rather interesting as I was studying diligent which is the Hebrew word charuwts (H2742) which is found 18 times in 17 verses in the King James Bible.
In five of those verses the Hebrew word is translated as diligent. However, in six of those verses it’s translated as the word gold.
Being a diligent worker is equated with gold. If you want the gold. . .the riches in your life. . .you must be diligent. Here are three of the verses:
Proverbs 10:4 in the Amplified Bible says:
“He becomes poor who works with a slack and idle hand, but the hand of the diligent makes rich.”
Proverbs 12:24 in the Message Bible says:
“The diligent find freedom in their work; the lazy are oppressed by work.”
Proverbs 21:5 says:
“The thoughts of the diligent tend only to plenteousness; but of every one that is hasty only to want.”
The New Living Translation of Proverbs 21:5 says:
“Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty.”
There is a different Hebrew word mahiyr H4106) used in Proverbs 22:29 in the Amplified Bible which says:
“Do you see a man diligent and skillful in his business? He will stand before kings; he will not stand before obscure men.”
In this verse. . .diligent means:
“quick, prompt, skilled, ready”
If you want to stand before a King (person of authority) you must the skilled, ever-ready and your performance must be gold. . .of the greatest value.
7. Don’t Fake It. . .Be Genuine
The very first moment you meet someone is critically important.
Don’t give them the political handshake. . .where you’re shaking their hand but already looking at the person next to them.
Here’s a good habit for you to emulate.
When you meet someone. . .as you shake their hand. . .they need to feel that at that very moment. . .they’re the most important person in your life. Because they are.
At the moment, you’re shaking their hand. . .you’ve made a conscious decision to spend that part of your life with them. They need to feel the importance that you assigning to this moment in time.
Practice on looking directly into someone’s eyes. . .this let’s the person know how deeply you value this moment.
The person that you’re meeting or talking with needs to feel the sincerity of your heart.
Sincerity is the real deal whereas insincerity is as phony as a three-dollar bill.
I read once where someone said:
“The secret of success is sincerity. Once you can fake that you've got it made.”
Sooner or later, the thoughts and intents of your heart will be revealed.
Be known as someone who is real. . .not a fake. . .not a flake.
Proverbs 21:29 in the Message Bible says:
“Unscrupulous people fake it a lot; honest people are sure of their steps.”
Honest people are not fakes. . .but a fake is not honest. . ..either to him/herself or anybody else.
Job 33:3 in the New Living Translation says:
“I speak with all sincerity; I speak the truth.”
Remember this, no one will care what you think. . .until they know how much you care.
BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS