What pops into your head when you think about ways to impress people? Is it with money? A prestigious career? A beautiful face? By being famous? If so, think about what could hide behind these stereotypical examples:
Behind the money may be loneliness, a lack of genuine relationships or intense stress.
Behind the career, a CEO might hate what he or she does, as much as a cleaner hates facing the public toilets.
Behind the beautiful face, constant fear of getting older and being deemed worthy in some other way could be debilitating.
Behind the fame, addictions and insecurities might reign.
These stereotypes effectively highlight the fact that even the things we deem most impressive, aren’t always what they seem. That’s a good thing because we’re really only here to impress ourselves, by doing the best we can. When we know we don’t actually have to think of ways to impress people, and truly work on ourselves instead, a funny thing happens.
We impress, without even trying to.
10 Ways to Impress People
Active listening is the number one skill you can have, in a social sense. Oddly enough, it’s also quite a rare one. The irony is, busy minds race ahead to think of witty responses, and therefore fail to fully concentrate on the information being presented. It’s not very impressive, however, when instead of receiving a reply, you 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. Think 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. Many adults don’t seem to overcome this desire to be heard, above all else.
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.
2. Be good at what YOU do
Being good at what you do 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. For example, being a good housewife in the fifties was to uphold the ultimate image. 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 fantastic parties, give compassionate advice or can fix anything and everything, you’re impressive. That’s because, you’ve made a point of excelling at something you love, rather than trying to impress for the sake of it.
3. Maintain your individuality
We’re all interesting to each other because of our differences. ‘Fence sitting’ within conversations, agreeing with someone when you don’t and pretending to like things may feel like the easiest option at the time, but it never is.
Firstly, you’re unlikely to feel impressed with yourself, when you go along with things for the sake of fitting in. Secondly, having the courage to express yourself freely and embrace responses is among one of the most effective ways to impress people.
Be a pioneer for individuality and acceptance of such, admire the qualities within yourself that express your uniqueness and delight in the flood of admiration you deserve as a result.
4. Always follow through
No matter where you are, whether it’s at work, at home, overseas or 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, when the actions behind them don’t measure up. For example, bragging might seem like one of the easiest ways to impress people. However, if it holds no substance, you can’t keep the mask on for long. When you are truly good at something there’s no need to brag, because you’ve already followed through. Therefore, the proof is in the proverbial pudding.
5. Be honest
No doubt you’ve heard someone say that honesty is refreshing. It is, because we live in a society where honesty often takes a back seat to getting ahead or the desire to fit in. The thing is, how can we ever hope to be impressive, if we’re not even expressing our true selves?
When you commit to being honest within yourself and your interactions in the world, you find it’s not such a scary thing to be seen for who you are. In fact, honesty is such an impressive quality, that doors open based on the instant respect you earn.
For some, smiling is a natural state. For others, it’s an afterthought or even a necessity. Think about how often you smile, whether it’s to strangers, when you arrive at work or at yourself in the mirror.
A smile makes you feel automatically happy, but it also brightens the day of all who get to witness it. Make a habit of smiling as often as you can, even if it doesn’t seem natural at first.
7. Express passion, enthusiasm and excitement
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, as adults play the game just as well.
Expressions of passion, enthusiasm and excitement are indications of someone who’s living life to the full. Of a person who’s not afraid to show just how impressive they really are. And there’s really nothing ‘cooler’.
8. Compliment people
This one is as simple as remembering how you feel when you receive a compliment, whether it’s about a new dress, your garden or a job promotion. You feel good, therefore you view the person giving you the compliment in a favourable light.
Really take the time to notice all the little things about the people in your life. There’s always something that’s compliment-worthy. It’s an impressive quality to be that person who thinks to point it out.
9. Be deliberately positive
Life isn’t always positive, so being deliberately so isn’t about ignoring the rusty side of the coin. It’s about navigating through situations in a way that highlights the shiny side, as often as you can.
For example, if you’re at work and everyone’s complaining about how hot it is outside, gently remind them of what perfect beach weather it’ll be for the weekend. Before long, your positive outlook will impress others and, more importantly, your own mindset will benefit from the good vibes you’re creating.
10. Hang out with YOU
Perhaps one of the best ways to impress people is to demonstrate the ability to be alone with yourself. When you foster this, you exude a quiet confidence that’s almost tangible. Travel solo, dine alone or simply sit in your own company without doing anything, often. When you do, you’ll strengthen your sense of self.
In terms of ways to impress people, there’s nothing more admirable than when you truly own who you are. This confidence in yourself shines in a way that’s irresistible, and undeniably impressive.