First impressions are tough to get right.
In fact, a series of experiments by researchers at Princeton found that it takes just milliseconds to form an impression of someone by looking at their face.
However, before and after that there are countless things people pick up on that make them dislike you. And it can unfortunately happen in any situation, from meeting your new prospective boss for an interview to a client meeting or first date.
And, sure, some of these might just be things you like about yourself and how you choose to live your life. And you should never let anything dictate that. But if you can make a few small, simple changes that can make a big impact in how people see you– why not?
This isn’t just conjecture or opinion, these are things backed by recent scientific research.
So, let’s just say, ignore them at your own risk.
What you dislike in another take care to correct in yourself.
– Thomas Sprat
Here are seven things you’re doing that make people dislike you immediately.
I know, you’ve heard you should keep the focus on the other person in a conversation so that they know you’re interested in them and you can control the conversation.
However, it turns out too much of this without any input from you will likely backfire. It all comes down to a careful balance.
A study published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology found that people dislike you when you don’t reciprocate their opening up with some spilling of your own.
In the study, participants who had more of a back and forth conversation liked each other much better than those where one person controlled the conversation.
Humblebragging is when someone hides bragging under a veil of self-criticism.
For example, in a Harvard Business School study, researchers found that employers were turned off when someone answered the question, “What is your biggest weakness?” using humblebragging, such as “being a perfectionist” or “working too hard.”
Instead, those same employers preferred honest answers such as “I’m not always the best at staying organized” and saw those respondents as more likable.
Ever gotten a weak handshake from someone? Well, it turns out people that give weak handshakes appear less likable and more anxious than those who give firm handshakes.
According to a University of Alabama study, participants who rated handshakes of undergraduates believed those with weaker handshakes were less positive, likable, and more socially anxious.
Believe it or not, sweating is an unconscious factor that can influence the way people think about you.
In a study out of Monell Chemical Senses Center, participants were asked to watch videos of women in various everyday situations. While watching, researchers had the participants smell three different types of sweat: sweat produced while in a high-stress environment, while in a high-stress environment with antiperspirant, and while exercising.
What they found was that participants rated the women lowest on a scale of confidence and general likeability while smelling the sweat produced in a high-stress environment, while the same situation with antiperspirant took the highest rating.
5. Oversharing on Facebook
Do you know someone on Facebook or other social media networks who shares photos about every single thing they ever do, from parties to general outings, special occasions, and even just eating out? It turns out this behavior can hurt your relationships and make you less likable.
A study by Birmingham Business School found that posting too many photos on Facebook can actually hurt your real-life relationships, particularly when the photos don’t have to do with anyone they’re familiar with.
6. Getting too personal too early
It might sound like the smart thing to do, at least on a date, to open up about yourself and your life. And it can be. However, be careful not to open up about the wrong things too soon.
That’s because disclosing something too intimate too early can decrease your likeability and actually make you appear insecure, according to a study by Susan Sprecher of Illinois State University.
The study found that, generally, keeping the thing you’re opening up about positive tends to make you appear more likable. So, if you’re unsure, stick with the good stuff or let them lead and then open up with something similar.
A joint study from researchers in the Netherlands and Israel found that including emojis in an email makes you appear less competent. To make things worse, it didn’t appear to have any noticeable positive effect to counterbalance it, such as making you appear nicer.
So, if you think all those emojis you’re throwing into your work emails are cool, you might want to think again…