Does your appearance matter? Of course it does! Most people are very visual and sometimes judgmental, and therefore this requires making a good first impression, whether it’s as part of a job interview, getting a date or making new friends. It is really hard to undo a bad first impression so don’t neglect your personal presentation.
Appearance does affect the way you are treated. When you look good, you feel better, you are more positive, you will present a better impression of yourself and people will treat you better. This will increase your confidence and result in a positive feedback loop. This explains why good appearance is important when overcoming shyness and improving your social skills.
Your appearance can be the game changer on the first date, so in this article we are going to entirely focus on your appearance. For further reading about how to overcome shyness and how to start dating, I recommend you to read other posts on this site. You can start with these posts:
How Are You Dressing?
Are you dressing decently and wearing clean clothes that look good on you? This matters because not only do you want to make a great impression when you meet someone, but also because before people know the ‘real you’, they get an impression that triggers an instantaneous judgment about you.
Therefore, sort through your clothes and separate the garments that makes you look good from the ones that are worn, grubby and don’t fit you well anymore. If you have a hard time knowing how to dress well, then you need to get help. Perhaps you have a friend or sibling who has a sense of style and might want to help you buy some new clothes- it needs to be somebody who can be honest.
Dressing well is a skill that needs to be learned. If you have never been interested in clothes and style, it is important to remember that you are not alone but now it is time to change that. There are lot of good online sources about dressing and style for men who are beginners when it comes to dressing well.
Some key components of dressing well are:
* having clothes that fit properly.
* if you don’t have sense for style, then forget about the latest trends and try to have a classic timeless style.
* having matching belts and shoes.
Skin conditions like acne, acne scars, skin pigmentation or dark spots can affect your confidence in a negative way. However, there is help available, so go and see a dermatologist or find some other skin treatment. Additionally, take care of your skin hygiene with a decent skin care routine that suits your skin type.
Research has shown that most of our communication is non-verbal- body language and voice tone accounts for the largest part of our communication. Therefore, body language is another aspect of your appearance for you to work on. Be honest to yourself: how is your posture? Are you standing and walking with shoulders back and chest out?
Look at yourself in the mirror and practice. This is not easy if you have demonstrated bad posture throughout all your life. So practice good posture in all situations as even a little improvement is better than nothing. Take up space when you walk, sit or stand- not in an arrogant way, but in a nice, confident way
Try to have open body language and avoid crossing your arms. Don’t have your hands in your pockets, but instead keep your body relaxed.
Practice keeping eye contact with people; shy people often avoid eye contact with those they don’t know well. To appear more confident, you need to hold eye contact with people properly, while holding a gaze that lasts between four and eight seconds- anything longer than this makes people feel uncomfortable.
Smiling is just as important as eye contact. Start smiling in social situations and if it is hard because you are not happy for some reason, try to think about some a past experience that made you smile and it will be easier.
How You Talk And Your Voice Tone
People can often hear from your voice tone if you are shy and not confident. Quiet introverts who are confident but not shy have a totally different voice tone than shy people. Shy people talk quietly and with a weak voice tone. You know this is you if people often ask you to repeat yourself or speak up. If this is you, people will understand right away that you are shy and treat you like a shy person lacking confidence.
It is important to be aware of this and try to develop a more confident voice. With better posture, you will get a better voice tone. Changing your voice tone needs some practice, so try speaking slower, louder and have some pauses in between words.
Additionally, try to remove all ‘filler’ words such as “eh”, “uh”, “ah”, “hmm”. It is one thing to be able to talk with confident voice in front of a mirror when alone, and totally something else to be able to talk with a confident voice when you are socializing with new people.
How does your home look? Is it clean and organized, or is it messy right now? If so, why is that? Have you been lazy? Do you enjoy being there? Would you invite someone back to your home? There are lot of benefits to keeping your home clean and organized. It’s healthier, you feel good to be there, it keeps you organized, you find your stuff easily and you are ready for company.
Besides keeping it clean and organized, it is nice to have your home decorated, reflecting your style and trying to make it cozy.
Taking care of yourself and your appearance do matter. It makes you happier, less depressed and raises your self-esteem. As I have said before, nobody wants to hang out with someone who doesn’t take care of themselves or dresses decently. Therefore if this is something you have been neglecting, then it is time to start looking at yourself in the mirror and going through your wardrobe.
However, you still need to push yourself and develop your confidence and get yourself out of your own head and into the conversation, but it will be easier when you feel better about yourself.