Woman thinking: How do you think this was perceived?

First vs lasting impressions

Woman thinking: How do you think this was perceived?A couple weeks ago I shared a story about a woman attending a new networking group, it not being quite what she expected and her leaving. You can read it here.

This week let’s go over the second question: How do you think this was perceived by the two ladies remaining?

First impressions are an interesting thing, but not the only thing.

After all, the very first impression she made was a good one.

She walked in pleasant and smiling and very clear about what she did and who she served. She came prepared with not only business cards, but a brochure!

She was interested in the other women there and the group. She asked all the questions you’d expect someone new to ask and was conversational.

And then she said she had to leave, I have all those things to do back at the office — I’m so sorry. And left.

The women remaining looked at each other and shrugged after she left — apparently building a business relationship with the two of us wasn’t high on the agenda today…

The first impression was good, but the one they left with — well, I bet she won’t be coming to mind anytime soon for a referral from either of them.

And the lasting impression she left wasn’t probably what she was thinking about as she walked out the door.

Maybe the work on her desk was more important then the lasting impression she left or maybe it wasn’t. Or maybe she got caught up in the conversation in her head and the uncomfortableness she was feeling and found an escape route.

The maybe’s don’t really matter.

The fact is she left, and that wasn’t good or bad — it was an action that she decided to take.

And the remaining ladies reacted also isn’t good or bad — it’s their perception of that action.

The easy thing to do here is suggest you think about how you’ll be perceived before you make any decisions (staying, going or otherwise).

But that won’t server you. You’ll never be able to leave a 100% positive impression on 100% of the people you meet.

And trying to do that will drive you batty and you’ll always be stuck in your head.

Instead before you walk into events, think about how you want to be (set an intention). What do you want to feel (or embody)?

Then, if you’re at a meeting or event that isn’t a good fit, check back with yourself — if I were fully embodying the intention I set, what would that look like? Would I stay or would I go?

Have you ever left a bad impression on someone and was okay with it? Or maybe you didn’t realize it until later? Share in the comments here.

Looking away

I’ve been thinking about the topic of “looking away” for almost two weeks. It’s shown up for me in many places and I’ve wanted to write about it here.

So, we’ll be exploring this topic for the next couple weeks.

This week let’s look at what I mean by “looking away.”

It’s those places in your life or business that are uncomfortable to look at for too long, for whatever reason.

Looking away from conversations, actions, events, beliefs or even people allows us to stay comfortable or at least know what to expect (which might not be exactly comfortable, but can feel more comfortable than the unknown).

Looking away can also mean we plateau, don’t grow or don’t become more of what we really want.

Today I want to give you space to fill in what it looks like for you without my interpretations or ideas of where you might look away.

What do you notice you look away from?

How you do anything is how you do everything - especially under stress.

How you do anything is how you do everything…

How you do anythingNote: I’m fine and well taken care of. Details of my “episodes” are at the end of the post (I share because I know you might be curious, not because I’m looking for advice).

I had an episode at the gym last month – a bad one by my standards (I don’t know what it is by other’s). It was a bathroom trip, juice box, another bathroom trip, lay down on the floor and have an ice pack episode.

And then I felt fine for the rest of the day.

I haven’t had an episode like that for a long time – over a year? I can usually feel them coming.

As it was happening, part of me noticed the pronounced difference in how I was handling it this time as opposed to the last time I had a fairly bad episode.

Last time I just wanted to sit in the bathroom – I didn’t feel well and thought I was going to be sick.

And I wanted someone to just take care of me, to fix it and make it all better.

When Karen (my personal trainer) came to check on me I really appreciated it, and I wasn’t sure that leaving the bathroom and having a juice box was really what I needed, but I trusted her and followed her advice.

And I felt better.

In my business at the time, it was similar – I wanted someone to give me the exact steps to follow and just make it all better. Heck, I wanted someone to just tell me what direction to go!

At the same time, I wasn’t sure that the direction or steps anyone was giving me were really going to work, but I did them anyway.

That process took longer than the juice box…

Fast forward to last month.

I’m feeling sick and like I should just head to the bathroom. I know a juice box will help, but I need to go to the bathroom – so I go.

And as I sit there feeling sick, I also know that I need to get up and have a juice box. I want to get up, even though I don’t feel like it.

So I go.

Under the watchful and caring eyes of Karen and Donna (the workout room attendant) – I have a juice box.

I still feel ill, but also a slight bit better.

I have to go to the bathroom again. I try to be quick because I know that staying in there too long isn’t what I need AND because Karen and Donna are worrying about me.

As I’m washing my hands, Karen comes in to check on me – making sure I haven’t passed out or something – I’m grateful.

I head back out and sit down.

Donna asks if I want to lie down on a weight bench. I opt instead for a mat on the floor – something I won’t potentially fall off of.

Karen gets a couple of ice packs, no longer asking if I want one – just knowing it’s what I need, even when I don’t. I take them, one for my neck and one for my forehead.

Now I am starting to feel better – I start joking with Karen and Donna.

Karen says the color has returned to my face.

I move back to the chair and sit for another ten minutes, just to make sure I’m okay to drive home and Karen starts her own workout.

The episode passed in under 15 minutes and I’m heading out the door at about the 25 minute mark.

In my business, things have also changed a lot.

I’m no longer looking for anyone to take my hand and tell me the direction I should be heading.

I chose my own direction and when I need or want help, I have trusted people (coaches and fellow entrepreneurs) to ask. And I modify what I learn to work for me and where I am.

I’m no longer looking for a savior or magic pill from the outside (well, we all have bad days).

Instead I’m looking and finding support and resources to help me take the needed/wanted steps and occasionally suggest something else that I’m blind to or simply don’t know about.

How we do anything is how we do everything. I’d add – especially under stress.

I have two questions for you today, I’d love if you’d answer one or both of them in the comments below:

  1. How do you react under stress and how do you want to react?
  2. How have you grown in the past year or so?
Episode details: My personal trainer and I believe the episodes are caused by a sugar crash in my body. I have been tested and I’m not diabetic or hypoglycemic, but a juice box generally brings the color back to my face pretty dang quickly.
The episodes are brought on by lots of heavy cardio where my heart rate is elevated a bit higher than a normal workout. Generally, at around the 10-15 minute mark I can feel the telltale signs that an episode is coming and Karen will notice I’ve gone a bit pale. When that happens I sit down and generally have a juice box. Then my color returns and I feel fine.
These episodes are not a regular occurrence. The bad ones, as described above, happen maybe once a year. The less severe ones (when I notice it coming earlier) happen maybe 2-3 times a year.