The 6 Ways We Judge People When We First Meet Them

When we first meet people, we take about five seconds to evaluate them and form the first impression. That first impression which may be right or wrong is very difficult to reverse or undo. The entire future of the relationship between the two is often formed from the very beginning which is the first impression. In fact, it is not us but human nature to judge people the first time we meet them. We do it whether or not we even realize it. This is why first impressions are so important in every aspect of your life, from career to personal.

Here are the six ways of how people judge others based on their qualities:

1. It's about Appearance

Of course, the first thing that we notice about someone is how beautiful they are looking to us. It is the quickest trait that we can evaluate. If two people are standing side by side and one is dressed in a suit while the other is wearing a stained t-shirt, our first impressions are obviously going to be quite different. Even if those two people are from similar backgrounds and social standing, we might assume that one is rich and one is poor.

If want to impress someone try this:

Always consider your attire. What is the appropriate dress for the occasion? Are you going to a business meeting or a barbecue? Always dress for the occasion. You may set the wrong impression by either over or under dressing. A clean and tidy appearance is the best way to give a good impression.

Accessories can distract. Avoid jewelry that is louder than your clothing. Huge, flashy jewelry can distract someone that you are meeting for the first time. Avoid stuffing your pockets or having pens poking out of your shirt.

2. Smile

Smiling is a universal sign of friendliness, and wearing one makes you immediately more approachable. Think about it. If you need to ask someone a question or are looking for someone to talk to – would you approach a person who’s smiling or one who’s scowling?

A warm and inviting smile goes a long way. It is a quick and easy way to let people know that you are friendly. Smiles welcome people. They build trust before you ever speak a word. When you first meet people, ensure you greet them with a smile to avoid being judged as rude or disinterested.

3.Body Language

When it comes to first impressions, you are much more likely to be judged on your nonverbal communication rather than your words. Body language speaks much louder in those crucial first few seconds. Body language can convey confidence, intelligence, and personality. When someone is standing slumped over with their arms across, it sends the message that they are bashful, angry or sulking. By doing so, you immediately become less approachable and lose credibility. Stand tall, smile, make eye contact and avoid crossed arms to ensure your body language doesn’t send a message you’d rather not send.

4. Timeliness

Do you know that you can be judged before you even arrive at the place? It is one of the quickest ways to make a bad first impression. When you are meeting someone for the first time, you are generally expected to be on time. Being on time makes the other person know that you respect them and their time.

Plan to arrive at least a few minutes early when meeting someone for the first time. Give yourself plenty of extra wiggle room to account for possible traffic or getting lost. There are no good excuses when it comes to being late to a first encounter.


We all have our little quirky mannerisms, but the truth is that you may be judged by them. It might not be fair, but the other person doesn’t know you yet. If you are jittery, outwardly negative, use bad language, smoke or you have a habit of looking at your cell phone every few minutes, you are going to send an impression that you may not want to send.