It’s late and I am a little tired. My family is sleeping and I am working on my computer. A nice movie is playing somewhere in the background. The truth is that I don’t know exactly what am I doing on my computer and I don’t know what movie plays on the TV. It wasn’t one of my best days and despite my incurable optimism, I feel a little down. I am raising my eyes and I look at the library. And there, in front of the books, it’s him. The master. The always distracted newbie. The underdog. It’s Po.
A gift from the heart. I’m smiling and my mood is back up in an instant. It’s one of the best gifts I ever received. Returning from one of the business trips, Dan, one of the most respected people in the community and one of my best friends gave me this figurine. He thought that represents me. To quote him: “sometimes people are looking at you and they don’t give you too much credit. Do you remember when Po was trying to get some food from the top shelf in the kitchen? He was clumsy … he was flipping things over. And suddenly he was focused. And in a couple of jumps and perfect moves he took the food. That’s you”. He told me that I’m fat.
The first impression matters … but how much?. That was not an accidental discussion. We had some cool brainstormings because there were some situations when the first impression I ‘created’ was not top five … or ten … or top. And this is not self-criticism. The feedback I am getting sometimes directly or indirectly is clearly stating this. I was told that I don’t have gravitas. I am working on it. My posture is not always the best. I am working on it. And sometimes I look unfocused, not interested and I don’t say smart things. I am working on the first two and I am still looking for a dictionary for number three. And yet, I can’t complain about my achievements at all. More, I know that a lot of people appreciate me.
All the books are stating very clear: first impression matters. A lot. Jordan Peterson states that we should walk tall, like a lobster. The power of the first impression. And there are o lot of techniques to help us work on that. But what happens if we still don’t get our gravitas from the moment zero? is it the end of the game?
Work hard … and then be patient … and then work harder. If we take these theories to ad litteram we might fall into a big trap. We might think that without the proper first impression, we are doomed. At least this is what I started to believe after feedback like that. And then I realized that if we have patience time works in our favor. I work hard to get results. I work hard to achieve my goals. And I wait for my moment. And I work harder. And guess what. Then the magic happens. I get the food from the top shelf.
All I know is that for sure, at a moment in life anybody feels like an underdog. Or somebody tries to make us feel like that. I don’t have a magic recipe and I don’t have magic advice on how to fight this. But I know for sure that not creating the top first impression doesn’t need to be the end of the game. Of course, it helps when we succeed. For those who don’t, like me, for the underdogs, remember this: hard work and tons of patience will get you to the top shelf. And to stay focused and motivated … find your Po. Thank you, Dan.