What do people see when they look at you? Take a few seconds to think about that. 1 Samuel 16:7 states, “But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.” It is absolutely true that God knows everything about you including what’s in your heart, but when you interact with others, do they know your heart? Is your heart apparent? This scripture specifically tells us that man looks at outward appearance. So whether we like it or not, what we display outwardly in our interactions with others is what counts. Are we warm and open? Are we approachable? Do we smile? Is it genuine? More often than we think, people can tell when we’re wearing a mask. But that’s a topic for a later date. Do we appear organized or disorganized? Do we appear flighty or decisive? Confident or doubtful?
Have you done any internal checks about who you are and why? How was your personality shaped? Take a second to think about that. Your experiences, upbringing, and genetic traits all play a role in your personality. Imagine your good and your bad. Now flip the script and imagine what the experiences and upbringing of others may have been like. Think about the exact opposite of yourself. What does that look like? How does it make you feel?
When psychologists, and maybe even sociologists, study personality, they focus on two areas. One focus area is on understanding individual differences in particular personality characteristics, such as sociability or irritability. In other words, they look at the spectrum of a characteristic. For example, levels of sociability can vary. Does one prefer to spend time alone or with others? Regarding decision making, does one prefer to make all of the decisions or does one prefer to go with the flow. The other focus area is on understanding how the various parts of a person come together as a whole. One may have the most amazing organizational skills and prefers to spend time alone. Another person may be a perfectionist and enjoys spending time in groups. Neither is better than the other. They are simply different.
How we interact and communicate with others largely impacts how people perceive us. And we’ve all heard it before. Perception is reality. As we create our reality, let’s remember that relationships often kick off from out outward appearances. Exude that which you wish to attract. Be approachable. Be genuine. Be open. Be YOU!