People will judge you the moment they first lay eyes on you.
They will come up with an idea in their heads of who they think you are, and run with it until you prove them right or wrong.
This is called stereotyping.
And there's nothing wrong with it.
In Richard Laermer's manifesto, How to Fame: Stand Out/Get Ahead/That Simple, he claims that if we want success, we need to choose to fame.
What does choosing to fame mean?
It means taking control of your reputation and dictating what people perceive you as the moment you walk in a room.
"Sadly, it doesn’t matter how fantastic you are if others’ perception of you is... off."
We can't control the color of our skin, the makeup of our gender, or the experience of our age. What we can do, is prove what kind of individual we are and what kind of beliefs and mindsets we've embraced.
How do you show people that you are this high performer, this go-to person?
In other words, how do we fame?
Laermer lists out the key steps:
- Are you reliable? Do you do things when you say you will do them? (And I mean every time.) “On time” means “a little early.”
- Are your communications smart and well thought-out? You need to show polish, poise and intelligence.
- Do you know your stuff? In a world where smoke and mirrors are quickly losing their esteem, authenticity is highly valued. A little research goes a long way.
- Are people amazed that you aren’t the boss?
- Do you take on a task for no reason other than that you know it will help someone (the fame definition of “proactive”)?
So we know that fame is great on its own, but what will it do for you?
Fame will give you credibility, reputation, and essentially anything you want in life. It will help you achieve your highest goals whether that is a higher paying job, a higher quality romantic partner, or a hands-off flexible lifestyle.
I used to be one of the downers who didn't think people's perceptions of me could change.
I would think that I was a certain type of person and that I was not allowed to get to where I wanted to be in life because of my inherited identity.
This ironclad identity mindset kept me from talking to people I've wanted to talk to.
My identity kept me from recognizing my faults and erasing my bad habits in life.
I let my stubbornness lull me into inaction, because I was afraid of "changing" or "selling out" to be someone I wasn't.
"Even after being clued in to the snap-judgment reality of a first impression, most of us are too stubborn to do anything to change that image. We think we shouldn’t have to because “we are who we are.”
News flash: “Who we are” is pretty amorphous. To fame, we need to make the rest of the world see us as the public personality we already know ourselves to be. We can’t allow others to create the story for us."
I know who I am.
But that doesn't mean that everyone else does.
I accept myself as a whole, but I'm constantly working on presenting myself in the way that I want others to perceive me. I want people to see the true me. And I can't do that if I take the backseat and just let them create some dumb images of who they think I am.
Maybe you feel the same.
Maybe you want to change how people perceive you, but are afraid of losing "who you are" in the process.
Don't think of choosing to fame as changing yourself. It's more a process of proving how hard-working, creative, and awesome you already are.
The question with fame isn't, how can I get everyone else to like me?
It's more, how can I help people see the best version of myself?