There is a lot to be said about first impressions. Even so, some say it isn’t fair to judge a book by its cover. There is some truth to that statement as well. Consider the book cover of E.L. James’ “Fifty Shades of Grey”. It features an unadorned open necktie. At most, some might find the cover slightly provocative. It gives little hint of the erotic tale contained within its pages. Of course, that’s not true of every book cover. Some are rather upfront about their presentations. Dr. Seuss’ “The Cat in the Hat” is literally about a mischievous cat who wears a hat. The trick to good instincts goes beyond the book’s cover. It is the little voice in your head that somehow knows the end of the story.
Picture this. You walk into a little store and spot a man with a gun somewhat concealed under his jacket. You do not see a badge or any other indication that he is a police officer. The man swaggers to the register where there is a sole employee behind the counter. You do not wait around to see if the gentleman just wants to purchase a pack of cigarettes. Your instinct is to get out of the store as quickly as possible. Later, you read that the store was held up at gunpoint. Was this a case of trusting your instincts or judging a book by its cover? Was it possibly both?
Consider this. You are a budding young actress, sitting at a cattle call, with hundreds of girls all auditioning for the same part. You notice that all of the women who are turned away have on tons of makeup, short skirts and big hoop earrings. The ones who are asked to stay for the second call are somewhat plain looking, wear flat shoes and have a preppy look. You want the part and know you can pull off an innocent appearance. Your instinct is to wash your face and put on your ballerina flats. Is this instincts, or logic? Or, are instincts the result of experience that allows a person to subconsciously apply logic to circumstances.
Women have their own special brand of instincts. They call it Women’s Intuition. It is their innate ability to evaluate a person or situation with no prior knowledge. Although the term often has a negative connotation, women’s intuition is extremely valuable. In reality, it may just be that women are better attuned to their emotions and the reactions of others. Smart women trust their instincts and respect their intuition.
Give others an opportunity to trust their instincts about you. First impressions are not always made in-person. The world of online dating invites a plethora of chances to make a stance with written words. Likewise, prospective employers may ask for LinkedIn profiles before they conduct interviews. Even some preparatory schools have entrance essay requirements. The onus is on the writer to make a presentation which appeals to the audience. There is still something to be said about the slightly provocative cover. There is even more importance to a well written piece that predicts a good end of the story.