Posts Tagged ‘impression’

HOW TO IMPRESS GIRLS and BOYS – Impression Management for Long Term Relationships

March 21, 2015

Original Post written by Me Vikram Karve in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve : HOW TO IMPRESS PEOPLE

http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2015/03/how-to-impress-people.html.

Link to my original post in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal: 
http://karvediat.blogspot.in/201…

IMPRESSION MANAGEMENT

HOW TO IMPRESS GIRLS and BOYS – Impression Management for Long Term Relationships

WORST IMPRESSION IS THE BEST IMPRESSION
Contrarian Wisdom
By
VIKRAM KARVE

Let me tell you an “apocryphal” story.

This happened 33 years ago – in March 1982 – in Pune.

A girl came to see a boy (for arranged marriage).

The girl was accompanied by her mother (the girl’s father, a Brigadier, was serving in a field area).

Normally – in Maharashtra – the boy goes to the girl’s home (for the customary “kande pohe program”).

But – in this case – the boy had requested the girl to come over to his rather Spartan home.

It was around 10 in the morning – the boy was alone at home – as the boy’s mother had gone for work.

The boy (a Naval Officer) had come to Pune on a week’s leave for “girl seeing” for arranged marriage.

Since the boy was not one of those refined “metrosexuals” – he had not “decked up” for the occasion – but he was dressed in a simple cotton white kurta-pyjama – and he was enjoying a smoke and reading a book – while waiting for the girl to arrive.

The girl and her mother arrived at 10:30.

“You are late,” the boy said, and he asked the girl and her mother to sit down.

The boy served Tea (which he had prepared himself).

Then – the boy lit a cigarette – and he said to the girl, “Let me tell you a bit about myself. As you can see – I smoke a lot. I drink regularly too – around 6 large pegs of rum daily – that is about half a bottle of rum every evening. My career prospects in the Navy are not very bright – I am certainly not ‘Admiral Material’. You are a ‘SODA’ – your father is a big shot in the Army – so you may be used to the comforts and facilities of army life – but in the Navy you get nothing – no batman (sahayak), no transport, no proper housing, no facilities – as you can see I am not a rich man – I just have a scooter – and I do not think I will be able to afford a car on the paltry salary we get in the Navy – you will have to live in some temporary make-shift  shanty – and you will have to do all the housework yourself…”

“You don’t get a house in the Navy…?” the girl asked.

“You do – but there is a huge shortage of married accommodation and the waiting period is 2 years – so by the time we get a proper house, it will be time for my transfer – and it is the same story in every new place – so you must be prepared for a nomadic existence shifting from one temporary accommodation to another…”

“What is ‘SODA’…?” the girl asked.

“Senior Officers’ Daughters’ Association – your Dad is a Brigadier so you are a SODA,” the boy said, “but let me tell you one thing – I am an honest, straightforward and outspoken officer – and so – your chances of becoming a member of SOWA are pretty bleak…”

“SOWA – Senior Officers’ Wives’ Association…!” the girl said.

The boy was happy to see that the girl was intelligent.

“You are very intelligent – and highly qualified – and all your good qualities are listed in your matrimonial profile – but I want to know one thing – and I want an honest answer,” the boy said to the girl.

“What…?” the girl asked.

“What are your faults…? Your bad qualities…? Your weaknesses…?” the boy asked.

“I cannot cook…” the girl began opening up – but her mother gave her a stern look – and the girl stopped speaking.

Observing the situation, the boy said to the girl, “Never mind – we will discuss all that in detail when we meet tomorrow…”

“We are meeting tomorrow…?” the girl asked.

“Why not…? After all, we are getting married – and I am here for a week – so we can go out together a few times – and get to know each other better…” the boy said, extinguishing his finished cigarette and lighting another cigarette.

The girl’s mother was getting increasingly uncomfortable at the way things were going, so she asked the boy, “You have a big beard – are you going to shave it off when you get married…?”

The boy looked at the girl’s mother, and he said to the middle-aged woman, “How does it matter to you whether I keep a beard or not…? Are you going to marry me…? Or is your daughter going to marry me…? But since you have asked – No – I am not going to shave off my beard – I like my beard – and a beard is the sign of a true Naval Officer – so I am going to keep my beard even after marriage – forever…”

The boy looked at the girl, and he said, “See – I told you that I drink heavily, I smoke, and that I have no future in the navy – very poor career prospects – and about the poor quality of life in the navy – but you just told me one thing – that you do not know how to cook – please tell me more about your other faults…”

“We have to go somewhere,” the girl’s mother interrupted – and she brought the ‘interview’ to an abrupt end.

In the evening, the girl’s mother made a ‘trunk-call’ to her Brigadier husband and she said, “What a terrible boy? He is himself saying that he drinks half a bottle a day, he smokes, and ….”

She told him everything.

“The boy said all that…?” the Brigadier asked.

“Yes – the boy hasn’t given us even one reason why we should get our daughter married to him.”

“Maybe that is the very reason why we should get our daughter married to him,” the astute Brigadier said.

The Brigadier met the boy – and he liked him – and so – the girl and boy got married.

The girl was expecting the worst.

But after marriage – the girl noticed the following ‘improvements’ in the boy:

1. Her husband did not drink 6 pegs of rum every evening – he drank around 3 or 4 pegs daily – and only rarely – at parties or with friends – did he drink 6 pegs or more.

2. He did not smoke much too – in fact – he smoked very few cigarettes – he preferred smoking his pipe.

3. She had been expecting to stay in a “jhuggi-jhopri” – but first they lived in the officers’ mess for some time – and then they shifted to quite a decent furnished apartment – which though small – the apartment was modern, comfortable, and located in the prime area of the city.

Though he was not an “angel” by any standards – her husband was not all that bad – as she had thought.

Much later – when she had given up all hope – her husband suddenly gave up drinking and smoking one day.

This happened 20 years after her marriage – and she had never imagined that her husband would give up alcohol and tobacco forever.

Of course – her husband has still not shaved off his majestic beard – but then she has got used to it now – after 33 years of married life.

After reading this “fairy-tale” – some persons may think that this is a true story – and they may even “recognize” some of the characters in this story – but let me emphasize that this is an apocryphal story – the characters do not exist and are purely imaginary – and any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

What is important – is the MORAL OF THE STORY.

You must have heard the saying: “First Impression is the Best Impression”

But I say: “Worst Impression is the Best Impression”.

If you give your best impression during your first meeting with someone – then you have to live up to the image you have created.

On the other hand – if you give your worst impression during your first meeting – then there is always scope for improvement.

There are many aspects to your personality – the “Best Side” – the “Worst Side” – with shades of grey in between.

At your very first meeting – if you try and impress someone with your “Best Side” – you have projected your best image – and thus you have no scope for improvement.

In fact – you will get all stressed out keeping up appearances trying to live up to the hyped-up expectations you have created in the other person – and slowly the “veneer” will start peeling off – and the goody-goody façade will crumble.

Dear Reader – you just read the “happy ending” story above.

I know a story where exactly the opposite happened.

There was a girl from a civilian academic background (her parents were university professors).

They lived in a town where there was a large cantonment nearby.

Most of her schoolmates and friends were daughters of Army officers – and the girl was enamored by Army social life.

The girl got a proposal from a Naval Officer.

The girl was under the impression that the life of a Navy Wife was the same as the good life of an Army “Memsahib” which she had observed in the peacetime cantonment.

The Navy boy came to meet the girl.

Believing in the “First Impression is the Best Impression” dictum – the boy showed his “Best Side” – and he “boasted” a bit about himself – he painted a rosy picture of Navy life – instead of telling her the ground reality.

All this created a glorified image and high expectations in the newlywed girl.

But – after their honeymoon – when they reached Vizag – everything came crashing down.

The boy sailed off on his ship – leaving the girl to fend for herself – all alone – in their “B Type” hired house – at the other end of town – far away from the Naval Base.

Feeling totally isolated, the girl went into a depression – and summoned her parents – who came rushing to Vizag – to help their daughter settle down and tackle reality.

As their marriage progressed – the “first impression” that the boy had created by showing his “Best Side” – this rosy first impression started to slowly crumble away as his negative qualities began to emerge.

After many years of marriage – the girl still feels that the boy “cheated” her by portraying a goody-goody false impression of himself and hyped rosy image of Navy life.

My hypothesis of “Worst First Impression” worked in my Navy life too.

I was posted as faculty in a prestigious inter-service training establishment.

My boss was a Commodore from a landlubber branch who had never met me before.

However – my “spoken reputation” had somehow reached him via the grapevine.

For a month or so – I noticed that he was quite wary of me – he treated me coldly and he kept me at arm’s length.

Then – one evening – at a party – when he was feeling quite happy after a few drinks – he sidled up to me – and he said, “Actually – I have realized that you are quite a good officer…”

Taken aback, I said to him, “Come on, Sir – of course – I am a good officer – why did you think otherwise…?”

“I had heard so many wicked things about you – that you are a difficult officer – but I actually find you to be so good…” the Commodore said – and later – his wife told me that I was his favourite officer – and he trusted me the most among all officers.

So – Dear Reader – whenever you meet someone for the first time – for matchmaking – for dating – at the workplace – for any long term relationship – beware of the dictum: “First Impression is the Best Impression” – and don’t get too carried away trying to make the “best impression” – since you may find it difficult to live up to such a ‘perfect’ image in later life.

When you meet someone for the first time – never try to “impress” anyone – just be your natural self – in fact – show a bit of your darker side – so that there is always “scope for improvement” later.

And for those of you who are going in for an “arranged marriage” – when you meet your “prospective spouse” for the first time – the first question you must ask him (or her) is: “Tell be about your weaknesses and your faults…”

Remember: “Worst Impression is the Best Impression”.

There is always scope for improvement if you project your “worst” impression

But there is no scope for improvement if you project your “best” impression – in fact, there is always pressure to live up to the “perfect” image you have created – and ultimately, this mismatch will cause stress and distrust in your relationships.

VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 
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© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Disclaimer:
1. This story is a spoof, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
2. All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the story are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:
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Posted by Vikram Karve at 3/20/2015 04:16:00 PM

IS IMAGE MANAGEMENT MORE IMPORTANT THAN CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT – Is FAKING IT worth it?

February 23, 2012

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: IS IMAGE MANAGEMENT MORE IMPORTANT THAN CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT.

Is FAKING IT worth it?

Click the link above to read the article in my creative writing journal (also pasted below for your convenience):

Regards

Vikram Karve

 

IS IMAGE MANAGEMENT MORE IMPORTANT THAN CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT?
IS IT WORTH FAKING IT?
Food for Thought
By
VIKRAM KARVE



In today’s world, image management is the “in thing”.

Image has replaced Character.

It does not matter who you actually are.

What matters is the image you project of yourself.

First Impressions matter more than lasting relationships – the superficial outer self is considered more important than the deep profound inner self.

Image Management seems to be more important than Character Building.

Image Management has become an industry. 

In today’s environment, success does not depend on traditional factors like knowledge, sincerity, hard work, performance, proficiency, efficiency and competence. 

It is the superficial image we project that counts and we are judged by what meets the eye.

Image Management plays a role in both your professional and personal life. 

So whether it is to get a job, to get married or to succeed in your business, everything depends on the first impression you create. 

Yes, first impression is most important now-a-days. You are judged by your clothes, your turnout, how you look, the way you dress, your grooming, your communication skills, the way you speak, your body language, your etiquette – all these superficial outward aspects play a more important role in creating an impression than your actual inherent character and innate qualities.

I have a contrarian view to all this and feel that it is better to be spontaneous and transparent. 

In my opinion it is better to act natural, be what your actually are and show the world your true self rather than project a false hyped-up image of yourself just to create good first impressions. 

If you resort to “image management” by employing the mask of pretence to project an artificial put-on hyped-up image of yourself, you will always be under constant inner stress to keep up appearances. 

When you live behind a mask you always have the fear of being found out, and the “fear of being found out” is one of the most stressful fears.

For how long can you sustain this image you have projected of yourself?

For how long can you masquerade being someone you are actually not?

You may manage to fake it and keep up appearances in short term relationships, but in the long term, one day the “mask” of mendacity will wear away and will come off and your true self will be revealed.

You may be able to create a fantastic first impression on your first date but can you sustain this image throughout your marriage?

Yes, “image management” may work in short term relationships like dating, social “hail fellow well met” friendships and quick-fix work encounters like in marketing etc but will not sustain you in the long-term in your career, marriage, professional and personal relationships.

Is Image Management desirable in today’s world? 

What is more important for the youth of today – to “manage” their image or to develop good and sound character? 

Should you put on a mask and fake it, or is it better to be your natural self, as you are ? 

Should you manipulate and stage-manage your behaviour to suit the environment or should you be your spontaneous true self?

Think about it.

Now-a-days image management has become relevant in in cyberspace too, as all of us who use the internet for social and professional networking have a “cyber image” to project and a “cyber reputation” to maintain.

In the next few posts, I will relate to you some examples of “Image Management” that I have encountered in my personal and professional life. 

In today’s world is Image more important than Performance?

Does image management work? 

Well here is an apocryphal story which shows how Image Management works can end in a disaster, sometimes with hilarious results.

THE STORY OF THE EXOTIC GOAT
Once there lived a Goat – an ordinary looking goat – who lived wild and free in the mountains.
One day while grazing in the forest, the goat saw a Giraffe, and the goat said to himself, “I wish my neck was as long as the giraffe.”
Lo and Behold!
The goat’s neck suddenly became as long as the giraffe’s.
Delighted, that he could now see far and wide, the goat saw an Eagle flying high in the sky.
“I wish I had wings like that eagle,” wished the goat… and instantaneously, wings appeared on the goat’s body.
Thrilled, the goat flapped its newly acquired wings, when he suddenly he spotted a Tortoise. 
The goat admired the beautiful hard shell of the tortoise, and said to himself, “I wish I had a strong hard invincible body like the shell of the tortoise,” and instantly his wish was granted – the goat’s back turned into the shell of a tortoise.
The goat felt ecstatic and impregnable, till he suddenly saw a Cheetah speeding across the horizon running at high speed.
“I wish I had legs like the Cheetah,” the goat wished, and miracle of miracles, the goat’s legs immediately became like the Cheetah.
Now the goat was truly overjoyed, on cloud nine, till he saw the enchanting sight of a beautiful Peacock with majestic feathers dancing magnificently.
“I wish I had gorgeous feathers like the peacock,” he wished, and in a jiffy the goat’s wish was granted, and the goat now had dazzling copious plume of colourful feathers.
Adorned with the neck of the giraffe, the wings of the eagle, the shell of the tortoise, the legs of the Cheetah and the feathers of the peacock, the Goat felt jubilant, supreme, regal, on top of the world, and strutted around grandiosely in majestic pride.
A Hunter passing by suddenly saw this unique stunning creature and he marvelled for a moment as he couldn’t believe his eyes.
The hunter stared in fascination and gawked enthralled and was mesmerized at the bizarre and fascinating creature he had never seen before.
After looking spellbound at the fantastic “Goat” for some time, the hunter recovered his wits and decided to capture this exotic priceless gem.
So the hunter cast his net, caught the “Goat” and sold this amazing “never-seen-before” and “one-of-its-kind” exclusive creature at an astronomical price to the zoo.
Large crowds gathered at the zoo, and everyone gaped in awe at this astonishingly exotic creature, fascinated by the awesome sight.
The exotic “Goat” spent the rest of its life in captivity locked up in a cage, weeping and crying, and he wondered why even those other ordinary goats, his erstwhile fellow brethren, who were wandering about freely and unnoticed in the zoo gardens, did not recognize him.
MORAL OF THE STORY – Don’t try to “manage” your image – just be yourself.

VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2012
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work.
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
 

Did you like this article?
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About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer. Educated at IIT Delhi, ITBHU Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and he is currently working on his novel. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles in magazines and journals for many years before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for almost 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing. Vikram lives in Pune India with his family and muse – his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts. 


Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
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Email: vikramkarve@sify.com 
       
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