Last night as I sat on my floor, cutting up Vogue and Glamour for articles and pictures to stick on my wall (Prada autumn/winter campaign anyone?) and I started to think about first impressions.
On Thursday I will be meeting for the first time people who I will be spending the next year with. People who may become my friends, others maybe not. What will they think of me?
How many times have you met someone who you didn't like, or just weren't very sure about who is now one of your best friends? Just like love at first sight, I don't always believe at friendship at first sight. In fact, I think friendship at first sight is very rare. Sometimes it takes weeks, months, years to really connect with someone. Some people become your friends very quickly, but it's rarely straight away. People are thrown together all the time; some people you meet always remain elusive to you, others become acquaintances. It takes a lot for someone to become a true friend. It's often that transition from acquaintances to friends that is the most difficult.
So what were your first impressions of your best friends? How has that changed over time? Were your presumptions accurate?
Some people are shy, some people come across better or worse than others. Some people appear stand offish when they're simply insecure. Some seem over-confident when they're simply trying to make a good impression.
I am one of those people who constantly wonders what people think of me. And I'm incredibly bad at meeting new people. I am a very extroverted person, but I hate small talk. I hate awkwardness. I find making friends really, really difficult.
I never know which side of me to show. Are people going to want to see nerdy, literature geek Charlotte? Giddy, over-excited Charlotte? Moody, insecure Charlotte? Determined, passionate, goal-orientated Charlotte? Boring, hard-working, early-night-in Charlotte? Fashion-obsessed, blog-writing Charlotte?
Because I am all of these people. I am all of these Charlottes.
I wonder which one they will encounter first. Covering my room in ad-campaigns and fashion articles I fear people thinking I'm shallow and conceited.
This is the first impression I don't want to make.
I don't want them to meet boring or moody Charlotte for a while yet either.
So is it my choice? Can I choose what people's first impressions of me are?
Physically, I can't change the way that I look. For example, I have bright pink hair. People will naturally make presumptions about me because of that. I can also be a bit of an over-excited dresser. I don't like to blend in or follow the crowd.
They make even have presumptions about the fact that I'm English. They might think I'm overly polite and softly spoken with a monocle. Or maybe a loud, aggressive lager-lout.
People will always make presumptions, and not always positive ones,
I just hope I can prove them wrong.