We have never been shy to bring up how ridiculously important it is to make a good first impression. Whether you’re introducing yourself to someone for the first time at an event or meeting someone on their first day of work, the things you say may be the source material for what people judge you for moving forward.
There’s a reason one of the most common sit-com tropes is one character making a terrible first impression that could have easily been avoided and then having to deal with the consequences of said impression. It’s a classic comedy routine that draws from some of the more harrowingly awkward moments of social interaction you want to avoid.
It’s important to remember that everyone has days where they’re inclined to enter their foot into their mouth; there are some people that make a habit of it. And though you will never go through life without rubbing some people the wrong way (intentionally or otherwise), there are some circumstances where it can be avoided.
Fortunately, Business Insider have made this handy, fourteen point list of the main phrases you want to avoid for when you’re meeting somebody for the first time. Of course it contains all the classic awkward moments like asking if someone is pregnant when they’re not and dampening the mood with your divorce story that nobody cares about.
Things like using the phrase ‘impossible’ can muddy people’s perspective of you, it’s seen as a negative and defeatist attitude. Similarly, talking about how tired you are comes across as both self-involved and dull – you have an universe of things to talk about and you want to focus on the fact you’re a little bit fatigued? See how that sounds?
Here are 14 things to avoid when meeting people for the first time.