We all know how important it is to make a good impression and create strong social connections with the people we meet. Sadly, we often walk away from conversations and interactions feeling like we didn’t do a good job or simply weren’t liked by the other person.
Happily, research by Erica Boothby has shown that this is very likely not true. She’s helped to identify something called the “Liking Gap”. Put simply, the Liking Gap is a discrepancy in perspectives between what you think someone thought of you versus what they actually thought. And it’s a real thing. Researchers have found this Gap everywhere: in college roomates, co-workers, romantic connections and more.
Now, what drives the Liking Gap? Your self talk, or the internal conversation you have with yourself after interacting with someone. Usually, we’re quite critical of ourselves about all kinds of things, that the other person probably didn’t even notice.
So next time you feel like you didn’t put your best foot forward with someone, take a moment to reflect on what was going on in your head and write it down. Then ask yourself – just how likely is it that any of those negative thoughts are true? Chances are, you’re more likable than you think! 🙂