Sunday, January 18, 2009

Live to Express and not Impress

Literatively speaking, the difference between 'Express' and 'Impress' is the first 2 letters. But its impact in our life is much beyond our imagination. Its a sad thing to note that most of us are tuned to focus on Impressing rather than Expressing. We have come to believe sub-consciously that outward appearances counts much more coz,the appearance is the first thing we see when we look at someone. So we move around in Best dresses, and fake big smiles(not always), hoping to make a good Impression, leaving our inner selves to isolation. So how does this Express and Impress come to matter..

Iam not wise enough to give opinions on what is what, but this is my understanding of Express and Impress. When we say we are expressing, whatever we are doing, we are doing by being our self. In contrast, When we want to Impress someone, our focus is more on imitating something/someone in order to influence others. In the process, we lose of what we are. Bruce Lee had said once about people imitating the big stars, that when we imitate someone, what we are doing is to imitate the outward appearance forgetting that there is a basis to that person's greatness and we cant achieve that greatness by imitating.


One of the things which the great scholars have said is that the interesting relation between Expressing and Imitating is that as one starts expressing himself , he/she will advertently end up impressing others. As Jim Rohn says,

“It's easy to let life deteriorate into making a living instead of making a life. It's not the hours you put in, but what you out into the hours that count. Learn to express rather than impress. Expressing evokes a ''me too'' attitude while impressing evokes a ''so what'' attitude.”


To be frank, Iam myself in the process of discovering how to express myself truly. Yet i hope that as one starts Expressing one self, the adage "The First impression is the Best Impression" will in turn lead to another on these lines.- "Your True Expression will be the Best Impression".

17 comments:

Rajesh said...

Fantastic write-up firstly.. 5 stars..

This just goes to the show the clarity of ur thought process..AMAZING!!!

I liked the paragraph where u explained in detail, what happens when we EXPRESS ourselves and when we try to IMPRESS others. That was nice. But I feel , a person needs to be smart enough to strike a balance between the both.

In the sense, he has to EXPRESS himself in a manner that will IMPRESS people.Though he need not imitate ppl or try to ijnfluence so explicitly but he should EXPRESS himself in a unique way to IMPRESS people.

A nice discussion...waiting for others comments.

mou said...

a very good post...very thoughtful...

it's hard to find genuineness these days...creating the difference between "impress" and "express"...

ultimately one has to realise, it really does not matter what you project to be, until you become that person...artificiality does not last long...sooner or later, every mask cracks someday...

Anonymous said...

it seems you are indeed wise and have expressed yourself very well here. so long as one is always true to an inner truth, an inner principle and strive to be guided by it, things will have to workout regardless of impressions that others might form. i am also not forgetting that being a human we are not all perfect and holding on to this inner truth is not always easy. yet, it is doable and works wonders when followed. thanks for thought provoking posts.
lan

Ramya said...

Good argument and differentiation.

I feel that even though being ourselves is a way of living, somewhere deep within us is a desperation and a need to impress others and be liked by all. It really need not be imitating or following a trend. Most people have a tendency to crave the limelight, if not showing it, within their deepest of secrets at heart at least!

Kalyan said...

Hats of to u buddy.. Good write up!!

--Kaly

Reflections said...

A superb write-up!!!!!

Makes one ponder
Ofcourse in todays times its more of IMpress & than EXpress.
But my take is tht one cant be blamed too much...the Society we live & the norms we follow does to a large extent play a big role in shaping our psyche. Even a 2 yr old loves to show off & look for appreciation when she wears a new dress:-P.

Rememeber Shakespeare & his famous saying "All world is a stage....."

Only a determination to change one self can force this transformation.
Hats off:-))!!!

Prashant Sree said...

@Rajesh: Thank You, Rajesh for the nice comment. Iam humbled. As you said, when we express ourself , we are being our true selves whose impression will be true and impressive. Well said about having a balance between the two...!!

Prashant Sree said...

@Mou: Wise words about the fallacy of trying to express an artificial facade...!

Prashant Sree said...

@Ian: I must thank you for such an thought provoking comment. We perfect ourself by making mistakes. Maybe thats why Experiences have their own value !! :)

Prashant Sree said...

@Ramya:Well said about the inherent need of every human to get appreciated.

I assume as one truly comes to know about oneself, he/she realizes that it is "I" which is gonna be with him in the long run and maybe thats when he is called a wise person...!!

Prashant Sree said...

@Kalyan:Thanks a lot, friend...

Prashant Sree said...

@Reflections:Well said. We value the society's impression of us more higher than our own impression of ourself... ;) (Even iam in the same boat, Hopefully, will be more wiser as i keep learning). Thanks for the kind comments. :)

Bins said...

Really. All this impressing makes u lose sight of the real u. At some point, u do not even realise who the real u is. I keep telling people. If u want to change, change for urself. The moment you begin to do it for others, it sets a vicious cycle in motion. Sets u up for a lot of disappointment.

Well written!

Priya Joyce said...

yes, what is said is quite true...I agree that as one starts expressing themselves they start to find ways to impress others and then a tym comes wen ppl realize that all that they expressed was ultimately a way to impress.
I donno whether its a sad thing or a happy one but still...specially today's world stands on impressing even if tat mite make expression a function of impression..tat was some maths in it...

tc

Prashant Sree said...

@Bins: Very apt words. "Change for urself." !! Thanks for such wise words, dude... :)

Prashant Sree said...

@Priya: Yes dear.. one doesnt knows if its right or wrong... And maybe cant decide too. Yet one can see if its gonna be useful for him and accordingly adapt it... :)

Marja said...

You are expressing yourself well and that's impressive with the right intend
Great post