Leveling up in real life: every move is a new opportunity.

Every location change leads to environment change. Every environment change leads to a changed you.

Dominik Nitsch

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Photo by Kevin Woblick on Unsplash

First impressions matter. It takes us about 100ms to make up our mind about a person. Once we’ve made up our mind, it’s hard to change our initial idea of the other person.

A quote I’ve often heard from my grandmothers is: “you’ve become so big — but to me you’re still that cute 2 year old that used to stay here all summer”. I’m sure you’ve heard the same.

The same is true when your parents remind you to be responsible, to wear a helmet, or try to tell you what’s the right thing to do when looking for a job … Mom, I’m 27, have already founded a company and lived on my own for 9 years. Hey, I can think on my own and (mostly) remember to take out the trash.

Yet in their mind, to some extent we’re still the children that we once were.

In my experience, the perception of identity is static — even though identity itself is fluid.

In the moment we get to know a person, our impression about their identity is formed. From there, the perception may change over time, but the majority of our perception of their identity will remain the same, no matter how much time passes.

Whenever I go back home and immerse myself in my old high school environment, I revert back to that insecure person that I was back then, trying to appear cool to be my peers. Because that’s how they first got to know me. I find it incredibly difficult to escape this behavior pattern — even though I’m a totally different person now.

Think about this: no matter how much you change, other’s perception of you is still largely based on who you were when you first got to know each other.

That’s insane. We evolve so much during our lives — for nothing?

That, ladies and gentlemen, is how you get stuck in high school: by never changing your environment.

Photo by Théo Dorp on Unsplash

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Dominik Nitsch

Entrepreneur | Athlete | Writer. Reflecting on life’s challenges and figuring out ways to overcome them.