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Have you ever been told that you seem intimidating? Did it confuse you? Often, there are things we may do that may make our personalities come across more intimidating than intended. Please note that many of these signs and behaviors aren’t negative, and though they might make you seem intimidating, it doesn’t necessarily mean you should change. Wondering if this applies to you? Here are 8 signs.
1. You’re snappy
Do you snap at people easily? Does hearing something you don’t like make you react hastily?
Sometimes, being snappy can come across as intimidating because people may feel like you’re unapproachable, and difficult to talk to (Bright Side). Even when you don’t mean to be, having strong opinions and snapping when things don’t go your way might make you seem intimidating.
Don’t worry, though! Being aware of this can only help you fix this. Next time you find yourself about to snap, step back for a second and take a deep breath before reacting. You’d be surprised at how quickly it’ll relax you and how much more approachable it’ll make you seem!
2. You think with your head
Are you extremely practical, so much so that you base most of your decisions on logic? If so, you might be more prone to thinking with your head.
Though this quality in itself doesn’t necessarily make you intimidating, thinking less with your heart may make you less emotionally aware in certain situations. And, as a result, you may come off as an intimidating personality.
3. You’re persistent
Do you set high goals for yourself? Do you work extremely hard to achieve those goals? If you do, you’re likely a very persistent person, which could come off as intimidating.
Please know that persistence is not a bad thing, and in this case, any potential intimidation is not a reflection on you! When you’re persistent, it shows that you have great confidence in your abilities, and it might be intimidating for others to see (Bright Side). But keep doing you, and try not to let the perception of others impede on your goals.
4. People seem to tip-toe around you
Do people tend to clam up around you? Do they seem afraid to speak their mind?
This can be referred to tip-toeing around someone, and it basically means that they are extremely cautious and careful in their presence. If you notice this happening to you, it may seem like people go quiet, agree with everything you say, and even apologize all the time around, afraid of any potential reactions (Thibodeaux 2019).
5. You tend to dominate conversations
When you have conversations with others, do you tend to speak the most, or the loudest? This could be a sign that your personality seems intimidating.
Dominating conversations can manifest in so many different ways. A few examples are speaking a lot, speaking very loudly, and cutting people off in conversations (Grant 2019). The main idea is that those who tend to dominate conversations come across as intimidating because it seems like others aren’t able to express their own ideas around them.
Like others on this list, note that these tendencies can happen subconsciously and could even be a potential sign of social anxiety (Grant 2019). So if you relate to this don’t feel bad or like it’s your fault. With that said, one way to avoid some of these habits is to try and practice actively listening in conversations, so you’ll be even more attentive and present than before!
6. You speak with an aggressive tone
When you speak, how do your words come across? No matter what you say, the tone with which you say them makes a huge difference.
Sometimes, speaking with an assertive, aggressive, or direct tone can come across as intimidating even if the content of what you’re saying isn’t. This could take a toll on the way people perceive your ideas and opinions.
If you find yourself speaking with a tone more aggressive than you’d like, being more mindful of how things may come across before you say them is a good habit to cultivate. It might take time, but gradually, you’ll come across as more approachable with a more gentle tone.
7. You’re critical of others
When interacting with others, do you tend to judge, dissect, or criticize what they said? While you may come across as intelligent, you will likely also come across as intimidating to be around.
According to Psychiatrist Grant Hilary Brenner, insulting others during a conversation, even in a humorous way, can make you come across as judgmental, competitive and just generally intimidating (Brenner 2018). Competition can be unsettling, so if people feel that way in conversations with you, they may be less likely to view you as approachable.
8. You’re straightforward
Do you speak your mind in situations? If so, your personality may come across as intimidating.
Speaking your mind without dancing around the truth isn’t a bad thing. In fact, it can improve communication in your day to day life. However, to come across less intimidating, continue to speak your mind, but try and make sure that everything you choose to say is tactful and constructive.
We hope you enjoyed learning about some of the signs of an intimidating personality. Could you relate? Did we miss anything? Thanks for watching!
- Brenner, GH (2018, Oct. 04). “How We Intimidate Others Without Realizing It”. Psychology Today. Retrieved from www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/experimentations/201810/how-we-intimidate-others-without-realizing-it
- Grant, ET (2019, Feb. 05). “8 Unexpected Signs You May Be Giving Off Intimidating Energy”. Bustle. Retrieved from www.bustle.com/p/8-unexpected-signs-you-may-be-giving-off-intimidating-energy-15922540
- Thibodeaux, W (N.d.). “Do You Intimidate Others? Here’s How to Know”. Inc. Retrieved from www.inc.com/wanda-thibodeaux/do-you-intimidate-others-heres-how-to-know.html
- “7 Signs Your Personality Is Intimidating Others” (N.d.). The Powerful Mind. Retrieved from www.powerfulmind.co/personality-is-intimidating-others/
- “7 Signs Your Personality Might Be Intimidating to Others” (N.d.). Bright Side. Retrieved from www.brightside.me/inspiration-psychology/7-signs-your-personality-might-be-intimidating-to-others-795238/