We tend to think that it is our parents who teach us to socialize from an early age, but we have to admit that most of the time they don't. For some, socializing is quite natural, while for others, it is scary. Fortunately, it is an art that anyone can learn, really anyone. Yes, even you! You want to see ?
Part 1 of 3: Make it easy
Step 1. Set the time of your arrival
There are two schools of thought on this subject: arrive early and arrive late. Let's analyze these two methods together and you can then choose the one that suits you.
- Arrive early. You will have an easier time talking to people before groups have formed, which leaves you with more opportunities. Plus, the fact that it's less crowded makes it a lot less intimidating. When there are more people, you can then go to the people you got to know a little earlier.
- Arrive late. Everyone is already there, which means there are also conversations you can slip into, which is a lot less stressful. Most of the time, you can easily enter a conversation without being spotted, you can also choose the one that seems most interesting to you!
Step 2. Take the step
Even the most outgoing people sometimes find it difficult to take the plunge. It's so scary, we all dread being rejected. So sometimes you have to be brave and eventually you will find that most people have a minimum of politeness. We're not going to roll out the red carpet for you, but they won't be as bad as you might have imagined.
How to take the first step? You start by making eye contact, smiling and using body language. After that, just start a conversation related to the situation and take the plunge. But how ? You do well to ask the question
Step 3. Start conversations about the present moment
It's the kind of conversation related to situations you have in common with others like when the bus is late, your boss wears a horrible tie, or the appetizers are really delicious. It only takes a quick sentence to start a conversation. Once they've answered you, just smile, give them your name, and ask for theirs, and the conversation is on. Here is an example of two people lining up for a coffee.
Jim: “I can't believe they raised the prices again! You might as well put liquid gold in the cream!"
Karen: “I agree. I keep telling myself that I have to stop, but I never do."
Jim: “Same thing for me, my name is Jim by the way."
Karen: “Me, it's Karen. What is your favorite drink Jim?"
Step 4. Start small
Respect these two criteria: small conversations and small situations. This is what it consists of.
- Start with small conversations, in other words don't wait until you make deep and breathtaking statements to barge into a group. Instead, introduce yourself into the conversation with phrases like “I agree”, “totally”, or “I'm not so sure”.
- Start with small situations, like the example of the one in line at the cafe. If socializing is stressful to you, it's best to do it in places that will get the conversation to end quickly. Think about the little occasions like talking to your cashier at the supermarket, people you meet on the street or at the bus stop, or anyone in line in front of you. The conversation will only last 5 minutes, which is a lot less scary than having a conversation all night.
Step 5. Do activities
Because if you don't, you'll be bored with your own stories. The reason other people have such interesting things to say is because they talk about their lives and their activities. You don't have to do extraordinary things, simple things like cooking, playing sports or reading can spark fascinating conversations.
- When someone asks you, “What did you do today? You surely want to answer something other than: "I stayed at home". It's okay to stay at home, but you've done a lot more than that. While you were surfing the net, did you read anything interesting? Did you make a recipe? Did you see anything trivial? Think about how you can get around this simple question.
You don't need to answer it per se. You can easily respond with, "Did you know that today is the start of the Olympics?" Do you usually follow? And now the conversation is started without focusing on you, the other person won't even notice
Step 6. Keep up to date with the news
Creating a conversation with strangers, with acquaintances and even with good friends depends a lot on being up to date with current events and trends. These are topics everyone hears about and will make the conversation easier. So take 10 minutes out of your day to read up on the news, watch a bit of John Stewart, Tosh.O or go see the latest movie everyone's talking about, read what tops the bestseller list of the New York Times, in short, you need to know anything that will help you to have a conversation within your social circle.
You don't even need to have thoughtful opinions. In general, people like to be interviewed and to talk about themselves, so let them be. When you notice that they don't talk much about them anymore, give your opinion. Do they like to play sports? What do they think of this Biggest Loser participant who was so skinny? Do they like pop music? They probably have an opinion on Miley Cyrus
Step 7. Don't judge others
If you judge others, you will no longer want to put effort into your social interactions. In reality, no one is as they appear to be, you can categorize people by what clothes they wear or what they may have said, but there are a lot of other things that you will be wrong about. Instead, give them a chance to surprise you and know that it won't be long before you are surprised.
The more people you meet, the more you hang out and get to know them and the more rewarding your life will be. You will have experienced more, learned more, and be more experienced in this area. People are there to enrich your life, the more people you invite the better off you'll feel
Step 8. Leave your home
Everything that has been said will be null and void if you don't put this point into practice, you have to create opportunities that allow you to socialize. If you don't have friends to meet, join a club, attend a college class or workout in your gym, work out in cafes, you need to be surrounded by people, that's the only way to start.
Look for the trigger. So the day you join the softball league, you will go out for drinks with your teammates which will eventually allow you to participate in team-hosted parties and use your social skills on a larger scale. So grab these small opportunities now, you will be able to socialize perfectly on time
Part 2 of 3: Make a good impression
Step 1. Smile
Are you going to approach someone who is pulling a face? Surely not. If you want people to approach you, smiling should be your number one priority. It shows people that you have seen them, that you are happy to welcome them and interact with them. Everyone needs a minimum of reassurance and that's exactly what a smile is for!
The advantages of a smile? You can do this while you are across the room. So if you ever sit in a corner observing the room, start analyzing. When making eye contact with someone, don't look away hastily, but smile. Who would have thought that the first step was so easy?
Step 2. Your body language should be more open
Rather, you tend to withdraw into yourself, now is the time to work on your body. Make sure you keep it open, arms relaxed, legs uncrossed, body positioned in front of the people you want to talk to. It's a subtle sign to anyone present that you are open to conversation and looking to share.
It also means that you have to put your phone down. The next time you're in a group of people you don't know, resist the urge to put on your headphones and play a game of Angry Birds. You will never be able to meet anyone if your world is all about watching and listening to what is at the end of your nose
Step 3. Maintain eye contact
If this makes you anxious, it's because you're too focused on yourself. Seriously, the other person is too busy thinking about what to say to think about you, so stop! If they talk to you, be polite and watch them. If you don't, it's like you're ignoring them. If you don't want things to end abruptly, then definitely don't do this.
One trick is for you to watch them when they are talking about something important or at least something important to them. If you're having a conversation or making spontaneous remarks on a topic, look away for a moment, but constantly bring it back to them. If you want them to get to know you, value what they say. You would like us to do the same with you, right?
Step 4. Listen carefully
Many people think that socializing is about saying the right things. You are wrong, this is only a small part of it. Once you get to grips with this little social jujitsu, you can have a conversation without talking to yourself. It's more about listening, asking the right questions, and appearing so interested that the other person won't see anything that shows them to stop talking. Where is the pressure in all of this?
- All you need to do is ask a question. Preferably an open-ended question like: "What is a typical day at work for you?" Then as soon as they land on something interesting, let it go on on its own. Keep asking open-ended and conversation-related questions. Enthusiasm should be seen on your face, in the tone of your voice (even if inside you are bored). Here is an example.
Karen: “What is a typical day at work for you Jim?"
Jim: “It's not very exciting to be in the paper sales business you know, but my boss makes sure it is. He's constantly circling around and when he's watching us I pretend I'm talking on the phone when I'm actually playing Candy Crush."
Karen: “I can't believe it! I do exactly the same! Have you never been caught?"
Step 5. Remember the first names
People love to hear their first name very much. Hear: "How are you? That's fine, but hearing, "How are you doing Karen?" Is something much more personal (if your name is Karen that's great). Use them whenever you can, it will help you remember them too!
When you first meet people, this is doubly important. You can make someone believe that they are the most important in the world just by saying their first name. When you know their first name, say it, insert it once or twice in your conversation, then make sure you say it at the end as well. Say: "It was a pleasure to meet you Jim, I hope we can chat very soon!" Sounds much more sincere and original, and you can be sure that you will leave a final good impression
Step 6. Analyze the others
Just observe, this is an asset that you can acquire if you read on. Put yourself in the shoes of a budding Sherlock Holmes, what can you learn from a person without talking to them first? There are two aspects to consider.
- What is the body's message? Are they tired? Anxious? Are they looking at the door? Are they watching the room? Are they bored? You can learn a lot from the expression on their face, the positioning of their body, and where they are in the room.
- What can you learn about their dress? A nice watch, nice shoes? Neglected hair? An alliance ? Headphones, a cup of coffee and piercings? These are forms of language that we don't pay attention to. Use them to your advantage!
Step 7. Dress for the Events
This point comes last, but is still important. If Barack Obama had attended a party dressed like a clown, would he be the most charismatic and famous person we know today? The first time you meet new people, it pays to be dressed appropriately. You don't have to be stylish, but you have to be dressed appropriately to suit your location.
The only thing in common with all situations is hygiene. In some cases, a t-shirt and jeans are sufficient, in others it is suit and tie. But no matter where you are, for goodness sake take a shower. You can be the future Einstein, no one will pay attention if you smell bad
Part 3 of 3: get out of your bubble
Step 1. Nervousness makes you awkward
The majority of us don't like to socialize just because we're clumsy. Awkwardness can make you so sad that you'd rather bite your right arm than relive the same thing. You can swear that you heard him walk by the door behind you, but in reality (or at least in whatever pops your imagination) it's nothing more than your nervousness. If you can get rid of your nervousness, you will get rid of your clumsiness.
Yes I know, knowing that nervousness produces awkwardness is not going to do you any good. But it can help you understand how it works. We all know the guy who doesn't care about having a mustard stain in the wrong place or this girl who tries to make 'sloppy' style look like real style. How is it possible ? They just go with it and don't let that sort of thing bother them
Step 2. Think positive thoughts
This is the real way to get rid of nervousness. Keeping thoughts positive will make it harder to get nervous. For example, you go to a group of people who trust you and get along well with. They are great, you are great, of course it will be great. When you have a mustard stain on your pants, you won't make a big deal out of it and you know why? Simply because you don't want to.
Life is like a destiny that we take in hand. Studies have shown that those who tell themselves they will be the most successful actually do the best. If you occupy a good place, you will be more able to elicit positive interactions, negativity is something just repulsive
Step 3. Enjoy your own company
People are the type who naturally gravitate towards nice and funny people. If you enjoy your own company, there's no reason other people can't enjoy it.If you already enjoy your own company, it can only encourage you and solidify the idea that not being able to socialize is in your head.
While no one can tell you how to do this, the easiest way is to start by doing things that appeal to you. The more satisfied you can be with yourself and the life you lead, the happier you will be
Step 4. Ask yourself why you came to this page
Chances are, it's because you can't seem to socialize or like it or it's just to have fun and see what you can say about it. Ignore the last point and look for an answer as to why you can't or why you don't like it. Trying to understand the reason is the fastest way to get results. Here is a list of potential reasons.
- You have no idea how to do it. If this is your problem, there are some typical examples you can follow to resolve it.
- You don't like gossip. Good news ! It's very easy to get around, you just have to lead the conversation.
- It stresses you out. For this point, it is important that you force yourself to relax. You have control over your body and how it feels, so you can put in the effort to change that.
- You don't like people. Well, first of all, go find better people! But while you are looking, do with what is available and stay focused on what is positive, it has got to be there somewhere.
Step 5. Think about what is causing you trouble when you are socializing
Assuming that you know yourself better than anyone else, you can tackle what is keeping you from being socially successful once you find the problem. Let’s analyze these four scenarios.
- You do not know how. You need to practice what will be discussed later on this page. As you exercise, things become a habit, you just need to practice.
- You don't like gossip. No one is asking you to do what you don't like. The point is, most people don't like chatting, it's just that no one dares to lead the conversation deeper, to more serious topics. You must therefore take the step.
- It stresses you out. You will then need to focus on the bodily factors: breathe slowly and deeply, focus on something external, smile, and do this a little bit each time. Relaxing when you are alone is also a smart thing to do.
- You don't like people. Sorry to tell you Holden Caulfield, but there are some good people out there, you just have to give them time. It will take a conscientious effort not to ignore people because of the shoes they wear or what they may have said about the Whole Food store considering it to be unique, and yes it does exist.
- Have confidence in yourself! As with everything, it takes practice.
- Have an open mind. Good things can only happen if you choose to.
- Smile constantly. Smiling is the cheapest!