Do you experience that nervous jittery feeling when talking to new people? Do you find that holding a conversation with strangers at casual events is as challenging as mountain climbing? Well, socializing doesn’t come naturally to all, but it is certainly an important skill that will serve you your whole life. Socializing has a wealth of benefits which directly impact our happiness as well as existence.
Getting out there and talking to people doesn't have to be difficult. Being more social and making new friends can be easy, all you need to do is have the will to change yourself from being the odd one out to a social and outgoing person.The following tips can help you let go of your shyness and connect authentically with people:
Striking up a conversation might be the most challenging step, but taking the first step yourself can give you an opportunity to meet a lot of new people. Take matters into your own hands and introduce yourself. Compliments can serve as a great ice breaker and help you start off a conversation.
Being rigid and standing in one spot is a common mistake that prevents people from socializing effectively. Move around with confidence and try to be more approachable. Keeping your head up and acknowledging people around you with a smile or a greeting, puts others at ease and also makes them more receptive when you approach them.
Everybody likes to talk about themselves. Therefore, practicing good listening skills is just as important as expressing yourself. It will help you appear accepting and gain other people’s confidence. Listening also allows you to learn more about others, which ultimately will aid you in establishing common interests and forming a bond.
They say that experience is the best teacher. So, go out, meet new people, interact and learn from your experiences to improve your conversational skills for the future!
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Abena is a Client Services Associate at Optimity. She graduated from the University of Toronto with a BSc in Global Health. She is passionate about human rights and health education, and hopes to develop tailored interventions to combat health inequities around the globe. Her interests include story writing, camping and exploring different cultures on her travels.