Being social and why you should be.

19 01 2009
Being social is something that most every human possesses. By basic sounds, to words, to hand gestures, we are able to communicate feelings, thoughts, and ideas with one another.

Though there are some of us who aren’t as social as others, and I, for one, am one of those people.
Even though I, for the most part, like being quiet, I do have to socialize with others to get my ideas across a broad spectrum. My point is that the more friendly/social you are with people you don’t know (I know this sounds a bit scary) the more likely you are to have people to network with. That and possibly people to drink with, but that’s besides the point.

I am sure that most everyone has felt social anxiety, though there are ways to overcome these butterflies and help you become more comfortable with those surrounding you. From being able to talk one on one with a person, to a huge crowd, here are some things I find valuable when meeting new people.

1. Observe what is happening around them, not yourself.
I usually meet new people while I’m at school, therefore I’m always interested in what they’re doing. With this being said, striking up a conversation with someone over a photoshop technique or what they are currently producing helps me get rid of that anxiety I feel. Then again, there are some people who, like myself, do like being left alone and are some what suttle with their answers. For the most part, people are usually happy to tell you about stuff that they are doing.

2. Find a common interest and roll with it.
This can stem from rule number one, which will eventually sprout into more common interests if you further the conversation. The warmer you appear and seem to a person the more likely they’ll be warm and friendly towards you.

3. Practice what you’re going to say.
This is more so with public speaking. If I’m going up for a critique on my work, I’m more so nervous and filled with butterflies when I haven’t thought things over in my head about what I’m about to present. Mind you I should know what I have done to achieve certain aspects of my project, but if I haven’t thought it through then I’m just as blank to telling you as you are blank of knowing how to do it. Before things like this I usually run through a list of points I want to make sure I get across in my head, but if you are really nervous you could always try writing down what you want to say on paper and practice it in front of a mirror.

4. Know what you’re talking about.
No one likes a liar or an ‘extender of the truth’ – If you don’t know how to do something don’t pretend like you do. You’ll be losing friends instead of making them. Seriously.

5. It’s okay to talk about yourself in moderation.
People you first meet aren’t going to want to know about your relationship problems and/or any scary health conditions etc, you’re going to scare the person off. Though talking about interests you have or a movie you saw (and your opinion on the movie) is quite all right. Mind you, when you start boasting and bragging about certain things, the only thing a person is going to think is that you are probably materialistic and fake, that and you use money to buy friends. No one likes a show off.

6. Be on the same level with the person.
Don’t try to talk down or downgrade someone because of achievements you have gained or you don’t think they’ll understand your form of ‘superior intelligence’ – this is not only rude, but it makes you look like an asshole as well as pompous. Talk to people in a way you would want to be talk to. I doubt you want a new person to talk to you the way some of your friends do (you know what I’m talking about), I doubt they want you talking to them like that either.

That is pretty much how I deal with social situations for the most part when encountering new people. Hope it is useful for you and social situations you get yourself into. Until the next post.




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