Stop Being A Social Recluse!
Meeting new people can bring exciting opportunities and new experiences your way in both your professional and personal life. Yet, your shy and introvert nature, or approach- anxiety or social anxiety can make these seemingly normal interactions a stressful activity! So here are some tips to help you break through your fear of meeting new people.
Begin With Small Steps
Try to be more social by taking small steps like greeting your neighbour, wishing the store clerk good day, smiling to the bank teller, helping out an elderly person, etc. These experiences will make you realize your fear isn’t as massive as you think it to be!
Bring Down Your Anxiety Levels
Learn and practice yoga, deep breathing, meditation, or anything that offers relief from anxiety. Set aside at least half an hour each day, to do these together by giving yourself pep talk about developing a more centered and clam approach. You can even conquer your fear by using positive visualization. Simply imagine yourself interacting confidently with strangers and run these images again and again in your mind to make them reinforced. This way, when confronting the events, in reality, you would be able to act confidently.
Have some conversation topics ready that can help break the ice with strangers. Stay updated on world news, sports, movies, etc. all of which would help the conversation flow, instead of the uncomfortable silence that often descends after the initial exchanges. With these steps complemented by practice and patience, you can surely start meeting new people confidently, without being fearful.
Guidelines To Meet And Interact With Strangers
- Greet and complement with a smile and a confident voice
- Talk to people you come across often (grocery store owner, waitress, café manager, etc.) and go beyond the mere hello!
- Be curious and ask questions (like clothes suggestions from the store manager, interesting things to see/ do nearby a tourist spot, etc.)
- Drown your criticizing inner voice that says ‘she/he doesn’t want to talk to me’ or ‘that person isn’t my type,’ which are just self-made excuses not to meet and talk to new people