The majority of us aren’t so smooth with striking up conversation and meeting new people, especially in large group settings–yikes, bring on the nervous sweat! It could particularly be overwhelming to put yourself out there at the beginning of a new school year or during your first few months at a new job or internship. But have no fear! By following these seven simple tips, you’ll start to spread your social butterfly wings and make new friends in no time.
Introduce Yourself to New People
This is the first, and very basic, step to being outgoing. If you come across a new classmate or co-worker, make an effort to tell them your name and a bit about yourself. Remember, it doesn’t hurt to be friendly. You could start by giving them a compliment. I mean, who doesn’t love being flattered?
Join A Club or Committee
Clubs are a great way to be more social. It gives you the opportunity to meet and surround yourself with people who share the same interests as you. In my first year of high school, I was afraid to join clubs because I didn’t think I’d mesh well with other students. In my second year, as an attempt to be more outgoing, I decided to give clubs a try and I can honestly say that’s where I’ve met most of my friends. They are usually in small-scale settings, so it’s not too overwhelming for people who aren’t ready to jump from shy to socialite. Whether it’s at school, work or in the community, if you’re looking to meet new people and break out of your shell, clubs and committees are a good place to start.
Try to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
You’ll never get anywhere if you stick to that familiar bubble of yours. Evolving as a person requires you to attempt new things and take some risks. Your comfort zone is comfortable because it’s where you know what to expect. Going out on a limb can be scary because you might fail. You might lose something. But you might also gain something, right? One way you can step out of your comfort zone is to face your fears. Maybe you’re absolutely terrified of heights so going on a rollercoaster is your ultimate “hell no.” But knowing that you tried is an accomplishment in itself. Eventually you’ll also realize that even a failed attempt at something new is a measure of success in that you had the courage to take a risk and made the effort to act and take a leap of faith.
Join In On Conversations
Whether it’s a class discussion, school event or lunch with friends/co-workers, if you have something to say, let it out! Frequently engaging yourself in conversation will help you develop good communication skills and get you to be more comfortable around others.
Set Some Goals
Going from a shy caterpillar to social butterfly doesn’t happen overnight. It takes baby steps. Things will be much easier if you set some realistic goals for yourself. It could be as simple as planning to wave at five strangers every day. Or maybe set a goal to ask at least one customer at work how their day is going. These small actions will help boost your confidence.
Don’t Get Discouraged, Get Confident
So maybe you tried participating in a class discussion and you totally froze up. Don’t beat yourself up over it. We’ve all had those moments where we get nervous and have trouble processing our thoughts. The important thing is that you made an effort. If you fail, just keep trying! Learning from your mistakes and being confident is key to success.
Invite People Over
Are you one of those people who cringe when others ask you to join in on a girl’s night out? You probably think to yourself, “I’d much rather stay at home in my bed.” Well, if you’re trying to be more outgoing this has got to stop! If you’re that gal who prefers to stay at home and watch a movie instead of leaving the house, bring the fun to where you are and invite people over!
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