Socializing can be challenging, especially if you’re naturally shy. Still, if you want to meet new people and experience something other than sitting on the sofa scrolling through your phone, you must put yourself out there more often.
This is easier said than done, of course. Even if you know you want to get out of the house, something still holds you back. After all, it’s much more comfortable (and often warmer) inside. Still, this is no way to live, and it doesn’t matter if you’ve recently moved to a new city or want to expand your social circle beyond your neighbors and colleagues. You can find some advice to help you feel more comfortable around new people.
Look For Common Ground
People are no longer so ashamed of the things they love, and finding people with similar interests as you have never been easier. This common ground can be crucial for feeling at ease around new people as it means you have something to talk about, which is often what many people worry about when they find themselves surrounded by strangers.
Whether you want to share quotes from Step Brothers or plan a Prestige Worldwide launch or discuss the fine minutiae of soccer tactics, there is a strong chance you’ll find something to talk about. If you’re worried about sharing with the whole group, the people next to you could be a good place to begin.
Have a Crutch
A social crutch can make you feel more confident, so going to parties with a friend means you have someone familiar, and this can make you feel more confident, especially if they are more outgoing than you are. Your friend can introduce you to people, so you don’t need to go through the daunting process yourself, allowing you to be a slight social butterfly.
However, a crutch can also be detrimental. You may cling to them throughout the whole event and fail to get to know anyone else. So, while a crutch can be beneficial, it isn’t always the best way to feel more comfortable.
Make Sure You’re Friendly
No one wants to talk to the grumpy person standing in the corner silently judging everyone else. There’s a reason people say a smile is the best thing anyone can wear, and merely speaking with a smile can help you feel more comfortable and open up to anyone you interact with.
What’s more, smiling will make you feel happier. It releases endorphins that will encourage you to loosen up, be yourself, and maybe speak to people you’d otherwise shy away from. Friendliness will also make it easier for people to remember you and associate you with positivity, so they’ll be happier to speak to you again.
Remember Other People Are Anxious, Too
Everyone assumes that they are the only one who feels nervous in new situations, but that isn’t the case. Everyone (or almost everyone) has some anxiety about meeting new people. Ultimately, people want to be liked, and even if they present an aura of not caring what others think, it’s still nice to know that people think you’re a decent person.
If you remember this when meeting new people, it will make it easier for you to feel comfortable. They might be going through the same stress as you, so being kind and approachable should ease any worries.
Don’t Overstep Boundaries
Nervousness and discomfort can rear their heads in ugly, inappropriate ways. You don’t want to be the one to overstep any boundaries, but your nervousness could make you act entirely out of character.
You must make sure you do not overstep any boundaries. When meeting new people, hugs and kisses are not exactly the norm, so a simple hello and a handshake at the very most can improve relationships and prevent later problems. Don’t close yourself off, but learn how to recognize if people are uncomfortable.
Fake It Till You Make It
There’s a reason fake it till you make it has become a popular adage. If you don’t feel comfortable, you can at least pretend you are. It may not last for too long, but you can learn how a confident person would act around strangers, and you’ll be able to switch it on whenever you need. You’ll have plenty of opportunities to be shy once you get home.
Sure, meeting new people can be scary. What if they don’t like you? What if they talk about you behind your back? What if one of them has recently started dating your ex? These fears may seem logical and reasonable, but they often hold no water. Besides, with these tips, you’ll feel more comfortable and you’ll not care, anyway.