If you are someone who feels uncomfortable when meeting people, you may feel that this is a knack, which you either have naturally, or you don’t. You’d be wrong. It is a skill, just like playing tennis or being good at singing. The more you practice it, the better you become at it.
Anyone can learn how to meet people and overcome their nervousness about it. It is a skill that you can learn in just a few steps and each time you practice how to meet people, it will become easier and you will feel more confident and comfortable with it. The great thing about this is that the more comfortable you are when you meet people the more comfortable you will make other people feel and they will respond more positively to you.
Here are ten easy steps you can take to meet people:
1. Get out and about
Who are you going to meet staying home and watching TV? Don’t waste opportunities to meet people. Go out regularly, even if it’s just to your local bar, library, cinema or store.
2. Look and feel good
This isn’t about dressing to impress, but in being comfortable with the face you present to the world. That way, you can approach people confidently and that is the best way to meet people and have them become your friends. People are worried about becoming friends with people who will be needy, so don’t appear desperate for friends, even if you are!
3. Have fun!
In keeping with not looking needy, you should go out and have fun, if you want to meet people. This works in several ways: you will make yourself happier, so you can function without making lots of friends; you will look like a more appealing friend if you appear happy and fun-loving; the activities you do to have fun are also your best opportunities to meet like-minded people with whom you can naturally strike up a friendship.
4. Make eye contact
Body language is very important in how you are perceived. If you avoid looking at people, you will send off signals that you do not want to be approached. So, look at people and smile. They will be much more likely to talk to you.
5. Break the ice
Don’t wait to be spoken to; make a simple, positive comment, and if possible, finish on a question to which the other person needs to respond. Something like “you played a good shot there; do you play often?” or “you look like you enjoyed the karaoke; who’s your favourite singer?” is all that is necessary when you first meet people.
6. Be yourself
No everyone will like you but that doesn’t matter; you don’t like everyone else, do you? You don’t want to have to compromise who you are in order to be friends with someone.
7. A little harmless flirting
Flirting with someone shows them you are interested in them. It flatters them and makes them feel good. However, don’t overdo it or it can appear false. Give no more than a couple of compliments and see how well they are received.
8. Meet as many new people as possible
The more you meet people, the easier it gets; it also increases the likelihood of meeting someone you really like.
9. Celebrate your progress
Be proud of yourself for the times you managed to overcome your shyness and talked to someone new. Each victory you celebrate in this way takes you nearer to your goal in feeling comfortable in meeting people.
10. Be creative
Think of the places you like to go where you could meet people. Follow your interests and let that get you into social situations; also, treat everyday situations like your daily commute or a trip to the store as an opportunity to meet people.