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10 Things Only People Who Don’t Like Parties Can Understand

10 Things Only People Who Don’t Like Parties Can Understand

Why are parties considered almost an obligatory activity for you to have a good time? If this question bothers you, then you will understand what truly makes a good night out — parties not included. There are loads of things you can do to enjoy yourself. Standing around trying to talk and socialize with the inevitable drink in one hand does not have to be one of them.

People look at you strangely when you try to tell them that you don’t like parties, that they can be exhausting and even stressful. In their minds, they only visualize glinting lights on glasses, people laughing, music, dancing, making new friends, staying up till the small hours of the morning and generally having a fantastic time. If they only knew what you have to go through to make sure that you avoid them at all costs.

If you don’t like partying, here are 10 things you can understand and relate to.

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1. You are not a hermit or recluse

You have your own circles of friends and you are not particularly keen on getting to know loads of new ones. You also enjoy being with your friends for a night at the cinema or dining out in the latest ethnic restaurant. You are not a loner because you know the value of being in the company of close friends.

2. You have other ideas about having a good time

You don’t want to explain to anyone (and why should you?) that there are other ways of having a good time. Have they not heard about books, films, gardening, yoga, or swimming? Which commandment says “Thou shalt have a good time only at parties,” you wonder.

3. You want to relax

Parties are hard work, so forget about relaxation. When you are dragged kicking and screaming to a party, this is usually what happens: you see your friends and maybe chat with them. Nothing new there. Then, maybe you want to be a little bit more adventurous and socialize more broadly. So, you have to work out opening lines, think up interesting topics, and areas of common interest. Then there is the music, chaos, standing up for long periods, trying to get another drink, and finding a chair to sit on. This is exhausting and you wish you had never accepted the invitation.

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4. You like your beauty sleep

It is wonderful to go to bed and sleep soundly. No getting home late, no mad searching for taxis, which by this point are as scarce as hen’s teeth. Nothing like your own nightcap, a warm bed, and zero worries about how many hours of sleep you’ll get. Sheer bliss!

5. You don’t like drinking

Why does everyone sort of frown when you say that you don’t drink? Is there some magical ingredient in alcohol which makes you a social and fun-loving animal? The joy of never having a hangover the next day is indescribable. Once was more than enough!

6. You feel like you’re taking an exam

Parties are like an examination in social skills. But this is supposed to be about having a great time, isn’t it? No way. Now you have to keep the conversation going and then you have to think of an exit strategy. You ask yourself why it feels as if your social skills are being assessed. You begin to feel like an alien because you have only clicked with one person in the last ten you have met.

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7. You hate having to circulate

You think nostalgically about sitting round the dinner table with some close friends and having a relaxed chat. At parties, there is no such thing because you have to circulate. The problem here is that it is a hell of a job to find one interesting person to talk to. It seems that you have to keep mixing and circulating and sometimes you never find that person. You would have a better chance of winning the lottery.

8. You find parties rowdy and noisy

The noise level is usually unbearable as the lives and souls of the party get going. Miley Cyrus gets louder and people get drunker, rowdier, and noisier. This is another reason why you hate parties. You must have been crazy to accept this time. The next time, you will be at home watching the end of a really good film and maybe chatting about it with some friends.

9. You find quieter parties too intense

You know the ones, those smaller parties where people are intent on talking about politics, philosophy, and the greater questions of life. They break up into small groups and it is impossible to escape. But you already have your own ideas on these topics and are not prepared to give a TED talk late at night. These parties can get very intense and sometimes end with argumentative people getting heated. You want to curl up in bed, but you’ve already been trapped.

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10. You are tired of the introvert and extrovert labels

You’re tired of having to explain that most people are neither totally introverted or extroverted. It is rather like a spectrum and you just happen to be nearer the quieter end of the scale. People are wired differently, so you wonder what the fuss is all about. In addition, you are not prepared to go to parties because you feel you should do so or because there is too much peer pressure.

Let us know in the comments how you escape parties and how you still manage to enjoy yourself!

Featured photo credit: Newbury Birthday Party /Gareth Williams via flickr.com

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More by this author

Robert Locke

Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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Published on May 18, 2021

How To Improve Listening Skills For Effective Workplace Communication

How To Improve Listening Skills For Effective Workplace Communication

We have two ears and one mouth for a reason—effective communication is dependent on using them in proportion, and this involves having good listening skills.

The workplace of the 21st century may not look the same as it did before COVID-19 spread throughout the world like wildfire, but that doesn’t mean you can relax your standards at work. If anything, Zoom meetings, conference calls, and the continuous time spent behind a screen have created a higher level of expectations for meeting etiquette and communication. And this goes further than simply muting your microphone during a meeting.

Effective workplace communication has been a topic of discussion for decades, yet, it is rarely addressed or implemented due to a lack of awareness and personal ownership by all parties.

Effective communication isn’t just about speaking clearly or finding the appropriate choice of words. It starts with intentional listening and being present. Here’s how to improve your listening skills for effective workplace communication.

Listen to Understand, Not to Speak

There are stark differences between listening and hearing. Listening involves intention, focused effort, and concentration, whereas hearing simply involves low-level awareness that someone else is speaking. Listening is a voluntary activity that allows one to be present and in the moment while hearing is passive and effortless.[1]

Which one would you prefer your colleagues to implement during your company-wide presentation? It’s a no-brainer.

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Listening can be one of the most powerful tools in your communication arsenal because one must listen to understand the message being told to them. As a result of this deeper understanding, communication can be streamlined because there is a higher level of comprehension that will facilitate practical follow-up questions, conversations, and problem-solving. And just because you heard something doesn’t mean you actually understood it.

We take this for granted daily, but that doesn’t mean we can use that as an excuse.

Your brain is constantly scanning your environment for threats, opportunities, and situations to advance your ability to promote your survival. And yet, while we are long past the days of worrying about being eaten by wildlife, the neurocircuitry responsible for these mechanisms is still hard-wired into our psychology and neural processing.

A classic example of this is the formation of memories. Case in point: where were you on June 3rd, 2014? For most of you reading this article, your mind will go completely blank, which isn’t necessarily bad.

The brain is far too efficient to retain every detail about every event that happens in your life, mainly because many events that occur aren’t always that important. The brain doesn’t—and shouldn’t—care what you ate for lunch three weeks ago or what color shirt you wore golfing last month. But for those of you who remember where you were on June 3rd, 2014, this date probably holds some sort of significance to you. Maybe it was a birthday or an anniversary. Perhaps it was the day your child was born. It could have even been a day where you lost someone special in your life.

Regardless of the circumstance, the brain is highly stimulated through emotion and engagement, which is why memories are usually stored in these situations. When the brain’s emotional centers become activated, the brain is far more likely to remember an event.[2] And this is also true when intention and focus are applied to listening to a conversation.

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Utilizing these hard-wired primitive pathways of survival to optimize your communication in the workplace is a no-brainer—literally and figuratively.

Intentional focus and concentrated efforts will pay off in the long run because you will retain more information and have an easier time recalling it down the road, making you look like a superstar in front of your colleagues and co-workers. Time to kiss those note-taking days away!

Effective Communication Isn’t Always Through Words

While we typically associate communication with words and verbal affirmations, communication can come in all shapes and forms. In the Zoom meeting era we live in, it has become far more challenging to utilize and understand these other forms of language. And this is because they are typically easier to see when we are sitting face to face with the person we speak to.[3]

Body language can play a significant role in how our words and communication are interpreted, especially when there is a disconnection involved.[4] When someone tells you one thing, yet their body language screams something completely different, it’s challenging to let that go. Our brain immediately starts to search for more information and inevitably prompts us to follow up with questions that will provide greater clarity to the situation at hand. And in all reality, not saying something might be just as important as actually saying something.

These commonly overlooked non-verbal communication choices can provide a plethora of information about the intentions, emotions, and motivations. We do this unconsciously, and it happens with every confrontation, conversation, and interaction we engage in. The magic lies in the utilization and active interpretation of these signals to improve your listening skills and your communication skills.

Our brains were designed for interpreting our world, which is why we are so good at recognizing subtle nuances and underlying disconnect within our casual encounters. So, when we begin to notice conflicting messages between verbal and non-verbal communication, our brain takes us down a path of troubleshooting.

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Which messages are consistent with this theme over time? Which statements aren’t aligning with what they’re really trying to tell me? How should I interpret their words and body language?

Suppose we want to break things down even further. In that case, one must understand that body language is usually a subconscious event, meaning that we rarely think about our body language. This happens because our brain’s primary focus is to string together words and phrases for verbal communication, which usually requires a higher level of processing. This doesn’t mean that body language will always tell the truth, but it does provide clues to help us weigh information, which can be pretty beneficial in the long run.

Actively interpreting body language can provide you with an edge in your communication skills. It can also be used as a tool to connect with the individual you are speaking to. This process is deeply ingrained into our human fabric and utilizes similar methods babies use while learning new skills from their parents’ traits during the early years of development.

Mirroring a person’s posture or stance can create a subtle bond, facilitating a sense of feeling like one another. This process is triggered via the activation of specific brain regions through the stimulation of specialized neurons called mirror neurons.[5] These particular neurons become activated while watching an individual engage in an activity or task, facilitating learning, queuing, and understanding. They also allow the person watching an action to become more efficient at physically executing the action, creating changes in the brain, and altering the overall structure of the brain to enhance output for that chosen activity.

Listening with intention can make you understand your colleague, and when paired together with mirroring body language, you can make your colleague feel like you two are alike. This simple trick can facilitate a greater bond of understanding and communication within all aspects of the conversation.

Eliminate All Distractions, Once and for All

As Jim Rohn says, “What is easy to do is also easy not to do.” And this is an underlying principle that will carry through in all aspects of communication. Distractions are a surefire way to ensure a lack of understanding or interpretation of a conversation, which in turn, will create inefficiencies and a poor foundation for communication.

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This should come as no surprise, especially in this day in age where people are constantly distracted by social media, text messaging, and endlessly checking their emails. We’re stuck in a cultural norm that has hijacked our love for the addictive dopamine rush and altered our ability to truly focus our efforts on the task at hand. And these distractions aren’t just distractions for the time they’re being used. They use up coveted brainpower and central processes that secondarily delay our ability to get back on track.

Gloria Mark, a researcher at UC Irvine, discovered that it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds for our brains to reach their peak state of focus after an interruption.[6] Yes, you read that correctly—distractions are costly, error-prone, and yield little to no benefit outside of a bump to the ego when receiving a new like on your social media profile.

Meetings should implement a no-phone policy, video conference calls should be set on their own browser with no other tabs open, and all updates, notifications, and email prompt should be immediately turned off, if possible, to eliminate all distractions during a meeting.

These are just a few examples of how we can optimize our environment to facilitate the highest levels of communication within the workplace.

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Effective communication in the workplace doesn’t have to be challenging, but it does have to be intentional. Knowledge can only take us so far, but once again, knowing something is very different than putting it into action.

Just like riding a bike, the more often you do it, the easier it becomes. Master communicators are phenomenal listeners, which allows them to be effective communicators in the workplace and in life. If you genuinely want to own your communication, you must implement this information today and learn how to improve your listening skills.

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Choose your words carefully, listen intently, and most of all, be present in the moment—because that’s what master communicators do, and you can do it, too!

More Tips Improving Listening Skills

Featured photo credit: Mailchimp via unsplash.com

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