As a lifehacker, you probably know that some of your actions are responsible for most of your success. When it comes to making friends and having a great social life, some social skills make the most difference. Here are six of them.
1. Find Great Places To Meet New People
Friendship always happens in a certain environment. This environment can be a school, a workplace, or just a friends’ house. It always starts with a circumstance that brings people together. This happens mostly by chance, and that is far from ideal.
If you want a great social life, it’s better to take control of this aspect and find great places to meet new people. I recommend you find private settings like local communities or meet-up clubs around your interests. As a rule of thumb, you need to find places where it’s natural to walk up to a stranger and introduce yourself.
2. Select The Right People
When you meet someone new and like them, you need to know if they are ready for a new friendship. Some people just have too many friends already, and some are going through a stressful event and can’t find the time to be social.
You’re better off not taking this as rejection; they just don’t have the time to be friends.
If you want to find out if they’re ready for friendship, then try and find out if they’re active socially. You can do that in two ways: first, you can ask where they go out, and second, pay attention to what they’re going through in their life. If someone is about to move, change jobs, get married or have a baby, you can be sure they won’t have time to hang out.
3. Spot Commonalities With Others
A common mistake people make when meeting new friends is that they focus on how the other person is different from them. They start to point out differences in opinion as a way to show how unique they are. It’s a good thing to be unique, but that should not prevent you from connecting with potential friends.
Instead, you should look for similarities in opinions, habits, goals, and interests. That will give you a little common ground, so you can build a friendship if you want to. You can always argue with them and even tease them once they become your friends.
4 – Show Little Vulnerabilities Early On
This sounds more risky than it really is. If you’re going to be friends with someone, there is a level of trust to establish; both of you have to disclose some things to each other.
To kick-start a friendship, there is a level of trust that has to be built. Even as you’re just getting to know someone, there is a need for the sense of “we can trust each other.”
You don’t have to reveal big secrets from your life. All you have to do is be a little more open. A rule of thumb is to be 5% more open than usual. When you do that, you can see that the other person will be more inclined to do the same; they too will reveal some vulnerability. These can be weird or funny habits, or quirks each of you have. It plays a great part in the friendship process, but most people aren’t even aware of it.
5 – Show Others That You Like Them
When you first meet someone, you both have to like each other to become friends. This entirely subjective aspect about first encounters shouldn’t scare you. What you can do here is always assume that you’re going to be liked, and that you generally like to meet new people.
When you hold these two mindsets, you automatically start to behave in a way that signals to other people that you like them, which makes them like you. This is a self-fulfilling prophecy: if they think you like them, they’ll start to like you.
6 – Treat Making Friends As A Skill
The irony here is that the socially successful people never stop learning about friendship and making friends. Socially unsuccessful people, on the other hand, think that it’s something you‘re either born with or not.
It’s true that some of us have learned it very well at a young age. And others, like me, had to figure it all out a little later. Like any other skill, it has principles and techniques that anyone can learn. The good news is that once you start learning, you can only get better.