Advertising
Advertising

7 Secrets To Social Success

7 Secrets To Social Success

Have you ever witnessed somebody who is so confident and fluent in conversations that it’s actually really impressive? How do they do it? Well, David Morin of Dumb Little Man has seven secrets that can help to improve our chances of social success:

We all know people who are beloved by everyone and seem able to make friends wherever they go. Some regard them with admiration tinged with a bit of envy, then shrug their shoulders and figure those people are just born with that special “something”. It might be surprising to learn that being popular is a skill that can be learned like any other.

Advertising

Just as you wouldn’t expect to wake up one morning knowing how to play the piano, the key to success in making friends is setting goals and developing a game plan. Use these seven tips as the framework on which you build your skill set.

Advertising

  1. Be interested, not interesting. A widespread misconception is that popular people are the ones talking about their latest promotion or exciting vacation they took or wild party they attended. Hearing the occasional interesting story is fine, but most people become bored or resentful listening to these blow-by-blow accounts. It’s far more effective to take a genuine interest in the lives of others and get them talking about themselves. And remember that no word sounds as magical as one’s own name. Addressing people by name makes them feel special.
  2. Be positive – but not too positive. Think about people you’ve known who expect the worst from everyone and everything and aren’t shy about speaking up. Not much fun to be around, are they? This doesn’t mean you have to be constantly spreading false rays of sunshine. That’s nearly as annoying as eternal pessimism. Have a clear-eyed and honest attitude and people will come to value your opinions as trustworthy.
  3. Be charitable to others. Gossiping about friends and co-workers may gain you an audience, but it’s superficial and temporary. Those who indulge their pettier instincts trashing others aren’t the ones you want in your circle. Eventually even those people will realize that you’re just as likely to be talking about them in the same way and they’ll steer clear. It also translates as weakness and insecurity, trying to build yourself up by tearing others down. Take the high road and you’ll be seen as fair-minded.
  4. Be helpful and dependable. If someone you know needs assistance that you’re able to provide with a minimum of inconvenience, offer it. The key term here is “minimum of inconvenience”. Doing favors for others that involve more time and trouble than they would for the person themselves comes across as desperation. Giving aid when you’re truly in a position to do so communicates a sincere interest in the welfare of others. As a side note, be sure to follow up on any commitments you make. The damage to your reputation is doubly harsh if people can’t count on your word.
  5. Be a “matchmaker”. If you’re heading to the movies with a friend, invite another film-loving pal to come along. Love sports? Assemble a group to attend the big game. Spearhead gatherings at your home or a fun venue such as a wine bar, inviting at least a few people who are new to the group. Keeping your social network interconnected has a circular effect where you’re perceived as having many friends, thereby gaining you even more. Don’t forget your manners during impromptu meetings, either. When out with a friend, many people make the mistake of failing to introduce them to others they may encounter. By doing so you run the risk of coming off as socially inept at best and rude or uncaring at worst.
  6. Be your (best) self. Yes, it’s a cliche you’ve heard a million and one times, but ideas become cliches by standing the test of time. Insincerity is a huge turn-off and no matter how great of an actor you are, the pretense will catch up with you. The most attractive people, both physically and mentally, are the ones who are clearly comfortable in their own skin. Accepting and embracing your own unique qualities radiates a healthy confidence that’s magnetic to others.
  7. Be self-aware. Periodically step outside yourself to evaluate how you come across to others. Don’t mistake this for being overly concerned with their opinions of you. Taking stock of the image you project shows a healthy respect for yourself as well as for them. Another factor to consider is your body language. You may not even realize that you’re wearing a perpetual frown or creating a stand-offish posture with crossed arms and lack of eye contact. It’s a simple concept, but it can make a big difference with how comfortable people feel around you.

As you work on developing your social skills, keep in mind that these tips center around the saying, “To have a friend, be a friend.” If you let that advice guide your actions, you’ll develop that charisma that makes people want to be around you while also staying true to your own values and principles.

Advertising

David Morin runs SocialPro, an online resource for having more success in life trough mastering social principles most people don’t know about. Watch his free video course where he teaches social hacks.

Making Friends and Increasing Business Contacts is Easy If You Know These 7 Secrets of Socially Successful People | Dumb Little Man

Advertising

More by this author

Siobhan Harmer

Siobhan is a passionate writer sharing about motivation and happiness tips on Lifehack.

9 Ways to Stay Positive This Chart Shows You Where And Why Emotional Pain Becomes Physical Discomfort 30 Brilliant Camping Hacks I Wish I Knew Earlier 20 Fascinating Webcams You Can Watch Online Right Now 8 Ways To Stop Emotional Manipulation

Trending in Communication

1 What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It) 2 How to Get Unstuck in Life and Live a More Fulfilling Life 3 What Will Happen When You Surround Yourself With Positive People? 4 How to Surround Yourself With Positive People 5 15 Ways to Boost Your Motivation for Success

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on March 30, 2020

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

Advertising

1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

2. Be Honest

A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

Advertising

If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

4. Succeed at Something

When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

Advertising

6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

Advertising

In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

Final Thoughts

When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
[2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
[3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
[4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
[5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
[6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
[7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
[8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

Read Next