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7 Ways To Make Friends As An Introvert

7 Ways To Make Friends As An Introvert

The feeling of loneliness can be a painful reality for some introverts.

Introverts value time, space and energy. Making “friends” as an introvert can feel like another thing to-do. There are several ways to make this “challenge” interesting, and even more adventurous. Below are some ways to make friends as an introvert, and maintain control of your environment without losing your energy.

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1. Start a meetup group

Take the initiative and create your own community. Starting your own community gives you the chance to “hand-pick” the people you want in your circle. Carefully crafted, meetup.com gives you access to a wealth of new social connections without being stuck in somebody else’s group. Choose a hobby or interest you love, create an event, and cap it at 5, 10 or even 20 people. Find a number that makes you feel comfortable. Be sure to include questions for new members to answer and require that each person display their photo for approval. As the group leader, you are in charge of picking events you’d naturally enjoy.

2. Go to lectures

Lectures are a major draw for introverts. You can sit and listen to big ideas and concepts. You can look around the room, observe the curiosity of others, and simply enjoy a close-ended experience. There’s plenty of time to ask questions in an orderly fashion, and pinpoint others you’d like to get to know. Afterwards, it gives you an opportunity to strike up a conversation or engage with a group of people.

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3. Go walking or jogging at the same time everyday

There’s something about taking a walk on a quiet morning and seeing other members of your community in their daily routines. You see familiar faces if you follow the same route. This provides a sense of security and comfort. As an active member of a running or walking group, you easily meet others with the same fitness goals. These types of activities have a clear start and end time, and everyone has something in common to discuss. If you don’t want to talk after a while, you can always change your pace without disappearing.

4. Take a cooking class

Who doesn’t love to talk about food? Cooking classes are a place to indulge, make mistakes and be silly. Letting go of control is challenging as an introvert. However, that is the point. After 2 hours of watching others flub the beef stew, conversation at the sit-down meal is more fun and just flows.

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5. Enjoy being alone when you go out

Most people have experienced the random questions about time, directions, etc. when out alone. To make friends as an introvert, answer these questions with eye contact, and give details if necessary. It’s great practice for talking to strangers, and maybe making a new friend.

6. Have a drink at a hotel bar

Head to the local hotel bar, and meet out of towners who will talk to you just out of curiosity. Do it right, and you may even get a free drink in exchange for tips on the best sights and sounds they can check out.

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7. Find a cafe, bar, beach, park, or bench that is “yours”.

It should be close to home, and take minimal effort. Visit it often, same time, same place. It will take about 3-4 visits until you appear as a regular to the staff, and about two to feel comfortable if you’re an introvert. Normally, after a first visit anywhere, introverts are more relaxed, and “know” the place. It certainly doesn’t take long!

These tips will give you a sense of empowerment as you make friends as an introvert, and create new social connections that can enhance your life.  Don’t be surprised if you attract other introverts as your new friends, too.

Featured photo credit: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/ via flickr.com

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Last Updated on May 17, 2019

This Is What Happens When You Move Out Of the Comfort Zone

This Is What Happens When You Move Out Of the Comfort Zone

The pursuit of worthwhile goals is a part of what makes life enjoyable. Being able to set a goal, then see yourself progress towards achieving that goal is an amazing feeling.

But do you know the biggest obstacle for most people trying to achieve their goals, the silent dream killer that stops people before they ever even get started? That obstacle is the comfort zone, and getting stuck there is bound to derail any efforts you make towards achieving the goals you’ve set for yourself.

If you want to achieve those goals, you’ll have to break free from your comfort zone. Let’s take a look at how your life will change once you build up the courage to leave your comfort zone.

What Is the Comfort Zone?

The comfort zone is defined as “a behavioural state within which a person operates in an anxiety-neutral condition, using a limited set of behaviours to deliver a steady level of performance.”

What stands out to me the most about that definition is the last part: “using a limited set of behaviours to deliver a steady level of performance.” How many successful people do you know who deliver a steady level of performance?

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The goal in life is to continually challenge yourself, and continually improve yourself. And in order to do that, you have move out of your comfort zone. But once you do, your life will start to change in ways you could never have imagined. I know because it’s happening right now in my own life.

Here’s what I’ve learned.

1. You will be scared

Leaving your comfort zone isn’t easy. In fact, in can be downright terrifying at times, and that’s okay. It’s perfectly normal to feel a little trepidation when you’re embarking on a journey that forces you to try new things.

So don’t freak out or get overwhelmed when you feel yourself getting a little scared. It’s perfectly normal and all part of the process. What’s important is that you don’t let that fear hold you back. You must continue to take action in the face of fear.

That’s what separates winners from losers.

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2. You will fail

Stepping out of your comfort zone means you’re moving into uncharted territory. You’re trying things that you’ve never tried before, and learning things you’ve never learned before.

That steep learning curve means you’re not going to get everything right the first time, and you will eventually fail when you move out of your comfort zone. But as long as the failures aren’t catastrophic, it can actually be a good thing to fail because …

3. You will learn

Failure is the best teacher. I’ve learned more from each one of my failures than I have from each one of my successes. When you fail small, and fail often, you rapidly increase the rate at which you learn new insights and skills. And that new knowledge, if applied correctly, will eventually lead to your success.

4. You will see yourself in a different way

Once you move out of your comfort zone, you immediately prove to yourself that you’re capable of achieving more than you thought was possible. And that will change the way you see yourself.

Moving forward, you’ll have more confidence in yourself whenever you step out of your comfort zone, and that increased confidence will make it more likely that you continue to step outside your comfort zone. And each time you do, you’ll prove to yourself again and again what you’re really capable of.

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5. Your peers will see you in a different way

Whether we want to admit or not, people judge other people. And right now, people view you in a certain way, and they have a certain idea of what you’re capable of. That’s because they’ve become accustomed to seeing you operate in your comfort zone.

But once you move out of your comfort zone, you’ll prove to other people, as well, that you’re capable of much more than you’ve shown in the past.

The increased confidence other people place in you will bring about more opportunities than ever before.

6. Your comfort zone will expand

The good thing about the comfort zone is that it’s flexible and malleable. With each action you take outside of your comfort zone, it expands. And once you master that new skill or action, it eventually becomes part of your comfort zone.

This is great news for you because it means that you can constantly increase and improve upon the behaviors that you’re comfortable with. And the more tools and skills you have at your disposal, the easier it will be to achieve your goals.

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7. You will increase your concentration and focus

When you’re living inside of your comfort zone, the bulk of your actions are habitual: automatic, subconscious, and requiring limited focus.

But once you move out of your comfort zone, you no longer rely on those habitual responses. You’re forced to concentrate and focus on the new action in a way you never do in your comfort zone.

8. You will develop new skills

Moving out of your comfort zone requires that you develop new skills. One of the many benefits you’ll experience is that you’ll be stepping away from the “limited set of behaviors” and start to develop your ability and expertise in new areas.

Living inside of your comfort zone only requires a limited skill set, and those skills won’t contribute much to your success. Once you can confidently step outside of your comfort zone and learn a new skill, there’s no limit to how much you can achieve.

9. You will achieve more than before

With everything that happens once you move out of your comfort zone, you’re naturally going to achieve more than ever before.

Your increased concentration and focus will help you develop new skills. Those new skills will change the way you see yourself, encouraging you to step even further out of your comfort zone.

Featured photo credit: Josef Grunig via farm3.staticflickr.com

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