Everyone feels isolated sometimes, no matter how many friends they have. We all want to learn to make connections with other people and the world around us. Here are 10 tips to break out of your lonely cocoon and become a social butterfly.
1. Don’t Be Fake
It’s pretty simple; don’t come across as an attention-seeking machine. Be a real, genuine person to the people you’re networking with. Don’t worry about how to impress people if it gets in the way of making connections that are genuine. The people who you want to have a relationship with are eventually going to meet the real you, so be honest and present that person right away.
2. Be Attentive
People like to be listened to, so listen closely. The best way to get to know someone is to just let them tell you about themselves, so you don’t want to hoard the conversation. Give them plenty of time to speak. They’ll appreciate it and feel more comfortable around you, which could result in a long-lasting relationship.
3. Be Supportive
Look for ways to help others, even if it’s the first time you’re having a conversation with them. When you’re on a job hunt, the best thing you can do is demonstrate your benefits to a potential employer by aiding him or her. Look for opportunities to support the people you’re talking with; don’t solely focus on what you want out of the relationship or the relationship will be nonexistent.
4. Be Persistent
Don’t be afraid to work a little bit for someone’s attention, whether that someone be a person you want to know personally or professionally. Be sure not to be a pest, but don’t give up too easily or you might not make connections you want to.
5. Be Desirable
An air of mystery around a person makes them all the more fascinating to everyone they talk with. The most boring man or woman could seem dazzling if he or she is adept at knowing what to reveal about themselves and what to keep hidden. If you’re trying to intrigue a new person, avoid being a completely open book.
6. Don’t Be Forgotten
Make an impression. Don’t do anything too crazy, but make sure you do something to distinguish yourself from the crowd of suitors or applicants when trying to make connections.
7. Keep Your Eye On The Prize
You have to be real, but you should also remember what your ultimate goal is. Don’t be so sidetracked by trying to be helpful that you don’t consider your own needs. Consistently remind yourself what you want and how you’re going to get it.
8. Connect With Common Interests
If you listened to the person you’re trying to impress when they told you what they enjoy, you’ll know if you have any common interests. Having similar hobbies is a great way to build the foundation of a friendship. Even if you’re not exactly into what the other person is into, connect their passion with something you do like so that you can show some enthusiasm.
9. It’s Not What You Know…
Nepotism is almost always an advantage. Using that advantage isn’t a bad thing; it’s simply an opportunity to present yourself. If you have a friend or a friend of a friend who knows the person you’re trying to impress, make use of them so that you can get your foot in the door.
10. Be True To Yourself
Never waiver from being the person that you want and deserve to be. You may be tempted to try anything to make a connection with someone, but don’t try to deceive that job recruiter or potential friend into thinking that you’re something you’re really not. That situation ends distastefully for all parties.
Featured photo credit: Digo_Souza via flickr.com