Wow I have had an “aha” moment this weekend…….I am actually somewhat socially awkward!!
I am not shy and I have a lot of confidence and am happy to chat away for ever on love and relationships should someone start the conversation. However I have realised that I become anxious in certain situations.
I have identified I am great in one to one situations or in small groups of those I know get me(my tribe) but put me in a situation of mingling and small talk with groups outside my comfort zone and my natural introvert characteristics kick in.
Add being in a group of those that are drunk whilst I am as ever (Mz Sensible) the designated driver and even common bonds seem to slip away.
It explains so much of why I am uncomfortable in taxis, don’t like “networking” and find approaching new people torturous.
So I have carefully reviewed this part of me to understand myself better…I am someone who walks my walk and talks my talk..ever looking for ways to grow, develop and to allow my soul to find peace..I am an active seeker of my truth….especially as embarking on my 2016 tour of public speaking my natural introvercy could hold me back from helping those who need me.
When looking into this issue I have discovered that many recommend social confidence courses and offer you encouragement to mirror other socially confident people, to study the etiquette of networking and to just get in there and do it!! I am not lacking in confidence, am aware of the etiquette and have tried to immerse myself in my fears..all resulting in me being in ever compromising situations that make my soul anxious
If any of this rings a chord with you (you are obviously part of my tribe lol) then here are 5 different “tips” that I have given myself that might help you. Tip 1 is a discovery that is key not just for this issue but will help you recognise more about yourself in love and relationships.
TIP 1 – INTROVERT OR EXTROVERT
Accept that social awkwardness and anxiety is very common and very natural..especially if you are introvert. Finding out if you are an introvert or an extrovert is a key discovery to accepting who you are naturally. Take this free test from Psychologies Magazine to help you identify which you are.
Many think that extroverts are super confident and introverts are super shy..this is not the truth. Many famous comedians, performers and public figures are natural introverts. The introvert tends to prefer the company of a few in a home setting rather than the extrovert preferring the company of many at a gig.
If you find you are an extrovert and still struggle with social awkwardness then click to take the advice offered in this confidence coaches blog which may work for you. The remaining tips are for those introverts that no matter how they try the awkwardness remains
TIP 2 – ACCEPTANCE
So now you know you are naturally an introvert its ok to accept that many social situations could often feel awkward for you. Not because you don’t have the skills to deal with them but because they go against the grain of where you would prefer to be. Accepting that your “social awkwardness” is merely a charming part of your unique makeup stops you expecting more from yourself and beating yourself up
TIP 3 – SAYING THANKS BUT NO THANKS
There will be times that you have to venture out and mingle as part of work or family occasions however it is just as acceptable to allow yourself the ability to say no thank you its just not my thing. Owning who you are will allow people to understand you better and know that your not being rude.
TIP 4 – FINDING YOUR TRIBE
Don’t rule out every social occasion just because it makes you feel a bit anxious. Evaluate the type of event and what you could give or learn from it. Will there be others of your “tribe” there ie is it an event that you will all have a mutual interest ie love, or beauty or health and fitness. If so the positives outweigh the negatives and who knows who you might meet as a result of mutual interests
TIP 5 – COPING MECHANISMS
In the event that saying no thanks to an event/party is not an option, ie its in your best interest or part of your work or something you are keen to attend, then here are a few coping mechanisms to help the natural introvert anxiety settle when it comes time to mingle:
Make eye contact and smile…let an extrovert know that its ok to approach you for a chat
Join one of your tribe,another introvert…you will recognise them as they will be sitting alone
Use break time to catch up on emails, make some calls, visit the bathroom or do a 10 min mediation
Ask one of the speakers or host about a specific topic you want to know more about
Use the time to sit quietly observing your own body, your heart rate, any physical signs of anxiety and accept them ..they are all part of you and your learning more about yourself on a daily basis
If you choose to come to any of my events, be it an Are You Ready For Love Seminar, A Soul Profiing Workshop, or any of the weekend retreats…feel free to help the introvert in me to connect with you by coming and saying hi..I will be grateful lol!!
TJ The Love Coach
Life is for loving x