He was a council member in high court. And he would take me to all those sports events and all those social events that that his workplace would have. All the people who would see a kid with him, they would want to talk to me. And they would ask me how I’m doing and things like that. I was forced to develop those social skills from a very early age. So my initial inhibition or the barriers melted because I had to adapt to that kind of variability that I was facing when my dad took me to so many places. It’s an acquired skill. And I would suggest the same for introverts also, who do not have sufficient energy to interact with many people. You don’t have to interact with many people. You can choose one or two people you really like and approach them. If it doesn’t work out, it’s fine. Move on.
You will find like-minded people gradually. It takes very little effort, one day at a time. You don’t have to spend too much. You can leave that place if you feel drained immediately.
What has worked best for me at any given point of time is just simply being me. Then I’m attracting the kind of people I like and who I love interacting with. Just show genuine interest in the other person. Get to know them for who they are. And show curiosity about the things they have done, or they have said, or things that matter to them.
How can you develop friendship if you are not even interested in that other person? It’s really not difficult, even if you’re an introvert.
All you have to do is gravitate towards people you click with or vibe with. Or just simply you can observe a person and you may like a person. Just go ahead and talk. It’s okay if they are not in the mood or if they are not interested. Move on, talk to somebody else. That’s how you acquire this social skill.
Another most important thing that doesn’t get stressed enough is you need to be presentable when you are meeting somebody for the first time in real life. Even for online presence- what kind of profile picture do you have? A lot of people don’t pay attention to how they are dressing.
Remember it takes five to eight seconds for people to form the first impression about you. That is where, how you dress becomes important.
Dress up in such a way so that you will feel good when you look into the mirror.
As long as you feel good and confident, you will be able to show that confidence in your conversations with others.
You can just look average and you can still be likable. I have seen so many people who looked pretty ordinary. But when you get to talk to them, you really end up liking them. Because of their personality.
And wear clean clothes, neatly ironed clothes, which are not torn.
The point is you look prim and proper up to your best when you are approaching somebody. It’s not just about looks. Once you have made your first impression, the second thing that becomes important is your personality. And if you’re trying to pretend to be somebody you are not, that as extremely off-putting.
People can tell when somebody else is pretending. And it’s very off-putting if you are just throwing what accomplishments you have done. Bragging or even humble bragging is annoying. Every one of us have some or the other kinds of accomplishments. So going and straight away, talking to people about your accomplishments and how well you are doing in your life actually doesn’t connect. Because nobody cares what you have done in your life. What value do you bring to them? Right now. You might be a president of some club. But what does it mean to me?
What is common between you and me? You can be the president of the world. But if we have nothing in common to talk about, then what can I do? We can never be friends. Then it becomes a transactional relationship where I want something from you; you want something from me. That’s not a meaningful connection. That’s not how you make friends.
We think that we are just going to make acquaintances and it’s going to be a transactional relationship. And that’s how we end up having no friends. You have to think long-term. It’s your acquaintances who eventually become your friends when you keep talking with them, when you keep connecting with them for a long time. Over a period of time. You have to spend time with those people. I’m planning to write a book helping you become a well-rounded individual. So that you can become good in multiple aspects of your life. Not just only in work or any specific area in life. So in that book, I’ll have a chapter dedicated to this topic where I go into much more details.
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