The Complete Guide on How to Be More Outgoing
By Social Life Expert David Morin and Behavioral Scientist Viktor Sander
Naturally outgoing people obviously didn't go straight from the womb to bars and parties. They built up their social skills and confidence gradually.
Everyone who’s not used to bars, parties and mingles feel uncomfortable in those environments. Some argue that we’re evolutionary hardwired to avoid situations with a lot of strangers as it could mean danger - what if they all belonged to the rivalling tribe?
Let's look at the path “naturally” socially successful people take to feel comfortable in social situations and how you can recreate that path. What they did was starting out in environments where they felt at home and then gradually took on new venues. Perhaps they started off with a small advantage socializing in kindergarten, used the skills they learned there to continue to socialize at lunch breaks in school and from there got the confidence they needed to attend all those school-discos to be able to feel comfortable at night clubs and mingles today.
I guess this sounds obvious to you presented this way. But when you actually see socially successful people in action it might not feel that obvious. If we don't think about the work behind who they are, it's easy to get tricked into believing that they are born that way while others are not.
I think it’s important to be aware of the process that built their social skills and confidence. Just as socially successful people started of easy - so should you.
I will now help you re-create the natural path socially successful people take to build their skills and confidence in social situations.
Try to come up with a few different situations. I, for example, used to enjoy parties if I had a good friend that I could hang out with and knew that I wouldn't be forced to speak to others. Another example might be joining a club or meetup for something you like to do. I joined a group of entrepreneurs who met once a week because entrepreneurship is one of my interests.
Actually doing this makes the profound difference between gradually changing into who you want to become - or forever staying the same. After a while, these situations will start feeling more natural and you will be able to take new steps.
As an example, it was natural for me to, after a while, start to interact with friends of friends, and when I felt that I could handle that, initiating conversations with strangers started to become fun as well. However, I would have experienced that as pure agony if I hadn't taken the incremental steps first.
Of course, bars and night clubs don’t even have to be your final goal.
My goal has never been going to parties (even if I enjoy that too). My goal has been being able to connect with people and make a lot of close friends. But as parties, mingles and bars traditionally are symbols of the most demanding venues socially, I use them as an example.
The mere thought of talking to strangers makes Jordan sick. But there’s one guy at work he occasionally speaks with.
He studies conversation skills thoroughly and makes sure to speak with that guy whenever an opportunity comes up, until he feels confident enough to strike up conversations with others as well. He makes sure to expose himself to situations that are just slightly challenging, because he knows that situations that aren’t challenging won’t make him grow - and situations too challenging makes him feel demotivated.
Fast forward one year, Jordan has made a few friends but still feels uncomfortable speaking to total strangers. However, he noticed that it feels better when he’s at parties where he already knows most of the people. Therefore, he makes sure to go to a lot of his friends parties. He can enjoy this, because he knows that he always can end the conversation with a stranger and go back to his friends at any time.
After a couple of weeks, he feels more confident talking to strangers. Now he instead gets thrilled by taking a more central role at parties. He starts practicing telling stories and involving several people in discussions at once.
People start admiring him for his ability to do so and this gives him more self confidence.
As Jordan starts to identify with a socially skilled person, his self confidence continues to rise. He no longer identifies with being socially awkward and is seen by others as a socially successful person.
An increased self confidence will help you become more outgoing. Here are some effective ways to increase your self confidence in social situations.
Scientists discovered in an experiment that when test subjects were instructed to focus on the person they were talking to rather than themselves, they felt 67% more self confidentref.
You will notice how your mind starts to focus inwards when thoughts come up such as “Now I’m looking nervous” or “Now they’re thinking that I’m awkward”. When that happens, force yourself to ask yourself questions about the people around you instead. These questions might be “What is he working with?” “She said she’s an artist. What kind of artist?” "How is he spending his free time?". "I wonder how she felt about moving here".
Memorize the set of initial questions I talked about in the previous chapter. Memorizing these questions will in in itself make you feel more confident because you always will have a conversation to fall back on.
In general, you shouldn’t fake who you are in social situations. This is the exception to that rule. If you fake self confidence in social situations, you will get a genuine self confidence in social situations.
When I first heard about this method, I didn’t believe it would work. I advise you to really try this out to see first hand how well it works, as it's thoroughly proven in interesting experiments, more about that a bit further down.
We all know how self confident people behave. James Bond, Oprah Winfrey, George Clooney, you probably consume hundreds of hours every year watching self confident people act. Thanks to this, your brain knows instinctively exactly how a self confident person behaves.
When you’re feeling uncomfortable at a social gathering, you can mimic the behaviour of one of the actors or characters that you’ve watched:
Scientists discovered in an experiment that if we act in a self confident way, we genuinely do become more self confident. Stress hormones decreased and hormones associated with determination and confidence increased in just a few minutes after changing into a self confident posture.
Did you know that…
In summary, people are more insecure than we think they are. If you presume that others are self confident and you’re not, you’re putting them on a pedestal. Knowing that people in general feel quite insecure will help you meet them on the same level that you’re on.
Public speakers use the old trick of imagining the audience to be naked. When they do, standing on the stage feels less scary. As soon as we picture people we meet as uncomfortable, something happens in our brains. We take the role of being the confident person.
You will also start to explain the world in a different way. If you meet someone who's reserved and assume that the person is self confident, you might assume that he or she doesn't like you. If you meet someone's who's reserved and you assume that the person is nervous, which is statistically true, you might assume that the reserved attitude has to do with the other person being nervous.
No you know that a lot of people feel quite uncomfortable in social situations.
You can use this knowledge to both feel more confident yourself and help others out. When you’re at a social gathering, look for people who are standing on their own or who look uncomfortable. Their biggest wish is to have someone talking to them just like “everyone else” is talking. Approach them by using the conversation techniques from the previous chapter.
Like I said before, it will be easier to approach people who look less confident. You can be more certain that they in fact would appreciate to be spoken to.
Start a conversation by using the conversation starter sentences in the previous chapter. You’ve made the person you approach feel a whole lot better, and perhaps you’ll have something in common that you can talk about.
Look for people who...
Approach them by...
You can now choose if you want to continue to hang out with the person or if you want to talk to someone else.
The best way to end a conversation, in a nice way, is to refer to a future point in time. Referring to a future point in time means ending in a positive mode. Here are some examples on what to say:
If you aren’t that interested in meeting again:
If you are interested in meeting up again:
If you’re interested in meeting up again, you should propose doing so through an activity related to a mutual interest. This is why it’s so important to look for mutual interests. Say that it turns out you’re both into running. You can say:
Using an activity is paramount for meeting up again. In chapter 5 I will go in-depth into meeting new acquaintances through social activities.
Learn how to Develop Self Confidence
Learn successful social tips through The Complete Guide to How to be More Social by social life expert David Morin and behavioral scientist Victor Sander. Increase social confidence by a few simple psychological tips. The self confidence guide will help you become more comfortable in social situations in a few minutes.
Hit it off with complete strangers. Know how to modify your questions in a way that will make people open up more even if you have to mimic the confidence. Help them out by approaching them yourself instead and seem more confident as well.
In the next chapter I will show you exactly how to attend a confident, relaxed body language even in the most intense social situations.
Or, you can watch my FREE video training here: Conversation Advice for Over-Thinkers.