Humans are social creatures. The better you are at being a social creature, the more success you’ll have. Unless you are content to hide out in a mountain cabin and somehow earn a living without ever interacting with anybody, you’re going to need to get good at interacting with people.
Of course, this can be tough to practice. It’s not like throwing darts, where you know right away if you’re successful or not, and can adjust your technique in real time. Whenever you are using your social skills with somebody else, they’re also using their social skills on you.
With that in mind, here are some basic ideas that will help you get what you want more easily when getting what you want involves interacting with others.
This is a measure of how comfortable you are with others, and how comfortable they are with you. This is a lot easier to create and measure than most people realize. All you’ve got to do is check your body language periodically. If you and your conversation partner are matched up, you’ve got good rapport. If you’re not matched up, simply move slightly until you are.
For many people, this can be tough. However, eye contact lets the person you’re talking to know, on a deep level, that you’re on the up and up and not trying to con them. The good news is that eye contact is pretty easy to practice, and it doesn’t take long before you’ll get pretty comfortable.
Just practice holding eye contact with people you’re speaking with, or even with random strangers on the street.
Everybody wants something. Few people roam the streets without a care in the world. Unless you’re just chewing the fat, (and even if you are) most people have a huge collection of unmet needs. The easiest ways to sparks somebody’s interest is to simply talk about what they want.
Non Verbal Communication
Before you start talking to somebody, it can help if you can sort of tell that they want to talk to you. With practice, this is pretty easy. If they are facing you, and make eye contact a couple of times, they’re interested. If you smile and they smile back, they’re interested.
Breaking The Ice
Sometimes just starting an interaction is the toughest part. One method that works pretty well is just to make a couple of pacing statements. These are statements about the environment or yourself that are true. That way, the person will have an easy time agreeing with you, and won’t feel put on the spot.
Then introduce yourself, and ask some easy to answer questions. Remember, the whole point of an ice breaker is not to impress them, but to make it easy for them to feel comfortable talking to you.
The more you practice these tips, the more your social skills will naturally grow. You’ll enjoy meeting with and speaking with new people, and your social life will take on a life of it’s own.
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