No matter how confident and popular you are, sometimes it can get lonely out there. You might be comfortable with being on your own and enjoying your “me” time thoroughly, but there will be moments you’d wish to socialize or connect with people who understand your thoughts without much talking.
I’m a natural extrovert. I love expressing myself in many ways, smiling at strangers, genuinely complimenting others when something excites me, and openly communicating my feelings and moods.
The extrovert feature in my personality gave me plenty of advantages in my solo trips or ex-pat lifestyle, especially when I got moments where I wondered how to connect with someone or when I wanted to meet people, share opinions and make friendships.
But when you’re an introvert, things are more challenging. I have many friends asking me, “How do you find the strength of joining a group of people out of nowhere and actively engaging with them?
Or “how did you get to spend a day with a stranger and felt like you knew him for ages“?
Both introverts and extroverts can test the following piece of advice: it works, no matter your personality type.
Next time you travel or you’re on your own, and you wonder how to connect with others or how to open up to people, keep those tips in mind.
1) You can control your emotions; choose to relax when trying to communicate with others
Let’s start with a fact you have to accept before reading below; not everyone will like you. Once you dare to be disliked, you’ll be able to let your guard down, be yourself, and go with the flow.
You cannot connect or click with specific people, either.
Always think about what it is that you’re losing when you are you. Be polite, humble, and respectful, but be true to who you are. Authenticity is always appreciated, and people can intuit more than you think.
When you’re “you,” without faking moods or sacrificing what you think, and without pretending you have an extra interest, you win. You move a step closer and connect with the people who’ll genuinely appreciate you for finding the courage to be yourself.
Consequently, you’d be away from those who’d make you waste your time by pretending. Negative vibes go away, and honesty thrives. Be always selective and straightforward because that’s the key to building a genuine connection with someone.
2) Connecting with others requires spotting the similarities instead of the differences
Every one of us is so same and so different in many, many ways. To me, that’s the magic of meeting with people abroad and understanding those who seem so different, superficially.
Give everyone a chance; people are smarter, funnier, and more interesting than you think.
Try to focus actively on the chat, and don’t let anything distract you. Instead of thinking about what you’ll reply, spot everything that connects you with the other person.
Let the similarities charm you, and the differences open you up to different worlds, views, and approaches. You’ll be surprised to find out that everyone has similar stories to say, guided by feelings you once felt too.
If you adopt this mindset, you won’t need alcohol, ice-breaking tactics, or group therapy to feel connected and intimate with others.
Whenever you feel intimidated, shy, or “not good enough,” try to think again about what you and the other person you’re chatting with have in common.
3) Give and receive therapy; the basis of all human connections
In the book of Scott, “The Road Less Traveled,” and it hit me. We choose to interact with and appreciate those who offer a safe base to open up—those to whom we can express ourselves without being judged or criticized.
What if you can better someone by letting him be himself? Try to listen. Instead of analyzing everything that the other person is saying or doing, try to listen more and use their words.
Imply your conclusions out of their stories and phrases. Show them that you’re there, reassure them that you care, make eye contact, and don’t touch your phone.
Consequently, when you feel you want advice, someone to listen, or just a hug, ask for it. Claim it.
Don’t let your needs embarrass you. People can be there if you let them, and it’s incredible to realize that you’re capable of trusting and worthy of receiving love.
4) Smile often and give compliments to the people you want to connect with
How often do you look at yourself in the mirror before you go out for the night? How much do you want others to admire your work?
You want to win the people around you, and that’s fair. But what if your smile, eyes, attention, and mind can make you more attractive than anything you wear?
When you hear or see something that you like, say it. It costs nothing, and a positive attitude can make someone’s day. It’s more useful than you think, and next time you find yourself hesitating, consider how you’d feel if someone was complimenting you.
If you catch someone’s eye, smile. Smile at the peculiar interest, which made you look at their side first, as well as the coincidence of capturing each other.
When someone speaks to you, or vice versa, make eye contact. Be there, mind, body, and soul. Every human interaction is (and can be) striking and useful if you pay attention.
Don’t overdo it, only be genuine. Like an extravagant outfit or makeup, an artificial interest, smile, or compliment can scream fakeness.
5) Find reasons to celebrate with your connections
There’s no need to wait for your birthday or your name day for an excellent excuse to celebrate. (I’m not too fond of birthdays, actually.)
Invite the ones you like over. Cook for them, and make small toasts about all the things you appreciate or others that bring you together. Celebrations, cocktail parties, and dinners are connecting and bringing people together.
Celebrate your ability to understand and make each other’s lives better or the appetite you have to travel the world and learn new things.
Well, life can be freaking special. Why don’t you celebrate that?
Your pleasant and flirtatious attitude can be contagious, and people want optimists and delightful human beings around them.
6) In a world that you can be everything, be kind to the people you want to connect with
Before you judge, correct, or criticize someone that you don’t know so well about an issue that doesn’t concern you-we have all been there and done that, on purpose or not- be empathetic. How you’d feel if you were in the shoes of that person and someone was judging or mocking you?
Choose to be kind and speak on someone else’s matter, only if you’re asked to do so. You can’t lose there, only win.
Kindness is a generous act that cannot be misunderstood or misinterpreted. It is what it is. You don’t know most people’s backgrounds or stories, even those you think that you know the most. How many times did you wonder how to make someone open up or build a deeper emotional connection?
By using kindness instead of judgment, chances are you’re covering both scenarios, and you’re also more appreciated in your relationships.
How do you connect with the world and the people you want to give and receive love?
Comment your ways!