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How To Be More Social at Work? 6 Steps With Tips for Introverts


Jane Ng 15 April, 2024 9 min read

How to be more social as an introvert?- If you are an introvert, this is probably a question you have searched for at least once. Unlike extroverts, socializing with others may seem difficult for you. It is common to experience insecurity and anxiety when speaking in front of a crowd. Or it takes a lot of courage to meet and talk to someone you're just meeting for the first time. Communicating or socializing sometimes makes you feel exhausted.

You must accept that your heart is always racing before you start feeling "noticed".

There's nothing wrong with being an introvert, just that sometimes it causes some inconvenience or disadvantage when you're in a group full of sociable people. So, in this article, we will introduce the Best 6 Steps and Tips for being more social, especially at work.

How to be more social
How to be more social - Why do we need to be more social?

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#Step 1 - Find The Right Motivation

How to become more social as an introvert? Many introverts feel that going out and socializing as a social activity is more obligatory than voluntary, so they do not feel motivated to do these things. But changing how you look at the problem will make it easier to approach and try.

  • Instead of thinking: "I hate doing things to bond like this"
  • Try replacing it with: “It might be fun to observe and participate. Maybe I can find like-minded people and hobbies and learn from other perspectives."

Of course, you can't force yourself to jump from "introvert" to "extrovert", but you can choose the right motivation, such as improving the knowledge and skills needed in the job or knowledge about the subject you want to study, etc. Meeting new people helps people have new experiences and can change their beliefs and outlook on life.

#Step 2 - Set Social Goals

You can start with small goals first, not too big ones, such as:

  • Make a new friend
  • Feel more confident in the crowd
  • Be less shy when talking
  • Smoother story opening

If you do not put too much pressure on yourself, like wanting everyone to remember your name, it will make you more comfortable and easier to communicate with people. 

How to be more social - Do not put too much pressure on yourself

#Step 3 - Start A Conversation

The ability to start a conversation is necessary for networking and building relationships. However, finding the right opening the first time you meet someone can be challenging. Regardless of the circumstances or personality of the person you want to talk to, there are several effective ways to start a conversation:

Use Ice Breaking Questions

Using +115 Ice Breaking Questions is one of the most effective ways to learn and engage with someone and keep the conversation going. Example:

  • Are you reading anything interesting book right now? 
  • How do you feel today?
  • What’s your favourite thing about your job? 
  • Has there been a task that has made you feel stressed lately?
  • Are you a morning person or a night person? 
  • What type of music do you most like to listen to when working?

Introduce Yourself

Introducing yourself is a straightforward way to show your interest in meeting someone. It is suitable if you have just started a new job or joined a club or an organization. For example:

  • Hi, I'm Jane. I just joined the team and would like to introduce myself.
  • Hi, I'm a newbie. I'm shy, please come say hi.

Pay A Compliment

Complimenting someone can boost their mood and make you more relatable. You can choose something you like from the person you want to get to know and mention why you like it. For example:

  • “I really like your hair. This curl makes you look gorgeous"
  • "Your dress is so beautiful. May I ask where you bought it?"

#Step 4 - Make the Most of your Listening Skill

One of the "gifts" of introverts is the ability to listen, so why not make it your strength? Instead of talking and giving meaningless answers, try using your listening and observation skills to find out what triggers or open-ended questions help the story doesn't go to a dead end.

For a conversation with only two people

The fact that you can listen and understand the other person is the key to cementing this relationship. Instead of talking about yourself, you can lead the conversation based on the story of the person you are facing. And it's also a great way to start a conversation and get to know people you've never met.

For a conversation with a team or crowd

This requires a lot more effort. Take 10 minutes a day to update the news or see what these people are having, and what they are learning about (even if it is a topic that you do not really care about). However, doing this will help you gain more knowledge and topics to easily be a part of a community and how to be more social.

How to be more social? Photo: freepik
How to be more social at work? Listening is the key. Gather others’ opinions and thoughts with 'Anonymous Feedback' tips from AhaSlides.

#Step 5 - Have Welcoming Body Language

With your posture, gestures, and movements, you can convince others that you are confident, even if deep down, you are really nervous.

  • Eye contact. Eye contact is the most important and powerful way when interacting directly with others. Maintaining eye contact can give the other person a sense of security, showing honesty, sincerity, approachability, and a willingness to listen.
  • Smile. Smiling makes you more confident and approachable in the eyes of others, and it also relieves you of fatigue. You will feel happier and more comfortable.
  • Stand up straight. You can keep your posture straight by bringing your shoulders back and your head up. This way, you will look both comfortable and confident. A stooped, tense posture, with shoulders forward and head down can cause feelings of insecurity, shyness, and anxiety.

#Step 6 - Don't Be Hard On Yourself

What you need to pay attention to in every conversation is not to force yourself to express more than necessary. This can lead to discomfort or unnaturalness.

You just need to convey exactly what you need to convey to the other person and join the conversation when you feel you need to speak up and express your opinion. Your words will also be valued more when you are not trying to say meaningless, awkward things.

In gatherings, if you feel like you do not get along right away, bring a book with you. Everyone respects the privacy of others, and your reading is something that absolutely deserves respect. It is a way to pass the time, eliminate the awkwardness of not knowing what to say, or avoid unnecessary group activities instead of pretending to be active and get along with everyone.

How to be more social - Photo: freepik

4 Tips For How To Be More Social

Get Over Your Fear Of Rejection

If you can't control what you want to convey in a conversation or meeting, you feel fearful and overwhelmed by emotions, so come up with ideas and plan them. Making a list of what you want to say and spending time practising will help you gain confidence. 

Also, familiarize yourself with the negative voices in your head, identifying them as just your thoughts and not real. Change things like "I'm a terrible communicator" to "I'm someone who can spark good stories around people". 

Find A Common Topic

Prepare topics that are easy to talk about and have in common with everyone to communicate, such as family, pets, sports, and entertainment. Questions like:

  • “Have you seen the latest superhero movie?”
  • "Did you watch the music awards show last night?"
  • “What kind of cat do you have?”

These questions are perfect for engaging in small talk and learning more about people quickly.

Host A Gathering

No one can avoid meeting and gathering with people around. Nothing works more than actively organizing a small gathering or hosting a casual dinner party to find ways to become more sociable. You will learn people's preferences, how to communicate effectively with others, and how to heat up the party with games like Get To Know You, This Or That.

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How to be more social - Hosting a casual dinner party will a good tip for how to be more social.

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Final Thoughts

How to be more social? You can only answer this question by practising communication skills and leaving your comfort zone. 

The above steps and tips will make you feel difficult and discouraged when starting out. However, you can make changes to develop yourself after being persistent and trying to implement them. So try to practice it every single day.

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Frequently Asked Questions:

What causes poor social skills?

The shortage of knowledge, skills and experiences can be reasons for poor social skills. In some cases, some people know how to introduce themselves but still need help in public speaking due to the lack of practice.

Why am I not social?

Various reasons, such as your anxiety, past trauma, lack of experience, or mental health issues, may cause it.

How do I become more sociable and overcome social anxiety?

The most significant thing you can do is stop avoiding the social situations that make you fear; just be brave to face and try to deal with them. Plus, it would help if you practised smiling whenever you can, don’t forget to set goals and reward yourself when you break your limits. Consider therapy if it is necessary.