3 Ways to Become Sociable
Man is a social animal and success in life doesn’t come by knowledge and hard work alone. Unless you communicate and reach out to others, you are likely to be left behind. The inter-dependence of man makes it all the more important to be sociable and communicative to get things done quickly. Improving your social skills are also vital for building relationships. Individual brilliance coupled with teamwork brings the best results and therefore industry looks for people with social skills. It pays to take a little effort to be more warm and friendly.
Improving your social skills improve your confidence, your happiness levels and could also be a great stress reliever. It will improve your health and also help boost your career growth. Social skills vary from person to person –your family members, schooling, friends, associates may have contributed their share in making you less sociable. However, there is no point in blaming others and the power to enhance your social skills is within you.
Here are three ways to improve your social skills.
1. Start Interacting with Others
As in swimming, unless you jump into the water, you won’t learn, the best way to be more sociable is to initiate short conversations with strangers. It could be even a simple ‘thank you’ to your nearby grocer or a cab driver. Try to say something about the weather or films, or compliment people on their gadgets or dressing. Sometimes, asking their name and place itself can be a good icebreaker. If you appear to be sociable, others will take over and you become friendly sooner.
2. Try to Ask Open-Ended Questions
If you unfortunately get to meet people who are tight-lipped, asking close-ended questions can elicit only a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ answer. For example, are you interested in films? Are you going north? Do you like to have coffee? On the other hand, open-ended questions that make them open up are more likely to succeed. It could be their hobbies, their family, their achievements, their work among others. After an introduction, you need such topics to keep the conversation going.
3. Show a Genuine Interest in Others
Dale Carnegie, the best- selling author and mentor had always emphasized the need to keep the interest of others in conversations. Most people are self-centered and would like others to show interest in them. So replace your talk with ‘You’ or ‘We’ instead of ‘I’. If you are talking over phone, it is polite to ask, ‘ Is this the right time to speak to you?’. If the other person is genuinely busy or upset over something, they will appreciate your attitude and possibly agree to speak later or call you back.
Your social skills can be vastly improved when you listen more, have a sense of humor and steer clear of controversial topics such as religion, gossips, political views or some topic the other person is not likely to be interested in.
It is important to maintain eye-contact, appropriate facial expressions, body language and posture. It is very important to end a conversation gratefully. 'It was great talking to you', 'I have a meeting', or 'It was nice to meet you, will catch up soon', ‘ You seem to be in a hurry, we’ll meet up again’ are some of the examples.
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