When do you develop social skills?
Are you a sociable person? Would you put yourself into the ‘Outgoing’ category or would you prefer to stay at home on a weekend night? If you’re the latter, then you’re not alone as many would rather stay at home than going out socializing.
There are many reasons as to why someone would rather stay in, more often than not, it’s age-related but sometimes its a problem. So if you’re worried about not seeing your friends or you just can’t seem to get up and go out to enjoy yourself, then you may be suffering from what’s known as a social phobia.
There could be a hundred reasons as to why you have poor social skills, but if it’s an ongoing thing, then the problem could be something from your past. It could be family-related, even genetic.
Were your parents outgoing when you were growing up or were they always there in the house? If let’s say your mother was always in the house and never really went out then this could have had a negative impact on your psychological makeup.
Maybe you saw something negative when you were young. It could have been anything from being chased by a dog or encountering an old scary person. Either way, this encounter would have sent you fleeing home where you felt safe.
Eventually, you probably thought of your family home as your safe zone & when you finally left, you then made your new home a safe zone.
What we can take away from all of this is that it’s a complete psychological thing and is easily rectified. With a little effort you could be out socializing in no time, all it takes is some willpower.
Remember, there are many different types of social interactions but you first need to get out of your safe zone and engage. You must realize that there is a problem, this is the most important step which will get you on the move to finally do something about your underdeveloped social skills.
How to develop social skills
In order to start developing your new skills, you’ll first need to write down all the areas you think you are lacking in. For example, you could start off with nonverbal skills as these would be easier to negotiate than verbal skills.
Then after you figure out the way you visually come across to others, you can start on your verbal skills.
To help with this, some people try repeating affirmations which can be a big help. Others will record these affirmations as social skills subliminal which they can listen to over and over again. This will change the way you interact with others without you even realizing it.
Which skills do you need to develop?
There are many areas you can develop in one lifetime but probably the most important are verbal & nonverbal, as they fall into most if not all categories.
Most of all we are visual creatures so, in order to make an impression, you’ll need to work on how you look and interact with others first. By doing this you will cover most of the basics.
What skills are important?
As mentioned above, verbal & nonverbal skills are the most important. Verbal skills obviously refer to the spoken language. You may not know it but you could be coming off as ignorant or uncaring when you speak.
Some people choose not to speak at all and it’s very difficult to get anything out of them. They are usually referred to as the dark horse or the quiet one.
These people have usually tripped up somewhere down the line and it was pointed out to them, so they choose to speak only when spoken to.
Or they made a fool of themselves way too often and now they follow the mantra “Sometimes its better to keep your mouth shut and have everyone think you’re a fool, rather than opening your mouth and having everyone know you’re a fool“.
Trust me, you do not want to be in a situation like this. You should always feel comfortable when trying to get your point across.
Are social skills learned?
Always remember that your opinion counts. Everyone you’ve ever met knows something you don’t. So if this is true, then you know lots of things which others don’t know anything about.
So it’s important to socialize, so we can learn from one another. The more we socialize, the more we learn. We can start to pick up on certain ways others act and we can copy them.
So the next time you’re out and about with a popular acquaintance, take a close look at how they act while around others. You can try to mirror them. By mirroring someone, you can automatically form a subconscious bond. In other words, they will automatically like you without knowing why.
This will then spread to the others and they will like you too. Be careful though, some people can take this too far and will start to dress like the other person. This will be very noticeable so don’t do it. Stick to the verbal and non-verbal actions and you’ll do just fine.
In a very short period of time, you’ll notice that other people in the group will treat you the same as the person you just mirrored. The person who you mirrored may cop onto this and could become jealous, but don’t mind this, it’s all part of your game plan.
Over time as you become more popular your social circle will become way bigger so you’ll have plenty of new friends to practice your new improved skills on.
Can social skills be improved?
Yes, once we figure out which skills need improving then it’s a matter of getting out of an old habit and learning a new one. So for example, if we take nonverbal communication for instance.
This is all about body language and how we project ourselves. If you can project yourself in a certain way, then others will take notice real fast. You could for instance make eye contact more often.
You’ve seen this yourself, you’re talking to someone and they are looking in a different direction. This behavior comes across as being really rude, however, the person doing this is not aware.
So going forward, concentrate on making eye contact when you are talking to someone & don’t overdo it or you’ll come across as being strange.
Another nonverbal communication area you could change is the way you stand. You should always stand up straight with your shoulders back & your chest outwards.
Try this the next time you’re out & see how people interact with you. It’s amazing the effect these two small things have on the way others see you.
How social skills are affected by technology
Yep, we’ve all seen it. You walk into a room and everyone is sitting down with their heads buried into a smartphone or tablet. No one is engaging with one another on a personal level. Their ability to interact with others is getting worse day by day.
This problem is especially prevalent in teenagers and will cause many problems as we head into the future. The best advice is to remove these devices for most of the day at least.
Social skills and emotional intelligence
Facial expressions also form a big part when it comes to building these skills. You really cannot be laughing or smiling at the wrong time. You should inherently know when certain facial expressions are required. Most do but some will find this difficult.
A good way to learn this skill is to watch movies and see how actors perform when something good or bad happens. You can learn from them if you find it too difficult.
For the rest of us, it’s a matter of practice. Once you start making eye contact during a conversation the rest will follow. Smile more often when it’s appropriate to do so. Show empathy when it’s needed, this is what people remember the most about a person.
This is why some people have many friends and get all the invites to those parties. They have actually practiced what they’ve learned on others, they have looked at their own emotional intelligence & fixed it if needed.
Social Skills Affirmations List
- I have good verbal skills
- I love talking to other people
- I am a good communicator
- I easily show empathy for others
- I am a good listener
- I have a great smile
- I am very welcoming
- I love interacting with others
- I love going out and meeting people
- I see the good in others
- I love to help others in times of need
- My friends can rely on me
- I am well liked
- I always make eye contact when talking
- I look at everyone in the room when talking
- I have great relationships
- I am well respected
- I always listen before I talk
- I never interrupt a conversation
- I give more than I take
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