Tips to Build Social Confidence
Not sure how you can appear more socially confident? One way to do this is to practice your social skills. If you make the effort to practice your social skills, it will help you to appear socially confident no matter what situation you find yourself in.
But, don’t get overly serious about this. You don’t want to be perfect—rather, you want to feel confident that you know social etiquette and have practiced it enough times that you know how to handle various situations.
It’s okay to make mistakes. You’re trying out new skills and seeing how they work. You’re bound to feel awkward and like you don’t know what you’re doing, but over time that feeling will go away.
Step 1: Address Your Social Anxiety
If you have overwhelming social anxiety, you’ll need to address this first before you start to put yourself into social situations to become more socially confident. There are a variety of ways you can do this.
- You could read self-help books and apply the strategies that you find.
- You could see a therapist in person or choose online therapy from a provider such as Online-Therapy.
- You could tap into energy psychology methods and see if they work for you.
Regardless of what you choose, it’s important to make sure that your anxiety is at least manageable before you start to try to boost your social confidence.
Step 2: Choose a Skill to Work On
First, choose a social skill that you’d like to focus on, read a description of how you go about it, and then put it into practice. Below is a list of the types of social skills you may want to practice.
- Expressing your opinion
- Standing up for your own rights
- Handling rejection
- Speaking with a loud enough voice
- Maintaining eye contact
- Not standing too far away from people
- Pointing your body toward someone when you are talking
- Listening and asking questions
- Sharing things about yourself
- Joining a group in conversation
- Ending a conversation
Meeting new people:
- Introducing yourself to a new person
- Introducing someone to another person
- Making small talk
- Asking someone on a date
Being in the spotlight:
- Speaking up in a meeting
- Volunteering to give a toast
- Sharing things about yourself
- Smiling and being friendly toward others
- Showing interest in others
- Sharing funny stories or jokes
- Asking someone how their day is going
Awareness and empathy:
- Shift your focus away from yourself to becoming aware of how others are feeling
Step 3: Find or Create a Social Situation
However, you can’t practice social skills on your own. So, you’re going to need to seek out people to practice with.
Create a situation in which you have an opportunity to practice some social skills. The situation you create will depend on the social skill you want to practice. For example, you could sign up for a yoga or similar class if you want to practice meeting new people. If you’d like to practice being assertive, you could return an item to the store.
Once you’re in the situation, practice working on a social skill from one of the above categories.
Step 4: Do It Again
Quite literally, you’re just going to keep repeating this process for each of the different social skills. Over time, you should notice that you start to feel more socially confident as you begin to get more comfortable with various situations.
Step 5: Evaluate Your Progress
What you should notice over time is that your beliefs start to shift, such that you start to see yourself as a socially confident person rather than someone who is awkward and anxious.
Eventually, these new beliefs should start to feed your thoughts, so that you have fewer anxious thoughts overall. If you don’t notice this happening, it could be that you have underlying unresolved issues that are preventing you from making progress.
Do you ever feel like you are resisting becoming a socially confident person? Do you worry that people won’t like you if you become “that guy” or “that girl?” These are issues you will need to address in order to make progress.
That’s it! Go through the list above and start making progress toward becoming a more socially confident person. I believe that anyone can take positive steps in this regard, and you are no exception.