I’m a shy and retiring kinda gal. Bit of an introvert. I struggle making friends. It’s basically that, I make a bad first impression. I think this is beause I know I’m shy and know that I have to make friends (e.g. when you first go to uni/ new schools etc). To overcome my shyness I have a tendency to over compensate. I know I do. Whether I’m too loud, I’m too Giggley, too “in your face”. I’m just too…“too”. If you speak to the majority of my friends they often say “yeah love her now, but hated her when I first met her” and that’s fine. It’s take a while to warm to me. I wear people down with how adorable I really am.
As mentioned I’m a little introverted, which I don’t know how but always leads people’s to the assumption that people think I think that I’m better than everyone else. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Whether this is because I can be quiet and that comes across as being up myself. Or whether I’m so insecure and I over compensate to such a degree, I come out the other end and come across as a know all? Maybe this is why I make such a bad impression. I come across as someone who thinks they are the dogs bollocks (yuck who likes people like that) or I come across as a loud, over laughing pratt.
So clearly my first impressions needs working on.
The fact is after university you stop having situations where you meet lots of new people at once. At university it feels like you are continually meeting new people. From your course, your flat mates, different societies, and then there are just the house parties and nights out. So it feels pretty full on. After university there is only one place where you are likely to meet lots of new people en masse. The work place.
Now I’ve just (relativity speaking; last year) finished university. And you don’t need me to tell you how hard it is to get job. I think you could have guessed my feelings from this. (link to someone employ me). But to follow on from that- I’m employed! Well done me! However, If you haven’t guessed already from the rambly pre amble. I now have to make friend at work, not make a bad impression, not come across as shy and not. I repeat. Not get drunk in front of my boss.
I’ve done all these things.
Okay maybe not all these things. But more than I’m proud to admit. This is for anyone who has anxiety with meeting people, and in the work place it is even more intense because you need these people to like you… because they pay you the precious, precious monies.
So some handy tips.
Be aware of what you’re saying
I can not be the only one who sometimes wonders if their mouth is attached to their brain. BE VIGILANT. Don’t say inappropriate things. I literally said to my boss “are you sad that your package is bent” (CONTEXT: he had a package delivered… it was bent…LEGITIMATE STATEMENT)
Don’t hide behind shyness
There is nothing wrong with being shy. However if you never talk and don’t put yourself forward, all your boss is going to think is that you have no ideas and that hiring you was a Bad Idea. Rubbish, but true. It’s uncomfortable, but sometimes you have to push yourself out of your comfort zone to show everyone what you’re capable of. For example the reason I don’t speak up is cause I often think what I’m about to say is stupid or not worth voicing. This is nonsense; whatever you have to say or contribute is worth being listened to. Just tell your self that it is better to try than not try.
Don’t get drunk at a work do and say something embarrassing
Example: “Wow, my longest committed relationship is with cake” said by Dee Baker only last week.
Go to work events
Meeting new people is rubbish, but once you’ve done it, it gets easier and easier. The sooner, the better. The longer you put off getting to know people, the harder it is. It is like ripping off a plaster. Get that first awkward “Hi I’m new” over and done with, it gets so much easier.
With this in mind, go to as many work events as there is! If your work does a drinks evening- go! (Just don’t get drunk and confess your undying love of cake)
Those are a few handy tips from a fellow introvert who struggles with the making of the new friends. If you have any tips and hints- share your experience!
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