Stop being so uncomfortable

Matthew (@ojai) 9 years, 9 months ago

Ever notice in public how people avoid eye contact if made and don’t feel comfortable speaking to strangers? Don’t do that. See somebody wearing something you think looks good? Just tell them. It’s not too hard. If you catch somebody in eye contact and they look away…don’t look away! It’s like people feel uncomfortable in their own skin? Keep looking…break that uncomfortableness, maybe say hi? Just don’t stare at people creepily haha that’s not going to make many people feel to comfortable.

My whole point is people tend to feel so uncomfortable with strangers. I know everybody is different and some people are too shy to just talk to random people on impulse, though. We shouldn’t be weirded out…spread the love. Not getting on that “hippie level” of hey man tell everyone you love everything about them but if you feel the need then do so! I have found holding back is just that and leaves no space for progression and new opportunities.

Do you guys/girls feel comfortable randomly telling somebody you like something about them and talking to strangers? You might meet some cool people over virtually nothing and their personalities may suprise you, take my word. Have you met any interesting people through “strange” altercations?

It’s not hard to NOT be strangers!

August 11, 2012 at 8:47 am
Matthew (1,127) (@ojai) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

“It is not as if I would do something that I am uncomfortable with or something that I do not agree with just to get people to like me –

but I feel that it is not their duty to like me and so I should try to get them to like me just so that I can increase my chances of them liking me”

If you would not do something you don’t agree with just to get people to like you and you feel as if it is not their duty to like you………why are you trying to get them to like you just so that you can increase your chances of them liking you!? You just said you feel it’s not their duty to like you – so why is “Don’t worry about what others think” terrible advice?

You know you don’t have to worry about what others think about you, right?

[Hidden]
Kidd (1,059) (@kidd) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@ojai, @kaataa, Can I say that I agree with both you?

It’s important to care about what some people think. Others can bring out the best in you, after all. Allow others to set an example for you, and try to set an example for others. Just make sure to think for yourself and understand what you want and need yourself to be.

Usually, though, “those who matter don’t mind and those who mind don’t matter.”

Don’t just be you. Be the best you who you can be. Some peoples’ motivation to do so tends to be for others, which I don’t think is wrong. :)

[Hidden]
Brendan (4) (@likeamau5) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

I was thinking about this today and yesterday and how I wanted to meet or talk to strangers but I felt I didn’t know how to exactly and I was (and still am) scared to. I used to be socially awkward and shy a lot and I had this road trip this summer with my church where I felt like I completely broken free from it. Now most of the time I’m not, but on occasion I’ll feel like I can’t talk to my own friends. I’ll get scared to say anything or feel like I don’t know what to say instead of just starting a conversation and letting it happen.

I’ve liked everything I’ve read here and I’d like to try talking to strangers, but I know I’ll get scared and convince myself not to. Just yesterday I was riding my bike and saw a neighbor who was the dad of a friend and thought oh I should try to say hi and it ended up that I passed him, circled around back to where he was, and turned around again. I don’t even know what I was scared of really. I’d really like to be able to talk to strangers, but I don’t know how to get started and shake off the fear.

[Hidden]
ButternutSquash (75) (@equanimity) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

I think discomfort is an awesome tool that should never be discarded because it enables us to learn self-awareness. That being said, I’m absolutely with you on the subject of this thread.

I just moved to a new city and am starting school on a new campus tomorrow. I’ll be using it as an opportunity to speak to strangers daily.

[Hidden]
Anonymous (26) (@) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

Not all are created equal. Being shy my entire life, even as a kid I wouldn’t speak to anyone I didn’t know, it’s not easy for everyone to just make eye contact, smile, and start conversations all the time. Most people are outgoing, and I don’t think they get it, or take the fact that some people ARE shy seriously. I am by no means rude, or have any displeasure in meeting new people, but I also do not feel comfortable striking up a conversation with the person next to me on the train. If someone else starts it, by all means I’m down, I love random conversations (most of the time). But take into account not everyone has this capability, and don’t look down on them for being so “uncomfortable.” It’s just our nature. Shy people mean no ill will, they just need a push.

[Hidden]
ArtFlood (5) (@danielflood) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@kirkwilly I’m from Atlantic Canada too and I completely agree! Especially so in the Maritimes where its almost rude not to say “Hi” to everyone you walk by.

[Hidden]
Faithflower (27) (@peacelove) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@ojai, lol I should really laugh at this topic because I recognize the weird thing, I feel uncomfortable but it depends on my mood…sometimes I just feel so inside a bubble so it’s really difficult to make contact, but other times things are just flowing naturally and that is so much more funn and relaxed…i dont know why my mood ruins the whole communication sphere, but when i’m annoyed or moody i cant really relate to people, even though i notice the great clothes or shoes or whatever i notice on them..

I also feel weird when some people just start talking about stuff lol, but i do the same anyway haha…

Should notice that the extreme old and extreme young people are the most relaxed in contacting others, the older people talk to anyone about anything it seems haha..soo funny..

[Hidden]
growlove (28) (@growlove) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@kaataa,

I know exactly what you’re saying because I used to feel the same way! But for whatever reason I’ve reached a point in my life where that kind of thing just seems so unnecessary. If people don’t like me I can’t bear to think that the old me would have changed who I was and wanted to be—basically my happiness— just to cater to someone else’s happiness, because now I just realize that there are an infinite number of other people out there to interact with. I don’t have time to waste fine-tuning myself to every person I meet when I think about the big picture of my life and just how many people I’ll meet in the long-run!

Does any of that resonate with you?

[Hidden]
Kaataa (14) (@kaataa) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@growlove, I can understand not wanting to change yourself into someone you do not enjoy in order to please others, but in my situation I actually do want to be someone who does want to cater to others, to an extent. It is very much to an extent, as I obviously would not do something I do not enjoy or become someone I do not like. I try my best to make sure that my needs are satisfied and the needs of others are satisfied. I don’t see why there can’t be room for both.

[Hidden]
Anonymous (512) (@) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@growlove, I feel that, we seek the approval of others only when we do not fully approve our ourselves.

“Master thyself, not the world.”
-Rene Descartes

[Hidden]
Dominika (55) (@dominika) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@deafening, i feel EXACTLY the same way. its so easy for more outgoing people to say “oh just be yourself, quit being so uncomfortable.” Well. easier said than done. I like people and i will totally talk to them if they talk to me, but im shy and i dont really know how to get out of it. i know some people might respond to that with “itll be hard at first, but just do it!”. well i dont know how. i dont know what to say, or how to say it, because in our society, wording is everything. Plus, im happy the way i am. I like to spend a lot of time alone and just have a few close friends. i have tried being social. i just ended up with a bunch of acquaintances and everyone was calling me to hang out at the same time, and i always felt guilty because i always felt like i was ditching someone.

[Hidden]
Lee (39) (@lldsgt) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@ojai, I hear what you’re saying there and I’m here as one of the shy guys. I’ve gotten through my 20 years here thinking about myself and the people that matter to me and thats about it, so basically I followed the “Dont worry about what others think” advice and it gave me a lot of self-happiness but it took a toll on my ability to effectivly communicate with people outside of my comfort zone. I’m at a point now where I’m trying to break through that, talk to more people, strike up conversation with a random person I dont know and have it be more than “Hey nice weather today!” But I never seem to be able to find things to talk about and it turns uncomfortable quickly. Maybe any advice you could give would be greatly appriciated.

@deafening, I agree a lot with what you said there mainly about the fact that I am by 0 means rude or disrespectful (infact all parents and older generations love me for my how respectful and considerate I am) but I just need that little push start to get it all going.

One thing I did was start talking to people who are much more talkative than I am, it seems to help a lot because with them there is zero silence, we are always talking about something, after talking to them a couple times it just becomes easier, you think of things to talk about because there is always mental stimulation. Try to focus that energy into conversations with other people who may not be as talkative. (Harder said than done but hey, we need to start somewhere right?)

[Hidden]
Anonymous (512) (@) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@lldsgt, Put yourself in situations where others are expressing themselves in ways you are familiar with. For example, attend concerts of artists you have a deep passion for, and you’re essentially summoning of group of like-minded individuals (if you both like the same artist). (That might be a stretch, but do you get where I’m coming from?) Other examples include school classes, clubs and voluntary organizations.

Manipulate your circumstances so that they favor your chances of meeting someone worthwhile.

This gist of this thread is something I’ve considered for much of my life. I hope my words could help even a tiny bit man!

[Hidden]
Lee (39) (@lldsgt) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@optimystic, Yeah I hear ya, I’m actually doing just that with my friend, hoping I will meet some cool people at the Brother Ali & Macklemore concerts. As far as things like clubs I was never too into them but i guess its something I could give a shot at. I do volunteering occasionally for my job, 40 hours a year. And I am trying to go places and do mroe things that i am passionate about and when I see people there I try to talk to them about what their doing, maybe teach them something and they teach me something new.
& Very helpful buddy, thank you.

[Hidden]
Julia (120) (@collinsj2009) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@kidd, great advice! Just what I needed to hear today.

[Hidden]
KellyM (107) (@kellah) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@ojai, I honestly love this post. Thank you very much for posting it! I have been recently thinking about how I wish we werent all strangers to eachother. thank you <3

[Hidden]
FindYourGreatness (345)C (@jpete011) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

Awesome topic. Honestly, I used to be that person that always looked away from eye contact with a stranger, even sometimes with people I knew well. I was insecure and for some reason soemtimes expected the worst from strangers. Messed up, irrational, stupid thinking.

Now, I have recently been going out a LOT. Many times on my own as most of the time friends are ‘just too busy’ to go out or want to go out when it’s socially acceptable (go to bars/clubs no earlier than 10:30pm on Fri and Sat nights). The thought never even used to cross my mind to go out solo, but it’s actually turned out great so far. I’ve met a lot of cool people that I obviously never would have met. It’s actually surprising how easy it is to befriend total strangers, I’ve found. People, at least here in Texas, are super friendly 9 times out of 10.

Shit, last weekend I went to the gym and there was this girl at the front desk and I starting talking to her casually, like I’ve know her for years. We ended up having an awesome conversation about each other’s life, and we both shared stuff about each other that only close friends or family would (now a days at least). It was awesome.
Then the next day I went to the grocery store and tried some protein bar samples that this girl was selling. I started talking with her and we hit it off. So I stuck around and we talked for like an hour, while talking with customers and having a great time.

It’s really all about removing all those stupid thoughts, social conditioning and pointless social insecurities. Once all that shit is gone, all there is is YOU, with nothing to hide.

[Hidden]
Kidd (1,059) (@kidd) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@collinsj2009, I’m glad I could help! :)

[Hidden]
growlove (28) (@growlove) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

@kaataa,

“I don’t see why there can’t be room for both.”

There is! No disagreement there.

[Hidden]
zowie (115) (@zowie) 9 years, 9 months ago ago

I like talking to strangers, friends, family members anyone in general but I’ve found that I always have to start talking first, though this is not a problem for me, sometimes it’ll be nice if someone came up to me and started talking.

[Hidden]
Eric (1,819)M (@blankey) 9 years, 4 months ago ago

Be social! All you are doing is looking at the different “you’s”.

[Hidden]
Ellie (1,363)M (@tangledupinplaid21) 7 years, 1 month ago ago

bump

[Hidden]
Viner Cent (50) (@Viner-Cent) 7 years, 1 month ago ago

And another excellent bum Ellie.I have read stuff like this before, tried it a few times I have been wondering, is Germany the only country, where people think you are a real wierdo when doing stuff like this and are like:”That guy is probably up to something bad, better get out of here!” I think the German speaking region is one of the most uptight places in this world.

[Hidden]
ShinyBug (1) (@ShinyBug) 7 years, 1 month ago ago

Unfortunately most of the people don’t like strangers that talk to them and probably you will receive rude replies or pepper spray in the eyes. It has been shown how people are much more gentle with good looking people and even those people have problems to speak with strangers, so you can imagine how could be diffucult for “bad looking” people. I like your way of thinking anyway, but it isn’t applicable everywhere or for anyone. Excuse my bad english.

[Hidden]
Tanuja (1) (@Tanuja) 7 years, 1 month ago ago

Talking to strangers isn’t really a big deal for me. Sometimes if the frequency matches we become friends however most of the times it’s quiet awkward the way they react even after a good 5-10 min conversation they just dont mellow somehow eventually becoming acquiescences. I have met crazy interesting people this way but this is all past. Its been one and a half year that I care less about talking to people. I’m not sure what that is, but I’m really withdrawn and detached from society, with no interest in talking to people. Heck, a lot of time, talking to people is a big pretense anyway, or a waste of time. Engaging in converstaion takes a lot out of me. On the other hand, some people require great effort not to talk. When I do speak, it’s either much too serious or not serious at all. Like there’s no middle ground. A lot of the time my words don’t even make sense to me. It feels like a lot of people aren’t sure where I’m coming from. My thoughts jump around a lot. Pretty nonlinear. This social anxiety is weird I have never been this way I agree this is just overthinking but I feel good this way plus, I dont want to loose my social life regaining it is easy but my intensions aren’t stable. I like both modes- this anxiety and the previous socializing mode its just, now I can’t talk wholeday long just for the sake of socializing and even if I manage to juggle both modes I feel that I am missing the essence. Guys, if anyone have been through this then please be free to share your thoughts rest of you are most welcome with their suggestions, if any.

[Hidden]
Optimystic (26) (@optimystic) 7 years, 1 month ago ago

I can relate to this so well. I also find myself being either too serious, or not serious enough, in conversations, and it really perturbs me. My thoughts, too, are nonlinear (whose aren’t?), and I often have difficulty interpreting my intentions with others. I wouldn’t say that I am at all unable to participate in conversations with others, but I’m not usually very good at it and I never really know where or when to “break off” or keep ongoing the newfound relationships. It’s stressful at times, but I know that others, like us, are in the same boat. We can rejoice in the fact that we are not alone.

[Hidden]
Tanuja (1) (@Tanuja) 7 years, 1 month ago ago

I agree with you @optimystic, after all we all are developing and even if it is kind of cold trait it will flourish with time. HE platform is a stress reliever and a mind booster so anybody who is here, is never alone and we all are in the same boat. Somehow. Glad you are here too. For middle ground, I am considering @Viner-Cent suggestion. It might help I just need to juggle calmly. Your method is like icing on my problem’s solution. I will try to talk a lot and it could be my April challenge and thanks for realizing me that.

[Hidden]
Viewing 24 reply threads
load more