Are you the person who has unintentionally pushed someone in a crowded bus, or fallen asleep in an urgent meeting? How embarrassing it is! Right?
Again, you want to make the best impression possible in front of your crush but mess up everything at the end.
If you encounter situations like these, no need to be worried. Because weirdness is an inseparable part of life.
No matter how sociable, driven, or confident you are, at some point you feel awkward and shy.
So, today, we will show you 4 easy but effective ways on how to be less awkward in public. They will make you more social and confident.
What is Social Awkwardness?
Social awkwardness is a mental state that leads an individual to behave abnormally in front of the public. It is also named as social phobia or Social Anxiety Disorder.
When someone puts too much emphasis on others’ opinion of his/her appearance, s/he feels worried. This sensation fuels social awkwardness.
A person suffering from this problem may not potentially communicate with others. Because s/he always fears being humiliated.
How to Be Less Awkward Socially: 4 Ways to Overcome the Problem
If you want to be more social beating your awkwardness, follow the below steps. They will teach you how to behave maturely.
1. Accept the Unavoidable Without Any Hesitation
There is no way out but to accept what is inescapable. If you start fighting with them, things will be more complicated. You should only deal with them in a convincing way.
Here are some tricks to follow!
A) Do not Stop Acting Like Yourself
Awkwardness is everywhere. In your course of everyday work you encounter weird moments. You may accidentally wave a hand to someone who is not waving at you. You may miss a handshake. Even others may not laugh at the joke you’ve just told.
These moments are weird but inevitable. If you are awkward, you may assume that you have terrible social skills. You might think nobody likes you. That’s why, you want to stay in the safe zone fearing doing the weird things again.
Consequently, you do not express yourself and act like someone else. Your fear of being humiliated/ humiliation destroys the opportunity of connecting with others.
Therefore, to be more social, always act like yourself. You need not copy others blindly.
B) Avoid Focusing on What Others Think About You
If you want to be less bumbling, stop bothering others’ opinions. There is always someone who is to find your faults. The fact is you can not please all. It’s beyond the limit of a human being.
When you look back and concentrate on what others will say if you do it, you are dragging your heels. You will never succeed breaking the circle of your social shyness.
So, be original. Do whatever you feel right. Learn to think straight. Never procrastinate taking your actions. If others love your traits, they really do it. If someone does not, let them find their own pleasures.
C) Deal the Awkward Silence Smartly
Awkward silence is inevitable. When it happens let it take its course. Do not try to break it. Let someone speak first. In the meantime, it would not be wrong to catch a drink.
D) Make Fun of Yourself for Your Weird Activities
Weirdity does not always make you an alien in your own community. It has its own charm. Hence, despite trying to duck the awkwardness, learn how to make the best of it.
And one of the effective ways to kick it off is to laugh at yourself for the funny things you have done. Do not try to hide your mistakes and absurdities.
Treat your ridiculousness as a medium enjoyment. Let others know you are OK with your bitter pills. Show them that you are not afraid of messing things up again. And you do not mind doing the dumbest thing ever and again.
What’s the result? At the end of the day, people around you as well as you yourself will feel comfortable. Your social embarrassment will be mitigated to a greater extent.
2. Maintain Consistency in Your Action
When you tend to be more comfortable with any situation, consistency is a must. Let’s dig in to learn more!
A) Avoid Underacting as well as Overacting
When you are in the iron grip of social phobia, you might tend to make two grim mistakes. You may either underact or overact when something uncomfortable happens.
Underacting refers to the tendency of muffling your personality. You become worried fearing that people won’t accept who you really are. Accordingly, you mute yourself.
You stay quiet and self-centered thinking that at least you won’t make things weird. Besides, you never try to improve your personality.
But believe me, my friends. The opposite happens in reality. When you underact, people around you feel that you do not want to be there. Though you want to be cautious, people will take you as a sad, annoyed, and bored person.
Now, you know the consequences of underacting. It makes the situation super awkward. Therefore, avoid this attitude to beat your social anxiety.
On the other hand, overacting exhibits your inclination of being something that you are really not. You try hard to prove that you are cool, lovable, outgoing, etc.
But in fact, you mask your own personality with a fake one assuming that it will make you less ridiculous.
So, what can you do? The foremost thing for you is to avoid these sorts of behavior. Try to act as natural as you can.
B) Stop Over-Analyzing Every Little Thing
If you ask how to be less awkward, we will recommend you to ban your inner critic. Studies have shown that people having social anxiety disorder spend too much time in their own heads. They brod over every single word they say.
When you over-scrutinize, things go wrong. You can not focus on where you should. This mental stress distracts you from being social. As a result, you can not get your work done more efficiently.
Therefore, change your mentality. Let things happen in its own way. Do not ruin your opportunities by overthinking.
C) Be Present by Showing Your Interest
You may ask how to show your interest when someone is talking to you. How can you prove you are present there? Let’s see an example.
Say, one of your friends is telling you an interesting story about his/her last summer vacation. But you are not listening carefully as you are thinking of your own hard days. Or you may be planning to say something cool while s/he is talking.
When the story is finished, you can not relate to it as you have missed the conversation. Under such circumstances, you feel socially awkward.
To get rid of it, be a good listener. The fact is the person is sharing a personal story to connect to you. Likewise, you should do the same thing.
If you pay less or no attention at all, they will feel you are not interested. It proves you are not present there.
Ways of Being Present in The Moment
- Listen carefully.
- Make eye contact.
- Avoid using phones while someone is talking.
D) Stay Active in Any Conversation
Another significant way on how not to be socially awkward is to actively interact in any conversation. If you are reluctant, people will presume that you are intentionally stepping away.
So, vigorously take part in the discussion to make it more vibrant. If you like any argument, tell them why. If any inconveniences arise, fight with them to neutralize the issues.
When they tell an embarrassing story, do not hesitate to share yours. For instance, if someone tells s/he sends a wrong message to a teacher, you should not behave as if you have seen a ghost. Rather tell one of your weird experiences.
Some Effective Techniques to Stay Active in a Conversation
- Ask more questions.
- Seek clarification if you do not understand.
- Show your gestures.
- Share your opinion but don’t interrupt.
3. Beat The Spotlight Effect
According to the healthline,
“The spotlight effect refers to people’s tendency to assume their mistakes and perceived personal flaws stand out clearly to others, as if illuminated by a spotlight.”
When you are socially awkward, you may think that you are always being watched by people. Hence, change this mindset to be more convivial. Here are some ways to help.
A) Live Your Life Like Nobody’s Watching
If you always feel that other people are scrutinizing your activities, the natural flow of your work will be hampered. As you are habituated to over-analyze yourself, you think people are doing the same thing.
But they are not doing it in reality. Let’s’ have a look at an example:
Imagine, you have spilled a drink in your shirt. You think that it will make you ridiculous. That’s why, you are trying hard to cover it up the whole time.
You may miss an important thing as your full focus is stuck to your shirt. But, statistics show that under such circumstances 99% of people do not even notice it. In case they see, they won’t think about it the second time.
So, why will you waste your time doing such stupid activities?
Live with full freedom because it’s all about your life. Do not put yourself under a spotlight. If any unpleasant situation happens, deal with it smartly instead of being awkward.
B) Prevent Yourself From Negative Thoughts
Life is a complicated playground where everyone is worried about themselves. It gets worse when an embarrassing situation arises.
Negative thoughts blur your vision. You lose the will power to handle that state. That’s why motivation is important to save you from the clasp of quicksand.
To improve your social anxiety disorder, stop thinking negatively. Always remember “The deeper the night, the closer the morning”.
To suppress your negativity, you can do the following things.
- Practice mindfulness.
- Make a difference with your environment.
- Fulfill your hobbies.
- Take exercise.
- Spend time with positive minded people.
- Change your state of mind to positivity.
C) Get the Insights From the Uncomfortable Situation
If you try to figure out how to be less awkward, take lessons from the most distressing happenings in your life. You are not the only one person in the world who is suffering from this problem.
In fact, everyone is trying to overcome their awkwardness in one way or the other.
For example, you might be contemplating over your spilled shirt. But the man next to you might be paranoid about a rip in his pants. The girl on the bus might be hiding dandruff under a hat. Your colleague in the office might be apprehensive of bad handwriting.
Thereby, gather your clairvoyance from uncomfortable situations and be confident.
4. Develop Social Teaming Quality
The last but very important aspect of being socially handsome is to team up with the individuals who are more socially skilled. When you get mixed with them, it opens a new horizon of learning through their behavior.
Their art of interaction will also motivate you. At the same time, it will instill confidence in you.
Besides, they may help you get introduced to new people giving you the opportunity to flourish.
Plus, they are the masters of small talk. Their way of expression is smarter than you. It stimulates you to improve your communication skills.
Thus, you can conquer your social phobia.
Symptoms that Prove You are Socially Awkward
If you are socially gauche, you will notice emotional and physical abnormalities in your behavior. Let’s have a look at the major signs.
Emotional and Behavioral Symptoms
- You may fear facing a situation where there is a possibility of being judged.
- Tension of being humiliated.
- Feel broken while talking to strangers.
- Tendency to be self-centered out of fear.
- Become worried thinking about others’ opinions.
- Fear of being the center of attention.
- Finding too many faults in yourself.
- Tendency to escape public speaking.
Here are some basic physical symptoms you might feel in case you are having social phobia.
- Fast heartbeat.
- Trouble catching your breath.
- Feeling that your mind has gone blank
- Muscle tension.
Question 1: What are some awkward situations?
Answer: Any normal situation may turn out to be weird. Here, we have gathered some examples for you.
- Ringing your phone in a meeting, library, or prayer room.
- Forgetting someone’s name you have just met.
- First day at your office.
- A job or academic interview.
- Forgetting to invite a close friend to your bridal party.
- Suddenly meeting up with your ex.
- Call for an immediate presentation without any prior notice.
- Accidentally touch someone’s body part.
- Sending text messages to the wrong person.
- The first date.
Question 2: How do I stop being so awkward?
Answer: You can do the following things to be less awkward.
- Shake hands confidently.
- Speak smartly.
- Change your way of expression.
- Establish eye contact.
- Ask questions if you need.
- Act normally.
- Do not think too much about others’ opinions.
Question 3: Is awkward silence a bad sign?
Answer: Sometimes, awkward silence is inevitable. It is quite normal if you meet someone for the first time. So, take it easy.
Question 4: How to be less awkward with a girl?
Answer: There are plenty of ways to act more socially around girls. You can even create your own style. However, you can start talking about her likings and disliking.
Besides, praise her for everything because it will make you feel less shy. Cut intellectual jokes to make her laugh. Smile more.
Question 5: What triggers social anxiety disorder or awkwardness?
Answer: The following aspects are strong enough to trigger social phobia. Let’s have a look!
- Family conflict.
- Any unpleasant event in life.
Question 6: Should I go to therapy for social anxiety?
Answer: Yes, you can go to a therapist for consultation. It will help you to fight against anxiety. Choose the best treatment for you. You should not neglect this problem because long-term suffering may create more mental issues.
The Farewell Statement
Life is full of opportunities. The most awkward moment may turn out to be the best event in your life. For example, you may find your life partner after making a silly mistake since s/he loves your weirdity.
Therefore, do not ruin your life by hiding the awkwardness. Instead try to keep them under control so that you can emerge more confidently and socially.
Hope our suggestions on how to be less awkward will help you to find the meaning of life.
Be social, confident, and lively.