Whether they know it or not, everyone in any social interaction is using invisible scripts. It doesn’t matter if you’re with your friends or you just met someone, how you think about the interaction changes it.
The thing is, people are sabotaging themselves all the time. Some don’t think they’re social people, so they don’t go out, and it becomes self-fulfilling.
Every interaction you go into with the invisible script “I’m not social”, reinforces it.
So what can we do? What invisible scripts are harmful, and how can we change these for more useful ones that build social confidence?
Here are three of the most deadly invisible scripts and how to flip them on their heads.
Script #1 – You want the other person to like you
Most people when they meet a new person immediately become self-conscious. They change the way they act, try to impress the other person, and start talking too much or too quickly.
Now what do we do about this? The answer is actually pretty simple.
Flip the script – Do you like them?
People with high self-esteem are already comfortable with who they are. They don’t worry as much how they come off to other people. Whether it’s with superiors or people they just met, they just seem more comfortable.
By focusing on the question “Do I like them?” when you meet someone new, you put yourself back in the driver’s seat. You become more concerned if the other person shares your values or has a similar sense of humor. You stop compromising yourself – stop acting – and start to become more confident in your self.
The next time you’re about to meet a new person – ask yourself if you’ll like them. Don’t worry about how you’ll come off.
Script #2 – I don’t want to say something awkward
A lot of people also have a hard time being around new people because they feel like they can’t be themselves. They don’t joke around like they would. They don’t say things they want to say or bring up topics that they’re actually interested in.
This is why people talk about the weather!
This makes conversations, especially with people that you just met, pretty boring. It makes it hard to connect with any new person in a genuine way.
Flip the script – Pretend that you’re already friends
This especially works with people that you just met.
What is a conversation with your best friend like compared to with someone that you just met? I’m guessing that you are comfortable enough to crack jokes. You probably pat them on the back more – or have more physical contact. You probably laugh easier, and yes, are okay with silences.
By pretending that the person that you just met is your friend, you tell your brain that it’s okay to be comfortable around them. And by acting comfortably – like your normal self – you are more likely to connect with them.
If you have a hard time starting to do this, try touching the person more. Grab them by the shoulder, pat them on the back, or hit the outside of your hand on their chest (guy to guy) if you crack a joke!
Script #3 – I’m comfortable with my social skills already
Let’s face it – most people aren’t willing to put in the effort to change. Even if they want to, they will make excuses not to. People start rationalizing that they are comfortable where they are.
Secretly, though, most are afraid to start. Sure, some people really are content with their friends and their social life. And that’s fine.
But social skills are something that you can improve quickly. People rarely take advantage of that. Most are too afraid to start.
Has this happened to you? Have you shied away from that one girl you wanted to talk to because, you told yourself, she’s not your type? Have you turned away from talking to your coworkers because you “don’t have that much in common?”
Flip the script – The best are always practicing
Adopt a beginner’s mindset. There is something to learn in every situation regardless of who you’re talking to. Who knows, that new person you talk to might have a job or be your next husband or wife. And if they don’t have a job or aren’t the next love of your life, you learned! You got a little stronger.
To really excel, you have to always be practicing. Challenge yourself at every point – anytime you notice yourself shying away from a situation, force yourself to do it. This is the fastest way to learn.
Practice, practice, practice. And watch your life do a 180.
Have you found a way to beat your invisible scripts? Let us know in the comments below!