Troubles Being Social – For Beginners

August 10, 2010 by  
Filed under Analysis

Naistehirm, over on mASF, has a pretty gut-wrenching post about his troubles being a social guy…

Naistehirm writes:

okay, I have a problem that I have no idea how to get over, I think I have tried several different methods, but none does the work for me.

Anyway, my prob is that most of the time I’m way too dull and not very talkative. I feel like I have never something to say and my mind seems to be pretty empty all the times, or full of crap like I’m thinking why do I not have anything to say.

I party a lot, but most of the time only cause I force myself to go to parties and be social, but that’s not good since in those cases I absolutely don’t enjoy myself.

Especially when I’m sober I have no clue what to talk about. Normally I am in social circles so my chances of getting girls are by social circle, but I have problems attracting girls when I have no idea what to tell them/or what to speak about, nothing comes to my mind, not even any random shit. Sometimes I’m able to hold conversation for few mins, but out of there it just gets dull and I make an excuse to get out of conversation or sometimes I just ignore people cause I don’t have a clue how to answer their questions or whatever. It’s not that I overthink my answers, it’s just that I feel there’s nothing to say. And this makes me feel very uncomfortable in social situations.

And I go out pretty much every day and I haven’t gotten any better. I haven’t got laid for 1.5 years (and I have really got laid for just once, and it wasn’t very enjoyable, was drunk and didn’t get the girl wet so it wasn’t cool at all).
And cause of me not getting girls and all my friends being succesful it hits my self esteem pretty bad, although it’s not that bad, cause I’m still thinking kind of realistically, and my looks aren’t bad either, so all I’m worried about is that I have nothing to say.

I only feel comfortable in social situations when I have had few beers, but then it lasts for just a while and sometimes it just makes me depressed so I can’t just focus on alcohol, and it would be a lot better if I was able to stay social even when I was sober.

Approaching girls is not a big problem for me, out of my friends I think I seem to be more couraegous about this part, but whenever I approach I can only hold conversation for a little while and then I start feeling uncomfortable cause I can’t move things anywhere.

Most of the discussion my friends do is cocky/funny type of, which seems to work on girls very well, but I rarely manage to do that, and even when I’m able to, then I have been silent for a way too long time and then it can come out either lame or mean or whatever.

Seeing my friends being succesful and me not getting any at all, makes me pretty depressed at times and I really want to get over it, cause atm I feel like I’m never going to get girls or even a relationship.

I feel pretty uncomfortable on 1 on 1 situations too, especially when with girls, because I feel like I’m forced to say something but nothing comes to my mind, not even any random stuff. I only feel comfortable with my guy friends cause then I don’t have to talk so much, so it doesn’t affect anything. But yeah, maybe someone can show me the right direction, what to do or whatever…

Thank you.

Here’s the thing about being social…
Being good at social interactions is about feeling comfortable, relaxed and happy.  It should be no secret that your emotional state influences how you interact with others, and the guys who have troubles with social interactions typically allow their emotions of feeling uncomfortable or pressured to “perform” overcome them, and when that happens, it’s just a spiral downwards.
Here’s what used to happen to me in social situations – and I can TOTALLY relate to Naistehirm when it comes to this…
I’d go out with my friends to a bar, party, whatever.  I’d see tons of hot girls I’d want to sleep with, and in my mind, I’d think to myself “Damn, I really need to talk to some of these girls!”  But when I thought that, I was putting pressure on myself to step outside my comfort zone.  This added pressure made me nervous.  When I did finally approach a girl, my nerves would be so overwhelming I couldn’t think of what to say, and the conversation would peeter out.  Afterwards, I’d feel stupid and beat myself up for “failing.”  That just made me feel worse, and depressed.  At that point, I didn’t want to talk to anyone because I felt like a loser.  And the fact that I couldn’t enjoy myself and talk to girls made me feel like even MORE of a loser, to the point where I wanted to get out of the social situation all together.
Some guys drink to avoid letting their nerves get the best of them.  I never did – mostly because when I introduced alcohol into the equation, it just amplified my feelings of depression when they hit.
So a BIG part of being social is learning to control your emotional state.  If you can make yourself feel relaxed, calm, happy, confident, etc., things become much easier for you.
The second part is to remove any and all pressure to “perform” in a social situation.  Too many guys go out thinking “I gotta get laid tonight!”  So they push for that to happen, and the more it looks like it won’t, the worse they feel because in their mind, they are “failing.”  A better goal for the night is to go out an “have a good time.”  This is infinitely easier to do because it comes down to your enjoyment factor.
I know what you’re thinking, though.  You’re thinking – “But Thundercat, to me, having a good time is getting laid!”  Well, I tend to agree with you.  HOWEVER – if you succeed in having fun, it makes getting laid WAY easier than if you go out prowling for punani like some PUA predator.  This is because women are attracted to guys who are having fun and having a good time!  Why?  Because women like to have fun too!  And if they have fun with YOU, it makes building attraction way easier.
The final aspect of the “being social” formula is rapport building.  This is where conversation comes into play.  If you have a hard time “thinking” about what to say to a girl, you’re doing something wrong.  Conversation flows naturally, but it does so within a structured pattern.  This is why I teach my Fish & Hook method (explained in excruciating detail in the Art Of Approaching /shamelessplug).  The Fish & Hook method goes something like this:
1.  Ask a question
2.  Get her answer
3.  Tell a story related to her answer
In essence, you’re “fishing” for something to “hook” into.  You ask her a question like “Where are you from?” and she says “Chicago.”  You then tell a story about this one time you went to Chicago and had the best pizza ever.  (OR something related to Chicago)
At this point, the girl might start talking to you about her favorite pizza joints in Chicago.  That can lead to a conversation about cooking.  You ask her “You ever make your own pizza?  Do you cook?”  She answers, and then you tell a story about you trying to cook that relates to her answer.  And you keep this up for as long as it takes to get a proper level of rapport.
Wash.  Rinse.  Repeat.
There’s no such thing as a truly boring person.  Everyone has stuff they are passionate about in their lives.  Some people don’t get as excited about those passions as they might, but regardless, if you can find enough “commonalities” with the person you are talking to and build rapport, conversation starts to flow very easily.
And if you’re REALLY stuck, check out Pure Personality.  It’s a great way to beef up your social skills.
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