Do you consider yourself to be an introvert? Maybe you have taken a personality test, or perhaps you have always known that you were much more introverted than extroverted. In any case, introversion comes with a lot of perks, but getting to know new people might not be terribly easy. Here are some great tips for making friends with people who have similar interests.
Subjects You Love
It might be a challenge for some of us, but take it upon yourself to be the one who strikes up chats with appealing people at parties or meetings. This way, you can have some control over what the initial topic of conversation will be. If you are definitely looking for someone who is also an avid reader, start off with that. Of course, conversations can change course, but at least you will have some opportunities to get in what you want to say and to make your point (and figure out early on whether the friendship is worth pursuing). This tactic can help you to better handle intense social situations.
You also should look into some classes in your community that will help you learn a new skill or further develop one of your currently existing hobbies. These classes could be more formal and at the college level, or more introductory at a local YMCA. Regardless, something weekly or bi-weekly is a great commitment to make. Hopefully through groupwork or peer reviews, you’ll be able to make some friends whom you share interests with.
If you are a religious person or would like to become one, attending a house of worship can certainly connect you with individuals who have the same interests as you do. Furthermore, during most of the service, you will not have to strike up conversations with other people. You can ease your way into becoming comfortable with other individuals there by simply attending services. Most houses of worship have social programs that you can attend too.
Recognizing a Problem
Being introverted is one thing and is nothing you should worry about. All of us have a little introversion and a little extroversion in us. However, having an overwhelming fear every time that you need to interact with another person can be a serious problem. You might actually have social anxiety disorder. If you feel you may have a fear of social situations, you should remember this. Fortunately, help exists. Schedule an appointment with a counselor or a social worker to discuss your issues. Through these methods, you might be able to recover from your condition or at least find steps to making it less severe. Then, you will have the ability to make friends and acquaintances in so many different types of situations.
An introverted personality is not terribly uncommon. Somewhere around half of the population are likely introverted enough that you have something in common. Simply knowing this information can help to make the situation less stressful too. Other people like you certainly exist, and chances are, you have far more existing things in common to discuss!
Becky Rodriguez writes about personality, development and socialization at bestmastersincounseling.com.