Photo Credit: Analee Ward
I understand that you like to keep to yourself. And you'd rather do meaningful work on your Pinterest page, edit photos, or check and edit your Facebook profile every 6.2 minutes, in attempt to look more marketable, more successful, more fun, more funny.
But marketable for who? For what exactly? You're not really gettin' out there and connecting, you're just shyly observing (Ehem, creepin on Facebook. Look. I'm guilty too!). But I'm proud of you. You're still here reading this post. So that says something...
Furthermore, I wanna help you get out there and connect. You're amazing. Really. And someone new in 2013 should discover that.
The truth is you probably have friends or at least one, the same friend(s) you've had for more than half your life. So you haven't had to put forth a lot of effort in developing new friendships, unless they somehow fell in your lap through work or a mutual friend.
It's like you've been in a long term marriage relationship with your current friend(s) and you've let yourself go.
Has anyone told you your strengths? Your weaknesses as a friend? Are those people still your friends? Remember, our circle of friends says a lot about who we are. We don't need to always be surrounded by "Yes Men", we need people in our lives that won't be afraid to tell us the truth, even in hard circumstances.
But when you have a solid circle of friends, your life is rich, full of laughter and tears (sometimes at the same time), and a well-rounded perspective when it comes to the beauty of simply livin'.
Here's a refresher course in How to Make Friends (And Keep Them):
No it's not a sign of weakness. But it is the difference between someone approaching you and/or possibly clutching their purse.
2. Them Not You.
Ask someone about their life. What was the highlight of their past week? The lowlight? Before you say a word about yourself, you should know at least 3 new solid facts about the person standing in front of you.
Don't take yourself too seriously. Allow yourself to flub your words a bit or embarrass yourself. Give yourself permission to be the full expression of who you are.
While doing the things you love (ie: Snowboarding, knitting, dancing, fantasy football, etc.), be sure to connect with the community of that particular activity. That involves you taking the first step. Introduce yourself to a new person and be intentional about remembering their name for the future.
5. Not Just Birthdays.
You don't just have to wait until it's your friends birthday to do something genuinely nice for them or to get them a gift. Trust me, gifts given without a selfish agenda will win a special place in people's heart forever.
*Oh, and here's a freebie: Stay Drama Free. If drama seems to follow you wherever you go, don't look at everyone else, it may be time to look at yourself.
"Associate yourself with people of good quality, for it is better to be alone than in bad company."
-Booker T. Washington