In this article, I share with you a list of important social skills to get you started in your journey for better socializing. Study them, practice them so you can start seeing the results.
In this article, I will highlight a list of social skills for adults and how they can benefit you. If being socially skilled is something you are still struggling with right now, you should read this article from start to finish.
1. Understand People Beyond the Words
If you want to be great at social interactions, you need to see every person as a person of interest and understand everything they say beyond just words. How can you do this exactly?
Whenever you are talking with someone, always assume that you know nothing about them. This is a great technique to have when you want to understand people beyond words. It allows you to always be curious with the other person and it automatically makes you a better listener. It forces you to pay attention more.
If you see every person you interact with as mysteries, your mind will always be on high alert and will pay attention to everything the other person is saying. You don’t just hear the words that come out of their mouths, you find the meaning behind it. Why are they telling the story? What’s so important about it? How is this memory of theirs making them feel?
If you can do this when speaking or listening to someone, you can react to them better. You don’t just hear words, you understand the emotions behind them.
2. Empathy: Understand The Emotions Behind What Others Are Saying
This tip is a continuation of the previous one.
If you can understand a person beyond their words, then you can understand the emotions they are feeling.
You have empathy.
Your empathy is your ability to put yourself in the position of others. If you are capable of empathy, you can understand a person even more and relate to them. This is a very important skill to have if you want to be socially active.
One key aspect of using your empathy skills in social interactions is having emotional intelligence. If you have emotional intelligence, you can make every conversation pleasant to the person you’re talking to and yourself.
Empathy is a very potent social skill.
You need to understand how someone else is feeling when you are talking to them. What emotions are they feeling at that moment? Their emotions will affect everything they say and how they react to you. How they respond to jokes, stories, and even how they anticipate your reactions.
If you know how they feel, you are also responsible for knowing how they want to feel. If they are feeling bummed out, they will most likely respond negatively to a negative comment. Knowing this, you need to direct your conversations to more positive ones.
Aside from knowing how they feel, you also need into account how YOU are feeling. If you’re not in the mood to interact with other people, you probably shouldn’t be out interacting with others in the first place. You also need to make sure that you are happy and positive when talking to others as that will affect how you act, therefore how others see you.
3. Be Socially Perceptive
After knowing how to empathize with another person, you now need to take it to the next level and scan an entire room. This is a good social skill to have because it will help you approach anyone in a gathering with the right attitude. When at a social gathering, you need to know these following things:
- Who came with whom
- Who’s dating who
- Who are friends with whom
- Who’s feeling what
When you take the time to know these things before you approach people at a party, you can interact with people better. You will know what to talk about, and you will know how to talk to them.
For example: if you know someone who’s friends with someone you know, you can immediately use that as an ice breaker in a conversation. If you see someone who seems alone in a crowd, you can approach that person and make them feel like they belong.
The best way to do all this is to think outwards, not inwards. Think about everyone around you and focus less on yourself. If you do this, you’ll be able to scan the room and be socially perceptive. You will be a social grandmaster at any party you attend. Not only will people enjoy your presence, but you will also actually have a lot of fun in the process.
4. Blend In With Others
A great social skill you should have at this point is blending in. If you are capable of blending in, you can be a part of any social circle naturally and they will be more than happy to have you.
Feel grateful at every social interaction you participate in. See it as an opportunity to grow and build great friendships. If you do this, you will have a higher chance of joining any social circle naturally. Your outlook and emotions will affect how you act and how you think. If you’re happy to be there, your actions and words will show it. Once others realize that, they will be more drawn to you. If you are a source of positivity, blending in and joining other social circles will be natural and easy.
5. Add Value To Social Interactions
You need to treat every social interaction with importance. You need to actively find ways to add value to those interactions and you will be seen as a contributor to every social circle you’ll be a part of. Thankfully, it is very easy and fun to do this.
What you need to be is a source of positivity at every gathering. You need to make people laugh, make others share their stories with you, listen to them while they do so, make them feel important and wanted in that interaction. Bring out positive emotions and everyone around you will be positive as well.
If someone needs advice, give a helpful one. If it is needed, quip a few jokes to make the mood lighter. Not every single situation has to be taken seriously. If you do this, everyone will be happy to have you around.
6. Learn Conversation Skills
Being great at conversations is the essence of having great social skills and it is something you need to master. This is such a wide topic that I’m going to share with you a series of articles just for this one aspect.
In the following articles, you will learn to:
- Start conversations
- Maintain conversations
- Keep them interesting
- learn small talk
- be talkative and know the right moments when to be talkative
- have deep and meaningful conversations
- and so much more
Take all the time you need to study and practice your conversational skills. Study them alone at home before you try them out in public. Or, you can even ask the help of someone you know. Practice it on them. The application is just as important as the study. You can find the articles: conversation articles.
7. Introduce People To Each Other and Helping Them Get Along
Another great way of boosting your social skills is by introducing other people with each other. If you do this, people will see you as someone who values friendship. Not only do you want to meet people but you’re also willing to let people meet others. They will even start crediting you for their friendship. They will appreciate you for allowing their friendship to happen and thus value you as a friend even more.
You can also introduce someone to a specific social circle. Introducing people to each other and creating friendships is also an extension of adding value to social interactions. By adding a member to the group you’re a part of, you allow that group to grow by letting in someone who belongs there, thus expanding and adding value to that social circle.
A great way of introducing two people to each other is to find people who share something in common. It can be anything like their hometown, a common interest, or even just a mutual friend. Make sure you mention them by name too!
For example, you can start the interaction by going “Hey Arnold, this is Susan. She lived in Minnesota for a couple of years. Didn’t you live there too?” or “Hey Arnold, this is my friend Susan. We were just talking about the game last night. She is just a massive basketball fan, perhaps even a bigger fan than you!”.
By doing this, you’ve already mentioned what it is they have in common AND they already know each other’s names before even interacting with each other. This also allows them to continue the conversation themselves naturally, but be sure to remain and help the interaction go smoothly.
8. Show Vulnerability – It’s a Social Skill!
You don’t need to be the most extraordinary person in the world to make friends. Every once in a while, allow yourself to show humanity to let others know you’re comfortable enough with them. You can do this by sharing embarrassing stories, or even letting out a few personal secrets.
Just be sure not to overdo this as it might make others uncomfortable. When talking to someone, or talking in a group, share something personal with them. Don’t share your biggest and most personal secret, but say something you’ve never told them before. By doing this, you are letting them know you trust them enough to show a little vulnerability. They may even return the favor and share some secrets and stories of their own.
As mentioned, don’t share your most personal secret or most private story right away. It can be something simple, or silly even. But if you acknowledge some of your flaws in front of your friends, they will appreciate you more.
9. Build Trust With Potential Friends
Some people are not as trusting as others. A lot of people have had experiences in the past that made them wary of others and made them trust more. What they want is to meet someone worthy of their trust. What you need is to be someone worthy of that trust.
You can start small, slowly, but surely by sharing a few private things of your own to that person. By opening up to them, they will feel more comfortable opening up to you. Do this slowly, but more and more. Eventually, you will have shared enough with the other person that you two will begin to trust each other. They will begin to trust you.
Just make sure that you let them know that it’s okay to be imperfect. Let them know that it’s fine to have vulnerabilities and that you won’t judge them for theirs. Once your friendship grows, they will be happy opening up to you in the first place.
10. Help Others Talk More
If you want to make friends naturally and hone your social skills, you’ll need to allow others to grow while you’re around. Let others speak and help them speak if they are uncomfortable around social gatherings.
You can do this by being an active listener and a great responder in conversations. By saying “uh-huh” or “that’s interesting! Tell me more” every once in a while, you are encouraging them to speak up more. You should also remember to look at the person while doing this while giving them slight nods.
Another great way of helping others talk is by allowing them to expand your knowledge. For example, if someone brings up their area of expertise, say something like “Oh, I’ve heard of that. Here’s what I know about it…” and once you finish, say something like “.. that’s what I think. What do you think though?”
Just make sure what you say is true in regards to their expertise. They will be impressed that you know something about their field.
By doing this, you are allowing them to teach you. You’re allowing them to speak up and share their knowledge. This will make them feel good about themselves and they will have you to thank for it.
11. Be Warm To Warm Up Social Interactions
Finally, you need to be warm so people will find you approachable. Be optimistic, be happy, and let others feel your emotions. You need to be good at conversations and be responsive if you want people to see you as “warm”.
When greeting or when being greeted by someone, always reply with something positive like “It’s great to meet you” or “I’m happy to be here”. Let them know that you are grateful to be in their company.
Your facial expressions and body language should also reflect this too. When you say “I’m happy to be here”, say that with a smile and a firm handshake. If you are genuine about being happy, your body language will show that naturally. You can be charming this way, and everyone loves a charming person.
Practice your facial expressions in front of a mirror. This is a great way to prepare yourself for social occasions if you’re unprepared. Be sure your expressions are “natural” and not “exaggerated”.
If you have any negative thoughts or comments, keep them to yourself unless it is appropriate or you’re in the company of close friends. Don’t let your negative emotions get the best of you when speaking to someone you just met. Once again, smile and be happy for the opportunity. You have the chance to make a new friend and that’s something to be grateful for.
You can immediately stand out from the crowd when you have a warm presence. People will generally look forward to meeting you and you will make a lot of friends naturally.
These social skills will get you started. You have to know that mastering these skills can’t and won’t happen overnight. It is something you need to study and practice regularly before you can use them naturally out in public.
Mastering these skills isn’t as easy as it sounds, but is perfectly attainable if you’re dedicated. So if you are dedicated, you’ll need to have the patience to study and practice and the guts to apply it in real life. Just remember that this is a great way to build friendships and it has a great impact on your life in general. Just remember this and mastering these important social skills for adults should happen to you in no time.
If you want to master your social skills even faster, be sure to check out our training. They will help you build your social skills, master the art of conversation, and overcome your fears so you can go out there and make friends right away.