"I would like to be more confident in social situations."

This item is regularly chosen on the confidence building self-assessment form by individuals seeking support.   Whether we identify as introverted or extroverted, we are social creatures and must learn to navigate social situations if we are to reach our goals.

Daily living requires us to connect and communicate with others. Social situations can include our interactions with co-workers, family, friends, potential mates, neighbors or the grocery store clerk.

Lacking confidence in social situations can happen even when interactions are brief, with few expectations held. Lacking confidence in more important or intimate situations is often associated with the higher expectations of significant personal goals. It is important to recognize that the perception of being “one who lacks confidence in social situations” has been accepted and absorbed by the stubborn robotic subconscious mind. The subconscious mind cannot be forced or willed to accept a new perception, it must be actively taught.

Help yourself begin to create a more confident persona by:

1. Recognizing that feeling confident in social situations is not about "having or not having" the ability. Make a conscious decision to invest time and energy in improving your confidence in in daily social situations.

2. Be crystal clear on the benefits of becoming more confident in social situations. If our "why" is lukewarm we tend to have a difficult time investing time and energy in self-improvement efforts. Take the time to write down the benefits. There is something amazing about putting pen to paper to help solidify intentions.

3. Learn to ask non-threatening questions and pay attention to answers. Many socially anxious people are so internally focused that they fail to pick up cues. Challenge yourself to paraphrase back if need be..."so do you mean...?"

4. Commit to a daily practice of asking a few simple light questions outside of your significant relationships. Use less threatening situations to build your confidence.

For example, any time you find yourself waiting in a line up waiting to pay for a coffee or groceries:

-"Geez do you think spring is ever going to come?"

-"I am thinking of trying something new, what’s your favourite thing to order here?"

-"I see you are buying tomatoes, do you think the produce is better here then...?" (Safeway, Sobeys, Superstore, Walmart etc.)

Are these 4 simple ideas the end all and be all to becoming more confident in social situations? No, but for some they are a pretty darn good start.