I just finished How to Be Yourself: Quiet Your Inner Critic and Rise Above Social Anxiety, a great book by psychologist Dr. Hendriksen. Besides sharing information that is built upon the foundation of science, she is sharing her personal experience with social anxiety, including all the mess and embarrassment that comes along with interacting with other human beings. I like her already.
Here are just three of my favorite takeaways about being more relaxed in social situations:
One: Anyone who is friendly to you has the potential to be your friend! When we lower our bar of expectations we invite the potential for more good friends in our life. Good friends (remember, this is founded on science!) have more to do with repetition and time spent together than any commonalities such as life stage, age, or favorite sports or books. So be open to new relationships with anyone who is friendly.
Two: Redefine your definition of popular! Popularity does not equal most liked. Again founded in science, the most well-liked people aren’t necessarily the ones considered the most popular. So don’t worry if you’re not popular or don’t consider yourself popular (or even if you are), instead just be likable, even if it’s to a small circle of friends. After all, being warm and friendly is what most people want in a true friend and those are the people you want in your life.
Three: Your inner critic is trying to help you. What I got from this is that I can thank my inner critic for trying to protect me and still put myself in scary to me social situations. Even if things go absolutely the worst way possible, I know I can handle it because I have structure and a plan for coping. Thank you, inner critic!
There are so many more things I could mention like that you’ll learn:
- How to build confidence
- How to make friends
- How playing a role can help you behave more like yourself
- What structure can help you accomplish
- And how to quiet your inner critic so you can be yourself!
So dive into your copy and become the comfortable you your loved ones know and love.