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One of the questions I get asked most often, is “how can I feel more confident about starting a convewrsation with someone I don’t know?” And surprisingly, if you go about it in the right way, it’s not that difficult. Today’s episode will show you how to do it AND meet your need for contribution and growth at the same time.
If you have any questions, or comments, please leave them in the comments section below.
Podcast music: Is ‘Sweet Life’ by Twisterium.
Music Link: https://www.twisterium.com
Hello and welcome to episode 30 of the everyday confidence podcast, from theskillfulmind.com. I’m your host, Steve George and on today’s episode I want to talk about contribution and how it’s one of the easiest ways to live a fulfilled life.
Now, if you’re listening to this podcast, no doubt you’re here to get some ideas about how you can become more confident. And there are lot’s of ways you can achieve that. Many of them we’ve spoken about already over the weeks and we’ll go over a lot more of them in the future. But, one of the things I get asked about most often, is; ‘How can I make it easier to speak to people I don’t know?’ That’s something that almost everyone who struggles with low self-confidence want’s to answer. And it’s very often difficult to find ways to ease into a conversation with someone you’ve never spoken to before.
So today’s podcast is going to do 2 things for you. Firstly it’s going to show you a way, where the person you’re gonna speak to, will be really glad you did. So, there’s no negative feedback to worry about. And second, it’s gonna give you a way to meet two of your 6-human needs. And if you haven’t come across the 6-human needs before, I’ll put a link for you in the show notes.
Okay. So going back to the first benefit where I said that the person’ll be glad you spoke to them. The reason for that, is because the you’re gonna be talking to someone who needs your help. Now, there are thousands of people who’d love to have you speak with them and it’s a really easy thing to achieve. Even if you really struggle with anything that needs you to be even a little bit confident. And it’s a great self-esteem booster too.
So how do you go about finding these people? Well, that’s the easy bit. All you need to do is think about who would like to speak with you.
So, let’s give you some ideas. Clearly with the Covid problems at the moment, finding people to speak with is going to be a bit more difficult that it otherwise would be. I mean, I used to recommend visiting the local hospice, or care home and asking if you can volunteer there for an hour or two a week. That way, there’s plenty of people who would be really grateful for a conversation. So, you can hone you’re conversation starting skills and make someone’s day without having to worry about repercussions for a bad performance. Any situation like that is win-win. You learn how to speak with strangers, and they get to relieve the boredom of daytime TV with a proper conversation.
And even though it’s more difficult at the moment, there are still opportunities. For example, if you live, even in a relatively small town, there are often people living rough who don’t get the chance to have a conversation with anyone. And it doesn’t even need to be a conversation. Even just buying them a coffee, or a burger will give you a reason to sit and talk with them. And I can pretty much guarantee they’ll be happy to talk to you after you’ve taken the time to treat them as a human being.
Now, obviously, if you’re going to speak to people who down on their luck, you need to be cautious. The vast majority of homeless people end up there because of circumstances they had little or no control over and they’re essentially they’re just doing the best they can in the situation they’ve found themselves in. But, there are always exception to that rule and you should do whatever you can to stay safe. So maybe buy them a coffee one morning and just say, ‘I thought you could use this’. Then walk on. If they thank you and seem friendly (and remember most people are), then the next time you’re passing say to them ‘I’m just going to grab myself a coffee, can I get you one, or would you prefer something different?’
You’ve started a conversation. Then you can go buy your coffee and whatever it they want and carry on talking. So thats’ how you start a conversation with a stranger and again it’s win-win. If you’re reluctant to do that by yourself, then go with a friend. Having someone you know with you should make the initial meeting less stressful and you’ll feel safer if you’ve got that extra back up.
So, onto the second benefit. By not only speaking to strangers, but speaking with people who don’t get the chance to speak with people regularly, you’re meeting your need for contribution. Now there are lots of ways to grow and human growth is a natural consequence of contribution. The more you contribute, the more you grow as a human being.
And who knows? Maybe you’ll make some new friends in the process. But be careful, ‘coz once you get the bug, it’s difficult to stop. And we wouldn’t want you making friends and becoming a pillar of society would we?
So, lets give you a quick recap. Over the next few days, think about how you could be of benefit to someone less lucky than you at the moment. Then decide on how you could not only be of service to them, but also use the experience to gain confidence in yourself and give back at the same time.
If you need to, speak to someone you trust and ask them to got along with you for moral support. Then, go make someone’s day. You’ll be really glad you did.
That’s it for today. Thank you so much for listening, I hope you got something out of it. If you enjoyed the show, please tell your friends. You can leave any questions or comments on the podcast page for this episode, which is theskillfulmind.com/podcast/30. Where you’ll also find today’s show notes and links. until next time, bye for now.