Nobody is born an introvert or an extrovert. Most people are somewhere in between. They have both sides to their personality, but one side may be more dominant.
Those who have a dominant introvert side tend to focus more on inward-focusing activities like reading, thinking, while those with a dominant extrovert side like to be around people or in social settings.
While there is nothing wrong being an introvert, sometimes you need to embrace your inner extrovert. Acquiring the traits of an extrovert will help you in job interviews, business networking, excelling at your job, making friends and in your personal relationships.
However, drawing out the other side of your personality will need some effort. You will have to first train your mind, as your brain controls your behavior to a major extent.
Here are a 30+ tips that you can try out to be an extrovert:
- Know yourself. Most people have both characteristics in them; that of an introvert and also an extrovert. Even if you are an introvert, you may have many extroverted characteristics. You just need to draw them out. When you know yourself, it will help you to better understand your behavior and your natural state. This will further help you incorporate your behavior with the traits you lack so that you can make the most of your capabilities.
- Find out the cause. Find out the cause for your introvert behavior. Sometimes certain situations, people or places work as triggers for your introvert behavior. Find out what exactly is it that makes you uncomfortable and lose your confidence. Knowing it will help you overcome it.
- Be open to change. If you view every extroverted trait as undesirable, you will find it difficult to adopt them because subconsciously you don’t want to have them in you.
- Believe that you can change. Have a positive outlook towards change. Believe that you can acquire the extrovert traits. Do not force yourself to change just because others are telling you to, change because you want to.
- Get out of your head. One of the introverted traits is spending a lot of time in your head, exploring your thoughts and feelings. Try to keep out of your head. Distract yourself with new hobbies and interests. Try to do things that will make you focus less on yourself.
- Visualize yourself as an extrovert. Although it’s not what you actually are, it is possible to act as an extrovert. You can feel as the person you want to become by playing the part. Acting like an extrovert constantly till your minds accepts the trait as a part of you can eventually make you feel like an extrovert. Don’t try to fake it, but instead act until you believe it.
- Observe people with extroverted traits. Changing your personality traits is extremely challenging. Notice carefully what the extroverts do differently and how they deal with situations differently. Watch their behavior and mannerisms closely and learn from them; What are those traits that make them extrovert or what are the traits that you would want to imbibe.
- Change your body language. Loosen up your body when in social situations. Introverts are likely to cross their arms, stiffen up and start becoming more fidgety when in group conversations. Change your body language. Appear relaxed. By doing so, your body will send a message to your mind to relax and be less anxious.
- Say no to your inner chatter. Introverts are likely to be involved with their inner dialogue. Try to turn off your inner chatter when in large social gatherings. Instead, engage in the conversation to be an extrovert. Try to listen intently.
- Learn to be comfortable around people. If you are an introvert, you are likely to be quiet in social situations. Being quiet is completely okay. But try to make yourself comfortable in social situations. For that, throw yourself into conversations where a lot of people are involved. Resist the urge to leave the place. You don’t have to necessarily talk, but listening and maintaining eye contact is also equally important.
- Get out of your comfort zone. You can’t change your personality trait overnight, but you can practice it by behaving differently until it comes naturally. Think of scenarios that make you uncomfortable and then think of how you will deal with them confidently. For instance: Walk up to people in your neighborhood and say hello. Gradually, as you overcome this fear, start talking to them. Try having conversations with them to become more outgoing and social.
- Do impulsive things. Do things that you wouldn’t have done before. If you feel like going out and drinking, get dressed and go to a pub. Who knows you may make new friends there or worst, you may be left sitting alone and drinking in a corner. But at least, you will be forcing yourself to get out of your comfort zone and pushing yourself to do something that you wouldn’t have dared to do otherwise.
- Find social activities you enjoy. One of the major reasons for people to turn into introverts is that they don’t see any activity around them worth investing their time and effort in. For instance, if your friends find watching movies interesting and entertaining while you are not much into movies, you will try and avoid meeting them or hanging out with them. Instead, try socializing with people who share your interests. Make friends with a group of people who love reading books. You will soon find yourself looking for opportunities to hang out with such people or going to a book fair or exhibition.
- Find the right kind of people to be around. Sometimes, the people around you can act as a trigger for your introverted behavior. It could be because you don’t gel with the people you hang out with. Find the right kind of people to be with; people you share a similar interest with, people from a different age group etc. Being with such people could bring out the extroverted side of your personality. Join an activity class or a workshop where you know you will end up meeting people who are on the same wavelength to be an extrovert.
- Organize social gatherings at places where you are comfortable. Everybody is comfortable in their own surroundings or in places that they are familiar with. Try organizing social gatherings or events as much as possible at places you frequently visit. Invite your acquaintances for a party at your home or head to your favorite restaurant or coffee-shop for an after-work party. As you feel more comfortable in places that you are familiar with, you will find it easier to talk to people.
- Create opportunities for yourself. You might be someone who is better in small groups or in a 1 on 1 conversation. If that’s the case, then you should try to engage in conversations with people in smaller groups at a large social gathering. By doing this, you are creating an opportunity for having deeper conversations.
- Use your strengths. Use your strengths or positive qualities. If you are good at listening, use it to make friends. People love to talk about themselves and they feel special when they know someone is genuinely interested in listening to them. So, the next time you meet someone new, just start a conversation and let your listening skills take over.
- Say yes to social invites. If you are an introvert, you might find socializing very taxing. That is probably because you aren’t used to being in social situations frequently. Find situations where you can be around people. Go to a get-together at your colleague’s place or accept a lunch invitation from a group of friends you met on social media.
- Start practicing your conversation skills. When you are in a social situation, try and force yourself to talk. If this is a problem for you, practice talking when you are alone. Gradually practice talking when you are around your family and close friends. The more you get used to talking, easier it will be for you in social situations.
- Position yourself better. When at a social gathering or at a party, do you often find yourself standing in a corner hugging the walls or spending most of your time in the refreshment corner? Instead, stand in the center of the room and be open to conversations. Make eye-contact and try to position yourself in front of the person you are talking to. Talk to as many people as possible.
- Smile. If you have trouble taking the initiative to start a conversation, encourage people to talk to you by smiling and making eye-contact. When you smile at people, they become relaxed and they associate it with happiness.
- Make small talk. If you are someone who is not very good with people, you will undoubtedly dislike small talk. But in reality, small talk will help you form friendly connections with people. Small talk can be about anything, from weather to traffic to a joke to news that you heard.
- Communicate with empathy. Learn to become more cordial and approachable. Avoid being judgmental and put yourself in others’ place and view things from their position.
- Take genuine interest in people. Try to find something interesting in each person you talk to. Be it their enthusiasm, their unique style, their personality or their mannerisms. Find something to appreciate in the people you talk to. If you are not genuinely interested in talking to them, they will be able to see it.
- Use ice-breakers. Notice small details about people or the event. It could be the jewelry a person is wearing or it could be something about the party. Choose these details to be the ice-breakers in a conversation. This will help ease your tension about starting a conversation.
- Keep your phone away. When in a social situation where you hardly know anyone, you may have the tendency to keep yourself busy with your phone. It provides you with security. However, it also keeps you away from forcing yourself to get into action and socialize. So, next time try to stay off your phone. Either don’t bring it along or leave it in your car.
- Divert the conversation to what you are interested in. Listen intently in a conversation and try to take the conversation to a topic that you are interested in. This will make you listen and also talk more. Also, people like to engage in a conversation if they feel that the person is genuinely interested in listening to what they have to say.
- Share your thoughts. When you are asked for an opinion, take it as an opportunity to share your thoughts.
- Allow yourself to leave. If going to a party you are invited to gives you a panic attack, commit yourself to attend the party for just half an hour. Tell yourself that if you don’t enjoy it, you are free to leave after 30 minutes.
- Remember what people think of you is none of your business. It shouldn’t matter what people think of you. Don’t get influenced by people’s opinions. You may often come across negative people, who may try to drag you down or doubt what you have achieved. Have the strength of your convictions and stand by your decisions and ambitions. This will make you more outspoken as you will try to defend your plans.
- Make time for yourself. While practicing the extroverted traits, take your time to re-charge your mental batteries. For instance: Take ample amount of rest or just go to sleep before attending a big event or heading to a party. This will allow your mind to relax and stop it from anticipating about the forthcoming event.
- Be comfortable in your own skin. When you believe in yourself, you develop confidence naturally. Don’t be over-confident. Be confident and honestly represent yourself.