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Confidently Meet People, Make Connections, And Enjoy Yourself This Holiday

Do you dread Christmas parties? Do you have a hard time starting conversations, keeping them going, and really enjoying yourself at these things? If so, you’re in the right place. Join Dr. Aziz as he provides simple, practical guidance on how to show up to any party with way more confidence and social power.
Click below to hear this episode!

Change Your Expierence At Your Next Party

Do you hate Christmas Parties? Do you dread them? Do you maybe avoid them or endure them kind of white knuckle it through them? Maybe just don’t have as good a time as you would like, maybe you feel restricted or inhibited. And if so, today’s show is going to help transform that, help you show up completely differently and crush it at any Christmas party or any holiday, New Year’s, any party that’s coming up for you, completely change the way you approach it and change your experience.

Hey, hey, welcome to today’s episode of the show. Festive holiday times are here. It’s Christmas almost and there’s no better time to talk about how to crush it at Christmas parties. If you want to jump into, learn more about the show, find about me, sign up to get my free e-book which is called Five Steps to Unleash Your Inner Confidence which is awesome and free, go to shrinkfortheshyguy.com. You can also send me a message through that site and you can get into the conversation at Facebook.com/social confidence so it’s a way to stay connected. And but today, we’re going to be getting into how to crush it at Christmas parties. And Christmas parties are not significantly different than other parties. It’s just there’s — it’s a time of the year where there’s a lot of these things. And whether it’s an office party or a dinner party or a small gathering or some sort of Christmas thing with extended family, there’s lots of parties and gatherings and for some people, it’s like, “Oh god, when are they going to be over?” And the way I look at it, there’s lots of opportunities to practice especially if you say things like I hate parties.

I Hate Parties

And this is a common phrase. I hear this a lot especially when we’re dealing with social anxiety or shyness or don’t have the confidence or social confidence or outgoingness that we want. That’s just a phrase we use. I hate parties. I used to say that. I hate parties. And let’s just slow down for a second though because instead of taking that as fact and say, “Yes, that’s true” and of course, I do and here’s my reasons. Let’s actually find out why. So, why do you really hate parties and what are some of the things? Just don’t dig too deep, just what’s the first thing that come to mind, why do you dislike parties? Why do you dread them or not like them or prefer not to go to them? What comes up for you? Good, what else? Just come up with a few more. What are your — it is important because we’re going to do something with these in a second, you want to write them down, even better. But what are the specific things that you say, “Yes, I like this or that,” what is it for you?

People are superficial at parties, small talks, I hate small talks, small talks sucks, it’s too loud. No one listens to anyone anyway, you can’t have great conversations, I hate going over and talking to people, I hate joining into groups, I never know what to say. What is it for you? Maybe some of those or all of those, something different, good. So, now that we have this list or things that you came up, what do you think’s really underneath all of that? Whether it’s criticizing other people or saying small talk sucks. Or saying I don’t like certain … I’m not good at these things, I don’t like talking to people or starting conversations. What is really underneath all of that? It’s the common thread, it’s social discomfort in my experience and it really was, but that’s just a fancy word for fear, it’s fear and discomfort, that’s what it is. When we’re honest with ourselves at the end of the day, there’s just some fear there and maybe we’re aware of some of the things that we’re scared of, I’m scared to go talk to someone, I’m scared to join into a group, I don’t like being in there and not knowing what to do next and just sort of standing there by myself and feeling awkward or clinging to my partner or friend because I’m scared to go talk to new people.

Fear- Let’s Face It

Maybe you’re aware of the fear but sometimes we don’t like to be aware of the fear, we don’t like to admit fear because that seems like weak or somehow, it makes us inferior. So, we kind of flip it to the more pseudo strong powerful stance of, “it’s not that I’m scared, it’s just that that’s bullshit, I just don’t like it, small talk sucks, people are superficial, okay.” And now we have this kind of front where we’re on the attack. I’m not weak, they just suck and so and that doesn’t serve you and it keeps you stuck, it kind of entrenches you. The best thing to do is like you know what, it’s just fear and it doesn’t mean I’m weak, there’s something wrong with that, everyone … dude, why do you think everyone drinks a shit ton around this time of year and at every single gathering because they’re super totally comfortable in themselves? No, because they wanted to numb out their own fear, their own self-criticism, their own self-doubt and hesitation and second guessing. I mean, most people are uncomfortable talking to people they don’t know, joining in conversations, being at a party, most people. You’ve might be thinking like, “Oh, I’m weird or I’m different”, saying like, “Oh no.” Most people it’s really a common problem and that’s where it is, it’s fear. So now, you’ve acknowledged that and made it okay, now we can actually deal with it, now we can learn how to overcome that fear, how to address it, how to breakthrough it, how to show up completely differently to a party with a lot more self-confidence and self-trust and to be able to more easily interact with people and be outgoing. So, in fact, we’re going to dive in all of that right after this, so stay tuned.

So, how do we crush it at Christmas parties? How do we have a much better experience there and actually enjoy ourselves? I don’t know if I might sound like a stretch, I might sound farfetched because your experience has been so the opposite but if you apply what I’m sharing in this episode and you’re working on your social — your social confidence and your skills in general, not just waiting until the day before Christmas to do this but if you’ve been working on stuff in general, over time, you can notice a powerful shift in how you show up. So, here’s some things.

Pre-Party

One; pre-party, big, big important thing. So most of the time, if you’re going to go out with friends, you’re going to go out to a club or whatever, usually people get together beforehand and have what called a pre-party where they get together, they hang out, they play music, they talk with each other, they connect, they get excited, they feel open, probably drinking and they get ready to go. And the way that we show, if we are showing up to a party by ourselves, we like drive there, we’re tense, we’re like, “Oh boy, oh man, I hate parties here I go…”

Right? And we’re showing up in a really low energy, tense, nervous uncomfortable state. So, what are we going to do? Pre-party, I know it’s ridiculous. I know. But this shit works if you do it, so what I would suggest is actually when you’re getting ready around your house and you’re taking a shower or whatever, you’re getting dressed, just start bumping the most badass, awesome, fun, exciting music that gets you going and I don’t care what it is maybe it’s music that can get you into a powerful state like some rap or some hard core hip-hop or you’re like, “Yes, motherf*cker, I just don’t give a sh*t.” Right? Or maybe it’s like, for me, I’m a huge fan of all things electronic. So, electronic dance music, trance techno, sci-trance, whatever it is. So, I’ll put on some of that stuff and just like literally jump up and down and just be like, “Yes,” and get into a powerful state. And this is something that kind of people hear about it and I try to teach it in some of my programs, I do in I think in Confidence Unleashed, I teach it. And when people come to a live weekend with me, they really get it because we do it and we help shed any of that self-conscious like, “Oh, I don’t know, isn’t that weird,” and you just get into a place where like actually this is really fun and little kids love this sh*t. And my son Zayim, when I’m doing it, I’m like — I hit my chest and raise my hands and like, “Yes,” and he’s like, “Yes,” and it’s awesome and it’s so natural. And we would do stuff like this when we were kids and we just learn like, “Oh that’s not okay.” So, give yourself that permission and if you really want to get this and make it totally okay and have it be part of your life forever, join me for a weekend here coming up in 2016. We got three of them, we got one in March, Supremely Confident Conversation Master. It should be awesome, it’s going to be and of course, we’ll include teaching how to do that because I show that in all of my events because it’s so important.

Party in the Car

Anyway, pre-party, get yourself pumped up, super important. And then on the drive there, be listening to some music, stay on that state. Be like yelling out, banging on the steering wheel, saying stuff like, “I got this, I’m the man.” It’s ridiculous, it’s silly but it works. There was a client of mine, who’s in one of my groups actually and he worked in an ad agency, I think in the Bay Area somewhere and he was kind of new in the corporate world and was nervous, many people don’t like me. And he said he would just start his pump up ritual, he’d be in the shower and he’ll be like, “Man, you got this. This is going to be an awesome day, I’m going to rock this, yes, I’m going to rock this.” And then he’d be driving to work like, “I got this, yes,” and he’d play his favorite song and he said it would be night and day difference how he’d show up. And of course, because your energy is so different and people pick up on your energy long before they hear what you say, long before they even notice your physical body language, it’s just what you emit, what you exude. And it’s like there’s an energetic state that you can get into that’s a lot more dynamic, engaging and appealing to others. So, super important to do that, that’s the pre-party.

Hit the Ground Running

Then also, it’s important to hit the ground running. So what you don’t want to do is, often people is they go to the party and then they’re like, “Oh, okay, I’m going to cruise the outside of the perimeter, okay and kind of lurk, scan out the seen by doing a perimeter check. Or they beeline for the bar and that’s cool, too, you can do that. I think that I would actually suggest not bee-lining for the bar. Most people do that because why? Because they’re nervous, they’re anxious, they’re uncomfortable, they want to neutralize that. And while the alcohol can’t help, it also is not going to help you overcome this sh*t and become a lot more powerful. Because what it’s doing is it’s numbing the fear and if you numb the fear, you don’t confront it, you don’t gain anything, you don’t build the muscle of confidence much at all. And so even, if you are going to drink, I would suggest keep it down to like one or two and also don’t do it immediately. Here’s what I suggest doing immediately when you walk into the doors. Go talk to someone, initiate a conversation, it doesn’t matter, you don’t know them, you do know them, the guy way down the hall that you work with, it’s your distant Aunt Myrtle, it doesn’t matter, you just — first person or group of people.

Hey guys, how it’s going? Hey John, nice sweater, I love it, festive. All right? Just boom, jump in, say something, ask a question, how it’s going tonight, how are you guys doing? Like if you don’t have a great thing to say, just say something and just get in there. And what that does is that will change the whole course of your night and maybe the course of your life, I don’t know. Maybe you’d meet someone at this party who will be your wife or your husband or your partner. Maybe you will connect with someone who you work with and who then you end up becoming friends with or maybe even starting a business with. I don’t know. I mean stuff can really change in ways that we don’t really understand or can predict. But at the very least, you can change the course of your experience at that party because you enter in completely differently. And you enter in by taking active ownership, you’re taking charge, you’re getting in to the driver seat, you’re not waiting passively for someone to come talk to you which put you in a disempowered state, you’re just hoping and waiting and then all you’re going to do is fill your mind with like concern and self-doubt, just boom get in there, don’t think, act, go talk, initiate with someone. That’s going to set you into motion. Then I would suggest moving and going and interacting with someone else and doing that a few times. I mean, you might dive right into a great conversation and keep it going or you might just be like, “Well great, I’ll catch you guys in a little bit, I’m going to go say hi to some other folks.”

It’s Great Seeing You-Moving On

That is a great way to move away from a person or a group. If it’s been one person, you could say, “Well, it’s great seeing you, John or it’s great talking to you, John. Let’s catch up in a little bit, I want to go and say hi to some other folks.” Boom and then you move on and then you go interact with someone else. And then if you want to go to the bar and get a drink, I’m not like the drinking police, you can go do that, get some sort of weird eggnog gross rum beverage. And then, but you’ve already set something in motion, right, you sent a message to yourself to which is like I don’t need alcohol to do this. Look, I can do this on my own and now, I’m going to have a drink because it’s going to be fun, right. So, you do that after you’ve interacted with a few people, that’s a huge step. And then there’s some super important stuff we’re going to get into about how to join into groups, how to interact with people, how to end conversations that are not going well, how to start conversations with people, ways to enjoy yourself more as you do this whole thing and a bunch more. We’re going to get into all that in just a moment so just stay tuned, we’ll be right back.

So, jumping into conversations because that’s a big part of any party or gathering, right, is typically you have to — you’re going to have number of conversations with people. And so you want to be able to start those conversations and interact with them and keep them going. And if you’re enjoying the conversations, stay in it as long as you like, if you’re not, being able to exit skillfully and gracefully and move on to someone else. You don’t need to sacrifice yourself and sit there and listen to someone you don’t really like, it’s really boring and uncomfortable, you don’t have to sit there and smile and nod for like 20 minutes and get hijacked in a corner. That is super nice guy behavior, I used to that and it would just be like, in my head, I’d be like — so outwardly I’m nice, I’m smiling and I’m polite and then in my head though, I’m not being nice, I’m being a jerk. I’m like, “God, why are they still taking, this is so boring, when they are going to shut up. How the hell I get out of here?” Right, so wouldn’t it be more authentic, bold and kind to end the conversation? We think we’re being kind when we’re being the nice guy but we’re not, we’re being scared, we’re being gutless.

Step Up

So we need to step up and we need to do something about that. You know the worst part of that though is I’m stuck in the nice guy role. It was like, “Well, I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feeling and if I end the conversation with them, they’re going to be crushed and they’re going to feel so bad and then they’re not going to like me. So what I would do is they’re talking about something I’m not interested at all, I want to get away. In my head, I’m like, when is this going to be over, please stop talking, please stop talking. Have you ever been there? And then here’s what I would do though, they pause for a moment and instead of saying, “Well hey, it’s great talking with you, John, I’m going to go catch, I’m going to say hi to someone else or I want to say hi to such and such or I’m going to go grab a drink or I’m going to use the bathroom or I’ll catch you in a little bit. You don’t even need a specific excuse, just I’ll catch you in a little bit or it’s been great talking with you, I’m going … I’ll see you around, I’ll see you in a little bit. Instead of saying that, I would say, “Oh, so you volunteer for Democratic party in 1974, cool.” I would like reflect back what they’re saying or ask them another question to keep them going, this is so painful.

And then as I’m doing that I’m like, why, why am I doing this, right because I was stuck, I was scared. And what we want to do is you just give yourself permission, man, they’re going to be okay, they’re going to be fine, they’ll find someone else, they’re not going to hate you, just move on and just say it that way, “Hey…” and you can interrupt. Sometimes you can wait for a pause, like that’s cool, hey, it’s been great talking with you, I’m going to grab a drink, I’ll see you, I’ll see you around here. All right, so there’s some subtle things here that are valuable. Hey, kind of inserting, you can do this, also notice that I said, “That’s cool” or say something that’s like sort of acknowledging but not like deepening the conversation. Don’t think you have to reflect back and show that you are listening to everything because if you do, they might just keep talking. Yes, that’s cool, cool, well anyway, it’s been great talking with you,” just like that. And then your voice tone is friendly but you’re also like signaling, “Hey, I’m moving on.” Way more powerful than trying to give them the subtle signals like I looked away, why are they still talking to me, that insensitive, unaware jerk. Right? And all that stuff is just passive, we get angry inside when we’re passive but when we’re active and we’re assertive, we can just fill out more power. So that’s how you break out of conversations that you don’t like.

Entering Converstations

How about entering into conversations? Well, there’s a ton of ways to do this. I go super deep in my program, the Confidence Code, which if this is something you really want to master, totally get that, go to your confidencecode.com. But there’s also this free e-book we give you when you do that, Two Steps to Total Confidence, super powerful stuff in there that I don’t teach anywhere else. But anyway, so we also want to be able to start those conversations and the cool thing about the Christmas parties is you can actually kind of queue up. You can come up with some things, some ways to start conversations ahead of time. And this is great, this is like a little crutch, a little trick in your back pocket that you can pull out if you need it. And so, just think about what are some things that I could ask people around Christmas time that would be relevant, that would start a conversation. So, you could be just like, “Hey, how’s it going? Or how’s your party going? Or what are you up to?” But you can also make it more tailored.

So what are some things you could ask someone because it’s Christmas or around Christmas time? That’s a question for you to think about to come up with, come up with a list of five. Like yes, yes, I just tell me them. And I could but this is about you building that muscle, this is about you flexing and building your own confidence muscle and practice and learning. This is going to build your conversation in building your conversation skills. And I would encourage you to do that to make that list. I’ll give you one, I’ll come up with one right now but really sit down and come up with a lot more for you that are relevant in your situation. Maybe it’s an office party so you can think about specific thing that’s related to people in your office around Christmas. But something I might say is be like, so, any badass gift plan for anyone? Or, so I have question for you, what is the gift you’re most excited about giving or what, it make it fun. What’s on your wish list for Christmas? That’s an interesting one, then you could see what they say and you could have all kinds of interesting conversation. Why do they want that, you could tease them about that, you could joke about that, you could make, wow. They list like eight things you’re like, “That’s all, anything else?” You just play with them so there’s a million ways you could go with it from there. But those are just a few but sit down and come up with more yourself because if you do, it’s going to be super valuable and you really use them and you have better conversations, it’s going to way easier to start. And it’s okay to start the conversation the same way with different people. So, you could say the same thing to one, so what’s on your wish list for Christmas? Then you go talk to someone else new 10 minutes later, so, what’s on your wish list for Christmas? That’s fine, reuse it. It’s okay and its valuable and you get some great conversations going. So that’s a super important way to start conversation.

How to Join the Group

Another thing that comes up at parties that’s huge is how do I join in the groups. Because most of the time in parties, people aren’t just standing there silently by themselves waiting for you to come talk to them. Maybe there’s an occasional moment or transition where’s there a person by themselves but usually people form into groups. Groups of 2, 3, 4 maybe even 5 or 6. So, how do you dive into groups, how do you jump into groups? That’s a huge topic, there’s a whole module on it inside the confidence, the Confidence Code. But I’m going to give you some tips right now. One is give yourself full permission to do it, less than what you say and the exact words you use is your energy. And if your energy because most of the time people are like, “Oh, I’m going to hesitate around the outside and hope they invite me in or I’m going to stand here awkwardly,” and that’s just sending this weird mixed signal. People feel uncomfortable by it. So it’s much better to just like boldly like boom, here I am, I am here to talk to you. Insert yourself into the group. I couldn’t do that, that’s rude. What if they’re having a really powerful, in depth life changing conversation?

Okay, first of all that’s probably not happening and just whatever, they’re chatting about some sh*t, they’re just talking. And secondly if that is, you’ll figure it out, you’ll find your way through it, no big deal, oh geez, it looks like you guys are in something really deep, well, I’ll catch up with you guys later. You’ll just find your way out of it, it’s no big deal and it’s so rare. That’s just our fear of rejection coming up, really that’s what it is. So just jump in, “Hey, how are you guys doing tonight?” The group of three people, looks like you guys are having a great conversation, what are you talking about? Looks like you’re having fun, what are we talking about? That’s a subtle one, looks like you guys are having fun, it’s just maybe they’re laughing and you acknowledge it. And then, notice what I said there? What are we talking about? What does that imply? Well, that implies I’m part of the group already? So, you do stuff like that and of course, your energy has to match. You come up to them and you hover on the outside and you’re kind of lurking and then you’re like, “Looks like you guys are having fun, what are we talking about?” And you’re all like tight and quiet and they’re all laughing and loud like it’s probably not going to work. Right, your energy has to come in and you just walk right over the group like and they’re all laughing, you’re like, it looks like you guys are having a great time, what are we talking about? And boom, someone going to tell you, you’ll be right in the conversation.

And again, there’s way more that I can get into in this episode if you want to go way deeper, go check out yourconfidencecode.com and it’s going to be, it’s such an important skill, joining into groups, man. Whether it’s a Christmas party, any sort of party or gathering, a networking event, this is huge for networking. I worked with a lot of people on that, they go to a networking event and they kind of just stand there a lot because they’re like, but those people are talking, I can’t do anything now. It’s like, “No, you can shift all that, you can breakthrough and a ton of other social skills. So super important stuff and speaking of super important, there’s one thing that we have to do before we end today’s episode that we cannot go without.

Time for action.

Action Step

Today’s action step is to apply this stuff at a Christmas party or at some party or gathering. You might have one for Christmas, for New Year, somewhere in between and you don’t have to overwhelm yourself. I got to do everything, let me figure out the 50 things I have to do. Pick one thing, just one and just trust the rest is going to be in your subconscious and it will come out when you need it but pick one thing. Maybe it’s that I’m going to do the pre-party before I go. Maybe it’s that when I go I’m going to initiate immediately upon entering into the room or into the party. Maybe it’s I’m going to end the conversation, I’m going to commit to myself that I’m not going to stay in conversations that I don’t want to have. I’ve done that before. I said, what I’m going to do tonight is I’m not going to spend any time in a conversation that I’m not enjoying, that I don’t want to have. And I will just end the stuff left and right as quickly as I wanted to. Maybe you’re going to say, I’m going to join into a group tonight or a couple of groups.

So just pick one thing and narrow your focus down on that. And you might be surprised how the other things actually just come a lot more easily without you even having to think about them, when you’re focused on that one thing and really making it simple and easy for yourself. So, go ahead and pick that one thing right now, just go with your gut, know that it’s the best thing and then go apply it. And then let us know how it goes, go to facebook.com/social confidence, share about your experience and you can also share and talk about your experience, go to the iTunes, you can rate the show, you can write about what you’re learning, how it’s impacted your life. But just share this, I love your — you can also send me a message at shrinkfortheshyguy.com, message me through that. I love to hear about people experiences and how they’re growing and what happens for them. I love the success stories. So until we speak again, may you have the courage to be who you are and to know on a deep level that you can crush any Christmas party and that you’re awesome. Talk to you soon.

Music Credit

All music is licensed or royalty free.

Intro:
DeepSound – Rain Clouds
(Licensed through Pond5.com)

Ask The Shrink:
Boccherini Minuet
(Licensed through Pond5.com)

Action Step:
Justin Crosby – Skrillit
(Licensed through Pond5.com)

Outro:
Lokfield – Terra’s Theme Dubstep
soundcloud.com/lokfield
(Creative Commons License)

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