Friday, September 7, 2012

opening up socially

            Hello there. These are social lessons I have learned, in chronological order, from various adventures, books, and practices. Enjoy!
                      -12 months ago I returned home from a month and a half in the mountains.
Lesson: People are important. Only by interacting with people can I learn to love.

            People have always been my weak spot.  I often find myself subtly frustrated or disappointed   with others. Why is that? The only explanation is expectations – I am viewing social situations  incorrectly.
-11 months ago I read The Social Animal by David Brooks.
Lesson:Humans are social animals. We are built to interact with each other.  Our Holy Genes preach ‘thou humans shall find meaning through thy neighbors.’ This is must be embraced – much natural happiness is found in company with others.   

            Practice has always been my motto. Life is earned through hard work and perseverance. If social skills are my weakness, I should improve on this area. Much is to be gained. All it takes   is courage and effort.
                                    -10 months ago I began practicing social skills. These include:
·         All skills may be learned, practiced, and mastered. You just need to begin and continue.
·         Some people you click with, others you don’t. Stick to the people with whom you click.
·         Don’t try to be someone else. You’ll fail.
·         Make conscious effort to pay attention to body language and tone
·         Look people in the eye, smile, and be confident.
·         Make an effort to stay awake, interested, and engaged
·         Let go of social mistakes you make or awkwardness (it doesn’t matter anyways)
·         Let others be themselves and let the situation unfold by itself.
·         Feel heart-center (direct your attention to your heart) to stay grounded and relaxed

            People are a spiritual priority.
                        -1 month ago I began spiritual social practices. These include:
·         Gather myself before to generate positive thoughts about the people I will be with.
·          Physically smile and contemplate my attitude. My attitude going into the situation will affect how I perceive the situation. If bad attitude, then try to counter it with reasoning and relaxing. (psychology has proven that smiling affects attitude)
·         Take a few breaths to ground myself, relaxing as I breath out
·         Contemplate how the upcoming situation is a chance to practice and grow
·         Reflect how much I have been assisted by others
·         Prayer. I just sit there and pray to whatever comes up. Sometimes I pray for myself, other times for the well-being of others. Never been a huge prayer but hey, keeping my mind open. It’s kind of fun too!

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