College brings many new social situations along with it. Breaking the ice can be an awkward thing, that is, unless you read this blog! I’m here to give you all the tips and trick you need to succeed in a new social setting. Let’s try and steer away from the oh-so common, “how’s the weather?”
The first situation is with your random roommate. Odds are if you chose to get a random roommate you answered some basic questions about yourself to try and get someone somewhat similar to you. Regardless of similarity, the beginning stages of moving in with someone you don’t know can be a little scary. The first thing I would suggest is to talk to them ahead of time. Use Facebook message, texting, or even a call to get things in order. Talking to your roommate at least a couple times before you move in will ease your jitters. Go into the roommate situation asking the basic stuff, like where they’re from, if they have a boyfriend/girlfriend, and what they like to do for fun. Try and go out of your way to spend time with your new roomie be it study time in the library or a quick lunch, the more time you spend with them, the more comfortable you will be.
Next, let’s talk football games, pep rallies, or welcome week. When in a large crowd, make a point to talk to the people around you, or at least smile! You need to appear friendly and welcoming. If you are standing next to someone you don’t know at the game try talking to them about the game. That one is obvious. If you notice they are cheering extra hard for certain players ask if they know them in order to strike up a convo. Same thing goes for pep rallies or welcome week activities, the key is to pay attention to the person, and try talking with them about whatever interest them. When meeting new people you need to be a good listener above all.
What if the person I’m talking to is shy!? In this case, you might have to be the talker. If the person you are trying to get to know is shy, the key is determination without being annoying. Odds are, they enjoy people, and they just don’t know what to say. Try asking basic things like whether they have any siblings, play any sports, or live on campus. Eventually, they should loosen up, but you need to be patient above all in this situation.
Let’s say it’s the weekend and you get invited to a party where you know no one, except the person that invited you. Go! The key to meeting new people is to get out of your comfort zone. You need to realize that everyone else is also there to make new friends and have a good time. Try not to cling to the one person at the party you know, and get out there! Find something to talk about with the people around you. Like I said before, pay attention to the people around you and talk about their interest. If you notice they have some good moves on the dance floor try this, “you’ve got some good moves, where’d you learn to dance like that?” Compliments are always a go to in new environments.
But what if I get shut down!? The worst thing that can happen in a social situation is a person not replying. Honestly if this happens, pretend like you were talking to someone else and walk away. Or, ask again. Chances are they didn’t hear you, or they’re so rude they aren’t worth knowing anyway. There is nothing embarrassing about being ignored, more so, it just makes the ignorer look rude.
Use these basic ice breaking tips for any situation and remember to smile often! There are many new people to meet and it all begins with a simple conversation. Try and save yourself from, “So…how is the weather?”