5 strategies to break out of your work bubble and meet more people
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If you’re like many other people, you can relate to the following statement:
“I have focused so much on my professional life, that I have become unfulfilled in my personal life.”
My personal opinion is that one of the reasons people seem so unhappy these days is that we have constructed a society that is inconsistent with our instinctual needs and makeup as an animal species.
We are sitting behind desks all day performing menial tasks that are completely outside the realm of the millions of years of biological evolution within us. We have taken an endless amount of biological progress and smushed it into a cubicle.
And, we expect to be fulfilled by this?
What’s more – this has caused us to become more silo’d and individualized. Between having our head down at the desk all day, and surfing around social media when we get home, we are losing the ability and opportunity to truly connect with those around us. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that we are becoming LESS fulfilled, and also LESS connected.
Needless to say, this is stemming into our intimate relationships, too. Or – lack thereof.
So, how do we begin to spread our proverbial wings and connect with more humans again? Whether it be to date, or simply make more friends?
Set a weekly goal for talking to new people.
That’s right – talking to strangers. Think about it: You go grocery shopping. You get coffee. You go to the gym (hopefully). You awkwardly stand around the Keurig at work. Consider ALL of the people you pass by on a daily basis while you are checking your Instagram notifications. How many potential friends or dates could you be missing out on?
Don’t worry, super-safety-people, I’m not telling you to hop into the car with a random person (you know, like Uber…), I’m simply encouraging you to set a goal to say hello and spark up a conversation with X amount of people this week.
How many will you talk to? Tell me in the comments!
Choose a new restaurant to have lunch at once per week.
Do you have lunch at your desk? Or maybe the corporate cafeteria?
It’s time to break out of your bubble and find new places you haven’t been before – unless you live in a small town with 1 local diner, odds are there is somewhere in walking, driving, or Ubering distance that you’ve never been.
Choose one day a week and make that your adventure day. Go to a new restaurant you’ve never been to before, and sit at the bar. Don’t sit at a table by yourself – the idea here is that you have conversations and meet new people – even if it’s just with the bartender.
You may find out about upcoming social events, or maybe someone else at the bar will be chatting up the bartender as well, and you’ll enjoy a nice conversation.
Either way, you can’t expect to meet new people while sitting at your desk.
(Important: Do this ALONE, so you don’t find yourself getting caught up in a conversation with your friend and defeating the entire purpose of getting out there to meet new people).
Get active on dating apps.
I know, you hate online dating because of that bad experience you had 7 years ago – but here’s the reality: There are A TON of people on there for a variety of different reasons.
Sometimes it’s easy to get jaded when you’re bouncing back and forth between home and the office all the time. It may seem like there are just no single attractive people in your age group in your area – until you open up that dating app again and start scrolling.
At the very least, this will give you an idea for what eligible singles ARE, in fact, in your area. And who knows, you might actually find someone you’re compatible with.
Do more activities that interest YOU.
Tell me in the comments below: What are your interests? Art? Music? Shooting guns? Racing cars? Playing the banjo? Learning to become a mime?
No matter what it is you’re into, you are not alone. Finding activities in your area (or hell…even joining a Facebook group based on the interest(s)), will bring you around people who automatically like the same things as you.
If you’re attending an art class for example, the very worst case scenario is that you get to do something you enjoy, and learn to be better at it. The added bonus is that 100% of the people who are also in that class, automatically have a similar interest that you can talk about.
Make it a point to get out and do more things that you enjoy – making new friends or going on more dates will happen naturally from there.
Say YES more often.
When I was in the corporate world before I started coaching people, I adopted a mindset when I began a new job: Say yes to everything.
I attended every event. Went to every pitch. Dressed up for every fundraiser. Accepted every invitation no matter how last minute it was.
Often times, I was the only one who did. That’s how I learned to love doing things by myself. I could arrive when I wanted, and leave when I wanted. I could talk to who I wanted. I could make the day or night my own.
That mindset then lead to moving from Boston to Los Angeles, alone. Attending a countless amount of events, alone. Making some of the most incredible connections I could ever ask for. Spending time in Manhattan. Doing the same thing…
You get the idea – magic happens when you just say YES, and start getting the ball rolling. It could be something big that happens, or small that happens – but saying “no” to opportunities that come your way only do one thing:
Close a door in front of you when you have no idea what might be behind it.
Open that door. Live your life. Stop accepting the circumstances you’re given, and start creating your own.
Break out of your bubble, because that’s where life happens.
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