Sunday, 08 July 2012
If you're anything like me (I hope to God for your sake you're nothing like me, but to avoid an argument, let's just say you are) then you have overwhelming knowledge of being the socially awkward one on a date. You've fumbled your way through interactions with other people, thoroughly embarrassing yourself, until you finally give up and take your bruised ego (and in my case of tripping a lot, actual bruises) home and log on to blog about it.
But what is Social Awkwardness, exactly?
Social awkwardness is most prevalent in people who spend more time on the Internet than in real-life social situations, so if you make a habit of reading blogs, you may be socially awkward (it's okay, we can help). If you're not sure about this diagnosis, social awkwardness can manifest in one or more of the following symptoms:
- Inability to speak in front of someone you like
- Inability to shut up in front of someone you like
- Inability to walk/stand up/sit properly
- Lie compulsively about your age/interests/background to get them to like you
- Trying to make yourself seem dumber than you actually are
- Trying to make yourself seem smarter than you actually are*
- saying "yes" when you mean "no" (and vice versa)
- forgetting you speak English (or whatever language you speak)
as well as many others.
For those suffering from social awkwardness, there are really only two options.
The first is to try and seem as normal as possible. Relax. Don't take it too seriously. Don't try to be something you're not. If they're not completely impressed with your natural-born amazingness, they're not worth your time. Think before you speak. Take a breath and calm down before you move in any way. Maybe practice some conversation topics beforehand, in order to avoid the all too common suddenly-mute situation.
The second, and my personal favorite, option is to kick it up a few notches. Be the awkward. Be as awkward as possible. Say weird things; make weird faces. Blatantly state unpopular opinions. Use made-up words. Be extra-loud in public. Throw in some awkward physical contact if the situation feels right. If you choose this route, you may loose the attention of someone you like, but eventually you will find someone who accepts and embraces your awkwardness (and maybe even finds it funny?) and that, my friends, is the person you want to be with.
*side note: I once read James Joyce's Ulysses to impress a guy. That's slogging though 800 pages of badly edited Irish shenanigans to get a boy to like me. Spoiler alert, it didn't work out.
Anyone have a lot of experience with being socially awkward? Tips to deal or funny stories to make us feel better about ourselves? Leave them in comments!