[Adv] Minimizing anxiety and awkwardness plus opening up a little in a new, one-off social situation

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Post by The Wisp on Fri Dec 05, 2014 2:18 am

So, tomorrow night there is going to be an open casual Mario Kart tournament at my school that I've decided to participate in (I don't know if it will be 8 or Wii, though; I'm an 8 virgin Uh-oh Laughing). My brother is also participating, so I'll have somebody to talk to no matter what else happens. This will only be my second attempt at attending social event on campus (the first was a few meetings of the philosophy club, but that didn't really work out). I'm realistic about what will come of this. I doubt any lasting connections will come of this, but I do want to have a good time and be relatively (for me) relaxed, non-awkward, and open socially. Ultimately, if I make some small talk with a few people that is not stilted or awkward, I'll count that as a victory.

I find one of my biggest social hurdles to clear is being able to be less inhibited, less cautious, and less over-analyzing-y in the moment of social interactions. I find it very difficult to turn that part of my brain off. I hope this isn't too broad of a question, but any advice would be appreciated Grin




Also, this is unrelated to the topic at hand, but I just want to express my gratitude to everyone in the community for being so kind and patient with me. I know I sometimes go through phases (like recently) where I spend most of my time overanalyzing things and/or venting rather than actually being productive. This community is so awesome and so helpful  Heart
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Post by gaboz on Fri Dec 05, 2014 7:39 am

You are goin to be just fine. and remember that enemies will be made with the blue shell.

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Post by nearly_takuan on Fri Dec 05, 2014 7:46 am

Show up, play the game a bit, let people talk to you, and try to initiate a conversation with at least one other person.

And if you're in the lead and get a speaker item, use it to cancel blue shells. Smile
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Post by kleenestar on Fri Dec 05, 2014 10:44 am

Keep an eye on your body. If you find yourself tensing up, take a few deep breaths. Your mind takes messages from your bodily state as much as vice versa, and given that overthinking is a possible problem, intervening on the body side seems more likely to be productive. Smile
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Post by reboot on Fri Dec 05, 2014 11:27 am

Keep an eye out for people that came alone. It can be tricky because in group settings people have a tendency to focus on groups of people because that is where there is more talking and motion and overlook people standing alone, so slow your eyes down so you see everyone. If you see someone alone consider coming up and talking to them.

If it ends up being on the 8 it might actually be a good conversation topic.

"Hi. Have you ever played Mario Kart on 8 before? It is my first time and I hope I do not flail." They either have played on 8 and might have some pointers or have never played on 8 and will probably have the same insecurity. From here, if the conversation feels established, you can probably jump into talking about MK and other games.
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Post by The Wisp on Fri Dec 05, 2014 9:05 pm

Cool, thanks for the advice everybody Smile
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Post by The Wisp on Sat Dec 06, 2014 1:21 am

So, this turned out to be much less of a big deal than I thought. The tournament was held in the bar/bowling alley/billiard hall of the school, so there were people around, but only one other guy besides myself and my brother showed up to play (the guy who ran it just kept score). I made some small talk with them, but we mostly focused on the game as we were all introverted nerds. A couple of people also started watching us. It was Mario Kart Wii, by the way, though I still sucked big time, and came in third Razz The guy who ran it said they got much higher turn out in the past, which makes me think it was promoted poorly. They had prizes for the top three, so we all won something!

Anyway, I tend to blow things up in my head. It's a lesson I need to keep learning, I think.
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