Looking for a bridge over troubled water? Krithvi Shyam, our young psychologist, addresses your worst anxieties.
I am a 15-year-old girl. I got into Std- XI a couple of days ago. All my friends got shuffled as we have chosen different streams. I have no one to talk to in my new class. As I am an introvert, I feel shy and awkward when it comes to approaching people to talk. I’m also shy to talk to boys, whereas most of the girls in my school hang out with boys a lot. When people talk in groups I really don’t know how to be a part of their conversation. I also tend to become nervous and tense. Please give me tips on how to mingle with people and talk to them.
The first month of class can always be scary because you’re still trying to forge friendships. Don’t worry, things will settle down soon. This is also good practice for your first month at college! Start by interacting with people who are sitting closest to you in class, and are easy targets because you don’t have to go looking for them; they’re right in front of you. You could also talk to people who go to the same tuition class as you. Don’t worry about coming up with witty conversation topics – people like to talk about themselves, so just ask questions and they’ll happily give you answers. For instance, maybe they’re great photographers, so start by saying you really liked that picture of the sunset on Marina beach that they posted on Facebook yesterday. Find activities that you can do with your new friends outside school. Try to spend time with them during some of your lunch breaks, instead of always meeting your old friends during that time. If you’re making friends with girls, they’ll eventually introduce you to boys, and already you have a conversation topic available – how you and the mutual friend met, and some of the fun things you’ve done together. It’s perfectly alright to be an introvert, but if people see you sitting quietly without interacting, they’ll assume you’re not interested in making friends. Once they see you making an effort, they’ll warm up to you too.
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