How to make the best first impression and build friendships

Striking up conversation with strangers and making a good impression is easier said than done – until now!

Everyone wants to make a good impression when they meet new people, but when you find yourself at a big event or party not knowing anyone, it can be hard to find the confidence to introduce yourself and strike up a conversation with a group of strangers.

That’s why author Susan RoAne has come up with some fail safe tips in her new book on how to make such events less daunting and more fun.

See below for a guide on how to step out of your comfort zone in order to build new friendships, inner confidence and of course, make a good impression on every single person you introduce yourself to:

Make eye contact and smile

The saying goes, ‘smile and the world will smile with you’, which is exactly why you should take a proactive approach to meet new people by making eye contact and smiling. “When someone smiles back at you, that gives you permission to go over to him or her,” says RoAne. The trick is to find someone who is not heavily engaged in conversation and looks approachable – keep an eye out for relaxed and open body language.

Do your research

RoAne insists on being “well read” before you go to any big event. By knowing your news stories you are guaranteed to find something to talk about with a new group of people. Current events are automatic talking topics – think the latest celebrity scandals or political debates.

Make your introduction memorable 

Make yourself sound intriguing by introducing yourself (name) and then your passions – i.e. why you love doing the job you do. A compelling introduction rather than just saying what you do for a living will strike a chord with others and will immediately put across an element of your personality. It also opens the gateway to a developed conversation.

Open up about yourself

RoAne advises that rather than simply asking other people lots of questions – which can become tedious and make you seem nosey – you should ask questions but go ahead and share your own experiences in comparison. Choose experiences that give others room to respond, such as somewhere you have travelled or a film you have seen recently.

If you feel you need extra help in forming connections with new people, and in finding the confidence to do so, why not consider life coaching? See our friendship and personal development pages for more information and advice.

View and comment on the original Women’s Health article.

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Written by Tamara Marshall

Written by Tamara Marshall

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