7 Habits Introverts Can Steal From Extroverts
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Meet & Greet1 of 8
By Shannan Rouss
According to a new paper in the Journal of Research in Personality, being more extroverted can boost your mood, a finding that's true across most cultures. (What's more, positive moods help reduce stress levels and promote healthy immune function.) If you're naturally more introverted, we've rounded up seven tips (inspired by Hollywood's most legendary and charismatic starts) to help you break out of your shell and be more social.
Stand Tall2 of 8
Your mother was right: Stop slouching. Instead of standing hunched, making yourself appear small and closed off, try opening up your stance, keeping your shoulders back and taking as much space as you need. Studies show that assuming this "superhero stance" actually reduces cortisol (the so-called stress hormone) and increases testosterone, a hormone that's associated with power and strength.
Pace Yourself3 of 8
In her book The Charisma Myth: How Anyone Can Master the Art and Science of Personal Magnetism, author Olivia Fox Cabane offers this tip for being a better conversationalist: Lower the intonation of your voice at the end of sentences, speak slowly, nod sparingly, and pause for a solid two seconds before responding. Another helpful tip? Smile (or even just think about smiling) while you speak to give off "vocal warmth."
Listen Up4 of 8
In order to have presence, you must be present, says Cabane. This means listening attentively when someone else is speaking to you. To improve your "presence," Cabane suggests trying to meditate—even for just a minute a day. The good news is that so few people are ever fully present that getting a little better at it will make a big difference.
Look 'Em in the Eye5 of 8
Similar to being present, making eye contact is critical. Cabane recommends maintaining eye contact for a full three seconds at the end of a conversation. Just avoid the Blue Steel gaze. Your eyes should appear relaxed with a look that's more soft than intense.
Copy That6 of 8
As Cabane writes, "People feel most comfortable with those who are similar to them in some way, including appearance and behavior." A shortcut to putting others at ease? Mimic their body language. It will trigger a feeling of trust.
Be Vulnerable7 of 8
Connecting with others isn't about being constantly strong and assertive. Revealing a weakness or sharing an embarrassing story can foster a sense of camaraderie between you and others. After all, "people love secrets," says Cabane.
Picture This8 of 8
While there's nothing wrong with showing some vulnerability, you don't want to come off as a nervous Nellie—especially in group situations. If you're feeling anxious before a meeting or at a friend's party, Cabane says to imagine being hugged by someone you love. (Just do so discreetly.) Research has shown that thinking about a warm embrace can rev up oxytocin, a neuropeptide that counteracts stress.
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