by Abigail Kullberg
When was the last time you were in a mingling setting? Was it a party with friends or family? A summer camp mixer where you didn’t know a soul? A college orientation meet-and-greet? A church coffee fellowship after the service?
Whatever the case may be, we’ve all been in mingling settings, and whether you like it or not, that last time you were in one certainly won’t be your last. How do these types of social gatherings make you feel? Alive? Energized? Ready to show off your social butterfly skills? Or maybe you feel awkward, uncomfortable and two seconds away from wanting to run and hide?
I’ve never liked mingling. It’s always been difficult for me, but I’ve gotten better throughout the years and have had to work really hard to step outside of my comfort zone. For some, it just comes naturally, and if that’s you, do your thing, girl! But if you’re like me and it’s not easy, don’t lose hope! I’m sharing my top tips for busting outside of that personal bubble of fear and insecurity, and working that room as a confident young woman of God.
- Fake It ‘Til You Make It. If you’ve never made much of an effort to talk to others in a social setting, it’s going to be hard initially. You may just have to fake it a little at first. Obviously, we want to present ourselves as genuinely as possible, but if you can grin and bear the awkwardness the first few times, being more outgoing will come naturally as time goes by.
- Put Your Best Effort Into Your Exterior. Even though physical appearance certainly isn’t the most important thing, when we feel good about how we look, we automatically feel more confident. Taking that extra time to do your hair, makeup and put on a killer outfit can give you just that boost you need to greet new faces and start up conversations with others.
- Expand the Conversation. Instead of the classic “Hi, how are you?” dive a little deeper and try to create a meaningful conversation with someone. Simple conversation starters could be “Did you do anything fun last weekend?” or “I love your shoes—where did you get them?” If it’s a church function, you can always ask how they liked the sermon or if they’re planning on going to a church-sponsored event coming up.
- Seek Out Someone Who Looks Lonely. If you’re on the shy side, you know how it feels to be all alone in a group setting. Don’t let anyone else feel that way! If you see someone by themselves, go on over and talk to them. It’ll not only brighten their day, but yours, too! Who knows? You might just make a new friend!
- Read What God’s Word Says About Mingling. Now, the word “mingling” was never actually used in the Bible, but I read one verse that really stood out to me: “For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline” (1 Timothy 1:7).
God doesn’t want us to be afraid. He doesn’t want us to be shy and timid. He wants us to step outside of ourselves and show love and compassion to others. In doing so, we can inspire others to do the same.
Do you like to mingle? Do you have any other tips that aren’t listed? Share them in the comments!