BBadger wrote:Awesome post.
One fun thing I've found that helps breaking your own ice is to just get out there and dance. It feels like one of the most ridiculous things to do, but you're out there, doing it. What know what is even better? Teaching a friend how to do do a dance, in public, in that random dance area.
But what? You don't know "how" to dance? (as if anyone else does) Afraid you'll look awkward, like you're doing "the idiot" like Jeff Goldblum on an SNL skit? Not if you know what you're doing!
Teach your friends the "Grocery Shopper". It's so easy to remember and it looks like you're a pro dancer. It's great to teach too: hold one hand and grip the handle of an invisible grocery cart. Now start struttin' down the aisles of make-believe food. Yeah, strut that shit like you have your headphones on. Grab that invisible jar of peanut butter off one of the shelves, spin that jar around look at the nutritional facts, raising your eyebrows or make a face looking at the sugar content. Oh well, looks good! Put that jar in cart. Or not. But keep on struttin'. Swap hands, that imaginary bag of chips is on the top shelf on the other side. Reach WAAY over; it's on the top shelf. Maybe it's made with Olean oil that'll churn your stomach. Yuck! Put that bag back! A make-believe box of cereal attracts your attention from the bottom shelf, grab that, it's on your list. That's right, it's a shopping experience. And keep on struttin'. ...
The dance looks good, is easy to remember, easy to do, easy to improvise, and easy to teach. The best part is that you'll be thinking about what you're putting in your shopping cart for that moment, while people catch notice and start watching the pro dancer. When someone pauses to watch you, ask him or her if he/she want to learn the dance. It can't be any worse or awkward than already dancing right? It'll usually be a yes, and maybe you'll help another would-be wall-flower. If it's a no, no worries, keep on dancing.
Still, the teaching will be the major ice-breaker. You'll be instructing, demonstrating, encouraging, and approving. You can't afford to be meek and shy. But you'll have the full attention of a complete stranger(s). It can only progress from there.
Man did I get some interested looks from people doing that. It was great. From wall-flower to dancer. So awkward, but a good awkward.
Oh, and if you are on the receiving end to a Grocery Shopping instruction session, make sure you don't refuse. Keep it enthusiastic! It took a bit for someone to come up and ask you to join in, so return that favor.
What great advice! I'm someone who *has* to ascribe to the maxim, "dance like nobody's watching."
A friend taught me 3 great dances to use when we went to Palm Springs to hang out. They were #1) "the Hungry" [take one hand and rub your belly in a rhythmic and stylistic way as you gyrate in whatever fashion floats your boat - can be kind of flirtateous directed at the right chica
], #2) "the Truck Driver" [use both hands to operate an imaginary oversized steering wheel - you can even toot the truck horn! - don't forget to regularly stomp on the clutch, gas, and brake as you downshift], and #3) "the Shoveler" [allows you to automatically get the feet involved as you sink the spade into the "dirt" - toss it energetically over your shoulder or in front of you to fill a hole - make sure to tamp it down occasionally!]
Now I have the "Grocery Shopper" to add to my repertoire! I feel like I've graduated to the advanced class! THX