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Section : Youth

What are Social Skills?
Social skills are the skills we rely on when interacting with other people. Navigating social situations is one of the most complex tasks human beings perform.

By Samvaad Bharti Post

Social skills are the skills we rely on when interacting with other people. Navigating

 social situations is one of the most complex tasks human beings perform. Socializing 

 involves many parts of your brain, including:

 * Language skills

 * Visual and auditory perception

 * Problem-solving skills


 Good social skills involve behaviors like cooperation, compromise, and respecting the 

 personal space of others. These skills develop as we get older and gain experience in 

 life. When we aren't properly using our social skills, social exchanges can get a bit

 rocky. For example, a student with poor language skills has difficulty communicating

 his or her desires and opinions. impulsive people often make snap decisions that lead

 to arguments.


 Why are Social Skills Important?

 Humans are social creatures by nature. You can't help but yourself in social situations.


 The Six Keys to Social Skills

 Social skills are behaviors that can be learned and improved wit practice. Try using

 the following six strategies as a guide to better interactions with friends, family

 members, and colleagues.



 Regardless of how skillful you are social situations, if you are too anxious, your brain

 functions in ways that interfere with speaking and listening. Anxiety can make you focus

 too much on small of conversation, which actually reduces your ability to communicate 



 n addition, when people socialize they naturally change their behavior to fit the moods

 of the people around them. If someone's body and face gives the unconscious message that 

 he or she nervous, it will probably make other people nervous too. That makes building

 rapport more difficult.



 People like to speak with good listeners. It's a mistake to think tha good listeners

 are people who don't do anything while someone else speaks. A good listener is actually

 an active perticipant in  conversations. Active listening skills include:

 * Maintaining eye contact, physical stillness, and attentiveness while another person 

 is talking

 * Paying attention while another person talks instead of thinking of your next rersponse

 * Making occasional responses to show you're listening: "Uh-huh." "really?," "Oh yes?"

 * Acknowledging what you've heard and asking for more information: "So, he went to the

 dentist? What happened?"

 * Referring to the conversation later: "You know how you were saying earlier..."



 A major part of social anxiety is self-consciousness. A great way to alleviate self-

 consciousness is by focusing strongly on someone else. If you're uncomfortable talking

 about yourself in a conversation, ask the other people questions about themselve. 

 Sometimes it's easier to respond to someone else's statements than to make your own.


 If showing interest is the way to connect with someone logically, empathy is the

 emotional connection. Empathy allows you to listen to someone's story and imagine how

 you would feel in the same situation.


 It may require a conscious effort to make yourself focus on someone else at first, but

 truly engaging with another person increases your comfort levels. Engagement will also

 make the people you interact with feel good.


 Empathy is the basis for connecting wit other people on an emotional level, and it's an

 important part of emotional intelligence.



 Rapport is a state of understanding or connection that occurs in a good social

 interaction. It basically means that you have an unconscious ability to communicate well

 with someone. When two people have good rapport, their language, speech patterns, and 

 postures fit well together.

 * Intentionally "mirroring" the other person's gestures or posture

 * Reflecting your partner's language and speech, including rate of speech, spoken 

 volume, emotional tone or energy and word choice

 * Feeding back what you have heard, as described in Key Two: Listen Actively



 Talking about yourself too much, too early, or too personally can show disregard for other 

 people in the conversation. Here are some example of ad self-disclosure:


 "How was my summer break? Let me tell you a 20-minute story about it."

 "This math homework reminds me of the time...sniff sniff...that my dog died!"

 "Have you seen this rash on by back? It's disgusting. Check it out!"


 Good intial conversation is often characterized by discussion of subjects not personal 

 to either party, or by exchanging personal views in a balanced way. However, as 

 conversations and relationships progress, disclosing personal facts (small, non-

 emotional ones first!) fosters a feeling of getting to know each other comfortably.



 If you don't look at people when you are talking or listening to them may get the idea 


 * You are ignoring them

 * You aren't telling the truth

 * You don't like something about the way they look

 Make sure that you're making frequent eye contact whether you are listening or talking

 to someone. This dosen't mean you have to stare at them. In fact, too much eye contact

 can make people feel just as uncomfortable as too little eye contact. looking away 

 occasionally but returning your gaze to someone's face while you are listening is

 preferable and helps with the flow of the conversation. 

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