Why do we get nervous when walking up to someone we don’t know? A million things will run through your head with each step you take toward that potential new friend or lover, stroking a fear of rejection that you have built up from years of previous rejections in the same situation.
Fear of rejection is one of the number one killers of our dreams and ambitions. It can keep you from going after that promotion, a new home, or a relationship simply because you have built up a preconceived notion that rejection is inevitable, leading some people to think, Why should I even try?
Approach Anxiety is an irrational fear of rejection while approaching or meeting someone you have a physical attraction for. It starts with that first fleeting eye glance and a nervous lump growing in your stomach. A life coach will tell you to just ignore that feeling, be bold, stand up and walk over and seize the day. Never mind that you just ditched your friends and are about to interrupt another group’s conversation. You’re dutch courage will have you believing nothing can go wrong.
In the real world, anyone who has ever tried approaching someone they are attracted to will tell you that is not true. Let’s just say you manage to summon the courage of 100 Spartan warriors and walk boldly across the room. Your friends are watching, and as you get closer, it will feel like all eyes are on you now.
As you arrive at their table they seem to be engrossed in a conversation, this is your last chance to abort before you end up loitering and waiting for a perfect window to say “hi”.
You decide to adopt the mantra of the Special Air Service: ‘Who Dares Wins’ and interrupt the groups conversation. Everyone laughs at how funny you are and then you’re easily able to find a moment to speak to the person you’re interested in alone. Easy right?
You have more statistical probability of winning the lottery than this scenario going well. Most likely, you will return to your friends with a battered ego.
There is a better way to meet new people without the uncertainty and nervousness of approaching someone cold.
Why Do We Fear Rejection?
The fear of rejection is intense because rejection means those around us do not accept us, significantly impacting our psyche and ego. We tend to remember the bad memories more than the positive ones, and being rejected by a potential lover or group of friends is a powerful memory, potentially impacting our confidence every time you meet someone new, whether you like it or not.
We all want to belong to a tribe, and when we face rejection, those negative memories can lead to physical symptoms like sweaty palms, rapid heartbeat, upset stomach, and a sudden lack of coming up with something to say. Making many people question whether they should even try the next time they see someone that interests them.
Faced with these emotions, many people turn to alcohol and other substances to give them false confidence. While “Dutch Courage” might give them more confidence, you don’t have the mental clarify or authenticity to make lasting connections.
A Better Way to Deal with Approach Anxiety and Meet New People
You are sitting at a bar talking with your friends when a friendly smile or laugh catches your attention. As you decide whether to walk over and talk to this stranger, a million things will run through your mind.
- I’m with my friends. I don’t want to be rude and ignore them.
- Why would this person want to talk to me?
- Didn’t your mother teach you that it’s rude to interrupt someone’s conversation?
Your approach anxiety will try and keep you firmly planted in your seat with these thoughts while reminding you of all your past rejections in a split second. You can ignore these feelings, blindly rush in with a cheesy pickup line, and defy the overwhelming odds against success. Or you can try a different way to approach someone new. No one goes to a bar not to meet people or be seen. The trick is finding the best approach where you can act more like yourself and not a Nervous Nelly.
History Holds the Secret to A Better Way to Meet New People
What is a better approach to meeting new people without the stress of approach anxiety? Sometimes looking in the past can give us the solution we need for today. In the 1940s, hotels and bars would have telephones sitting on each table where occupants of each table could call another and start a conversation.
This eliminates the fear of rejection and awkward stammering while you try and interrupt their conversation, which can create a bad first impression if they don’t want to be interrupted at that time. With the telephones, they could simply not answer or say call back later and save you that embarrassing walk back to your waiting friends after your rejection.
Over Here is a social app that takes this same approach and modernizes it. Events, festivals, and other social gatherings can use our app to allow their customers to find groups and individuals near them and start a conversation. Over Here allows people to overcome their approach anxiety and expand their network of friends.
Over Here Can Help Your Event or Festival Create More Memorable Moments
Music festivals, clubs, bars, resorts, and other large events are great places to hang out with friends, have a great time, and meet new people. We are social creatures and crave to be seen and accepted by others. Many will come into your event with high hopes of meeting someone new, only to get rejected and kill their happy mood. There is no greater mood killer than being rejected by a potential friend or lover.
Events, festivals, and other social gatherings can use the Over Here App to get people interacting with others without any fear of approach anxiety ruining their good times. Instead of needing some dutch courage to walk over to that smiling face, users can use the Over Here App to let them know they are interested in starting a conversation without the butterflies, sweaty palms, and cheesy pickup lines that fail more times than they succeed.