Before you set yourself on a long lonely road of solitary, you need to examine the reason WHY you won’t grab your opportunity if it’s placed in your way.
1. Are you timid / introverted / shy?
If the idea of talking to strangers terrifies you, start by practicing doing just that: talking to strangers. The easiest way to start is at a bar. Talk to the bartender. A bartender will always answer back. That’s what they do. Learn to banter… “How long have you worked here…. What skills/education did you need to become a bartender….. Who are your favorite clients?”, etc. Once you are comfortable talking to the bartender, turn to the people next to you, and rest assured —if they did not want to talk, they would be drinking alone in their apartments.
2. Are you afraid of rejection?
The only way to overcome a phobia is to become immune to it. So if you’re afraid of rejection, go out and get rejected… a lot. Approach as many strangers in various public places and allow yourself to be rejected. Once you are immune to it, rejection will no longer be a deterrent to approaching strangers. Think of it this way: this person is not rejecting you; they don’t even know you. There may be dozens of reasons you got rejected: bad mood, bad hair day, bad day at work; the list goes on and on. Perhaps your approach technique did not work and you got rejected. So treat every rejection as a lesson to refine it. You know there is more to you than just your approach technique.
3. Did you set yourself up for failure?
Just like a good salesman is the one who believes in her product, you need to believe in yourself and your ability to attract the opposite s*x. If you are staring at a cute guy across the subway car thinking of different reasons why he will reject you, he will reject you, because your product is not convincing enough. Instead, tell yourself that you will be thrilled to embark on an adventure with this stranger to see where it takes both of you. Remember: confidence is attractive and enthusiasm is contagious.
4. Don’t know what to say?
If you don’t have a natural gift of gab, then have something prepared and rehearsed for times like these. Think of something that will set you apart from everyone else. For example, instead of saying “Hi, my name is Josh and I think you’re pretty”(yawn….yawn…yawn), say something that will take her by surprise and will be remembered. For example: “I need a woman’s point of view: I have been debating about a better gift for my Mom’s birthday. I am torn between a bracelet and a set of wine goblets. Which would you recommend?” Always think of conversation starters that are unique and do not call for one word answers.
We all have these fleeting moments that we think about for years to come and wonder “what if?” so this spring, how about breaking the pattern? Remember that fear is temporary, but regret lasts forever.