For some people, mingling with others is unbearable at worst, awkward at best. Follow the advice of Jeanne Martinet, author of The Art of Mingling, to ease your anxiety when you find yourself in social settings.
Change your mindset. Rather than seeing mingling as an obligation you hate, view it as an opportunity to learn and grow as a person. Even short conversations with people allow you to gain new perspectives and build new connections, some of which could last a lifetime.
Realize that other people are nervous too. Martinet says that people typically are too consumed by their own nervousness and worried about how others are perceiving them to pick up on your anxiety. Just knowing that other people are feeling the same way you do can relax you a bit.
Have fun. While you may be at an event for business reasons, you can still have a good time. Enjoy connecting with people, be grateful that you have the opportunity to attend the event, smile and laugh. If you are having a good time, you’ll be less nervous. Plus, you’ll be more approachable.
— Adapted from “Afraid to Break the Ice? Never Fear, Miss Mingle is Here,” Anne E. Bromley, UVA Today.