Give other people a chance to like you

Sometimes you'll be unhappy because things aren't working out socially. No one ever calls/invites you to do things, you feel excluded, you don't know who you're going to live with next year, you're eating alone all the time and you wish you could do things with other people more often. I would know because I've been in this position most places I've been since I finished high school. In this position it's very tempting to blame others. But in most cases, the problem lies particularly close to home. If you've never been in this spot, the rest of this article will feel like absurd cheerleading.

You have to give people the opportunity to like you. I read this in a brochure three months ago and it's stuck with me since then. If you sit off by yourself at meals, in classes, or turn down a social opportunity on the weekend, you're sending a signal that you'd like to be left alone. It's tempting to hope other people realize you don't know a whole lot of people and you're feeling a little intimidated, but this is grasping at thin air; people are more worried first and foremost about their own lives in the worst case. Instead walk with your head up, be positive and make the first move. If this is overwhelming try to do a conversation with just one classmate or one other student each day. My favorite is to say "Hi, I don't think we met, I'm Kevin. I just transferred here. What's your name?"

Second, stop judging people.Just stop. Don't do it. Don't talk behind people's backs, either. Ignore what your peers say about your other peers. Approach every new person like they're the most interesting person you've ever met and you'd love to be friends with them. No one's perfect, not even yourself, so stop blocking until you find that perfect group of friends. You're not.

Lastly, walk with your head up and don't forget to smile a lot. I've noticed confidentpeople and people talking on the phone don't look around - looking straight where you're going, or on who you're talking to, is a sign that whatever you're doing is the most interesting going.

Hope it helps.

Addendum: It appears that happiness is contagious. All the more reason to smile a lot and hang out with cheerful people.

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