2014 is your year! The year you break out of your shell, make new friends, become the life of the party! Or just the year that you talk to your coworker in the elevator instead of awkwardly staring at your shoes. You can do it! Here are some steps for getting started.
1. Practice small talk.
We know discussing your commute or the weather seems tedious, but it definitely doesn't hurt. Every day, challenge yourself to compliment a stranger's shoes or ask a coworker about her weekend.
2. Really listen, and ask questions.
It can be hard to get out of your own head, but show people you're listening. Look them in the eye, and ask follow-up questions. Be present.
3. Don't overthink little decisions.
And then stick to your instincts.
<img alt="" src="http://lovelace-media.imgix.net/uploads/24/e8d79b40-4839-0131-0684-6ea97fc6560d.gif?w=320" class="article-body-image" title="Image: http://lovelace-media.imgix.net/uploads/24/e8d79b40-4839-0131-0684-6ea97fc6560d.gif?w=320"/>
4. Don't worry about worrying.
Worry can be good: it can point to things you need to address. Don't be hard on yourself for being a little obsessive. Learn to distinguish between what you can and can't control, and choose to move forward. And choose to do something to remove yourself from the cycle of worry: go for a run, meditate, do something nice for yourself.
5. Leave your door open more.
Literally. Let coworkers and your roommate poke heads in. It will be worth the distraction.