This post is part of a 30-day social experiment I did that focused on becoming more social. Also check out the project introduction, update two, the post-project recap, my five biggest takeaways, and the wildly successful reddit post.
Project: Talk to Strangers is going well. So well, in fact, that after 12 days (I am writing this the morning of the 13th) I have initiated interactions with 42 new people, meaning I am slightly overachieving.
When I started, I envisioned having to run out to bars on weeknights at 10 or later to talk to whoever was around out of desperation to meet my quota. However, the biggest surprise so far is how many opportunities throughout my day (more like just my night) that I have to meet new people.
Not even a week in and I had decided that the purpose of my project had evolved. Instead of doing it to potentially boost my social life and to get to say goofy things to strangers, I hope that this project can be an example to others in similar situations about just how easy it is to meet new people, and that there are opportunities everywhere as long as you know how to look for them.
I think it will also show that, more than anything, making friends is a slow process that requires steady effort over time. Not that that needs to be proved (especially if you can relate to moving to a new place post-college).
The whole thing admittedly would have been more interesting to do when I had first moved to the city, but there’s always next time I move. A perfect book opportunity, actually.
One big weakness I have uncovered is my propensity for forgetting names right after I meet someone. One girl I was talking to in a bar actually got kind of upset with me because I forgot her name twice in the span of five minutes (hey, I knew it started with a K). Definitely something I will be focusing on improving as I move forward, lest this project become how to piss off girls in bars.
The data I am collecting will also (I think) be pretty interesting to look at when all is said and done. A sneak peak (there is also a column off to the right that didn’t make it into the screenshot denoting if I exchanged names with that person):
I also have plans for displaying this information in a unique kind of graph or map.
It’s been a fun challenge so far, however it’s not putting me outside my comfort zone as much as I had hoped. Because of that, the average number of people I talk to in a day will probably skyrocket for the remainder of the month, or I will at least get a little more bold in who I talk to and what I say to them.
Anywhere in particular you’d like to see me try and meet people? Let me know in the comments- don’t be a stranger.