How to Have Aware Social Interactions?

Posted on by Sen.

There is a saying – “No man is an island, entire of itself”, which simply translates to the reality-based fact that no being is totally independent of inter-dependence – life works on the principle of leveraging inter-dependence; for example, flowers depend on the bees for their replication and the bees depend on the flowers for food. Our social relationships (including the intimate ones) serve several purposes for our growth as well as for entertainment, and thus form a part of the principle of inter-dependence. The more aware you become the more you realize the desire to connect more deeply with life, which translates into specific desires for better social involvement. In a physical environment there are various social dynamics that play out, which have light-natured and dark-natured aspects to them, and an awareness/understanding is required to navigate them smoothly – one cannot simply opt for a black-and-white technique, like “I will just be loving”, in a reality such as Earth which has various aspects of imbalance and balance present in it. To be “socially mature” is a growth path by itself, and involves an aware understanding of your own mind (along with evolving from the negativity in it) and the minds of other humans.

This post basically deals with discussing certain understandings relating to social dynamics which can be incorporated to have more enjoyable, and deeper, interactions. If you are dealing with a lot of emotional and mental momentum, which have been built up over your past unconsciousness, you would have work on going through a phase of release through the state of allowing (discussed in several posts of this blog, main ones being – release of suppressed energy, reducing mind momentum, the state of total allowing, healing the imbalance and faq on the state of allowing). The release of past “momentum”, of emotions and mind activity, is critical to incorporate new learning, or new perspectives, because when you are dealing with a load of past momentum there is very little freedom/energy in you to work with new ways of thinking. This phase of release (what I call phase 3) is a challenging journey by itself, however when you are done with a decent percentage of release (say about 60%) you are quite ready for a return of focus towards incorporating new life skills and developing the attitude of conscious choice (which can seem like a different mindset than the one needed for the phase of letting go or phase of release). The past two posts are more focused on the dynamics of living from this mindset of conscious choice, and this post discusses some understanding relating to social dynamics which you can use to work on a conscious choice towards improving your social life (if you so desire).

It’s important to realize that different people are on different journeys, and one shoe doesn’t fit all, so you have realize what feels like an inspiration for you at this moment in your personal path of growth. If improving your social behavior looks like a part of your “growth path” then you will need to develop more awareness in the area of inter-personal communication. A lot of social anxiety is out of a mis-understanding of social dynamics (not having a good understanding of human mind) which leads to several limiting ways of thinking about interactions – for example we are brought up with some fear-based inputs of “don’t talk to strangers” which may be beneficial advice to a child but the same child grows up as an adult and unconsciously starts making this thought into a fear-based attitude of being resistant towards new connections or interactions. You will be surprised at how many thought patterns are carried over from our childhood days into our adulthood without realizing that our reality has changed, that we are adults now. Very few of us use our own awareness to address the limiting behaviors, rather we simply keep adhering to the past conditioning, thus unconsciously holding on to patterns of thinking that no longer serve us.

The area of social interaction opens up potential for growth as well as for entertainment, through building new connections, going deeper with old relationships, developing new channels of co-operation-based productivity or simply enjoying the momentary pleasure of inter-relating. So if you wish to grow in this area you would require the attitude of openness, and an attitude of learning, because you will be exploring new waters which may be unfamiliar to your present conditioning – as they say, “one can’t find new oceans if one doesn’t have the courage to lose sight of the shore”.

The fear of interacting with strangers

Consider this simple truth that every friend that you have today was once a stranger to you. Strangers become “new” friends, if you keep blocking out your interactions with strangers, and keep holding on to your familiar circle, you will potentially block yourself from gaining new connections, new perspectives, new growth and new expressions. In some countries it’s normal for people to say “hi”, or give a smile, to complete strangers walking on the street, and these countries usually rate very high on the “happy planet” list (basically a list of countries which are voted on standards of human well-being). In some countries people can be more welcoming (sometimes in a servile way) to foreigners but can be cold with each other, basically out of associating low value with themselves and their compatriots – such countries usually rank low on “happy planet” index because there is no sense of comfort among the locals which causes them to feel “threatened” all the time. In some countries people hold a very strong suspicion towards foreigners and strangers, they are highly “private” in terms of holding on to their circle, they rank the lowest on this index.

One of the biggest contributions of the “internet” is the opportunity, it provided, for people to get global. Through avenues like the chat facilities, and social networking sites, people are able to connect a lot more freely. If you go on yahoo chat you may find that there are some “public chat rooms” who have people who’ve been regular in that room for years – it’s like a real community that they belong to. Online interaction is sometimes referred to as “virtual reality”, and is sometimes even condemned as taking away from real life interaction, however, such a perspective is quite inaccurate – for one, there is nothing virtual about online interaction because you are talking to real people, secondly, there is a better chance that people who are shy in real life may be able to open up (or be more exploring) online under the safety of their anonymity. Online interactions can be very useful in learning about human minds, because people can be far more open during an online communication than during a face-to-face communication. Of course, online communication has a draw back in that it does not allow for the experience of true intimacy, or deeper connection, which can only be possible when you are physically present with someone. As they say, verbal communication can only allow for a small percentage of input, majority of the input comes from non-verbal cues like through your eyes, through your body language and physical touch or closeness.

When you are online, you can log-in to a chat room, say hi to a stranger and possibily end up having a meaningful conversation. The same principle is valid in real life also, very few people would react negatively to you saying “hi” to them, and even if they do it doesn’t matter, it’s just an indication that they are not interested for their own reasons (or possibly have their protection shield on), you don’t have to make it personal. Sometimes we are afraid of “what to expect”, the mind may throw up fears about strangers (like “what if he/she is a creep”), basically you would need to use your logical sense of judgement, as an adult, to sense if there is any form of threat possible from a person. If your instinct tells you that a person is safe and your logical sense gives you the same indication, it’s a safe bet on all accounts, however if you sense that there is something “off” about a person just follow your instinct to make your exit – a lot of our fear of strangers comes from our “child identity”, as an adult we are well capable of handling our security and have a better sense of instinct. Sometimes we are just afraid of getting “buzzed off”, or coming off as “weird”, so we keep from saying hi to a stranger who we feel like interacting with. Your desire for interaction with a stranger can come for many reasons

– You may just feel an attraction for that person, because of the physical looks or they way they are dressed or their body language or just an inner impulse.

– You may be looking for some company to while away time (for example while waiting at the airport or travelling in general)

– You may just want to connect with a person at a friendly level

Whatever be the case, when you feel the desire to talk to a stranger and you over-ride it out of the fear of being buzzed-off, or just a “child-identity” based fear, you basically end up losing a possibility of an enjoyable experience, possibility of a friendship, possibility of an intimate relationship or at the very least an exciting memory of their reaction. It’s not easy to overcome this fear of talking to strangers and it can take some “experience” before your mind starts realizing that it’s not as fearful, that it can be fun and that people are not as “cold” as the exterior that they project – the most serious face has a playful interior also, don’t be fooled by an external seriousness, remember that “joy” is a dimension present in all minds. The very attitude of being open towards social interaction, with strangers, causes you to develop new skills in inter-personal communication – the brain automatically adapts to the requirement of a challenge.

Our interest, in strangers, would usually be with the opposite sex (or the same sex in the case of homosexuals), basically because it’s more interesting to the mind to contemplate the possibility of a romance, or because we are in the “searching for a mate” mode. However it’s important to not discount the possibility of a friendship, and possible new connections arising from that friendship (friends of friends deal), that can come from talking to the same sex also or rather not making this whole thing about “hooking up”. In terms of talking to strangers of same sex, women are far more comfortable launching conversations with another woman, guys have a strong “homo phobia” instinct, thanks to all the ways in which homosexuality has been “negatively” warped up in this society (where gay is used as an insult), which prevents them from having a causal conversation with another guy (the first thought that would pop up in a guy’s mind would be “Is he gay, or does he think I am gay”).

Requirements for a comfortable social interaction

Understanding social dynamics is one thing and internalizing it is another; you can read about a lot of tips on improving social communication but unless you start learning/improving from your own experiences you can never internalize any of the understandings that you gain from reading. It will take time for you to internalize these understanding and to incorporate them into your natural behavior, it involves being aware of your old patterns and being aware of the changes required, letting go of identifying with the old patterns and aligning yourself towards living the new patterns as a conscious choice. Below is a list of a few requirements for allowing the possibility of a comfortable social interaction.

An open body language – Your mind reflects in your body language. It’s easy to read a person, like a book, if you read his/her body language – the body never lies. Even if you are “trying” to project a cool body language, while being fearful in your mind, it will show up as cues in your body language. A lot of people try to “project” a confident body language by rigidly trying to hold eye contact, holding a firm handshake, keeping their shoulders broad, wearing a never-dying (looking totally fake) smile etc, and such a projection usually comes off as being manipulated, and anyone with any iota of awareness can immediately sense the insecurity behind the show of confidence. The truth is that we are more comfortable around people who are aligned with their “humanness” rather than people who are trying to fake confidence – you will notice that you can sometimes have a deeper conversation with someone who is being shy than with someone who is trying to project a show of confidence. The deal is that a “confident body language” does not necessarily have to be an open body language, whereas even a shy person can have a real openness (a shy person can be open or be closed, whereas a person who is faking confidence is always closed). Below are a few pointers towards an open body language

– People always sense your “inner vibe”, so if your mind is holding thoughts of “how can I impress this person” or “how can I show my dominance”, it will get projected in your body even if you try to fake an external coolness. Just work from the thought of “I am interested in this person and I want to enjoy the interaction” and you can see how an open body language (that’s natural to you) comes up.

– Use your eyes to convey your interest rather than to show your confidence. There is a huge difference between both these approaches. When you try to show your confidence your mind will be “pre-occupied” with itself and have no real space to be genuinely interested in the other person. You can create a real connection by just looking into someone’s eyes from a place of interest (it could be sexual interest, romantic interest, curiosity-based interest etc).

– Keep your body relaxed (this can take some real awareness initially and it can also require you to release the momentum of your mind/emotional-accumulation so that you don’t get over-excited or anxious). Quick movements are always perceived as a sign of agitation and it will make the other person feel “nervous”, relaxed movements are always comforting. Especially with your eyes, you need to consciously let go of the habit of darting it around at a frantic pace. Your eyes are a direct indicator of the movement of your brain, so to have a conscious control over your eyes (which becomes natural with time) can also allow you to steady your thoughts while talking to someone.

– Don’t think too much (about the next thing to say) while interacting, allow the thoughts to happen, allow the conversation to take the shape that’s most natural at that point. What’s more important is to connect with the other person at a non-verbal level simply by conveying your interest through your eyes and your relaxed presence. Silences are totally okay in a face-to-face communication, in fact the moments of silence can be opportunities for an more intimate connection where you convey to the person “non verbally” that you don’t feel awkward in their presence. If you are constantly thinking about the next thing to say, to fill up the silence, you lose touch with the non-verbal connect.

– Don’t make the other person “extra-ordinary” in your mind. The moment you make someone extra-ordinary you stop being natural with that person, and then you can’t connect at a human level. You can see how people behave in the company of celebrities, with that sense of awe and the “servility”, which makes the interaction very hollow instead of bring in the “human” element. The same is true for any member of the opposite sex, or same sex, that you feel attracted to. Always remember that deep down everything/everyone is ordinary in every sense, extra-ordinariness is a delusion-based perception simply because everything in life has a light and dark nature aspect to it.

– Look at enjoying the interaction in that moment rather than worrying about what you can get out of it, or where it may lead. There are many interactions which would go nowhere outside the few minutes (or seconds) that you spent with that person, you may never see him/her ever again in your life, and yet every interaction is a memory and can serve to enhance your understanding of people, and of yourself.

– Drop the formalities as much as you can. Be with that person the way you would be with a friend. This attitude completely changes the dynamics of the interaction. People respond to our attitude towards them, so if your attitude towards them is one of “I am interacting with a stranger” they respond in a similar manner, rather if your attitude is one of “I am interacting with a friend” they respond in the same manner. Also remember that we all have a “personal life” in which we know ourselves in our playful, romantic or sexual nature, and anyone who’s not being a hypocrite would respond positively to any playful communication on your part.

Everything new feels uncomfortable to your brain, initially; the idea of interacting with strangers, or being open to an intimate communication, can feel like a challenge to start with. However, if you feel that developing social maturity is your desired growth path then you will need to let go of identifying with the resistance from your brain (which will arise because the brain always has resistance to any new habit or behavior).

Overcoming limiting judgments – It’s true that it’s our nature to “judge” as a part of perceiving. It’s not possible for anyone to stop judging, it happens naturally as a part of our thinking process. The moment we interact with someone, a part of our mind works on judging the person, recording their body language, their intelligence (or lack of it), their personality etc, and it’s something that can’t be helped. We fear getting judged by others because we realize we judge others in our own mind. It’s important to start understanding that “judgment” is just natural form of thinking and it’s not something that gives a true picture, we’ve all judged people wrongly now and then, and every narrow judgment is false anyway because there are so many “shades of grey” to every person.

Also, the deeper truth is that we are the ones judging ourselves, and it’s our judgment of ourselves that causes us to feel offended by the outside reflection of it. So instead of fearing outside judgment you will need to work on letting go of your own judgment of yourself. You can’t be offended by something that you don’t judge yourself by – for example, a tall person (or a person comfortable with his height) would never get offended/hurt if someone calls him a “shorty”. You can thus use social interactions as a means to find out your own insecurities; no-one is perfect and there is always room for more growth.

Being comfortable with your sexuality – We are all sexual beings since sexuality is a natural dimension in our mind, it’s just that many of us have limiting/negative thoughts about our sexuality and hence are not totally comfortable with it. When you are comfortable with your own sexuality it’s easy to communicate your sexual interest (verbally or non-verbally) during an interaction – for example, flirting is a way of expressing sexual interest verbally while a seductive eye-contact (what’s called “bedroom eyes”) is a way of expressing sexual interest non-verbally. Communicating sexual interest does not mean that you will want to have sex with that person in “reality”, it can just be a playful way of interacting, a way to enjoy a conversation, or a tease. There is a difference between “being sexual” and “wanting to have sex in reality” – having sex with some person in reality can have many implications which we may not interested in dealing with, but we can use our sexual interest as a channel to have an enjoyable conversation. In fact there are many people who can come across as being very sexual (because they are comfortable with their sexual dimension) who don’t actually have a high sex drive in terms of desiring the actual act of sex.

A person who is not totally comfortable with his/her sexuality would always have some “awkwardness” during a social interaction. Being totally connected/comfortable with one’s sexuality is a powerful state of being and can go a long way in manifesting a naturally open body language. Ironically, though guys get labeled as the “sex mongers” it’s the women who are more comfortable with their sexuality and are adept at expressing their sexual interest non-verbally, while most guys lack a comfort/connection with their sexual dimension and feel awkward, in many ways, in the presence of someone towards whom they feel a sexual interest. In fact there are a plethora of books, like “The Game”, written by “pick-up artists” (guys who’ve mastered the art of seduction) to help guys with developing better body-language, sexual communication and eye-contact skills around women. Most skilled “pick-up artists” are highly aware individuals who enjoy the art of seduction and use their awareness to understand the social dynamics involving women.

In conclusion, it’s important to understand that when you enter into a new area of growth you have to be willing to be patient with yourself and know that there will be a lot of learning to be had before you reach a state of “natural comfort” with that area. If you get dejected by initial rejections, or goof ups on your part, instead of using them as an opportunity for calibrating your understanding, then you will impede your own growth, develop limiting thinking and be unrealistically critical of yourself. The area of social dynamics is vast since it defines the integral aspect of “relationships”, and for some of us the very purpose of our current lifetime may be to grow in this area and develop a balanced perspective around it.

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  1. Asli

    Thank you Sen. Your comment on “the attitude of learning” hit the chord and inspired me to explore my “social phobia” that I was trying to deal with.

  2. rafael

    #1, absolutely amazing article

    #2 If you say that ppl who are faking confidence will never be able to truly interact with someone.. Then how do you explain all these cocky arrogant guys who are constantly getting laid with the hottest and most “desirable” women on the love market and have a ton of friends .. While the shy guys who project insecurity (out of being “completely natural”” seem to not be able to get a woman at all and also have no friends or many ppl they associate with.

    Me being a college guy and having been in so many different type of social situations can tell you firsthand that most of these “cocky arrogant guys” truly are very insecure on the inside.. Yet the women are by far more attracted to the “insecure guy” who just projects an image of confidence, (talking loud , tooting his own horn, putting ppl down) than to the guy who is acting “completely natural” thus projecting his insecurites on the exterior.

    I would love to know your opinion on this

    and then you mention books like “the game” and the whole pick up artist community and you call them “highly aware individuals”. when in reality all that they are doing is manipulating and molding their expression to what women like and are biologically programmed to be attracted to thus causing them to get laid more than a “non pick up artist”

    The article has great insight and definitely resonates within

    I just find some of your logic(like the above) to be off and extremely contradicting

    1. Sen Post author

      Rafael, one of the values that most women look for, in men, is the sense of “security” that he can provide her – different women look for different degrees of security. The more aware/balanced a woman is the less she looks for “security” as a value from men, she would look for other values like compatibility, honesty and better communication. The type of guy a girl is attracted to would also depend on her own maturity/awareness levels. If she is attracted to a guy who is faking confidence, and being cocky/arrogant, it would indicate some form of superficiality, and lack of maturity, within her also. With maturity comes a greater degree of wisdom to be able to see through fake behavior. You would have to ask yourself if you are really interested in having a relationship with someone who is immature/superficial or would you like to find someone who is more mature in her thinking and has more depth to her. If your criteria for judging a girl’s value is just her hotness, you may have to sense your own immaturity and do the inner work of finding better maturity (if you so desire). There is nothing wrong with being immature and having immature thinking, you just need to ask yourself if you are okay with it.

      Also a guy who has a lot of insecurities will not be attractive to a woman who is looking for security as a value. So even if the guy is totally open with his insecurities (and not faking confidence) he would still not be attractive to such a woman, she might pity him or even make him her “friend”, but wouldn’t feel attraction for him. Like I said, there are some women who don’t look for security as a value from men, they are more interested in honesty and such guys would be attractive to such women.

      An open body language is the natural by-product of doing the “inner work” of releasing the momentum of negativity (which is the reason for the strong hold of insecurities). There is a natural sense of confidence which is present such a person, and this confidence comes from an inner grounding rather than an external act – it’s sometimes referred to as a person who is “centered”. Since this confidence is not being created artificially, it does not break down under any circumstance.

      As for the point about pick-up artists, the term I used was “most skilled pick-up artists are highly aware of the social dynamics involving women”, I did not say “the whole community of pick-up artists is highly aware”. Some of the really skilled pick-up artists are like “Zen masters” who do the inner work on finding their own balance, and their sense of natural confidence, and bring awareness towards understanding the dynamics of social interaction involving women – most women are highly intuitive about sensing insecurities or fake confidence and hence are some of the best indicators for growth in a man, and these “skilled pick-up artists” use this area as a means to work on their own growth in terms of finding true confidence, and its their authentic confidence that makes them highly attractive to most women – they don’t work on manipulation, they just work on an understanding social dynamics and work on finding true inner confidence, and they are not your average “cocky, fake confidence, throw in a few pickup lines” kinda pick-up artists. There is nothing wrong with using your awareness to learn about social dynamics involving women, to understand a woman’s mind and be able to communicate/connect better with her which is what sparks the attraction in her.

      On a side note, you may want to investigate if there is a sense of anger (and possibly jealousy) that you might feel towards the guys who are successful with the girls in your college, possibly this sense of anger stems from your own feeling of inner lack about yourself and your inability to feel successful in terms of social interactions involving women (which you may be a desire in you).

    2. Markus

      Rafael: “If you say that ppl who are faking confidence will never be able to truly interact with someone.. Then how do you explain all these cocky arrogant guys who are constantly getting laid with the hottest and most “desirable” women on the love market and have a ton of friends”

      Do they have tons of friends? Are those women really desirable? If one stays on a purely superficial level, maybe so. But they are just playing with masks. You are right that many are manipulating each other. The man found a mask that certain shallow women find attractive – his ego gets a stroke from stroking her ego in the right way. Back and forth it goes – but when is there ever any real interaction? That is sure to come up – but it wrecks the illusion for all involved, and they break up. On to the next superficial dance.

      If you don’t play this manipulative game, you miss out on what? Lying about who you are to get an ego boost from some woman who is lying about who she is to keep your lies flowing. Sooner or later they will see that true happiness cannot be found with the mask on, and cast it aside to try some other way to interact. It is a chance to grow, yes?

  3. Dave

    Sen, although this post is helpful, I sort of find that when I’m relaxed.. all if not most of what you mentioned happens automatically when my mind is quiet. Shouldn’t our priority still be with just being present/allowing what is, and not having to learn all this? At the moment, I just feel I can’t take on everything that you have written, as it feels that this side of social interaction will come naturally once we release whats bothering us and it feels like the long way round to learn everything by script. Am I wrong here, do we need to challenge ourselves more during the allowing/release phase… or what is one’s actual priority.

    1. Sen Post author

      Dave, I’ve mentioned in this post (and have given links to the posts that discuss it) that finding inner wholeness by the release of past momentum is a foundation towards developing the space of freedom to work on learning new skills to be more proficient in various areas of physical living – like health, wealth and relationships, and that this post specifically deals with providing some understanding on social dynamics. Even the state of allowing has so many dynamics involved in it that it can’t just be encapsulated in one pointer like – “just let go, relax and you will get there naturally” – if that was the case people wouldn’t keep visiting retreats for several years while the teacher keeps repeating the same sentence, they come there because they feel confused, they desire a clearer understanding, they have specific issues that are blocking their movement etc. To find inner wholeness in yourself is one thing, however that does not automatically mean that you will gain mastery/expertise in all areas of your life – it just means that now you have the balanced foundation to work on gaining better understanding and expertise in areas like finance, health and relationships. If you are working on finding inner wholeness then that is your current journey, and if you are going through the phase of release of past momentum then that should/would be your priority, this post is for people who either have released their past momentum or people who don’t have a strong past momentum, and are basically just looking to gain a better understanding of social dynamics (I’ve mentioned this in the beginning of the post).

      Just imagine a guy who has “inner wholeness” and he decides to hit the gym, he goes there and sees all the barbells and machines, he sees other guys working out, but he is clueless about what to do – do you think his inner wholeness should automatically just give him the knowledge on which barbell to lift, how training to put in, how to space out the training sessions, how to most effectively eat to enhance muscle gain? Or do you think he would have to consult with other guys who’ve been at it (and have greater experience), to read books by experts who’ve managed to accomplish certain goals that he desires, to use this knowledge and calibrate it to his own needs? It would be silly to say that just because I have inner wholeness I should automatically be good at weight training – it will take time, it will take a willingness to learn and it will take some “goof ups” before I start becoming good at weight training. In the same way, just because I have inner wholeness doesn’t mean I will be automatically good at social interactions – it takes an awareness to learn certain aspects of effective communication, to understand different minds (a woman’s mind can think in different ways than a man’s mind, and there are many dynamics to it, and this understanding requires you to gain knowledge). You will have an open body language, and a real grounding, as a result of the inner wholeness, but it can’t automatically translate to you being good at interactions, you will have to use your awareness to gain an understanding of social dynamics and incorporate these understandings to gain expertise in that area – in case you imagine that all “life skills” will come to automatically by reaching inner wholeness it’s just a deluded thought with no foundation in reality.

      Consider another example of “reading skills”, you might think that you know everything about reading but you would be surprised at how your reading can become way more effective if you have more “knowledge” about its dynamics and found new perspectives, and skill-sets, around reading. There are value understandings relating to the area of “reading” that one can gain from courses like photoreading which gives you insight on the use of relaxed-focus to browse through books and take in the required information in a matter of minutes. Inner wholeness will not automatically improve your reading skills – however it can expedite your desire for improving your reading skills by making you more free towards being guided towards the right resource.

      There are three approaches to learning – 1. you learn purely from your own experience 2. you learn from the experience of others 3. you learn from the experience of others while incorporating value from it and learn from your experience there-after. The third approach is the most effective means towards expedited learning. Inner wholeness is not some magic wand that automatically gives you “expertise” on all levels of life, it’s just a foundation for balanced growth/expression and quicker learning, nothing more. It’s not about “learning everything by script” but about gaining certain understanding that can add value to your current understanding and thus help you gain better expertise in a certain area of life (depending on whether you want to grow in that area).

    2. Dave

      I carefully considered what you wrote, and just want to say that I wish to seek clarity here above all else. That’s what I’m coming to you, writing to you. Anyhow, in my personal experience I have to say that even though I have high anxiety, frenzied at times, I do enjoy going to clubs/pubs and even hitting the gym. I agree with you that when I first started going to the gym at around 17-18, I had a very limited understanding on which excercises would hit which muscle type, technique and proper rest/recovery. For example, I started off by using the bench press frequently as it was easy to increase the chest muscles, but did not know that I also had to work out my back and subsequently ended up with rounded shoulders! The same could be said when I had left my girlfirend at around 18, and had found that I had absolutlely no idea how to talk to girls. But I found a difference, in that, there is a ‘sentience’ between beings. Just like if you had not learnt how to be in nature, in a rainforrest somewhere in an instant, you are able to know how to be still, and sense the presence of nature. In my own personal experience, I find that it is the same with people and that it was not ‘learnt’ knowledge, but rather a discovery. I remember Mooji saying somewhere that if you learn something you have to keep remembering, but when you discover something its basically always there. I am now 22 years old in this body, & now when I go to these places (clubs,pubs) there is still a nervousness inside, even a self-consciousness. But, remembering that I am that presence, I am that consciousness kills the person inside. And there isn’t really a need to work out how to ‘be’, as I see that it is that mostly our minds get in the way of interactions with people. During this time, the past year, i had been avoiding this presence as I thought it was a technique as I thought there was me and ‘the presence’, I felt that I did not want to practise a technique anymore and things had gotten worse, alot worse. But just quick spanking, alot of suffering, and a flash insight… Undeniably, I am this presence, unapologetically. There is no duality here.

      I have to speak for myself here and say that also I am only concerned with freedom, as there is still that nagging sense in me to cut out all the bullsh*t that gets in the way. Even if it means women for now. I just feet that for the time being, I shouldn’t postpone being free as it is honestly the only thing that matters to me. If I cannot be free, then I think that how am I able to truly enjoy worldly experiences anyway. Maybe everything goes hand in hand, I dunno Sen, I’m burning here.

    3. Alias

      Dave, the ascent has begun. Allow the flow. It may burn at first, but you’ll balance it out. Perhaps Sen can point out specific points, but truly if you go through all his articles you will see that the whole journey is there in words. It may take months to sync in, most probably years, or even decades. But you have a whole life to discover as you very nicely put it. No need to accumulate knowledge about it, just be aware of things…

  4. Perplexed

    Gosh Sen, that seems so shallow – a book on how to learn lots of techniques and tricks so you can pick up women! Are you recommending it? There’s a lot of good stuff in your post but are you really serious that this is a good strategy for men to undertake (given that women are already such good flirts. Really!!!). It seems so insincere, debasing to women, and I can’t see how it is at all congruent with your earlier posts. I must admit I haven’t read the book myself and don’t think I will after reading about it on Wikipedia. It seems very ego driven.

    I’m being critical here but I think it’s because I’m disappointed. I love your blog and I’ve read and re-read many of your posts. In the past I’ve read Tolle and Abraham-Hicks too and I believe you’ve brought their teachings and many other teachings together in a practical and user friendly format. It really is wonderful what you’ve done with this and I will continue to read your posts.

    I’m also familiar with lots of other teachings of the “fake it till you make it” variety and it seems like the message in this post has gone a full circle and back to techniques. I’m with Dave on this – surely body language etc will naturally be as it should be once we release all the negativity?

    1. Sen Post author

      Perplexed, the words I used were “most women are more comfortable with their sexuality and are adept at expressing their attraction non-verbally”, this is because women are naturally more in tune with their body than men – how’s this debasing to women? A lot of men are highly awkward in communicating their attraction to a woman because of a disconnection with their sexuality – it’s a reality that a lot of men would attest to. A lot of guys fail at approaching women they feel attracted to because of a lot of limited thinking in their mind about how a woman would react – this feels debilitating to most guys because they feel frustrated at their inability to take action towards their attraction. A lot of this social anxiety, that guys have around women, is because of their lack of understanding of social dynamics involving women (it’s just a fact that women think differently from men on many levels especially in subjects of relationships). If understanding certain social dynamics involving women allows a guy to let go of certain limited thinking on his part which was restricting him to being more free in approaching women, how is it a bad thing? Even a guy who has released all the inner negativity may still lack an understanding about social dynamics involving the opposite-sex, one does not know become “all knowing” just by releasing the momentum of past negativity – it’s about having an attitude of learning on a constant basis about any area of life that you feel/desire you need a mastery in.

      How many times do you find women complaining that the guy just can’t get her? How many times do you find guys complaining that they have no clue why the relationship broke-up? Most of it is because of a lack of understanding in a guy towards a girl’s mind, and vice versa. There are many books which are written to helps girls understand a guy’s mind and help guys understand a girl’s mind, and they all serve a value in helping people develop a better understanding and bridge gaps in any limited/deluded/mis-alinged thinking they may have. Where do I specifically “recommend” the book – The Game? I just mentioned it as an example of the many books that are being written about the subject of helping guys understand the social dynamics involving women. An aware person would read a book for the value it can provide in terms of gaining a better understanding of a certain area, while letting go of any “blind techniques” which may have no real value.

      I always emphasize on the attitude of learning and looking at gaining “understanding”, and I don’t talk about any ideology of “fake it till you make it” in this post. I’ve mentioned at the beginning of the post that this post is just a discussion on providing certain “understandings” regarding social dynamics for those who desire this as an area of interest and growth, and it’s more apt for people who are mostly done with the phase of releasing their past of momentum of negativity. There is a difference between gaining understanding and working with “black and white” techniques in a blind manner – even the state of allowing is like a technique if you want to see it that way, and it’s possible for people to not understand the logic behind why/how the state of allowing works – it’s just that such people would just keep feeling confused along the way. The more clear you are in your understanding of the dynamics of the state of allowing the less confusion you have and the easier it is for you to incorporate this process.

      I’ve mentioned in the post that once you release the momentum of negativity you will naturally have an open body language, but just because you have an open body language does not mean you will gain all the understanding about social dynamics – finding your space of inner wholeness is one journey, developing understanding about life and various areas of experience (like relationships) is a journey of learning of its own accord – one can’t just say “I will let go and not seek any understanding” (that can just become a passive attitude which just leads to a new form of imbalance). Inner freedom does not depend on understandings, but inner freedom/wholeness is just the right foundation or platform to gain new skills or understandings that can serve your physical experience. Your inner wholeness makes you more open to gaining new learning/perspectives, new skills and new understandings towards three major areas of physical living which are health, wealth and relationships. Even if you’ve reached inner wholeness you would still need to understand about the financial systems prevalent on Earth in order to be more effective at managing finances, like understanding investment dynamics etc – just because you’ve reached inner wholeness does not automatically make you a financial expert, it just makes you more open to understanding financial dynamics without any hang-ups or limiting beliefs.

    2. Alias

      It is in the simple every day things that one is to apply whatever “teachings” one has been studying. One will then realize that it’s not “simple” at all; in fact it is rather complicated. Man makes it complicated. Most can’t simply put things together inside them our outside them. What is there to be disappointed about in a most truthful article like this? As soon as sex appears in an article, people simply lose the sync… why? Sen has been talking about the wholeness of life almost in every post he publishes. He is trying to connect the scattered pieces of the puzzle, and put them together for you. Perhaps it has its own risks (as Sen probably already knows), but you have to help out yourselves. There is no deep or shallow ground here, there is your everyday lives which include everything and primarily your relationships. Life is relationship. With your loved one, or your sexual partner, or even the relationship with your property and your bank account. It is built on dependencies. Dependency for pleasure primarily, and then as one goes into it, more peculiar types of aversion of fear.

      As long as one keeps his sexuality away from his spirituality, one is bound to be “blocked” at both of these areas; truly because they are the “variant” expressions of the same type of energy circulating in one’s body. They move cyclically, as manifestations of the creative and destructive forces of energy that exist in all of us. But these are just words here… one has to find out for himself, one has to be serious to himself.

      Every time a spiritual guide is grounding the energy for us, talking about something real, we revolt. It can be seen across the globe in all types of spiritual/religious/new age talks. All these still have the stigma of old fashioned religion and puritanism. We are all human beings in denial, but even that most of us will deny.

      To agree or to disagree with life, or whatever becomes part of it (like Sen’s posts, or our opinions) is like agreeing or disagreeing with the sun rising and falling. It happens. Here or there, in this blog or so many others, even if most are unaware of it. It is one whole movement taking place across the entire earth, trying to balance itself. There is no point in identifying with one thing or another, nor rejecting (neither inwardly nor outwardly). The cause becomes the result and the result turns itself back into cause in no time. What you are today, you will not be in 10 years from now, just like you evolved from a child playing with toys into a grown up. Your consciousness has expanded enormously, and you’ve moved on. One will play again with toys, and perhaps feel the innocence once more in his life time, when one is to give life to his own children. Then perhaps one will begin to see the bigger picture, when one will have to raise a family and face the greatest challenge of all times. And once more knowledge turns against ignorance, control over innocence. Then one will relive his childhood as the parent, and the most mystical secrets will unfold in front of his eyes. As long as one has eyes to see, desire, relationship, sex, control, knowledge, ignorance, enlightenment, they are all parts of the ever-changing “self”. Oneself is all of them together, and none of them.

    3. Perplexed

      Hi Sen, thanks for your reply. There are a few points that I would like to clear up…

      Firstly, my comment re debasing to women was for the book, The Game. It had nothing to do with your comment ““most women are more comfortable with their sexuality and are adept at expressing their attraction non-verbally”, this is because women are naturally more in tune with their body than men” – but I do wonder why you think this? Women have lots of issues with their bodies, eg anorexia, and I think men can be very capable of expressing their attraction non-verbally. A woman will know instantly in a look or a body movement if a man finds her attractive but whether a woman chooses to reciprocate the signal is another matter. And maybe the man finds the woman attractive but that doesn’t mean he wants to pursue anything… and so on. It’s complicated! I agree that “If understanding certain social dynamics involving women allows a guy to let go of certain limited thinking on his part which was restricting him to being more free in approaching women” is a good thing. And vice versa. Both sexes can have issues including social anxiety.

      Secondly, I did not say that you recommended the book. I asked the question “Are you recommending it?” to clarify. I guess I was surprised when I looked at the reviews of the book referred to in Wikipedia, eg. reviewer in The Observer wrote “Some of the recommended techniques are sinister. One involves discreetly undermining a woman’s self-esteem by paying her a backhanded compliment in the hope that she will hang around to seek your approval. This manoeuvre has its own name: ‘the Neg'”. In my opinion, that doesn’t show a lot of respect for women. Sorry Sen, I just think that was a bad choice of book.

      Thirdly, I apologise for the “fake it till you make it” comment. I see what you mean now. Yes, it’s very important to develop the skills and understanding, learning goes on forever. It would be nice to be all omniscient if one is realised but i guess this is not going to happen.

  5. Alias

    Very nicely put Sen. The closer you get to the real, the harder it is to put it into words. However as Dave mentioned just above, It is perhaps too chewed to digest properly; perhaps one should have the chance to find about all this by himself. Yet again, it’s a free world as you mentioned, so one can write about what ones heart and mind are prepared to share with the rest of us, and whoever is interested, can simply read it. So it’s not a matter of priority (as Dave asks). There is no priority at all in any of these. As long as one is caught into the process of becoming, of following these texts as a guide to evolve in one way or another, one is caught in self-illusion. I don’t mind if one agrees to it or not. It’s not about me or Sen or you as individuals. I’ve been reading these posts for some time, and although my replies are limited, I noticed that in most readers replies the majority is just concerned about themselves, and how to overcome a personal problem, anxiety, phobia, or the other side of it, the process of capturing joy, uplifting feelings etc. If one has been reading these texts from the beginning, one should have probably seen by now that the “self” is the root of all the happiness and conflict, and so one must move of from that. One should open up, as Sen says. Perhaps one should read the earlier posts again, because it is all there, the whole journey translated into words. Words are of a limited nature, but you are not.

    For the ones that see, a great circle has completed over the last week or so. It has been on for over two years now (not talking about this Blog). An alignment has taken place and many probably feel it inwardly as a void; others as bliss. Allow it to flourish.

    1. stormy

      Hi Alias, what’s the cycle you mentioned? I can feel something going on…lately I’ve been more intuitive about things and today I had to leave work early because I started crying hysterically when I woke up and couldn’t stop. I’m not exactly sure why, I just feel like everything is horrible and like nothing is “happening” but I don’t know what I want to “happen” I just feel stuck. I didn’t feel like this last week or even yesterday so I’m wondering what you’re talking about, thanks!

    2. Alias

      Stormy hi, didn’t mean to cause confusion. When inner turmoil slows down, things become more clear, transparent and the cyclical movements can be seen. One can observe the relationships between events just like one observes the sun moving from the east to the west around the globe. The ones that see it, feel bliss. The ones on the dark side of it, feel the void. The thing you are describing can be anything from the effects of the cycle, a change in weather and atmospheric pressure, or simply inner turmoil, or even a bad dream. Whatever the case, just observe it, let it be. Watch your thoughts, emotions and reactions without choosing between one or the other, without self judgment, without expecting something out of it. It is like breathing, it takes place on its own. If you try to control it, you merely mess up the rhythm.

  6. Alliswell

    First, I tend to not be attracted to men that are “into” me, yet this is what I feel I want – A reciprocal relationship with someone that cares about me as much as I care about them. Yet, I seem to be attracted to the men who aren’t and then wonder why they don’t return the affection. The men that do usually do not interest me. I see this as a pattern in me. How do I turn this habit around?

    I do want a good relationship with one man.

    1. Alias

      Begin by asking yourself why you want to turn it around? Are you willing to change it? Why is this happening to you and not to others? Don’t you think you should look into it before trying to change it? To change what you don’t understand or what you don’t like is merely substituting it with an idea, while the “habit” still remains. If one is to understand his habits, then one has no need to turn them around. One’s relationships are truly a great mirror revealing oneself. Subconsciously choosing rejection is likely to derive from self-rejection in some area of your inner life. It finds its way out in the outer reality through your relationships. Such insecurity many times derives from lack of affection in one’s childhood (father figure too distant perhaps). But all these are mere speculations. One is to look into his own abyss.

  7. Markus

    It seems that another thing to keep in mind for comfortable social interaction is to have no expectations. When one approaches another because he or she is attractive, that can go many ways. If one does so with the goal of ‘having sex’ or ‘finding a boyfriend’, for example, doors to other possibilities close. With a goal or expectation, one can easily overlook what is real or miss the value of the interaction.

    As Sen mentioned somewhere on this page, a relationship might only last minutes. But it can still be a good thing. A few words to a stranger who you never see again might make a big difference.

  8. Kevin W.

    I really liked this one. I definitely have made the mistake of making some girls out to be something extra ordinary. This resulted in either me being too nervous to talk to those girls or I would feel somewhat of a let down when I did get to know them because I had put them on such a high pedestal. Also, your point about dropping the formalities is so true. I really have a hard time engaging in typical small talk (ie. “crazy weather out there huh?) because it feels to me like both people are basically just reading a script. That kind of conversation seems disingenuous to me.

  9. Alliswell

    Thanks for the response, Alias
    I worded my question poorly. You are correct. I had a father who was very generous, but distant and never showed affection. He was also very critical and controlling. I would like to have a positive, respectful relationship, but I realize I fear I will end up with a controlling, critical man. I do see this and I would like to turn it around. It is almost like a self-fulfilling prophecy. I end up in the same position. I see that I have poor self image and feel somewhat undeserving of a good relationship, based on my childhood, yet this is something I truly want to overcome and experience. I want a demonstrative man, yet I am not very demonstrative.

  10. Lyns

    I’ve come to this sight in search of letting go of or not being controlled by my ego, everything I’ve read so far has been very interesting and I can relate to a lot of it, my relationship with my man has nearly broken down recently, I’ve been blaming him for a lot of things. Through searching for enlightenment and healing of myself and our relationship I’ve discovered and come to realise that it is because of my own behaviour and negative view of myself that has caused most of the problems in the relationship, I feel that what we are all seeking, men and women alike is love from each other, respect, understanding and not blaming. From a woman’s point of view, I think men and woman generally believe that women are the one’s more in touch with our own emotions and more emotionally intelligent, but I know that my man has brought more emotional intelligence to our relationship in the first place through growing up in a more balanced atmosphere, I am learning and realising more about it now because I have always believed in growing in life but I do believe that with women realising our own independence more, political correctness, speaking for myself at least, that it has become confusing about who we should be and what men want now, when ultimately deep down I think we all just want unconditional love.

  11. MJ

    Wonderful article, looking forward for your views on learning new skills related health, wealth etc

  12. Anon

    I just want to say I found your website and really find your writings insightful. Please keep writing, there are many benefiting.

  13. Tony


    know that you are helping a huge amount of people out there, across the globe, truly struggling in everyday life. Please never stop posting your ideas and views on the world.

    Gratefully I wish you a nice a weekend.

  14. Ian

    Hi, I’m interested in the point you make about manipulated confidence.

    It has been mentioned to me by therapists and seems to be a general rule of thumb and advice from friends and family and girlfriends, that if you think confidently then you will be confident, for example this phrase ‘ take a deep breath, shoulders back, stand up straight, behave confidently and you will be be confident’ etc

    Is this not manipulated confidence?

    regards Ian

  15. Ahlan

    Hey Sen, I am amazed at the power of allowing and staying detached. I have one question for you.

    One guy has been my friend and colleague from the past 11 years. We had our share of fights but we were friends. One day I stumbled onto the fact that he has been talking ill behind my back(from many sources). Basically he is very insecure and very jealous of me all along. Though he pretended to be my friend, all the while he was alienating me from everyone. He has been spoiling my image and belittling me. You can say he back stabbed me.
    I confronted him with this but as usual he denied it flatly. It took me several months to come to terms with this.

    On reading your posts and practicing what u said it brought me much relief. I have forgiven him and accepted that my light nature needed a person of his nature to balance out.

    I cannot avoid him since he works in the same company as me. A few weeks back he approached me for reconciliation.
    My question is:
    Should I continue to be friends with him ignoring the past and knowing that he has no intention of changing or is non repenting? OR DO I completely detach myself from him and not make an effort to be friendly?

    Also I have a more generic query.
    How do we deal with 2 faced, individuals who pretend to be your friends and who mean well for you but the minute ur back is turned they turn on you.
    Thanks a lot Sen. You are a life saver!

  16. Dark Havana

    Hi Sen,

    I have read many of your articles and I find some of them amazing, even ingenious. This article particularly is very important for me but still…unlike many other articles, it doesn’t provide a cohesive idea of how to act and interact in social circles in case you have that awkward feeling while being socially exposed (or challenged?)

    I am not doubting that all your conclusions are correct.. I actually think that you are completely right about (for example) body language remarks as well as all additional physical signals which can speak out someone’s disposition and/or state of mind.

    I am not going to ask you what I am supposed to do because my aim is to achieve deeper understanding of how to feel comfortable and bring the best of myself out while interacting with others. The question is: if I am into about releasing suppressed energy and the state of allowing, how can I influence (what you call) “inner vibe”?

    I find most of the people boring. It is so hard for me to get interested in people on one hand but in the same time, it is really nice to be surrounded by them and also to make them interested in your stories. I have never been good in so called “small talk”. You write: “Look at enjoying the interaction in that moment rather than worrying about what you can get out of it, or where it may lead.” I stopped worrying about where it may lead but for some reason I can hardly find enjoyment in meeting people. It is rather uncomfortable. I often think that people are bored by me while I am bored by them. It is confusing.

    Your articles are great help in my personal development and as far as social interaction, I am still the beginner and need to learn a lot about it. Seems like a very difficult chapter. Hopefully some of your future posts will make it easier to understand social behavior and interaction with others. It would be so awesome to get that changed.

    Thanks a lot.

    1. Sen Post author

      Dark, in many cases, the reason why we have a hard time with social interaction is because we are not really comfortable with who we are – being comfortable with who you are is not about “feeling great” about who you are, but about being “okay” with the light (traits) and dark (limitations) in you – no-one is “perfect”, it’s about accepting your imperfections along with your traits. The reason you find interactions boring could be because you have a sense of “arrogance” about you, possibly you are too imbued in your own mind to relate to other people, or you could be highly judgmental of others, it’s also possible that you prefer your own space and are not really interested in being social at present – whatever be the case, the deal is to understand if there is a certain imbalance in you that’s triggering your experience of negativity during interactions, or if it’s something that’s just a natural tendency in you in which case you simply need to align with your preferences. The foundation is to first find your space of inner freedom, by releasing the momentum of past imbalance/negativity (accumulated through your unconsciousness) – you can read the recent post – the experience of finding balance – for more insight on what inner freedom entails. From this foundation of inner freedom you will be in a better place to understand your preferences regarding interactions, and to see certain imbalances in your mindset regarding interactions.

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