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Please, Let’s Make It ‘Awkward’

Embrace the seagull. Embrace your awkwardness. (Jeannie Bespoyasny/Flickr)
Embrace the seagull. Embrace your awkwardness. (Jeannie Bespoyasny/Flickr)

The psychology and science of social awkwardness. How to embrace your own quirks and idiosyncrasies to become the best version of yourself.

Awkward has become a kind of buzzword in popular culture these days. We say “awkward!” and everybody gets it. And we celebrate the awkward nerd or geek, in TV’s “The Big Bang Theory,” “Silicon Valley” and more. But for the truly, consistently socially awkward, it’s a challenge. The missed cues. The paralyzing fear. The real awkwardness of everyday life. My guest Ty Tashiro says it’s also a gift. This hour On Point, navigating life – and interesting payoffs – for the socially awkward. — Tom Ashbrook


Ty Tashiro, psychologist and author. Author of the new book, “Awkward: The Science Of Why We’re Socially Awkward and Why That’s Awesome.” (@tytashiro)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Atlantic: Awkwardness, Why?— “It’s when a fist bump unwittingly meets a high-five. It’s when Ben Carson tries, unsuccessfully, to walk onto a stage. It’s trying to introduce an acquaintance to someone else at a party and then realizing you don’t actually remember their name. It’s awkward, and like so many other things, you know it when you see it.”

The Cut: Why Wallflowers Don’t Make Friends — “I once had a friend who, when we went to bars, refused to drink sitting down. ‘I want to meet someone so we have to stand,’ she’d say on nights when she was hoping for a hookup. Her logic: If you’re standing, you’re approachable. People can walk up and talk to you. Seated parties are complete and closed to outsiders. Standing parties are there to make friends.”

Quartz: A psychologist’s surprisingly reassuring advice for socially awkward people — “Anyway, what’s so great about being cool? As a psychologist, I’ve found that most of us just want to find meaningful human connections. And that’s rarely going to be achieved via Instagram likes, a glamorous wardrobe, or a fancy job title. Instead, the socially awkward among us should simply embrace the bumbler’s best friend: good manners.”

Read An Excerpt Of “Awkward” By Ty Tashiro


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