people talking

Are You A Tortoise Or An Octopus In Your Social Interactions?

At every social event, there are two kinds of people – tortoises and octopuses.

What’s the difference?

Like tortoises, some people tend to withdraw into their shell and avoid contact with certain individuals. To get them to socialize, they need to be coaxed out of their shell and made to feel safe.

Octopuses, on the other hand, will grab at every opportunity to talk to people and make friends. They need to learn how to slow things down. Otherwise, the tortoises feel overwhelmed with their exuberance.

Understand how your emotions dictate your communication.

What’s The Balance For Social Interactions?

By now you probably figured out that neither a tortoise nor an octopus is an ideal role model for your socializing habits.

So what is the balance?

Find out if you tend to be more of a tortoise or an octopus in your dealings with other people.

For tortoises, the challenge is to avoid withdrawing into a shell. These people tend to hide in large groups where they blend into the crowd. They also refrain from drawing attention to themselves, preferring to stick to the one person in the room that they are familiar with.

Occasionally, saying less is the better option. 

If you think you are more of a tortoise in your social interactions, step out of your comfort zone in small steps. Meet new people and begin by having short conversations with strangers even if it makes you feel awkward.

For octopuses, the challenge is to avoid coming on too strong. You may have a high level of self-confidence but you might frequently encounter individuals who are not ready to engage with you on the same level.

Finally, study the body language and behavior of the person you are interacting with and adjust your communication style to match their comfort level.

Sheevaun Moran is a business advisor, master coach, quantum energy thought leader and the founder of Energetic Solutions. She uses business principles with energetic techniques to help more than 25,000 entrepreneurs, CEOs and leaders bring instant focus and shifts to clarity, purpose, and profits.


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