Here is yet another confidence building activity for you. This one builds on an activity that you may have done before, which is to walk around making eye contact with everyone that you see as you go about your daily business.
Well, that's a great activity to do, and this week what I want you to do is to add something on top of that and in addition to making eye contact with everyone that you see, flash them a big smile. A nice, friendly smile, and just notice how other people respond.
I tend to find when I do this that maybe half the people who I flash a smile at respond with a smile and the other half of people who I flash a smile at just kind of keep going about their daily business or look the other way or look a bit weird. Don't be weirded out by that; it's okay. Part of the aim of this activity is to just notice what emotions come up for you and what sensations and feelings you have when the person either accepts your offer of a smile and smiles back or when they maybe reject your offer of a smile and turn away.
Also notice what thoughts go through your head. Do you think, "They like me," or, "This isn't working," or, "I'm a loser," or, "I"m hopeless," or, "People don't like me"? Just notice what kind of bullshit thoughts go through your head as you do this, and also notice what thoughts go through your head when people respond in a way that you consider positive; when they appear to be accepting of your gesture of a nice, friendly smile.
There's a lot of people out there going about their daily lives just in their own little world and they're not looking that happy, they're not smiling, they're troubled by all sorts of stuff that we know absolutely nothing about and we have really very little idea what's going on in the heads of other people, particularly strangers we've never met before.
Don't take personally any reaction that you get to this, but it's an excellent exercise for giving yourself a little more confidence and just generally learning how to accept connections with strangers and accept when strangers don't really want to connect with us and being okay with that.