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Trouble with networking

may have to do with fears, uncertainty, and expectations about the behavior of others.

To gain insight into the thoughts and feelings you have about social contacts you can make use of the REBT (Rational Emotive Behavioural Therapy) theory. The basis of REBT is the ABC model: Activating event, Beliefs, and Consequences.

According to founder Ellis, it is not so much the situation (A), which makes it difficult (C), but the way you look at the situation. Often this is done in a rigid, irrational and dysfunctional way.

Example ABC

A - Activating event
contacts during a network

B - Beliefs
I'm not interesting enough
It will not go well

C - Consequences
Anxious (feeling)
Lower performance (behavior)
Sweating, muscle tightness, palpitations (physiological)

Discussing and reviewing (D) can not help full beliefs (B), can help you achieve a new, more effective approach to the situation (E). The future focus (F) shows what you learned from the ABCDE process and can help in future stressful situations.

D - Disputation
What is my purpose? Help these thoughts in the achievement of this goal?
I'm not interesting enough: Who says? Is that someone who knows you? Do you have proof that you are not interested? You concentrate only on the evidence and not on the contrary evidence? You pull too fast a conclusion? What kind of impact this thinking of you?
It will not go well: how can you be so sure? What facts indicate a future failure? Can you predict the future? you overestimate the likelihood that it will not go well? When something does not go well? What's the worst that could happen?

E - Effective new approach
Targeted thoughts with a focus on networks: feel less anxious; decrease of physiological reaction; better performance when networking.

F - Future Focus
Focus on achieving my goals network. Learning that I was not too demanding myself to ask, less monochrome think myself and not a label too quickly must stick to.

From: "Handbook of Coaching Psychology: a guide for practitioners" by S. Palmer and A. Whybrow, 2007

It is important to take the following points:

  • Remember that you're not the only one that finds networking difficult
  • Networking is more than just one person talking to another person
  • At a networking event you need to show a genuine interest in meeting others
  • Prepare for networking by having a clear picture of who you are, what you can do, and what you want to accomplish with the meeting. You can use the information obtained from the self-analysis
  • Remember that not everything will go well every time and that's OK. Find out what your problems or obstacles are and try to fix them

Last modified:12 October 2018 09.58 a.m.
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