If you’re anything like I was as a teenager, one embarrassing moment can ruin your entire day. Here are 3 tips to get through any awkward moment.
#1 Laugh it off
If you did something kind of funny and everyone is laughing, just laugh with them, even if you are dying inside. Honestly, the less of a deal you make out of it, the sooner people will move on.
Whether it’s tripping up the stairs or mispronouncing a word, everyone messes up sometimes. Even if you’re secretly freaking out, don’t let it show. If you respond with defensiveness, that will escalate the situation and turn it into something it doesn't have to be.
Use the laughing it off strategy for any minor awkward moment that people will forget about minutes later. The calmer and more lighthearted you can remain, the quicker your bystanders will move on.
#2 Call it out
This is the perfect strategy to use when other people saw what you just did, but no one says anything, so it’s weird and quiet. Calling it out ends the silence and allows people to breathe and acknowledge what just happened.
This technique puts you in control of the narrative. No one else can make fun of you because you already pointed out your mistake. By calling it out and laughing it off, you give everyone the green light to move on.
Here’s an example:
If you mispronounced a word while reading aloud in class, you could just say, “Wow, I just said that, haha, I mean [correct pronunciation].”
The key part of this technique is after calling it out, move on! No need to be overly self-depreciative.
You train others how to treat you. Instead of leaving the door open for someone else to tease you, call it out, then indicate the moment is over by moving on.
#3 Pretend it never happened
Most people don’t even notice your awkward moments! You might think they are glaringly obvious, and others care about everything you do. Most of the time no one notices, and if they do, they really don’t care.
If something very minor happens, don’t even bring it up. Why bother bringing attention to it? Brush it off. Like if your voice cracks or something, just keep going. Things like that happen to everyone, so don’t make it a bigger deal than it needs to be.
The key part about pretending your awkward moments never happened is to not obsess over them. You can’t carry them around in your head for the rest of the day. The whole point is to give yourself the freedom to move on, not to continue carrying that burden!
I know you probably want to avoid awkward situations altogether, but at least when they do happen, you’ll have 3 options for how to respond and keep going with your day.
Want more tips to be less awkward?
Check out this book on Amazon It’s the Awkwardness for Me