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I enjoyed 'How to talk to anyone' - http://www.amazon.com/How-Talk-Anyone-Success-Relationships/... for general advice.

There is also Dale Carnegie's 'How to win friends and influence people' https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_to_Win_Friends_and_Influen...

Apart from that, maybe join some kind of regular group that is more oriented for social than physical? Toastmasters or something like that or even board game groups (most games have some social aspects to them). Wine tastings also come to mind. Just choose activities where you know you will have to speak with people.




I've got both of those books and even took a DC communications course (for which I paid out of pocket). They got me into some paralysis by analysis. Every interaction becomes a frantic tree search through the set of conversational rules I learned from those and other advice books. Win Friends in particular seemed very glib and sales/business oriented, rather than aimed at connecting on a sincere level.


Different approach then, have you tried having one or two beers (wine/scotch whatever) before? Not enough to get drunk, but enough for some of that paralysis by analysis to fade?


This is not bad advice. I'm naturally a bit reticent, but a beer or two and I'm chatty and can break through some social barriers. (There's a limit of course, moderation is best.) People call drinking a "crutch" but it's no more so than any other self help advice; alcohol can break down some inhibitions and lead to interesting conversations. (I've heard pot works similarly though I've never used it for social disinhibition myself.)


> Every interaction becomes a frantic tree search through the set of conversational rules I learned from those and other advice books.

You have Aspergers?


I don't, but this basically sums up how I fell about these types of books. I think the answer though is to practise until it doesn't feel like a that.


Practice doesn't help if you're brain is literally wired differently. Practice can only cover up with intellect a deficiency in behavior that others do automatically and unconsciously, which means no matter how good you get at faking it, it's still going to be exhausting and aggravating because you lack the underlying natural behaviors.


> They got me into some paralysis by analysis.

Have you considered any improv humor stuff, where un-planned-ness is almost the goal?




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