My wife actually organizes events to help people practice this. If you are in San Francisco there is one happening Tuesday at 7pm: https://speedfriendingsanfrancisco.eventbrite.com/
If you email me I can answer any questions.
We know how connected we are and how easy it is, so we don't set hard plans. Better to defer the potential rejection or obligation.
If it weren't so easy to connect there'd be more pressure to just set a hard time and calendar it right?
That's what people say to those they don't want to be around. If they wanted you around they'd call you.
A good start would be replacing "What do you do?" with "What do you love to do?" or "What are you passionate about?" :) Good luck!
The difficult part is to find that part of the subject, even if it's just a kernel, that triggers the interest you potentially have. This can take a while, sometimes. Perhaps reading up on how to interview people can help in this regard (it's helped me!).
In my case, but I suspect this is true for most humans, my 'genuine interest' activates once the 'human interest' angle, to put it vaguely, starts appearing. Probably because that's easier to relate to.
I hate talking about football, for example, but I've had wonderful conversations with football fans once they started sharing personal stories of things they experienced, adventures they had, or stories of how they used to go to games with their fathers, and how this was one of the few ways in which to connect with them, etc. In the process, I learned some interesting things about football too, but that wasn't really the point for me.
Over time some of these football fans became close friends of mine. We don't talk about football much nowadays, because it's clear that I find the topic mind-numbingly boring. But we do still talk about dads, and that's very valuable.
This incidentally relates to one of OP's suggestions: don't assume that you'll keep feeling the way you feel forever.
Gives them scope to talk about a new role you hadn't heard about, their regular job, a holiday they're going on, renovations at home, etc.
If you really don't like to dance, try theatersport or "impro". It will help free your mind.
Big bonus: you will meet many people that are not in tech. And afterwards you go have a drink in a local bar, great moments to talk to other people.
Ask someone what their current challenges in life are?
What are they passionate about?
What are they looking forward to?
The window dressing might be different but underneath we are very much alike.
Try getting into something completely different than tech. Like aggressive athletic stuff (ie MMA / boxing... not cycling where you have lots of techies) or do some improv, which can drastically improve your bullshitting skills if you can stick with it.
Enjoy the other person, Like a TV show.
I've made a couple of friends from playing at local vball meetup.
Also politics - public interest lawyers love me.
And this excellent talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yFIa-Mc2KSk
I have Asperger's. Plus PTSD from various stuff that happened as a result of that.
So the idea of a safe place to share my strengths (and weaknesses) and try to find a job that doesn't stress me out was really exciteding. So I fired up Tor and tried to register.
Then the confirmation email never name. I tried resending. Set a timer. Wait 15 minutes. Try not to perseverate.
I only have two emails - my main, plus a very old hotmail account which has now been morphed into an Outlook addy. Outlook has a pretty rich feature set, including aliases. So I thought I'd try that.
"There's a temporary problem with the service. Please try again. If you continue to get this message, try again later".
I go through the process again on Outlook. Set a timer for 15 minutes. Try not to perseverate.
I guess I could use my personal email (my first name at my last name dot com), but frankly part of why I was excited about registering.
Maybe the issue is I did the initial account registration over Tor. Or maybe I'm just particuarly unlucky today.
All I know is my rational brain quietly whisper "Oh, just go back later, it's probably some server side bug", and my emotional brain yells back... other things.
I guess I could sign in with my Twitter, but if you'd been through what I've been through, you'd have trouble trusting people too. That's how I got into privacy and security work... feeling like I had a secret, and I needed to protect it.
 Yeah, a VPN is probably sufficient but lately I'm interested in how much of the web is closed off to Tor users due to crazy captchas and other gotchas.
Best of luck to you.
That said, based on talking about this stuff over the last few years, the percentage of people suffering from any degree of these disorders is certainly way higher than I ever thought.
>1. Personalization – the believe that we are at fault. This is the lesson that not everything that happens to us happens because of us.
"Small-minded people blame others. Average people blame themselves. The wise see all blame as foolishness."
>2. Pervasiveness – the belief that an event will affect all areas of your life
"Be careful what you water your dreams with. Water them with worry and fear and you will produce weeds that choke the life from your dream. Water them with optimism and solutions and you will cultivate success. Always be on the lookout for ways to turn a problem into an opportunity for success. Always be on the lookout for ways to nurture your dream."
>3. Permanence – the belief that the sorrow will last forever
"A student went to his meditation teacher and said, “My meditation is horrible! I feel so distracted, or my legs ache, or I’m constantly falling asleep. It’s just horrible!”
“It will pass,” the teacher said matter-of-factly.
A week later, the student came back to his teacher. “My meditation is wonderful! I feel so aware, so peaceful, so alive! It’s just wonderful!”
“It will pass,” the teacher replied matter-of-factly."
-old Zen tale
Good starting point: http://geneticgenie.org/
They even have an implementation of methylation analysis on this website.
Yes, epigenetic methylation is associated with increased risk for all sorts of chronic illnesses. And, yes, oxidative stress influences heritable methylation. At the same time, the site appears to be peddling its own brand of alternative medicine woo and affiliate links.
The AJHG paper they cite to is talking about folate and methylation in the context of fetal abnormalities. This is a whole different beast from feeding adults B12 vitamins and hoping for the best.
Well you are supposed to do a blood test for the metabolites that occur in the methylation pathway, to see if the cycle is running correctly. Not sure if that is mentioned on this particular site, but this is what people are doing for example on this ME/CFS forum 
> The entire website stinks of snake oil
You could still be right about this (or not), of course. I'd also like to see some clinical trials of this approach.
From my experience with a lot of family, friends, classmates, coworkers, I agree that this can really help out someone who's depressed (PTSD too).
Texts or email sent back and forth, meeting up for dinner, coffee, or a beer have all seemed to help. Getting them a light box has helped, if they use it..
I was thinking why is it so hard for one man to form a friendship with another. Personally, I have found it difficult to form a friendship with other men outside of work or of school. Now that I am about to turn 46yrs old, I can count on one hand the number of guys I can consider a good friend. The rest are either workmates or schoolmates.
Social contact is not the silver bullet to depression, but I believe that it helps a lot.
 - http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/587/t...
Yes, guilt is the means by which so much bad stuff gets installed in our minds. Ideas that get passed easily from mind to mind regardless of truth content are called memes. I propose the term remes for ideas that get recalled easily in an individual's mind. These get rehearsed more frequently than other ideas regardless of their truth content and so they persist; they achieve this by generating guilt.