Lanny's Blog

4 Human Interactions that Always Seem Awkward

When it comes to social interactions, you will usually feel awkward at some point or another. That’s part of growing up, I suppose. But eventually, after practice and being around people long enough, you will find that social interactions will become less and less awkward.

However, even though I enjoy meeting people and getting to know them, I’ve found that there are still parts of interacting that I find odd at times. Here are 4 human interactions that always seem awkward.

awkward turtle
Awkward turtle!

1. Starting a conversation– I have struggled with this for a long time. It’s hard to come up with something on the spot that’s both clever and will get the other person in a talkative mood. Sure you can always just go up to someone, extend your hand and introduce yourself, but that’s not unique. It’s not memorable. But hey, go for it, I’m sure you’ll do fine.

After you do successfully start a conversation, there’s one aspect that everyone is afraid of….the awkward silence…

Chuck Norris

Side Note: Everyone is also afraid of Chuck Norris. Apparently sleeves and shirts are afraid of him too.

Awkward silence is the worst. It’s that moment where your brain freezes, your mouth forgets how to work, and you have no clue what to say next. You usually know when it’s about to occur when the conversation goes something like this:

Person A: “What’s up?”

Person B: “Not much.”

Person A: “So….uh….”

And that’s when it occurs. That was painful to type, because it brings back so many memories of the awkward pause that inevitably leads to the silence.

2. Winking– I have personally never understood winking at someone. It just seems creepy and off-putting whenever I try to pull it off. It’s like I get confused and forget which eye to wink with and I just end up blinking at someone. That’s not a great way to let someone know they are attractive. It just makes me look like there’s something wrong with me.

However, I’ve never really found anyone who can pull off a good wink. It’s a hard thing to accomplish. Even good looking celebrities struggle with it.

Robert Downey Jr. winking

He's either winking or he's at the beginning stages of pink eye. There's no way to tell.

So it baffles me whenever someone winks at me, or does it to someone else. Maybe it’s a confidence thing, but I just can’t see myself winking on a regular basis.

3. Hugging– I have no problem with hugging people that I know and that I’ve built a relationship with. And I think it’s totally acceptable for guys to hug other guys. No shame there. And it’s definitely okay to hug girls. Ladies?

But what I find to be really awkward is hugging people that you’ve just met or people who  love hugs way too much. If I’m with a close friend and we part ways, I’m fine with giving out a hug. But if you’re a guy and we just said “hey” in a coffee shop, the next time we run into each other, don’t go for a hug. If I’m uncomfortable with hugging you, I literally turn into a statue because I don’t know how to react.

guys hugging
“Oh…okay….thanks for that… who are you again? Stop, that tickles!”

Hugs are like handshakes but with more commitment. You have to know going into it that the other person will return the hug. If they don’t, well then that’s just really awkward for everyone involved and everyone who witnesses it.

4. Ending Conversations– It’s really weird for me when I’m talking to someone, but I have somewhere to be. I never know how to politely tell the person that I need to leave. Usually, I just end up sticking around until they decide they need to be somewhere.

Ending a conversation also goes back to the hugging thing. In your head you’re thinking, “Okay, so do I shake their hand, go for a hug, or just walk away without any physical contact?” It’s the second hardest puzzle I’ve had to figure out.

rubik's cube
The hardest puzzle I’ve had to figure out.

What are some  awkward interactions that you struggle with? Tell me about them in the comments section.

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6 thoughts on “4 Human Interactions that Always Seem Awkward

  1. So very true. I can only remember ending one conversation recently since I always feel rude when I have to, and then if I do I spend about five more minutes reassuring them I enjoyed talking.

  2. Having any conversation on subjects other then Chuck Norris feels awkward, Chuck Norris should be in every single conversation.

    PS: I also think that all legal documents should be coded ‘Chuck Norris ##’.

  3. I find hugging really awkward too. I can only comfortably hug someone I know very well (i.e. mostly female relatives. I don’t go for the “hugging other guys thing”. It’s just not me!).

    The worst thing about an awkward hug is that the other person usually thinks it’s a great idea. While you’re stuck there desperately searching for a way to escape, they’re having the time of their life hugging you. And for some reason that always seems to make it worse 😛

  4. Kyle Booth on said:

    It’s also very awkward when you just met someone and they go for a hug.

  5. Pingback: 3 More Human Interactions that Always Seem Awkward « Lanny's Blog

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