The world is filled with stressful situations, and nobody feels this more keenly than the patient with Asperger’s Syndrome. Not disabled in the sense of intellect and overall awareness, patients with this condition lack some very basic skills that prohibit them from interacting effectively with others on a social level. Overcoming the anxieties about social interactions is hard to do for those with Asperger’s Syndrome, but there are some tips that might make their situations a bit simpler.
Listen carefully when someone introduces themselves. You may learn something about their background, their interests, and also their hobbies. This might help you later to get a conversation started. In the alternative, it might go a long way to keeping a topic of conversation going and chiming in.
Practice your facial expressions in front of a mirror. Since this is your single weakest portion of adequate communication, you want to practice often and carefully. When you think you have it down, practice with a trusted friend or family member. This will prevent any awkwardness later and also minimize any anxiety you might feel.
Be open to criticism. Although strangers and those to whom you are newly introduced are most likely not gentle and kind about the way they approach you – it matters little if they know that you have Asperger’s Syndrome – they might still offer you some important clues about the way you come across. Take this information back to friends or family members and ask them about it. Your acquaintances may be on to something.
Pay close attention to the way you are dressed. Even though it sounds like a trite statement, but clothes do make the man. Clothes that you might simply appreciate for their material, color, or even feel could be construed by others as part of an image you are cultivating. This might not be the image you intend to give off, and in some cases, it might actually hinder conversation! Ask friends and family members periodically about your image. Additionally, if you wear clothes with pictures on them, ask friends or family members what they mean and how they come across.
Learn how to pace yourself in a conversation. It is tempting for anyone to monopolize a conversation by talking about themselves and their own interests. The same holds true for a patient with Asperger’s Syndrome. Yet for the latter, it is easy to misunderstand an open question geared at getting a conversation flowing for a bona fide request to give an in-depth analysis about a certain topic or issue. Be careful not to hog a conversation and ease into conversations, making sure the other party also has a lot of time to converse about the things that are important to them.