The Introvert’s Guide To Surviving (And Thriving) At A Conference: Five Tips

By Karolina Kurcwald

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It’s that time of year again. An annual season that strikes terror into the hearts of introverts the world over. Conference time. Few experiences are as terror inducing for introverts like me than being thrust into a swelling crowd and told, “Here … go be sociable.”

Thankfully, over the last couple of years — through hard won lessons and a little help from a handful of insightful articles — I’ve learned how to not just survive a conference … but thrive.

While the fear doesn’t go away completely, the following five tips will give you a fighting chance.

1. Connect Ahead of Time

One of the most difficult elements of attending an in-person conference for introverts is the anticipation. We think about how we’re going to deal with the unknown circumstances of the event, how we’re going to talk with people we don’t know, and how we’re going to be able to cope with the stress of it all.

If you simply start by getting in touch with colleagues your already know, it’s incredible how your trepidation diminishes.

All this really means is sending a quick email or making a quick phone call beforehand.

Why? Because it’s comforting to have someone we know — even in the slightest — when all around us are strangers.

What if you don’t know anyone?

If there’s a list of attendees available — often conferences provide a quick rundown of who’s coming — you might consider getting in touch with a fellow attendee that shares the same job description you do or works with a similar agency.

Plus with social media, organizers almost universally have a Facebook page or Twitter list dedicated to the conference itself. Like the page, subscribe to the list, and be sure to ask questions or respond to a few of the questions that are already there.

As Due points out in their How to Create a Business Blogging Plan in 2016

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