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How to be more outgoing

Here are some tips for practicing an outgoing mindset so that you can call upon it when needed
3 min read

People can form strong identities around being introverts or extroverts, especially in the United States. While it’s important to recognize your innate tendencies, it’s also important to learn that identities are complex, and that everyone can call upon many different mindsets throughout the day, even if some take more energy.

Outgoing is one of the eight Agile EQ mindsets. If it is one of yours, learn more about it in Your outgoing mindset in Agile EQ. If being outgoing takes more effort for you, keep reading for tips on practicing this frame of mind and revising the knee-jerk thoughts that may make it hard for you.

Why do it?

Gaining comfort with the outgoing mindset will have different benefits for people of different DiSC® styles. People with i styles usually feel pretty at home with this frame of mind. For others, being outgoing means taking a bit of social risk and redirecting energy toward reaching out to others and connecting in an honest way. Redirecting energy in this way often pays off.

C styles, for example, may prefer to work alone, but almost no one truly works alone, so taking the time to build strong relationships can minimize inefficiencies and misunderstandings down the road.

D styles will see the long-term benefits of building a network of support as they work toward their goals.

S styles are often inclined to weigh their words carefully for fear of saying the wrong thing, but this can be an exhausting way to approach interactions. They may discover that letting down their guard a bit actually uses less energy and opens up new opportunities.

Situations that may call for the outgoing mindset

Perceiving the best mindset for the situation at hand is the key to agile emotional intelligence. Once you gain familiarity with all the mindsets that are available to you and when they may be most useful, you’ll be able to adapt your approach to the needs of each interaction. In general, you might consider the outgoing mindset when:

  • networking
  • establishing new relationships
  • developing trust
  • deepening working relationships
  • generating team spirit
  • showing others you are interested in what they have to say

How to be more outgoing

Your DiSC style will determine the steps to take to gain comfort with the outgoing mindset. In addition to DiSC style, Everything DiSC® Agile EQ™ measures how much effort it takes you to stretch into the mindsets that aren’t intuitive to you. People with the exact same DiSC style and dot placement can have very different effort meters for any given mindset. Your personalized Agile EQ report (see sample) will walk you through steps specific to your needs and current comfort level with each mindset.

Recognize your thoughts

To be more outgoing, you may have to challenge thoughts like:

  • I don’t have anything interesting to say.
  • I’ve got more important things to do than socialize.
  • I’m not letting them see this side of me.
  • They won’t respect me if I lower my guard.
  • This is a workplace, not a social club.
  • I need to be careful about what I let slip out.

These thoughts are often happening under the surface, so you’ll need to notice when they pop up.

Set goals

From there, you can set some goals. These are broken into beginner, intermediate, and advanced in the Agile EQ system. They’ll look different for everyone, but some samples are:

  • I don’t hesitate to talk about myself in front of others.
  • I’m willing to share my feelings, even ones that make me feel vulnerable.
  • When appropriate, I adapt my communication style to make others more comfortable.
  • I carve out time to give encouragement to my teammates.
  • I initiate social events on a regular basis.
  • I’m typically comfortable at networking events.

Start practicing

Those can seem like lofty goals, depending on your comfort level with the outgoing mindset. So where do you even start? Your Agile EQ report will give you detailed and concrete action steps for moving forward a little at a time. In general, here are some ways you can take action to be more outgoing:

  • Identify your emotions and communicate them to others.
  • Make it easy for other people to open up.
  • Build a larger network of connections.
  • Share your opinions openly.
  • Give people “the gift of going first” in conversations.
  • Be the one to initiate connections and opportunities to get together.
  • Reach out and get clarification, instead of being defensive.
  • Be more unfiltered.

Even for people on the other side of the DiSC, there’s a way to be more outgoing while still being authentically you. If you are naturally of the composed mindset, tapping into the outgoing mindset during a conversation doesn’t mean you’re suddenly super lively. It may just mean you remember to say what you are thinking instead of deferring or clamming up. Or you text someone to check in and say hi, instead of waiting for them to text first. You can change your mindset countless times throughout the day without changing who you are.

See also: Your outgoing mindset in Agile EQ


Avery Harris-Gray

SC style, NY based. Writing about Everything DiSC and The Five Behaviors since 2020. Leadership style: humble. EQ mindset: composed. I always have snacks to share.

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