#30: Addressing strangers – starting shot

Now things are really getting exciting in the Practical Social Studies trimester: After smiling at people last month, we’re going to be calling them from 1. October address. In our starting shot you will get the right mood for the approach month. Out of the house, ready, go!

Just watch our video to get all the tips for the month:
(by the way, this is the last video we shot over Skype for now, because Stefan is moving back to Nuremberg now)

Here’s the whole thing as eavesdropping fodder:

And here for the bookworm in you:

What we are doing this month:

We will talk to at least one stranger face to face every day for 30 days. If you ask the other one a question, that’s enough. You don’t have to ask something you really want to know. You can ask, for example, what time it is, although you have a cell phone plugged in&

Why do we want to address people?

  • Alex: Because I actually want to get in contact with people more often, but often don’t dare to do so.
  • Stefan: Because I want to meet new friends. Every friendship starts with a conversation and every conversation starts with being approached.
    In general: because we are social beings who can only survive together

What is your why?
Write it down to motivate yourself enough for the month and stay on the ball.

Consider also the negative consequences (If I don’t bring the habit into my life, then…) and the positive consequences (If I bring the habit into my life, then…).

This is how we approach people:

  1. Choose a sympathetic person.
  2. Make and maintain eye contact, smile at person if possible.
  3. Take one step towards the person. With an open body posture.
  4. Start talking&

Address who?

  • In the beginning people with whom you have the least inhibitions: Young, old, woman, man – it’s certainly very different. In the course of the month you can increase to your disliked group (for example, the same age opposite sex).
  • Best to address people who are standing. If you stop people in their movement, you stop them and it is harder!
    Another possibility: Stand by yourself and let people approach you.
  • Bigger challenge: Walk up to others head on.
  • It becomes more difficult when people have headphones in or are fiddling with their smartphones. Addressing groups is also more difficult.
  • You are also allowed to approach people who look haphazard and offer them help!


What do we say?

Here are some possibilities of what you can say

  • Ask for the time
  • Ask for directions
  • Asking for the nearest supermarket / mailbox / xy
  • ask if the person can take a photo of you (and post the photo as proof in our forum or Facebook group)
  • Increase: Add a little extra – something like "because today I don’t have my watch with me".
    Again increase: Ask open questions: "Where can I go for a good meal nearby??" / "Can you recommend xy to me?"

General Addressing Tips:

The best tip: Do it instead of thinking about it!

If you do think about it, then do it purposefully. Get yourself into a good mental state before approaching. Remember for example

  • funny moments (see smiling at each other)
  • to your strengths
  • past conversations that went well.

On the topic of fear/insecurity:

  • Realize that everyone is afraid to talk to people, not just you!
  • People don’t see your insecurity right away. Tip: shoulders back, chest out, smile&
  • Make quiet movements, speak slowly.
  • Relate your fear: what can happen in the worst case scenario? Most of the time you will see that no one itches if things go wrong&

If it is too difficult for you:

  • If it is too difficult for you on the street, approach employees. For example the cashier, the sales clerk or a policeman.
  • Also easier for some: take advantage of the moment when you sit next to someone on the bus or train or someone sits down with you.
  • Be together with a friend / implementation partner – this gives security and the commitment to approach someone!
  • If you want to force yourself to approach: go alone to an event where you wouldn’t otherwise go alone.


  • Should you apologize when approaching?
    Alex: I think a "hello" costs more effort, but would be a better end goal than apologizing.
    Stefan: If there is eye contact you can say "Quick question" instead of "Excuse me" for example.
  • If you have approached someone, then continue immediately afterwards. The more people you approach per day, the better. Because practice makes perfect! Do not make but then the next day nothing, because you have addressed the day before 2 people& In the MonatsMob we are active daily!

And now: You talk to us

Talk to us by leaving a comment below. For example, write down who you will approach first outside and what you will say.

Just to say again: We have ultra Bock on the month – because the "people to address" was one of our motivations to create the MonatsMob!!

We are excited to see how we will do and how you rock the month&

Out of the house, ready, go!

Communicative greetings from
Stefan& Alex

About Alex and Stefan

And now?

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