This is a deep dive into the emotion that possibly decides more things in our life (or our whole life?): Fear.
Are you ever in a situation where you want to approach someone and talk to them, but then chicken out because…. well… why exactly?
Our fear of approaching people we don’t know (and in particular if they’re not interested in talking to us) may be borne from completely irrational and archaic reasons (Here’s a great explanation of what is going on exactly from Tim Urban.)
The fear may also be evolutionarily programmed into us, but programmed into us from a long bygone era, when being rejected, ostracised or ignored may have resulted in us being banished from the tribe (for not being evolutionarily superior to others, in terms of ability to be social, attractive and therefore a better bet for pro creation.)
But that’s a long time ago. Most of us don’t live in tribes anymore. So the potential gain from going up to someone, trying to learn about who they are, maybe even asking them out is much, much higher than the potential ‘loss’ of them either not being interested in talking to you, or catching up with you.
You won’t be banished from the tribe if it doesn’t go as you hope. But on the other hand, it could turn out brilliant if you try, and you could make a deep connection.
The benefits far, far far outweigh the possible (non-existent) risks.