How to Deal With Being Socially Awkward With TED Speaker and Author Ty Tashiro

Ty Tashiro

Verywell / Julie Bang

Every Monday on The Verywell Mind Podcast, Editor-in-Chief Amy Morin, LCSW, interviews authors, experts, entrepreneurs, athletes, musicians, and other inspirational people about the strategies that help them think, feel, and do their best in life.

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Meet Ty Tashiro

Dr. Ty Tashiro is an author, social scientist, and relationship expert. He’s a popular TED speaker and the author of a great book called Awkward: The Science of Why We’re Socially Awkward and Why That’s Awesome. He is also the author of The Science of Happily Ever After.

Dr. Tashiro's work has been featured in the New York Times,,, on NPR, and more.

Why Ty Tashiro Is Mentally Strong

While he talks about the scientific reasons some people are socially awkward, much of what he shares also comes from personal experience.

Ty is willing to talk openly about embarrassing moments—and what he learned from them. He’s a self-described awkward child. But he worked hard to address some of his social quirks, and he says he now feels much more comfortable with social skills. 

What You'll Hear on the Show

  • The science behind why some people are socially awkward
  • How to deal with embarrassing moments
  • The most helpful strategies for sharpening your social skills
  • What to say to yourself when you’re dreading a social event
  • Things to remember when you make a social mistake
  • The 3 characteristics that matter most in relationships
  • What really happens when you blush (and how people actually perceive you when it happens)
  • How to manage social anxiety
  • How to mentally prepare yourself for challenging social situations

What You'll Learn About Being Socially Awkward and Mental Strength

Rather than declare yourself a “socially awkward” person who can’t change, commit to improving your skills. Similar to the way you might get better at soccer, math, or anything else, you need to practice social skills if you want to improve.

Beating yourself up for forgetting someone’s name or for spilling your drink won’t do any good. If you’re embarrassed, own it. But don’t dwell on it!

Remember, you don’t have control over everything. But the one thing you can always control is your own behavior. A little mental preparation can help you feel calm enough to be your best self in social situations.

Quotes From Ty

Ty Tashiro, Ph.D.

We all have awkward moments, no matter how socially competent we are.

— Ty Tashiro, Ph.D.
  • "I have to break things down more. I have to put in extra effort and practice."
  • "You might feel silly for a little bit, but an awkward moment is not the end of the world."
  • "Get your mind right before you go in."

More About the Podcast

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Links and Resources

By Amy Morin, LCSW
Amy Morin, LCSW, is a psychotherapist and international bestselling author. Her books, including "13 Things Mentally Strong People Don't Do," have been translated into more than 40 languages. Her TEDx talk,  "The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong," is one of the most viewed talks of all time.