Here in Canada, we are known for our overly polite vibe. “Sorry” is part of our national anthem, for God’s sake (I’m not joking – check the third verse). We could probably benefit from choosing when and where to give our apologies a little more...
Growing up, I moved around a lot and I had to figure out the social hierarchy of each school I attended. I had to learn how to make friends while standing out in the right way, and every time I moved, I started again with a blank slate. It was a tough process, but over time I got very good and made friends quickly. I became what you might call ‘a natural’; making friends was easy for me, but I didn’t understand why it worked the way it did.
In Grade 10, I attended Columbine High School. Like many other schools I had attended, it had a serious culture of bullying. When the shooting happened, I was in university studying Communications. I decided at that moment I wanted to start something to help people feel real connections with each other.
It wasn’t until I graduated university that my real test took place. I was diagnosed with skin cancer on my face and underwent major surgery. The resulting scar transformed my appearance forever. For the first time in my life, I found myself unable to sustain eye contact with new people in fear of rejection. I fell into depression, my confidence plummeted, and I lost my ability to connect.
After several months of suffering, I made the decision to reclaim my life and started my rediscovery of social skills. I studied the science of human attraction, read books, talked to people, and observed strangers who knew how to be social. I became obsessed. I tried everything out for myself and found certain things worked and others didn’t. I fell on my face–a lot–but I also started to have some success. Over time, my successes became more consistent, more steady–even better than when I was ‘a natural’. I had achieved social mastery.
Based on this research and experience I developed Advanced Social Hacking or A.S.H, my comprehensive people skills training program. Using the principles in the program, I consistently build amazing relationships with both men and women. Now, I’m sharing these tools with you, so you can enjoy more meaningful relationships and success in both your professional and your personal life. Whatever you need to make that happen, I am here for you.
Devon O’Brien Ash