We are all very well acquainted with awkward situations. Sometimes we fidget incessantly to get out of conversation, feign a phone conversation, or even pretend to drop something simply to alleviate the tension in the room. What seems counterintuitive, however, is that being confident through awkwardness is so important to real-life success.

1. You will find adventure

The best stories never come from the nights you stay in bed. They usually come from the nights you couldn't have predicted the outcomes of--the nights you never planned to remember at all. If you push yourself to go places you normally never would, you're already on the road to making great times.

2. You have a broader worldview

Experiencing different cultures and mindsets allows us to broaden our intercultural awareness. Increasing our knowledge only makes us more well rounded, enabling us to lead fuller, more fulfilling lives--as well as be more tolerant with those we don't always understand.

3. You know how to recover

When people don't put themselves out there, they will never know what failure feels like. Sometimes, things like applying for that far-fetched job, pursuing that daunting summer internship, asking for that promotion, feel absolutely impossible. Yet, if we keep putting our hearts and egos on the mind, we will know how to deal with rejection. We will be able to pick ourselves back up and keep going--an invaluable skill to carry with us forever.

4. You will make new friends

An underappreciated fact about pushing yourself out of your comfort zone is the social satisfaction that occurs. Putting yourself out there--physically, emotionally, and socially--is the real key to branching out of your normal circles. Who knows, you might just meet someone who, after five minutes of awkward conversation, becomes an integral part of your life.

5. You will grow

Through everything, by throwing yourself headfirst into unfamiliar situations, you will grow remarkably as a person. You will watch yourself burgeon socially, emotionally, and spiritually. You will approach every situation differently, and you will understand what true tolerance means. You will make indelible memories. You will live--and you'll do it vicariously through yourself, and nobody else.