DEAR HARRIETTE: I have always been an outsider, and not by choice. It just seems to happen. I started a job this year where I thought it might be different. We all go into the office, and on many occasions a group of people my age go out after work for drinks or whatever they do. They have never invited me. I’m kind of shy, so I haven’t gotten up the courage to ask to go. I do talk to them when I see them in the hall or in the lunchroom, but the conversation never goes anywhere. How can I get them to see me and invite me to go out with them? -- Outside the Group
DEAR OUTSIDE THE GROUP: If you want the chance to join this group at work, you have to say something. Who in the group have you talked to the most? Strike up a conversation with that person. You may want to invite that person to have drinks with you after work one day. Or you can go straight for the big ask. Tell this person that you have noticed that they go out a lot and you would like to join some time. Ask if that would be possible. It could be that they never thought about it. They have been doing their thing together for so long, they might be on autopilot. Put yourself out there and ask. You may be surprised at how easy it will be to get an invitation.