Most people have experienced shyness at some stage in their life. Some seem to grow out it, while for others their shyness stops them from moving forward to their full potential in life.
Fortunately you can overcome shyness. It will take time, but perseverance and practicing the 7 strategies below will help you on your way.
1: ACCEPT YOURSELF FOR WHO YOU ARE
Accepting yourself for who you are is the first big step to overcoming shyness.
Don’t focus on what other people expect you to be. Who cares what other people think! Accept yourself for who you are and what you are.
Once you accept yourself for who your are, you will start to feel more confident, and look more confident.
2: FIND YOUR FRONT ROW
Your front row is the audience you want. For example: Imagine if you are are on stage – Who would the people be that you want in the front row?
For most people this will be family or your closest friends – Those that love and cherish you unconditionally already.
These are the people that you can practice overcoming your shyness with first. Talk to them more, see them more.
Once you get used to mingling and talking to your safe zone people you will gain more confidence, to eventually be able to talk and mingle with strangers or those you don’t know so well.
3: STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS
Don’t act how you think people want you to act or be. Be yourself and love yourself for being you.
People can generally see through those that pretend to be something they aren’t. It can come across as false, and is a real put off.
Learn to be comfortable being you. Be kind to yourself – Don’t put yourself down.
Remember you are just right being the person you are. People will respect you more for this!
4: BREAK OUT OF YOUR SHELL (Comfort zone)
If you don’t get out of your comfort zone – You will never overcome your shyness. I know this sounds scary, but every time you take steps to try new things you are closer to overcoming your shyness.
As a shy person you may not like going to crowded gatherings or certain work events full of strangers or people you don’t know so well. Slowly start attending some of these events.
Remember you don’t have to stay at the party or event for hours on end. Just go for an hour or two.
Attempt to talk to people. This doesn’t mean you have to have a long drawn out conversation. Just chit chat is okay.
A simple hello how are you? Or a positive comment about something at the event or party may be good starters. If people are standing around eating, you could even make a comment on how nice the food is.
When you start doing this you will soon realize it wasn’t so bad, and feel more encouraged to go to the next party or event etc. Then before you know it, you will have broken out of that comfort shell.
5: PERFECT YOUR POSTURE
Posture and how you come across to people is important. As a shy person you may be sending out the wrong message to others because of the way you hold yourself.
If you are standing there fidgeting, slouching, looking timid, nervous or fearful, people will see you are not confident, and may even think you don’t like them, or just don’t want to be there.
This is a real put off to other people and most people won’t approach someone like this.
You need to snap out of this and train yourself to look confident, no matter how scared you may be feeling.
Have you ever heard the phrase ‘Fake it till you make it’? Here’s how….
- Stand up straight with your shoulders back (not slouched)
- Facial expression – Make sure you don’t look bored or scared – Keep telling yourself you feel good.
Before you know it, you will start to feel confident naturally in these situations.
You may also be surprised to know that you are not likely to be the only person at the event or party that is trying to overcome shyness. Many people experience shyness, so you are not alone.
6: DON’T GIVE UP
Never give up! Overcoming your shyness will seem over whelming at first.
You may feel awkward and uncomfortable being thrown out of your comfort zone – But as long as you take baby steps and persevere your efforts will be worth it.
When ever one tries anything new, no matter what it is, whether it’s riding a bike, learning to drive, learning a new job, fear often plays a part. And in most cases it takes many attempts until you have mastered your goal.
Overcoming shyness is no different. Don’t give up – Keep trying even if you have experienced rejection by some.
7: MAKE A LIST
Make a list of all the tasks or situations that make you feel awkward, uncomfortable, nervous, shy, scared etc.
Now you need to complete each task in your list. Remember baby steps is okay.
You may find it best to start of with the things that make you feel the least nervous first. Then gradually build up to the tougher tasks on the list.
As you accomplish things on your list you will find yourself feeling more open and confident, until one day your shyness has gone.
Article written by Wen Dee
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