What makes some people confident, allowing them to walk into a social or business setting and take part immediately? What makes others shy, so that they stand back or don’t speak up when they are in the presence of others? The answers to these questions aren’t completely clear. There is too much mystery in the human personality to let us know everything about the way we act. But there is some good information on shyness that can help you overcome this trait.
When we are faced with a troubling situation or a confusing task, it is sometimes best to fake it until we make it. This tactic may help someone who is shy and tends to “hide in the shadows.” Shy people can break the ice and start on the road to being more involved by acting as if they are confident, even when they aren’t. It’s surprising how much more relaxed we become when we try this. In addition, we aren’t so self-conscious. This can be a major issue for shy people, who seem to spend a lot of time “looking at themselves” and worrying about how they look and act.
It also helps if we force ourselves to focus on the other person or the other people we need to interact with. Again, this may seem artificial at first, but in the long run acting as if we are confident and interested may become more natural. Of course, this doesn’t mean we should continue to be fake for a long time. We have to practice it until it becomes genuine. It will, if we want it to.
What’s Causing Shyness?
Give some thought to what the real cause for shyness might be. Even a very shy person has a good friend or family member that will help figure this out. If the shyness is associated with a particular person or a specific situation, give some serious thought to why this is the case. Try to see yourself with that person or in that situation but with confidence. This may show you what the cause for shyness really is.
Some people have difficulty with verbally affirming that they can do something or fit into a particular place or job. But, like it or not, looking in the mirror and telling yourself you can do it may be the first step to overcoming shyness. This affirmation might be as simple as saying, “I am confident enough to talk to this person” or “I can relax and just ask the question.” It’s important to make positive affirmations and to avoid obsessing about weaknesses.
A person who is clean and well-groomed will be more confident. So, you may have to start your journey away from shyness with the simple step of making some changes in appearance. This doesn’t have to be a complete makeover and it doesn’t have to involve “becoming” a different person. Just touch up a few areas, put on some clothes that are slightly different and take that first step. Finally, acknowledge that life can be risky but the small risk of breaking through shyness brings great benefits.