I want to have an open and honest conversation with you about shyness. There are moments in life in which you need to just step outside of your comfort zone and break down that wall. I actually want to start this by telling you a quick story. I grew up in a family that was never on time. My dad was always late to the party and still is to this day. So as a child and into adulthood, I felt unproductive if I was on time to something. I felt like that time could be spent doing something more productive. When Bret and I got married, I realized that a huge stressor for Bret was being on time… actually Bret likes to be 10 minutes early. If I was running late, it would really stress him out, which would then cause tension in our relationship. One time after class, I had one of my regulars came up to me and told me that when I’m late to class it makes them feel like my time is more valuable than theirs. Which was completely opposite of the situation. I decided to talk to a few more close friends about this. I got their opinion on the perception of me being late. And they all said, that it made them feel like I valued my time more than theirs. This was a good reality check for me because I had never thought of it this way. From that point forward I started making a conscious effort to be on time; because once I knew how it was being perceived (even if that’s not what I meant at all) I knew I had to change it. I didn’t want to make people feel like my time was more valuable than theirs and that they weren’t important to me. So why did I tell you this story? Because, this situation made me realize that I needed to take some responsibility for how I was making others feel, even if that wasn’t my intention.
When you are shy, intimidated, nervous or uncomfortable around others what you’re doing is asking other people to take care of you. You’re making other people feel nervous, intimidated and uncomfortable around you. Shyness is not cute when you’re an adult. It’s uncomfortable. Nobody wants to feel uncomfortable. So when you are acting that way, you’re then making others feel the same and therefore people do not want to be around you.
So lets dive into shyness. Typically it stems from us getting in to our own head. We’re thinking about what other people are thinking. We’re worries about what other people might be saying. We’re worried that we’re not going to know what to say or how to act. We’re worries about what their opinion is of us. We end up thinking that everyone is looking at our teeth, or our hair, or our ski, or our weight, or our outfit, or our makeup. And to be honest, people don’t care. Really all people are noticing is that you seem so awkward. When we’re so worried about what everyone else is thinking, its actually really selfish.
Being shy affects your opportunities to connect with others and to share your story. So I want you to stop labeling yourself as shy!
So this starts first with your body language. Sit or stand tall, shoulders are back and your chest is open. Your body language should project that you can take care of others. Your body language should not project that you need someone else to pull
Most often we have fear, because it’s fear of the unknown. But you know what’s going to happen. You’re going to be around people you’ve never met before and you’re going to have to figure out how to introduce yourself and have a conversation. Create a list of at least 15 questions that you can ask at this particular event and review them before you head in. Sometimes I hear shy people say that they worry others will think they’re nosey for asking questions. But answer this honestly. If someone was taking a genuine interest in you, would you feel like they were being nosey? We love it when people are interested in us!
Why must we overcome this? Because it’s holding you back. We don’t give opportunity to those who we don’t think are capable of handling it. We don’t give opportunities to someone who we think can’t lead. I know you have a message you want to share. And it’s really difficult to share that and to make your dreams happen when you’re stuck inside your own head.
So right now, write down 10 questions that you can use in any social setting. With practice, this will help you feel so much more comfortable in social settings!
To listen to the podcast episode on this topic, just click play below!
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