How to Overcome Shyness. Shyness is usually associated with being quiet, insecure and socially anxious. Most people feel shy at least occasionally. However, some people’s shyness is so intense that it can keep them from interacting with others even when they want or need to – and this may lead to problems in relationships and at work.
What Is Shyness
Shyness is a feeling of discomfort, awkwardness, tension or inhibition during social encounters, especially with unfamiliar people. It keeps you from pursuing your goals, either academic or personal. Shyness results in excessive self-focus and worry, often preoccupation with your thoughts, feelings or physical reactions. While sometimes you can grow out of shyness, sometimes it can stay with you.
Generally, shyness is associated with new situations and can often pass; it can also attribute to the people you hang out with. It is common to feel shy on your first day of school or when you start a new job where you do not know anyone. Over time you might start to make friends and your shyness may start to go away as you become familiar and comfortable with your new situation or with new people.
Some situations where you might find yourself being shyer than others are:
- Public speaking
- Speaking to the opposite sex
- Meeting new people
- Job interviews
- Talking to someone important
- Eating and drinking in public.
Severely shy people may have physical symptoms like:
- Dry mouth
- Feeling faint
- A pounding heart
- Upset stomach.
They may also have:
- Negative feelings about themselves
- Worries about how others view them
- A tendency to withdraw from social interactions.
How To Overcome Shyness
If your shyness is keeping you from doing things that you – want to do, then it can be really useful to talk to someone. Consider talking to your family, friends or counselor.
Tip #1 Prepare your conversation
Thinking about what you might talk about with new people can really help the conversation and any awkward feelings. It will help a lot if you pick a topic that you are confident about. If you feel shy at work, look out for some interesting news items over the weekend and bring them into conversation on Monday.
Tip #2 Focus Outward
Shyness makes you self-absorbed. Shy people feel they have nothing to say, and that they should have amazing stories to tell to socialize. This is not true; people like to talk and they will love you when you are interested in them. Asking questions to know about them will.
- Give you something to talk about.
- Give other people a chance to talk about themselves.
- Take your attention off yourself.
Tip #3 Smile And Be Friendly
It is natural to be friendly to someone who smiles at you, so try it yourself. Opening yourself up to people can make them feel more comfortable and more likely to be friendly in response. People are more likely to strike up conversations with strangers if they are smiling.
Tip #4 Practice Social Skills
Start practicing your social skills one at a time. Smile at someone or say hi’, and practice it at home until you feel confident to try it out in a social situation. Next you can move on to something like trying to keep eye contact during a conversation. Start off with a few people that you are comfortable around.
Tip #5 Worse Case Scenarios
It always helps to run through some of the worse things that could happen, as you can learn how to handle the situation when it really happens. Thinking about some of the worst scenarios that you may come across, such as dropping your drink at a party or stumbling over your words when giving a class presentation, will help you realize that they might not be as bad as you thought initially and would also prepare you for these situations.
Tip #6 I’m Shy
Letting other people know that you are shy can sometimes make the situation more comfortable. Generally, people are understanding, caring and patient, so they will help support you.
Tip #7 Natural Ways
Natural remedies that utilize natural ingredients to soothe nerves and promote calmness are available easily. Some herbs, such as Passiflora incarnate, Kava, St John’s Wort, Rhodiola, Scullcap, Chamomile, and Valerian can calm your nerves when you feel shy.
Tip #8 Relaxation Methods
Meditation, deep breathing, and muscle relaxation are some of the relaxation methods you can practice to overcome shyness. These techniques will also help you to reduce anxiety, relieve tension brought by fear and enable you to take your mind off unwanted thoughts. Once you feel more relaxed, you will instantly feel more sociable.
TIP #9 Rehearse Being Confident
Mentally rehearsing being more outgoing and relaxed has amazing results. Lie down somewhere comfortable, focus on breathing deeply and slowly, and imagine yourself in the upcoming social situation looking relaxed, comfortable and even talkative. This self-hypnotic preparation will greatly affect the way you actually feel when you get there.
Shyness is – not a medical disorder, but it is rather a behavior pattern. Being shy is not necessarily bad and feeling shy from time to time in new situations and with new people is alright.