Shyness can stop you from enjoying life
But, it is easy to overcome shyness
Being shy is a problem that affects millions of people. It is important to understand that we all have
degrees of shyness and in some ways we all learn to deal with it. For instance, a successful used car salesman may actually be
very shy in front of women when approaching them for a romantic
relationship. Or a
boss may actually be shy in making a presentation to an audience of 100 industry peers at a conference.
Let us review the story of Brad who is so painfully shy that the only way he seems to communicate with the outside world is via email. I have developed some communication with him and that is what he has to say (my advice is at the bottom).
"I've never really had much of a social life, and a lot less now, since the end of my Senior Year of High School. My previous problems with social interaction stem from the fact that people as a whole have not treated me kindly. Junior High and early High School were very bad for me. Before then, I was fairly
outgoing - relatively speaking - but after being tormented during those years, I've sort of 'forgotten'
how to be
sociable. I've changed a lot in that respect, especially within the last 3 1/2 years, due to my interest in music. It certainly helps one
get over their anxiety around others
to play their own music for others and receive praise.
As for my more recent lack of a social life (meaning mainly hanging out with my only two friends) is more because I've become a bit of a shut-in since leaving High School. To explain a bit more about that, I didn't graduate from High School. I was going through a rough spot in my personal life from age 14-15, and often found sleep to be a more appealing pastime than school work. I paid for that by ending up 5 credits short of graduating. This was and still is
painful for me to think about, because I missed out on graduating with my friends.
And since I was so
stressed out and
depressed, I just took a break from things for a while. Right now, I'm getting ready to
move on with my life by getting a job, GED, and enrolling in community college. I often worry
what I'm going to do with my
life, but I suppose that's every young adult's primary concern.
I've only really had one close female
friend, but I recently found out that she is not a very good person. The personality she put forth was really more of a front to hide how she really is. I've pretty much removed her from my life by now."
Brad's case is typical of many shy people - they just did not get the opportunity to open up to people when they were young. While it might seem that one is stuck with shyness the rest of her/his life, that is simply not true. A dedicated
program of improving your social skills can actually make you much closer to the overall population. There are books, videos, and even medication available for shy people.
My suggestion to shy people is that they should make an effort on making some friends not with an intention for romance but just to be more social. Hopefully, you may find romance on the way but there will be no pressure on you to get into a relationship. Similarly, they can participate in an activity - for example, music as Brad is doing - not to win a competition but to be with other people.
If you need more ideas on dealing with shyness we have several
articles on the topic of
is the best time to seek a relationship - advice for shy people
How to talk
Signs of a