How to overcome your shyness

Shyness is a human quality that everybody feels at some point of time in their lives. Shyness reveals itself in various ways – dry mouth, shaking hands, sweaty palms, loss of words etc.

Where does shyness come from?. In some cases, genes contribute to this. Parents of shy children are often shy themselves. The social environment or certain incidents of our early life also make us shy. For example, if you are a sensitive child and your teacher ridicules you for giving a wrong answer in the class, you may not raise your hand to give an answer in future. At the root of shyness is self doubt, leading to self defeat. Professionally we are afraid to express our needs and goals to our superiors. Socially, we are unable to go forward and say ‘hello' and we by-pass the opportunity of meeting an important person.
More often than not, we feel that everyone's eyes are looking at us, each of our smallest actions are being minutely observed and that our manners or gestures are under a searching look. As a result we stop going out, avoid mixing with people, do not take the initiative to introduce ourselves at a social gathering, expressing our views and so on.

How, then can we fight against shyness? A few tips given below will help you to overcome shyness and face the world bravely.

- Don't avoid situations – Our shyness if often increased when we avoid certain situations. For example, opportunity to give a talk, attending a party where most invitees may be unknown, participating in a group discussion and so on. It is better to move forward and take advantage of the opportunity.

- Think positive – Positive thinking can help you to conquer almost any difficulty, don't encourage any self doubts ex “Is my dress ok for the occasion?" “Am I well prepared for the presentation? Or “Shall I have a friend at the party?" and so on. Pay attention to your body language – look friendly, make eye contact and smile.

- Take small steps – Don't set a big goal for yourself when you want to get rid of your shyness. If you are terrified of public speaking, start by addressing your most trusted adult (parent or grandparent) then move to a small group of friends. Then move to a larger group and after sometime your stage fear will disappear and you will enjoy talking at the mike.

- Identify the causes – Identify the causes of your shyness. It could be something to do with your general appearance (your unruly hair, obesity etc) or your slight stammer / unconscious gestures, or even a personality trait like forgetfulness. Whatever it is , once you have identified it, you can go about rectifying it. You can get a smart hair cut, reduce your stammer may hardly be noticeable. Try to remember names by jotting them down in your diary. Conscious efforts to work on weak points definitely pays rich dividends. More often than not, it is inferiority complex that contributes to shyness.

- Join the crow – Joining a crowd is always easier. So go ahead and join fund raising drive, signature campaign or a ‘Walk for the environment' with other, participate in a group discussion, join a group of people at a party discussing the latest Cricket Match and offer your vies. Soon you will feel your shyness disappearing.

- Appreciate yourself and look for ways to improve – Remember, no one is perfect in this world. Everyone is born with good and bad qualities. First count your blessing and remember your good qualities, then learn to accept your faults and failure.

Shyness is a natural and common trait and there is nothing to get worried about.


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