Overcoming social anxiety and shyness may seem impossible to someone that has it, but it is doable. Being shy can come from having low self-esteem, having a fear of what people will think of you, thinking you will be rejected or because you are afraid of crowds. There are a few things that can help you to overcome your social anxiety and shyness:
Find Your Strengths
You may not be the most talkative person in the room, but there are other things that you are great at. Know your strengths and own them. Everyone cannot be the best at everything. Many people have no idea what their strengths are. Finding yours will help to give you the confidence that you need to overcome your shyness.
Releasing Anxiety through Breath
When you begin having anxious feelings, take deep breaths. It will help you to relax. Learn how to do various relaxation techniques. Deep breathing is great because you can do it standing up, sitting down, when you are in a crowd, or when you are alone. No one will know when you are doing your deep breathing and you will feel so much calmer afterwards.
Sometimes, you have to tell yourself that you are great. Positive affirmations can come in the form of a note or a verbal saying. The funniest and easiest trick it to hide sticky notes throughout your house with things that you like about yourself. You can always say positive affirmations when you are meditating or working out.
When the Going Gets Tough, You Don’t Get Going
Social situations can be scary, especially when you are hyperventilating, overstressing, sweating, and analyzing the thoughts of everyone in a room. Leaving the situation may seem easier, but it doesn’t solve the problem of being shy. You will end up being a serial av
oider and leaving any time there4 is a situation in which you feel uncomfortable. Overcoming your shyness and anxiety will only happen if you face your fears of crowds and attempt to be interactive with people who you have just met (or are just meeting).
Practice Social Skills
Sometimes practice makes perfect. Make up various scenarios and try to see how you would respond to them and how everyone else will respond to them. Think of it as a dress rehearsal for a play. By running through different scenarios in your mind, you can practice having the confidence that you need to succeed in the real situation.
Overcoming your shyness and social anxiety won’t happen overnight. Patience is key. Every day try talking to someone new or staying a little longer than you would have the day before at an event. By pushing yourself in increments and raising your “social pain” threshold, you will be more likely to have a positive experience than if you would attempt to dive in head first and try to play the role of an extrovert. Social anxiety and shyness affects everyone at one time or another in their life. Once you find a way to cope that is suitable for you, keep with it.