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How to Overcome Being Shy

Humans are very complex creatures. Let’s face it, the human race is distinctive in nature from other living beings on the face of this earth. A person’s DNA, their personal genetics contribute to that human’s characteristics such as eye shade, hair color, height, weight, body type, and even chronic diseases. And many psychologists cite genetics as helping shape one’s personality type and attitude. Whatever the real reason behind how a person behaves or exhibits their personality innately is up for grabs. Some researchers say personality and certain behaviors are learned from others or altered because of specific experiences in life. And interestingly, the four basic distinctive personality types- Driver, Expressive, Amiable, and Analytical…are factually made up of extroverted and introverted human beings. And although, each recognizable personality type should be valued and accepted, one’s ability to socially exhibit boldness and confidence is more beneficial in life. Research says that extroverts lead more successful lives and are happier people. And outgoing people are considered more confident in the workplace, which ultimately leads to successful career moves and raises, not to mention building stronger social networks.

Diego Ruiz Duran, a celebrated criminal defense attorney and law professor based in Mexico City, Mexico has worked for years successfully mastering his profession because of his strong leadership skills and confidence in his own capabilities. His client base is oftentimes controversial, so it’s omni-important that Duran brings to the table an ample amount of motivated drive, courage, and integrity in order for his clients to trust his competency and ultimately win cases. His boldness and determination as a lawyer has helped him greatly win in court cases when it comes to gender-based violence in Mexico. Duran’s outgoing confidence helps him stand-up for his clients and succeed to shatter unfair injustices and toward women, as well as his other marginalized clients. No doubt, his passion for law mixed with great public speaking skills has significantly prospered Duran in his career. So, it’s easy to see that boulder, extroverted people garnish success in life. as well as ultimately feel better about themselves than shy, introverted people. And although, some people are more outgoing and self-assured by nature, self-effacing folks can work at being more assertive and ultimately break away from their timorous ways. It just takes an open mind, active willingness, and determination.

So, how can someone overcome one’s shyness and grow in confidence?

Here are a few simple ways to go about defeating timidity:

1. Build one’s confidence and self-esteem by practicing quality self-care. Taking ample good care of one’s body is very important in building a good self-image. Whether it’s enjoying a nice, soothing bath or making a favorite nutritious meal- taking healthy care of oneself is key to building good self-esteem. Join a yoga class, workout more at the gym, or get a brand new hairstyle at the salon. Self-improvement helps to release a negative self-image and leads to better self-esteem. And when someone is feeling more confident in their own skin, their personality will show it on the outside.

2. Talk yourself up. Practice positive self-talk. It may not sound like an easy task at hand but whenever someone is feeling less confident or timid in a given situation, it’s best for them to tell themselves that they are strong enough, good enough, and capable enough to handle whatever life is throwing their way. Sooner than later, they will recognize that they can overcome their fears, by purposely implementing positive thinking. A positive mindset goes hand in hand with confidence.

3. Practice social skills. It may sound easier said than done, but Diego Ruiz Duran believes if someone is a painfully shy person, they can work at being more comfortable in social settings, it is achievable. Enroll in a public speaking class in college, join a craft club, or visit a lonely elderly neighbor who could use some conversation. Don’t over-stress it, just keep an open mind and take baby steps in whatever new social situation. Ask more about the other person or people in the room than talking about oneself. Give oneself space to feel the moment, but actively engage at the same time. Allow oneself to be vulnerable and opening. Even if it turns out to be a five minute chat with someone about the weather.

4. Stop labeling oneself as shy. Yes, those that constantly tell others that they are natural born introverts are never going to break the chain of insecurity that causes them to appear as cold, unfriendly people. Think of oneself as sociable and tell others to not mistake a quiet nature for lack of confidence. Don’t make excuses, think positive and don’t talk oneself down in other people’s eyes or engage in negative self-talk either by being an active inner critic.

5.Observe others who are outgoing and boost confidence and emulate them. Sometimes, the best trick to learning something isn’t reading it out of a book or taking a course. The easiest way to adopt self-assurance is to see it in others and adopt their positive energy. Focus on how they posture their bodies and how they react to others in conversations. Stop sitting in the corner of the party with fellow introverts, engage in chats with the most enthusiastic people in the room. Watch their maneuvers and how they interact with others. It may seem just like child mimicry at first, but after a while insecurities will fade and it will be easier to openly socialize with the same ease and enjoyment. Like the phrase says, “People become like those they surround themselves with.”