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Let’s stop it.
Thinking your challenge is unique or you’re the only one who finds it difficult to deal with feeling shy and lacking confidence.
Because guess what?
Shyness is part of our humanness; a common thread that links us all and doesn’t have to keep any of us trapped in fear and discomfort or lacking in confidence. It is possible to supercharge your confidence.
As a child I was the Queen of shyness. My mother was so concerned about my difficulties around others that when I was 4 years old she thought it would be a good idea to take me to be evaluated by a psychiatrist.
She never followed through. 🙂
And somehow I muddled through on my own, picking up and practicing new insights along the way until I learned to reframe situations where I had struggled and found ways to create a new sense of comfort and security.
So when the biggest obstacle in your life is YOU here’s how you can make sure you don’t succumb to your own worst enemy.
Honestly, it isn’t that hard to supercharge your confidence. You might still feel a little shy in some situations, but it won’t continue to be at a level that will cripple your happiness or success.
1. Get a reality check
You are not alone. You are not unique in this. Half the people in the country say that they’re shy to some degree or another according to studies conducted on shyness, but it needn’t put a crimp in your life. (Read: Shyness…a Bold New Approach by Bernardo J. Carducci)
If you are shy and lacking in confidence in certain situations, or if you feel shy and find it hard to meet people don’t let it be an obstacle to your happiness or success.
Keep in mind that almost everyone you meet has similar feelings and whatever happens you’re going to be just fine.
2. Fake it till you make it
It’s an oldie but goodie. People often do better when they act it out.
When my daughter was at University she was terrible at managing her affairs…but she was a great actress. So I suggested she pretend to be a very organized person. What would she do, how would she feel, where would she be?
She bought herself a pair of plain glasses which she put on once a week and played the part of ‘Miss Organization.’ It worked beautifully. It changed everything.
Try imagining you are that super confident person you know, or have seen. Change your posture. Simply acting like someone else can get you out of your own way.
3. Forget goals
Don’t have a goal to become more confident. Have a system to get you there.
In weight loss, getting rid of 10 lbs is a goal; eating healthily is a system.
Supercharging your confidence is a goal; practicing visualizing yourself as being confident is a system. Especially when applied to situations that, in the past, have been difficult or uncomfortable.
And it’s a system that follows natural laws. Especially ‘as within, so without.’ Which just means if you think of yourself as a confident being that’s who you become.
4. Focus on others
Focus on creating a connection with everyone you meet.
This makes it easier to let go of how you’re feeling in that moment.
As you develop a genuine interest in someone else the less concerned you become about what they think of you. Not because it doesn’t matter…if you’re shy it probably does…but because you’re paying less attention to it. And as you’re more invested in others your body language tells a new story.
If you need a little help with body language Check out what Amy Cuddhy has to say in this Ted Talk.
5. Keep learning and growing
Regardless of your current level of confidence any new accomplishment always creates a spin off effect.
Take a course, a class, study something that floats your boat. The combination of pursuing something you’re interested in and engaging your brain in a new way brings happier energy and vitality. In turn this spills over into every aspect of life… increasing your confidence.
6. Allow vulnerability to supercharge your confidence
Many of us fear being judged which is why we’re anxious in some situations and not others. Remind yourself of your great qualities and be proud of who you are.
Allow yourself to let others see the real you. Practice this with those you are close to and know you can trust. Give yourself time to develop the habit of being open and authentic and you might come to realize how much closer you feel in these relationships. This leads to increased self-confidence and is a positive way to feel confident in social interactions.
So start to focus on being as genuine and authentic as possible and as you heal your lack of confidence in this way you’ll discover that these qualities are the ones that others appreciate most about you.
7. Redefine your truth
Look for situations in your life right now that reflect back to you where you are confident today. Dwell less on past situations that continue to trigger pain in your life today and train your mind to look for the wonderful.
One of my friends was in a really miserable relationship. She was verbally and emotionally abused. She struggled and stuck it out far longer than she should. She allowed her compassion for another to outweigh her compassion for herself.
Until enough was enough and she let go.
But out of it came many blessings. She discovered strength, awareness and greater self-confidence. Remember struggle is just another word for growth.
What blessing could you find today if you wanted to?
Over to you. What would you add to this list that you know for sure has helped you supercharge your confidence and manage your own particular brand of shyness? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.
Encourage one another.