I decided to do a blog post about being shy: what it's like to be shy, tips, advice and sharing with you my experience. I'm surprised I haven't done a blog post about this before, especially since it's something I know quite a lot about! This is probably going to be a longggg, serious post.... but I'm hoping you can learn something from it and it will help you if you are like me :)

Starting when I was 3 years old and too shy to ask to go to the toilet so I peed my self in the classroom - of course, I denied it whilst stood in a puddle of pee. All the way through primary school I was too quiet to talk to the teachers, answer questions in class and I was only comfortable around people I knew. At this age it didn't matter to me, until I reached Year 9 in High School (I was 13/14 years old for any Americans reading).

At this point, it hit me that actually being shy was effecting me so much. I had friends who I spoke to everyday at school but I didn't really have any friends with the same interests as me, I had no-one to talk to (except my Mum, I told everything to my Mum and I still do to be fair!), I didn't have that 'one friend' that I could just walk in to their house and be comfortable with opening there fridge and getting food like it was my second home. I was always at the dance studio and training/rehearsing which stopped people asking me to hang out with them as they just presumed I'd say no (or that's why I think anyway). I'd been at the same dance studio for three years - and I was still really shy in front of people! I wasn't being my self at all.

I probably used to cry about being shy once a week for a whole year, it stopped me from doing things I liked, making friends, dancing and performing. I cared what people thought of me, I couldn't shout, talk loudly and was insecure to share my ideas and opinions.

Yet now, I can go to London on my own, I can actually pay on the bus, ask questions (although, in my whole 13 years of dancing I have never asked a question in class), I teach my own dance class,  I went to a college taster day where I didn't know anyone in my lessons! I'm also finding it easier to talk to new people but not completely.

If you're shy you'll know, the most annoying thing is when people think you're snobby, rude or ignorant. Even worst, when people expect you to stop being shy straight away - I wish it was that easy! You want nothing more than to be like the loud and outgoing person but it's not as simple as it sounds!

I'm still not completely over my shyness, I'd describe myself as being quiet with a little bit of shyness here and there. I am an introvert and that's completely fine - there is lots of people like this too! I enjoy listening to people rather than talking - and I'm ok with this! One thing I still can't get over is starting a conversation, talking to somebody first, holding a conversation for long... If you're shy and have any advice - I'd love to hear it in the comments! It takes me so long for me to finally be comfortable and act my normal self around people, it's really annoying!

I've come up with a list of things that I think or that have helped me with 'SHYNESS':

  • Don't over-think situations - I used to panic and ring my mum asking her questions like "What if the doors locked" "What if the buzzer is broke" "What if I'm the first person there". Just go with the flow of things
  • Fake it until you make it
  • Walk with shoulders back - you'll look and feel more confident
  • Smile - you will look more approachable
  • Don't compare yourself to other people
  • If you're nervous, shy or scared about something - do it anyway, don't back out
  • When talking to people, ask them questions too - as much as they like asking you about yourself, they love talking about themselves too!
  • When someone is talking to you, nod, look at them or say 'yes' to show you're listening

These are the tips I do to work towards overcoming my shyness.

It's ok to be quiet, as long as it's not effecting you, your opportunities or your happiness.

I love the quote "Fake it until you make it" my mum used to say this to me all the time and it's probably the thing that helped the most.

Feel free to let me know in the comments about yourself, any advice - I'd love to know and I'm sure I'm not the only shy person out there!
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