Shyness is a characteristic of personality that influences the person’s behavior and inevitably conditions social relationships by limiting the individual’s social development.
It is a feeling that the person experiences when exposed to certain social contexts and consists of the discomfort and the inability to fully enjoy and develop their interpersonal skills with satisfaction.
This constant and persistent fear of performing some concrete action in front of other people creates a feeling of insecurity that blocks the subject and makes it difficult for him to have a conversation or an approach to others with fluidity and naturalness.
Shyness can be prolonged and persistent or it can be circumstantial.
It can appear in specific situations that the subject does not control and that leave their usual routine, such as, for example, when presented to a group of people they do not know. In this case, shyness is likely to disappear as time progresses and interacts with them.
These people live dependent on the opinions of others, believe that their opinion has no value and, therefore, does not matter. Shyness is not a disease but when it is acute it can lead to an infinite number of problems in everyday life, generating social isolation.
If I increase my self-esteem, will my shyness be reduced?
The characteristic thoughts of shy people are negative thoughts such as “I don’t serve,” “I can’t,” “I’m not capable,” “I’m not worthy,” etc.
All of them immobilize the person when he is going to carry out any type of action and more specifically if it is a social act.
These phrases are well known, since low self-esteem also relates them.
Shy people run away from social interactions because they believe they cannot contribute anything interesting, that is, they think they are worthless and that they are uninteresting. These self-perceptions are the branches of the tree of low self-esteem.
In short, these negative assessments of the person himself increase vulnerability to criticism and external opinions.
For this reason, shy people prefer to hide, go unnoticed and stay in the background so that no one judges them, since they are totally dependent on the criteria of others.
Many people think that being shy will never change, since they were born this way. But the truth is that this aspect can be changed through a constant and long work of modification of thought and behavior.
By becoming aware of the wrong thoughts and overcoming certain emotional blocks we can overcome shyness in less time than we imagine.
“Shyness is a condition outside the heart, a category, a social dimension that leads to loneliness.” Pablo Neruda.back to menu ↑
How does a negative person really feel?
Next we will expose a series of traits that characterize shy people.
- Negative self-assessment These people with low self-esteem consider that they are inferior to others, that they are not socially accepted and would be exposed to ridicule in the case of trying to socialize.
- They tend to blush very easily. Any opinion or word that someone tells you will make you feel ashamed and feel a great discomfort since your self-confidence is very low.
- Unable to give their opinion. They are not able to openly express their thoughts or desires, so they tend to punish themselves with ideas like “I should have said this” or “I should have acted this way.” They are not able to defend their arguments and can act passively-aggressively, or give their opinion behind the backs of who should listen to them.
- They show introversion. Generally the shy person tries to pass inadvertently. They avoid eye contact, their posture is shrunken and their tone is very low. They just remain silent and watch others seem to agree with what the majority think. They try to stay apart in public situations and are unable to join a group.
- They can stutter, shake, blush or start sweating if they try to talk when they are in social situations due to the high tension they are being exposed to.
- Excessive attention in themselves. They are usually very focused on their own emotions and thoughts than outside. In this way, when they get nervous in social situations, they are aware of what is happening and this increases their insecurity and nervousness.
- Excessive concern. They are excessively sensitive to the criticisms and opinions of others, so much so that the information they can receive paralyzes them and prevents them from making decisions in any type of interpersonal relationship.
- They show high levels of anxiety that they experience when they undergo situations that bother them and generate stress, leading in extreme cases to lead to an anxiety crisis.
- When they maintain contact with someone they try to keep their distance, nonverbal language appears in a way that they usually keep their arms crossed (a way to hide), or try to avoid physical contact.
- Negative language towards themselves. When they describe they use negative words, they blame themselves for everything that happens and are unable to recognize if they do something right highlighting their failures and errors.
- They are easily manipulated. They access the proposals of others even if this affects them negatively, as long as they are accepted and liked.
Shyness, why me?
The age at which shyness appears is usually between 5 and 7 years. It lasts until adolescence where it becomes a systematized mechanism because in this period the individual has greater awareness of himself (self-concept). In this period, the social aspect and the need for acceptance by its group of equals becomes evident, so it acts accordingly to please and give a favorable image towards others. This is where the decision of a normal process of maturation of the individual in relation to their environment is determined, or on the contrary a chronic problem that leads to social isolation.
This problem has causes of different types among which we can find:
- Genetic causes: According to some scientific studies, the predisposition towards shyness related to a personality gene has been discovered, creating the ideas of fear towards social relations. However, this gene is only a conditioner, so if there are adequate factors of social and psychological environment it does not have to manifest itself.
- Physical causes: Any type of illness that affects the health of the individual, whether genetic or acquired, can affect the person’s personality by highlighting the differences with the rest and seeing their limitations. In this regard, parents play a triggering role in attitudes such as overprotection and caring for them, preventing them from interacting with others in an ordinary way.
- Psychological causes: The diversity of stimuli that a person receives in his childhood makes his personality consolidate. Therefore, children with overprotective, demanding or authoritarian parents can cause the child to feel insecure, with low self-esteem and unable to develop social skills when interacting with other people. Also certain traumatic events or events can mark the identity and make a person who was not shy begin to act and feel as such.
In addition to these causes, shyness is usually learned behavior, so the importance of being unlearned and carrying out contrary behavior is stressed.
Parents are the main socializing agents of a person’s life, therefore it is important that they take this aspect into account and avoid attitudes such as:
- Humiliation: The negative and derogatory words towards the behavior of the children causes the negative self-concept to be encouraged, so it is essential to educate from the respect and take care of the language that is used towards them, since they are especially susceptible in this period.
- Severity: Continuous prohibitions affect your sense of freedom and acceptance of your mistakes, so it is essential to create a dialogue about why you should not perform certain actions and keep tolerance in mind at all times.
- Lack of communication: Talking about what frustrates them and makes them feel bad encourages the acceptance of themselves and the loss of shame about their emotions favoring the expression of feelings and normalization of them.
The 8 wonderful steps that will help you overcome shyness once and for all
People undergoing their inferiority and self-sabotage complex limit their interaction with other people to avoid criticism and judgments towards it. This fact causes them negative feelings such as frustration, helplessness and loneliness. Therefore, we must be aware that this feeling of incapacity is possible to modify and be able to establish healthy relationships with others feeling good and enjoying people. Here we leave some techniques to overcome shyness and feel fulfilled in the social and personal plane.
Detect the causes of your shyness
Identifying the triggers of this is the first step to eradicate it. In this way, if the thoughts that originate the shyness are located, it will help you to stop them at the moment they manifest themselves. For this we propose you to prepare a list of situations that generate anxiety and social phobia. For example, when does this happen ?, who am I with when it happens ?, does it always happen or only occasionally?
Recognize and accept shyness as part of everyone’s personality
Denying our emotions and running away from them only makes them appear more intensely. Talking and expressing your feelings and acknowledging your shyness makes the situation normalize, since by expressing them aloud you get free and take away the pressure you carry on your back if you try to hide it.
Restructure your thoughts
Las personas tímidas tienen un patrón de estructura de pensamientos negativos en su cabeza. Shy people have a structure of negative thought structure in their head. To do this you must break this habit by challenging your mind, that is, when they appear, be aware of each of them and put a brake on them. Most of these thoughts come from irrational beliefs such as
- “I am not worth it”
- “They don’t like me”
- “I do not serve”
Have the idea that even if your head tells you, they are not real, so try not to listen to them and look for ways to see the situation differently.
Choose to keep an open attitude
Our body language gives us away easily, so an open body language sends signals that you are available to build relationships with others. Maintaining eye contact, sitting leaning forward, keeping arms and legs open and sketching a small smile are some of the gestures that attribute sociability. This language determines the perception that others receive from us and the way we relate to our environment.
Talk to your mirror
Sounds strange but talking in front of the mirror makes us practice our way of communicating and expressing our ideas. Observe the way you interact, your gestures and movement that you make when speaking, then imagine that you are talking with another person and contemplate the way you act. This will serve as an essay for when you find yourself in social situations so that your anxiety disappears and your confidence increases.
Give way only to positive thoughts
Making positive affirmations about ourselves causes us to unconsciously establish ourselves as beliefs, so that highlighting our qualities and talking in an affective way will eventually make us feel better and make us believe our values and virtues.
Take care of yourself like nobody else
Spending time, taking care of your diet and exercising makes us feel better physically and mentally. The message we give ourselves when we treat each other with love and take care of ourselves is that of “I care.” Take time to do what you like and that makes you feel good. Remember that nobody can love you like you and that is why you must start conquering yourself every day.
Remember that the only acceptance you need is yours
Be independent of external opinions and seek the approval of anyone. If you do something, do it for yourself, for feeling good and giving yourself courage. Being independent and not needing anyone is a sign of strength.