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One of the Shyest People I Knew
I was once the one of the shyest people I knew. In preschool, I sometimes hid underneath wooden fruit crates after the other kids had removed all the balls inside at the start of recess.
Through out much of middle and high school I ate lunch alone. I usually left the school grounds during the lunch break so that the other students wouldn’t see that I was eating alone. I didn’t want them to find out how shy I was. (This was true during the short time I was in public school, but not as much while I was in the boy's home because we all lived together. For more details, click: About BP - Bio.)
During my first two years of college, I was so shy that I was constantly in a state of panic when I ate a meal in the cafeteria, as I sat in class for fear that I might be called on, and when I met with a professor in their office.
At this point in my life, the idea of overcoming shyness seemed like a distant possibility for me. Even so, I never gave up on my dream to overcome it.
When a Fortune 500 company hired me as a management trainee, I was repeatedly put into situations where I had to deal with my shyness. I’ll never forget the first staff meeting where I was required to give a short presentation. It was the most humiliating and agonizing event of my life!
Even when I walked into the entrance hall where people gathered before going into a business meeting I would panic. “How should I act? What should I say if someone approaches me?” I would think to myself.
The requirements for social interaction and public speaking increased with each promotion I got. I eventually became a regional division head and later a national marketing manager responsible for generating 400 million dollars in annual product sales. In order to met the requirements of these positions I had to learn about overcoming shyness and the fear of public speaking.
Proper Perspective about Overcoming Shyness
One of the most amazing things I learned during my journey is that many people who I perceived as NOT being shy were in fact very shy themselves. I’ve concluded that shyness is simply a normal human condition. I see it as one of those childhood based fears that we eventually grow out of or learn to control if we choose to do so. Some people choose never to face it or they never find themselves in a situation where that are forced to deal with it. My story is a combination of both of these.
Another equally amazing thing is the response I would get when I asked people how I did after delivering a speech or attending an important social function. I was always stunned when people would tell me how cool, relaxed, and confident I appeared because inside I felt scared, incompetent, and shy.
So one of the most important lessons to learn for overcoming shyness is that almost everyone is shy or has experienced being shy some time in their lives. I have been astounded many times by people who I knew as being supremely confident and socially skilled to report to me how excruciatingly shy they once were, and in some cases how they still are but that they had learned to control it.
The other important thing to remember about overcoming shyness is that the way people see you is frequently much different from the why you see yourself. Other people cannot hear the discouraging things that you’re saying to yourself or often even detect your nervousness. Why? Because they are usually more consumed with their own thoughts about how they are being viewed by YOU!
Shyness Can Be GoodIn the dating world, both men and women often see shyness as a point of attraction. There is a fine line however. If a person does NOT allow their shyness to hold them back from trying, that is attractive. In contrast, if a person DOES allow shyness to hold them back, that is unattractive.
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