What’s Next After Learning the Secret of Transforming Shyness?
Knowing that is perfectly normal to feel fear, knowing that safety can be created by you, both internal and external and knowing that you can control fear through conscious breathing gives you a new way to show up in the world. The next section has some ways to help you transform shyness and these are just examples, you can apply the secret of transforming shyness to any area of your life!
Please read the disclaimer noting that I am not a health care professional.
EXPERT EXTERNAL LINKS by Shyness Experts
Dr. Carducci PhD Shyness Research Institute
Dr. Alex Avila PhD Author, Educator & Researcher
Dr. Renée Gilbert PhD Shake Your Shyness
Dr. Henderson PhD The Shyness Institute
Dr. Elaine Aron PhD Highly Sensitive Person
Susan Cain Quiet: The Power of Introverts
Dr. Tucker-Ladd PhD Psychological Self-Help
PsychCentral Community Bulletin Boards
Psychology Today on Shyness
Personality Test Site
Dealing with Loneliness and Shyness (Harvard)
Always Have Something Meaningful to Say
Ever at a loss for words? Ever envy those with the gift of gab? Maybe learning to talk endlessly about anything is not for you, however, having a few meaningful things to say can change your life. The reason it is important to have meaningful conversation is that words tend to help make others comfortable because they can get to know you, whereas, silence tends to make others uncomfortable because they feel threatened and uncertain about you.
The secret is to know three meaningful “things” to say about yourself, three meaningful things to say about current events, and to be present and notice and express feelings about the current environment. This secret is both simple and powerful.
Actually “Things” are exactly what you do not want. “Thinging” means making yourself an object, something that we often do without our even knowing. (PAIRING: How to Achieve Genuine Intimacy by George R. Bach and Ronald M. Deutsch copyright 1970.) While this book was from the age of encounter groups, it has great truth that is timeless.
Example of what you do not want to do when meeting someone for the first time:
“Hi, I’m Kevin Rhea, ‘Rhea’ is Irish name but I was born in Alaska before it was a U.S. State. I am a computer programmer. And You?”
What is wrong with the above introduction? You probably hear many such introductions so what is the problem?
First, the introduction says nothing personal about me, it simply identifies some facts. Secondly and most importantly, it “things” me in the mind of the other person. All of their associations with other people named Kevin, the Irish culture, Eskimos, and computer programmers are put on me without their or my even realizing it. I become Kevin, the Irish Eskimo Programmer.
Maybe you think, “That’s kind of interesting – Kevin, the Irish Eskimo Programmer” but if you really want to make meaningful contact with someone, you must not “thing” yourself because once “thinged”, it is difficult to change this impression as all new information is placed into the existing “thinged” categories.
A better introduction would be:
“Hi, I ‘m happy to meet you. It feels great to be at this outdoor cafe after being inside all day. I spend as much time as I can outdoors. That is a beautiful sweater you are wearing, is it a favorite of yours?”
This is better start to an introduction because:
1. No “thinging” is done my feelings about the current environment are expressed (great to be at the cafe)
2. Something important about me is expressed (I love the outdoors)
3. I notice something personal about the other person (beautiful sweater)
As the conversation continues, I can express more things that are important to me as well as discuss current events and what is happening around me. The combination of being personal, being present, and talking about current events encourages a natural conversation which is meaningful and flows between what is important to me, what is important to my partner, what is happening around me and my partner, and what is happening in the world.
After a connection between the two of us is established it is fine to say my name, occupation, and other “things” and facts about myself as they naturally occur in the conversation.
In order to always have something meaningful to say, write the following on a 3 inch by 5 inch card each day and keep it with you:
x is important to you
You love y
You look forward to z
The Community and World
x happened in the world today
y happened in community today
A pattern of z seems to be happening around us
Ask About Them
What is important to them?
What do they love?
What do they look forward to?
Remember to stay present and notice what is happening in your environment.
The information on this one 3×5 card is all you need to strike up a meaningful conversation with anyone. This strategy works in person or on the telephone resulting in a meaningful conversation which can lead to many things and can be enjoyable for its own sake.
Don’t be afraid to start off with some small talk about the weather or other trivial matter (that’s what everyone does) – after all you need to find a way to introduce yourself and small talk is a time-honored and socially accepted way of breaking the ice. If you have trouble making small talk, seek out web resources or books as small talk can be learned.
And what if no results occur from a particular conversation? Be happy that you did all you could to establish meaningful contact and are just experiencing one of the Principles “Not everyone was meant to be your friend or partner”.
Ask for What You Want
There is a high correlation between asking for what you want and getting it. This is true in work, school, and relationships. Despite what you may have learned from others, you have every right to ask for what you want which will increase the likelihood of you getting what you need.
We may think that others should know and that we should not need to ask, but the truth is that people are not mind readers.
Communicate with Impact to Move a Relationship Forward
Feel invisible, that no one notices you? Do you sometimes observe couples and think “Why did they pick that person, they are not even nice to them?” Do you have trouble moving from friendship to romance and intimacy? If so, the information from “Art of Impacting” as described in PAIRING: How to Achieve Genuine Intimacy by George R. Bach and Ronald M. Deutsch may be for you. The knowledge has great truth that is timeless. Without creating impact, there are no sparks to start a relationship.
Talking about the weather, sports, news, or music does not create impact.
Being nice does not create impact. Bach and Deutsch say:
“Expressing real feelings in a real way creates impact.” “In expressing real feelings to someone, one also expresses trust and acceptance.”
Having impact leads to intimacy which means being close, feeling understood, accepted, and valued.
How does one express real feelings? It could be a smile, a look — more often it is what you choose to notice and say about the other person and yourself. Saying something outrageous or very personal (“no one has ever told me that!”) could also have impact as long as it is real. Expressing real feelings also means letting the other person know how what they say and do affects you.
Interesting enough, expressing negative feelings and reservations (in a good way) is one effective way of creating impact. After all, negative feelings and reservations are honest and expressing them helps create trust and even acceptance (because the other person will understand that you are being real with them).
When you are real with someone, they are likely to be real in return. Being real together builds trust and leads to intimacy. Being real is scary which helps generate the sparks which lead to intimacy.
Those that are shy often make two critical mistakes by:
1. Being too nice.
2. Saying only what they think the other person wants to hear.
Being nice and cautious in what one says does not create impact and intimacy. When stressed, people who are shy often become even “nicer” and more cautious creating even less of a chance to really get to know the other person.
People working on their shyness and trying to avoid the two critical mistakes above often go a bit overboard. For example, telling someone you love them on the first date is expressing real feelings; but is too much, too soon. Instead, tell them some ways they are impacting you which gives them an opportunity to also express some real feelings.
The wonderful thing about impact is that it is created from honesty.
How to use the Ways that Transform Shyness
With the knowledge of the Principles that Transform Shyness, insight learned by following a Process of Understanding Shyness, and the wisdom gained from the Secret of Transforming Shyness, you can now practice Ways of being and behaving that will transform your shyness.
While studying the following Ways that Transform Shyness, notice when you feel “Sure, I know that”, “I do that now”, and also notice where you feel “I could never do that!” These are all powerful ways of being and strategies that work to transform shyness.
We model our ways of behaving from our friends, parents, television, and other influences. Sometimes we are not aware that they do not work, yet we continue to use these ineffective ways. Sometimes we are not even aware we are following any strategy or particular way at all. Why not use strategies that really work, instead of old ways which produce the same old results?
Question any strategy that is not working for you now . . . including ways of being you have used your whole life.
Using the following ways will help you become Shy and Free™ which means being free to be your true self.
You are on a personal quest and do not need to understand every way of being which follows, only the one(s) which you are drawn to at this point in your own journey.
List of Ways that Transform Shyness
The following is a list of ways that transform shyness. Click here to view all these ways that transform shyness.
- Always have something meaningful to say.
- Keep a Journal.
- Date, Date, Date with many people you may not be interested in.
- Move from Wrong to Right Action.
- Practice, Practice, Practice.
- Ask for help.
- Communicate with impact to move a relationship forward.
- Ask for what you want.
- Change your automatic social response from “No” to “Yes”.
- Ask for everyone’s phone number.
- Publicly declare what you truly want.
- Recognize when you are escaping and reroute the energy.
- Volunteer first as a way to overcome the fear of public speaking.
- Life After Shyness.