“Never assume that loud is strong and quiet is weak.” ~Unknown
This quote seems counterintuitive, right?
For many years, I, too, scoffed at the idea.
Having dealt with crippling shyness throughout my life, I know firsthand what it’s like to feel weak, powerless, and trapped because of it.
As a child, I remember clinging to my mom’s leg and using her body to hide from strangers. Then, as I got older, this shy behavior manifested into a fear of speaking my mind, interacting with others, putting myself out there, and so on and so forth.
My quiet and timid nature led to me being known as “the shy girl,” a label that followed me through my formative years and made me feel stuck inside a box of limitations throughout my adult life.
During these years, my shyness did nothing but hold me back from being who I wanted to be. It felt like a dark cloud hanging over me, and I couldn’t escape.
Until, one day, I realized that being shy got me nowhere. I was living a life of loneliness and fear where I had no close friends, no social life, and no happiness.
I refused to allow myself to fall victim to being shy. So I chose to do something about it.
Looking back, it’s been a long road to get where I am today, but I can honestly say that I’m a stronger person because of what I went through as a result of all of it. I’m thankful I went through the challenges that come with being a shy person because it forced me to make a choice: shrink or grow.
So if you, too, are dealing with debilitating shyness, here are some things that may help.
Feeling stuck? Then it’s time to shake things up.
If you’re extremely shy then, chances are, you’re scared to put yourself out there. And why would you? Especially when your comfort zone is just so comfortable.
I know what that’s like because I’ve been there myself. It’s easier to live your life within the confines of what’s familiar because there are no risks and no surprises. But there’s also nothing to be gained from an unchallenged life.
From a young age, I recognized that my big ambitions were tethered on a short leash because of my shy nature. I was never going to reach any of my goals if I kept living my life in fear. And that thought alone scared me more than the thought of putting myself out there.
For that reason, I saw my transition from middle school student to high school freshman as an opportunity for a fresh start. I knew I wanted to do something I never had the guts…