I’m shy. This makes dating sooo hard because I’m really good once I’m on a date; I’m myself, I’m goofy and relaxed and not nervous or anxious at all. I think I’m so comfortable when I’m on dates because I know that the guy is interested in me already, that’s why we’re on a date, so now I can just have fun.
But it’s the getting to that point that scares the crap out of me! If I date a guy it’s because he made advances towards me; but let’s say it’s me who’s into a guy, I’m terrible! When I say hi to a guy I have a crush on I smile and walk away quickly because I’m terrified. It’s completely irrational, as all fears are, but I don’t know, I try and just say, “it’s easy, just talk to him, he’s nice,” but once I’m in the situation everything in me tells me to run quickly in the opposite direction, I think I’ve lost a lot of potential guys this way. I have always thought that if he were “the right guy” or if he’s that into me he’d just try and get to know me and be more aggressive. But why would a guy try and get to know me if I can hardly say hi? What about that would keep anyone interested? How would he even know I was interested if I don’t flirt? I’ve read all the articles; I’ve read articles on Christian flirting, shy girl flirting, young adult flirting, but none of this helps me if I can’t get passed hi lol.
And I just wish that there weren’t so many rules, like smile at him, but not too much, flirt with your eyes-glance but don’t stare, if you’re talking to him touch his arm, if he does ‘x’ then you should do ‘y.’ WTF? Why can’t I just talk to him like I do my friends? And why do I get such anxiety when I try to flirt? I’m terrible and I think I would be single even if I were trying to date right now. I’m bad at this thing everyone else just seems to get, I don’t play the game well at all, I just like being 100% honest, no games, no manipulation, no double entendre, just honesty. If a guy asks me if I’m doing anything this weekend and I’m not doing anything I’m going to say I have nothing. I’m the kind of person, where, when a friend asks me how something looks on them, I honestly say, “maybe you should change because that’s not your color” or, “that looks good, if you don’t care that people can see your cellulite.” Hello! I’m honest because I don’t know how else to be and because I expect people to be honest with me, if I say something looks good when I think it doesn’t or that I have things to do on the weekend, it’s a lie and I don’t like lies.
When I was in New York I didn’t have this problem because guys in New York are aggressive, if they want you then they go after you. Dating was so much simpler because it didn’t require me doing anything; I’d literally get hit on, on a regular basis walking to and from class: I’d get guys cutting me off my path to give me an invite to a lingerie party, I’d get walked back to my building by guys I’d never met because they wanted my number. But I don’t like city boys, I like small town, Midwestern boys and, unfortunately for me, they’re very passive. If a guy likes you around here, he’ll stare at you…a lot; he might talk to you a little bit and finally get the courage to talk to you in class or some liquid courage at a party but don’t expect much because Midwestern guys don’t make bold moves unless they’re sure the girl is into them. New York guys, on the other hand, don’t give a crap; they have this confidence that no matter what, the girl is going to be into them. You know what, even if you have a boyfriend it will not stop them from trying to get your number and trying to get to know you, believe me, I’ve used it as an excuse before. Midwestern guys require a little push, which just so happens to be something that I’m terrible at. Man, I cannot tell you how many times another girl liked the same guy as me and because I have no idea what I’m doing, I throw in the towel, stop talking to him, and let the other girl swoop in and grab all of his attention and of course because he thinks I don’t like him anymore, he takes the bate. Being “shy girl” may have been cute in high school but in college it’s terrible. And I don’t expect people to feel bad for me because I don’t feel bad for myself, I feel frustrated with myself because I’m an adult and I should be able to handle a crush. But I seriously have no idea what I’m doing: When I have a crush do I flirt with him when I see him? In front of everyone? No, that’s scary and too forward. Do I slip him a note? Are notes cute anymore?
See I’ve just been waiting for guys to be the assertive ones, but how will a guy know I’m even interested in him if I don’t do anything?
Well anyway, my shyness is something I’ve struggled with for a long time. I mean I have friends, in fact it has always been really easy for me to make friends but it has always been really hard for me to make close ones. My anxiety is like a brick wall made to protect me from certain social situations and instead of protecting me it limits me. And I have no idea how to tear it down. It’s an unexplainable phenomenon that only another shy person would understand, it’s like, you think about doing something and you’re thinking, “I’ll be fine,” then you’re in the situation and even though you’re telling yourself to stay, everything in you tells you to leave immediately. Something as simple as saying hi to a crush does this to me and I have no idea how to make it stop. And it’s the weirdest thing because if I have a class presentation I’m completely fine, I may be a little nervous but for the most part I’m okay and I’ve been told I’m a good public speaker. But then here I am, in front of a crush and I can’t form a sentence. It makes no sense! But like I said, all fear is irrational.
It’s obviously the fear of being rejected because, like I said, once I’m actually on the date I’m completely comfortable and I have a good time. And I think that I’m comfortable giving presentations because I know everyone is pretty much forced to sit there and at least pretend to listen so the pressure is off. When it comes to guys I’m crushing on I either ignore the crush and wait till it goes away or resort to technology. Technology has been like a safety net for all of us shy people, we can say what we want through text, email, Facebook, Twitter, etc. but I think it’s cowardice, like, when a guy texts me that he’s into me a part of me thinks, “oh how cute, he was too nervous to say it in person,” but a part of me says, “I just saw him 10 minutes ago, he couldn’t tell me then? What did he think I was going to do, beat him up?”
So my objective is to overcome this fear of rejection because as I get older it’s just going to limit me more and more. And maybe it’ll take me being rejected 100 or 1,000 times, maybe it’ll take me doing something crazy like, idk, being a go-go dancer…okay maybe not that because they literally dance around in underwear and I wouldn’t wear anything in a room full of strangers that I wouldn’t wear in front of my dad, but idk something crazy that requires extroversion. Also, let me explain, I’m an adventurous person so it’s not like I’m afraid of the world, I’ve been told before that I must not be that shy because I did ‘x,y and z’ but I’m afraid of rejection by my peers, I’m not afraid of going on spur the moment road trips or skinny dipping or just being ridiculous, a lot of people get confused by that but being shy doesn’t mean you’re boring. Anyway, I’m afraid of rejection, so I’ve got to put myself in situations where I can be rejected. The only way to get rid of a fear is to put yourself in front of the stimulus that scares you on a regular basis so that your amygdala eventually knows there’s no danger here and then I’ll be “cured” of my shyness.
Okay, so I’ve written a list of situations to put myself in and things to do on maybe like a daily or weekly basis:
- Talk to someone, other than my parents, on the phone. I know this sounds silly but I don’t like talking on the phone it’s weird, plus people always sound different on the phone than they do in real life, it’s awkward, like talking to a stranger.
- Talk to someone I don’t usually talk to in each of my classes. I get stuck in my circle of people in classes and my classes are small enough where I can talk to anyone, so I should.
- Be honest about how I feel. It’s very easy for me to be honest when it comes to my opinions about something but very hard for me to let people know they’ve hurt my feelings or that I’m mad at them. Usually, I ignore the feelings until they go away, but they don’t really ever go away. Especially right now when I don’t know who my real friends are, in all honesty, the people I hang out with right now probably won’t even remember my birthday (in 2 weeks). I’m tired of being left out of things and I think I was better off with the friends I hung out with last year, I still hang-out with them occasionally but not as much because I got so involved with making new friends that I kind of distanced myself from the old ones. I’m not saying I’ll stop being “friends” with the people I’m “friends” with now because I have met a couple of people that I really am close to, and I wish I could say that I just need to balance the 2 groups but it’s not about balance, I just don’t belong there and so I’m distancing myself more now. I want to hang-out more with my original friends because those people definitely know when my birthday is and I was never excluded from anything and I never felt like I’d be judged for saying something. I could be myself and they love me, all of me, good and bad. Plus I got hit on a lot more when I was hanging-out with them lol, probably because I went out more and met more people. The funny thing is, I can say these things and probably a lot more and just vent my frustrations because those “friends” don’t read my blog, but that would be very immature and I need to tell them myself. Ugh, that’s going to be uncomfortable, I don’t want to talk about my feeling and I don’t want to offend anyone but certain things need to be addressed.
- Seek more guy friends. For some reason I’m nervous around guys more than I am around girls. I have mostly girl friends, which is okay I guess, but I think it’s important to have both. Oh, but I have one guy friend! Progress!
- Go to very public places by myself. I don’t like going to places like the mall or the movies alone because I feel like it draws more attention. Doesn’t make sense, but that’s why it’s a fear.
- Do pageants or get back into modeling. This one is iffy because I said before that I wouldn’t do pageants because I felt like I would have been doing it for selfish reasons but I’m coming to realize that a big part of this journey that God is putting me through is me becoming a better woman. And I think that God wants us to be confident people so it would probably actually glorify God if I did pageants if the goal is to become a better woman of God. Or I might get back into modeling; nothing says rejection like the fashion world. On the other hand, I’ve gotten so used to ‘no’ in the business that I’m completely numb to it so maybe modeling again wouldn’t really do anything for me. We’ll see, good thing I haven’t given away that directory yet.
- Talk to guys I think are cute. This is going to be the hardest thing on the list for me because when I’m around a cute guy I feel like I’m about to have a heart attack. A little bit of the pressure is off because I’m not looking to date anyone, but still, this is gonna be a hard one. I’m going to have to actively get out of my own head… people underestimate how hard this is for me.
Something for me to remember is that even though I may get overwhelmed and walk away quickly when I try and do these things the point is that I expose myself to them, so every experience, good or bad was a success because I put myself out there.
I know this sounds strange, but as a kid I was really shy. Painfully shy. The turning point was freshman year, when I was the biggest geek alive. No one, I mean no one, even talked to me.
I never felt comfortable with myself, because I was never part of the majority. I always felt awkward and shy and on the outside of the momentum of my friends’ lives.
Writing is show-business for shy people. That’s how I see it.
It was very natural for me to want to disappear into a dark theater. I am really very shy, that is something people never seem to fully grasp because when you’re an actor you are meant to be an exhibitionist.
I loved to make people laugh in high school, and then I found I loved being on stage in front of people. I’m sure that’s some kind of ego trip or a way to overcome shyness. I was very kind of shy and reserved, so there’s a way to be on stage and be performing and balance your life out.
I think if I were a college professor no one would say I was uncomfortable about being shy because that might be expected. But I think because of people’s stereotypes they think of a football player as someone who is very outgoing and I’m not.
I didn’t start singing with my eyes open until I was 19, that’s how shy I was!
I have feelings too. I am still human. All I want is to be loved, for myself and for my talent.
At least someone gets it.