We are all very familiar with shame. The feeling that arises when you do something wrong and everyone suddenly notices you. You are so sure that everyone is judging you and thinking about your mistakes. Your face is flushed, your heart is racing, and you wish you were somewhere else. Shame is a universal human experience. Although common, shyness is unpleasant. Build self-confidence, avoid embarrassing situations, and deal with embarrassment.
Part 1 of 3: Building Confidence
Step 1. Focus on your strengths
This is the first step in building self-confidence. Shame is related to feeling that something is lacking in you. To reduce shyness, remind yourself of all the positive qualities you have.
- What are you capable of doing competently? What are your best qualities? List these things. Ask for help from close friends and family. List all traits, skills, talents, physical features, social/interpersonal skills, and so on. Read this list every morning. If it's still there, add it!
- Be kind to yourself and practice positive conscience. When you look in the mirror in the morning, smile and say, "Today, you deserve happiness!" Choose a physical shape of your body that you like and praise it. For example, say: "Good morning, handsome! You have a great smile!"
Step 2. Find your challenges, then set goals
Determine the things that you think are still lacking, the things that make you feel lacking. Then, answer the various challenges. Set measurable and attainable goals to address these challenges as much as possible.
- For example, if you are embarrassed to make small talk because you feel that your communication skills are not good, improve your communication skills. Then, set goals and challenge yourself to achieve them.
- To develop communication skills, you need to be aware of the messages and impressions you are giving off and practice sending other impressions. Call a friend (ideally with good communication skills). Do role play with this friend to improve your communication skills.
- At first, set a small goal like this: start a conversation with one friend/colleague each week. Slowly increase this number to one friend/partner each day.
- WikiHow has tips on other pages for boosting self-confidence.
Step 3. Maintain relationships that are good for you
Sometimes, self-doubt comes from friends or family members who often criticize you or place too much importance on things that really don't really matter like the latest clothes or makeup. Determine if your closest friends or family members support or push you down. Don't be afraid to make new friends if your friends criticize you a lot.
- Good friends will accompany you to celebrate your success and challenge you to do new things.
- After you've spent time with a friend, ask yourself: do I feel comfortable, refreshed, and ready to go on with life? Or do I just feel tired and lethargic as if I need to pretend for these people? Your emotional state after spending time with someone is a good indicator of the effect that person has on your self-esteem and emotional health.
Step 4. Understand that everyone can be embarrassed
Shyness most often arises when we feel that everyone is watching us and judges that there is something lacking in us. Shyness can come on suddenly (eg when you stumble in public) or slowly (when you are about to give a speech in public); To be sure, shame is always rooted in the feeling that there is something lacking in oneself. An important first step in overcoming shyness is realizing that everyone experiences it.
- Most people feel that something is missing in their life. Shyness in social situations is one of the most common manifestations of this feeling of deprivation. Jim Carey, Kim Cattrall, William Shatner; these famous artists have experienced stage fright that almost ruined their entire careers. But then they had a glorious career.
- Feelings of deprivation can usually be traced back to childhood. For example, if you need to struggle to get your parents' attention, if what you do for them is never enough, or you are bullied by your friends, perhaps as an adult, you will often feel deprived. In certain cases you may need to solve childhood problems that are related to adult problems.
Part 2 of 3: Coping With Embarrassing Situations
Step 1. Identify your triggers for shyness
What situations are the most embarrassing for you? Do you feel embarrassed when you feel that others are judging you, for example when you need to give a speech in front of a crowd? Or are you embarrassed when those closest to you see you doing something embarrassing, like having food on your teeth or having toilet paper on your feet?
- There are people who feel very embarrassed when people they know make mistakes. This feeling is closely related to shame.
- Other triggers are other people discussing or doing things that seem inappropriate (like talking about sex or bodily functions around you).
- Sometimes shame stems from a general feeling of deprivation. This may arise when meeting new people, such as when you feel you don't look good or are afraid to speak in front of the class.
Step 2. Realize that there is nothing wrong with being shy
Everyone must have felt ashamed because shame is part of being human. Just like making mistakes and learning from mistakes, embarrassing situations can teach you about who you are and what you value. You can also find out what traits are not good and you can improve in yourself.
- Easily embarrassed is a personal trait. People who are easily embarrassed tend to feel other feelings more deeply. Such people are usually good friends. Be proud of yourself!
- Ask your friends about the embarrassing things they've done. You'll know that everyone feels embarrassed at some point.
Step 3. Forget the mistakes you made in the past
It's easy to remember embarrassing things in the past and imagine what other people thought about the embarrassing thing you did. The fact is, everyone has their own embarrassing things to think about, without having to think about your problems!
- Sometimes it's okay to reminisce about embarrassing things from the past, such as when you were trying to judge something embarrassing that just happened.
- On the other hand, however, be kind to yourself and allow yourself to forget about the embarrassing thing. If it was a friend who experienced this, what would you say to him? Be a friend to yourself.
Step 4. Avoid situations that you think will be embarrassing
Identify the type of shyness you are most likely to experience. Use this information to avoid situations that you think will trigger embarrassment.
For example, if you need to give a public speech and you feel very embarrassed, use a Powerpoint presentation or other visual aid. That way, when you talk, everyone's eyes will be taken away from you. Practice your speech material until you understand the material perfectly and you are confident about your speech
Step 5. Ask your friends for support
If you believe that your friends and family won't take advantage of your shyness, ask them to help you avoid embarrassing situations. Tell your friends about situations that are embarrassing for you, and ask them to help you avoid them.
- If your friends tell you you're blushing, ask them to stop. Research shows that people who are told they are red face will blush even more.
- Ask people you trust to stop teasing you about certain sensitive topics. For some, the thing they are most embarrassed about is being teased about a lack/uncertainty (eg physical qualities or likes). If these people really care about you and know that this problem is bothering you, they will stop. Otherwise, you may need to make new friends.
Part 3 of 3: Shyness Coping Strategies
Step 1. Take control of your physiological responses
The body perceives shame as fear, and initiates symptoms of a response to fear: a racing heart, sweaty wrists, flushed cheeks, and a stuttering speech. You need a lot of exercise to control this physiological response. The trick is to focus and calm your mind, using the same techniques used to calm a panic attack.
- Focus on something in the room that isn't scary, like a clock, a poster, or even a crack in the wall. Think about it in detail. Then, do the deep breathing technique.
- Breathe in slowly and deeply. Count to three with each inhale and exhale. Focus your attention on the sensation of air filling and leaving your chest. Imagine your stress and anxiety going away with your breath.
- If the embarrassing situation you're in is something planned (like a speech or meeting with your lover's parents), do something soothing right before the event starts. Many actors have a ceremony they need to perform right before a show, which keeps them focused and takes the stage fright at the last minute. For example, Brian Wilson of the band Beach Boys, would do reflexology and pray before every concert.
Step 2. Admit that you are embarrassed
If you do something unexpected and embarrassing, like spilled your drink on the conference table or mispronounced the boss's name, admit that you're embarrassed. This confession will lighten the mood.
- Explain the reason for this situation. For example, say: "Oh, sorry, I mispronounced your name! I can't stop thinking about people with that name these days."
- You can also ask for help. For example, if you drop something or stumble on the sidewalk, ask someone passing by for help. Instead of laughing at you, they will be busy helping you.
Step 3. Laugh
If you do something embarrassing during a meeting or in class, chances are that someone will start laughing. Laughing in embarrassing situations is a natural human response. That doesn't mean the person laughing is insulting you. If you laugh too, it means you have a great sense of humor and you don't take yourself too seriously.
Research shows that using humor to respond to embarrassing situations is the most effective solution. Learn to laugh at yourself. You can make jokes if you think fast (for example, if you spill coffee over a report at a meeting, say: "Hopefully there's nothing important there!"), but if you don't think fast enough, smile and then say, " Yeah, hey!"
Step 4. Realize that what you are experiencing is more than embarrassment
Sometimes, this shy tendency is a manifestation of a perfectionist personality. However, although less common, extreme shyness is a symptom of social anxiety disorder.
- If your fear of shame or being judged by others is interfering with your daily activities, or making it difficult for you to enjoy social life, you may have a mental disorder called social phobia (also known as social anxiety disorder). Most people may be embarrassed only when they need to make a public speech or stumble in front of a crowd, but people with social anxiety disorder will be embarrassed by simple things like ordering food at a restaurant or eating in public. The symptoms of social phobia generally appear at puberty.
- There are several ways to treat social phobia, including psychotherapy and medication. Consult your doctor, who may be able to refer you to a good psychiatrist.