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I'm too shy

PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2011 9:33 am
by Vianne
well, I don't know how to explain it...
I've a group of fantastic friends: they are good guys, they are funny and I like them but...I don't feel good with them. Every time we go out, I can't talk, because I think that whatever I've to say is not interesting, and so I decide to stay in silence. I know it isn't my friend's fault, but it's my problem, so I don't really know how to solve it.
It's very strange, because when I'm with just one or two persons, I haven't this problem, and i talk frankly. The problem comes out just when I'm in a group of 5/6 persons or more...
please, can you give me some advice to improve my self esteem?

thank you very much, Vianne :)

ps, sorry for my english, if there are some "horrible" syntactic mistake, please tell me, so I'll don't do it again the next time ;)

Re: I'm too shy

PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:04 am
by dayle
Hi Vianne. This is a very difficult one to answer. I have a similar problem myself - in group situations, I still have a tendancy to almost commentate on myself and say 'don't say that, it's not interesting, look, they're bored now,' but I ignore it now. Do you have anyone in the group you are particularly close to? I found it very helpful to confide in a close friend and she would encourage me. I also had an older female mentor, at work, who helped me build my confidence in a work setting and that translated into my personal life. The other thing to do is to push yourself outside your comfort zones - maybe do activities that you have to talk about (I've joined a book-club and done activities such as paint-balling and high-ropes). I don't know what you do with your friends, but if you can do activities with them, rather than meeting up at the pub / people's houses, it gives you a shared experience which makes it easier to talk about. My mum - who is incredibly confident - told me that confidence is something you have to fake until you stop thinking about it. So next time you think what you have to say isn't interesting, try and say it anyway. Keep trying.

Re: I'm too shy

PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:32 pm
by Vianne
Thank you Dayle:)
Well, i'll try to follow your advice of don't listen my inner voice which says to shut up ;) even if it's not so easy...especially because I've lot of things to say (for example, I've just started to attend university, and it's really exciting; in the last months, i've been abroad, i've done many different activities) but they don't care! they talk only about football and videogames...if I try to talk about...a film, or a book i've read, or a place i've visited...they turn their head and don't listen...
Maybe I'm not able to speak properly?maybe I speak too fast or too slowly?
Do you think there is a "right" way of speaking to be listened by everyone?
I'm asking if the problem is always me, or sometimes also they have a part of responsability...(not all of them, of course, two or three of them are very nice and friendly with me)

Re: I'm too shy

PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 1:04 pm
by dayle
Hi Vianne. That puts a different slant on it. It might be if you're tentative when raising a subject, that this makes it easier for them to turn away, but no two ways about it, turning away and displaying disinterest when someone speaks is RUDE. However, it sounds like you have very different interests to them and it can be difficult to be confident in that situation anyway. Some people have a knack for speaking to people about subjects that interest them - so if your friends can only talk about football and video-games, the trick for getting them to listen to you, would be to learn something about football or video games. Really though, for you to build your confidence, you need to find people who enjoy the same things you do and want to talk about university / films / books / travels. You say you have recently started university, are there potential new groups of friends there that you can put some time into? If you can talk about things that animate and excite you - even on the screen, you seem more vibrant when you write about univeristy etc - it will be easier to come out of yourself.

My friends now are very different from those I had when I was just starting university. In book-club, or with colleagues, discussions can range from TV shows, through classical literature, world politics, travel, feminism, comedy, silly things that have happened, serious things that are happening etc. It makes it much easier to get caught up in the topic and respond.