Extreme Self Consciousness Revisited

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I can tell by your clicks and searches that this is an area that you are interested in reading about. 

A lot of people that are shy e mail me about this issue.  I am not a shy person.  So when I read a shy person’s experience about extreme self consciousness I am taken aback. 

Shy people obsess and fixate on things.  People that are not shy would not react the way a shy person does to most of these circumstances.  A shy person has trouble putting these circumstances into a manageable perspective.  A shy person has trouble letting go of these circumstances. 

Here is an example of what I am talking about.  My friend Tasha is shy.  The other day she was at a meeting at work.  She prepared for this meeting and she was asked her opinion of something that was being discussed.  She was not speaking off the top of her head.  She gave a well thought out and well researched answer.  Her answer was received well. 

That is not how Tasha saw it.  She was certain that she sounded foolish, un prepared and that no one thought highly of her answer.  Why did she feel this way?  Certainly not from any factual or logical basis.  She felt this way because she is extremely self conscious and shy. 

Tasha and I spoke about it.  I presented her with logic and facts.  She nodded but went on and on  that I was incorrect.  She was sure she sounded bad.  Even when I agreed with her (just for arguments sake) that she sounded  bad she could not let go of it. 

Let’s say she did sound bad (even though she did not).  It is over.  She can not go back in time and fix it.  All she can do is go forward and do better the next time.  People that are not shy may feel like Tasha did for 10 minutes.  People that are shy relive that feeling over and over.  This is where they are extremely self conscious.  Long after everyone that was there has forgotten what has happened a shy person rarely forgets. 

Even after everyone has forgotten this (possible faux pas) a shy person obsesses about it over and over.  Shy people punish themselves over and over again. 

People that are not shy let it go rather quickly.  People that are not shy mentally process it as over and no longer that important.  It is not that important because the next time they will do better.

If you are shy you believe there is no next time.  What you did is final and indelible.  Not true.

If you are extremely self conscious you must have a conversation with yourself.  During this conversation you must learn a new way to talk with yourself and a new way to process information. 

First you must decide how important what happened is?  Your initial reaction will be that it is of the utmost importance.  In your new conversation with yourself you will calmly and logically review it.  In your new conversation you will not review it in extremes.  In your new conversation you will fairly decide how important is it. 

The next step in your new conversation is to let it go.  Just release it.  It is over and done with.  The way to change and learn is to let go of things that hold you back.  If you keep them then they just weigh you down.  You do not learn from them by storing them up.  you must get rid of them and make space for new, better thougths. 

In summary – Step One Review farily and accurately

                          Step Two Let it go

If you are ready for the next step check out this great report on overcoming your shyness.

Marcia, Your Confidence Coach

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