Ever since I was a little boy, I feel uncomfortable being shy. Around the age of 12, I went to a psychologist, and she told me that I was an introvert. She told me there’s no problem being introverted and that I should look for activities that fit my profile.
The advice that could have solved my life had the opposite effect. I became more and more isolated; I lost countless good opportunities in life because of it.
The psychologist was right; I’m an introvert. But maybe she didn’t explain the difference between shyness and introversion, or perhaps I didn’t understand correctly. The fact is that only some time ago, I understood that shyness and introversion are different things. As a result, my life has changed for the better.
That is why I want to share what shyness and introversion mean and mainly clarify that they are not the same. Furthermore, I want you to get the best out of your personality type and live a fulfilled life!
Characteristics of a Shy Person
Shyness is nothing more than fear, a fear of social judgment, a fear that people will look at you and realize that you are not good enough. It’s a personal, internal perception that there is something in you that if other people find out, you won’t be worthy of their love and respect.
That’s what stops shy people from doing many things. They can’t do everything that exceeds their comfort zone. Let’s suppose you are a shy person, and there is a circle around you. Everything inside it you are comfortable doing, for example, talking with your family, with your friends. Therefore, even a shy person feels at ease in specific social interactions.
On the other hand, a person without shyness has a bigger circle. Thus, they can have social interactions without so much discomfort. Basically, the shy person only feels shame when they are forced to extrapolate their confidence circle.
And since the shy person has this circle smaller than other people, even some everyday situations make the shy person feel extremely uncomfortable. In short:
Timidity = fear of social judgment.
Introversion is something completely different. It is how you respond to stimuli, including social stimuli. Introverts feel more comfortable and produce more when they are in quiet environments; when performing solitary activities.
An introvert learns best when reading a book. On the other hand, an extrovert performs better in a classroom, interacting with other people. However, both an introvert and an extrovert will have no problem raising their hand and asking questions. In contrast, the shy one doesn’t dare to do it going home without taking full advantage of the class.
Another example: an introverted speaker. After the lecture, an introvert, instead of going to a bar to socialize with friends, as an extrovert would do, goes home to rest and recharge their energy.
By the way, energy is totally connected to confidence. A person without energy can’t be confident, can’t make things happen. The raw material of action is energy. If you want to strengthen your confidence, you have to know how to manage it, most importantly, how to recharge it.
Never assume that loud is strong and quiet is weak.Anonymous
A person with low energy has inappropriate beliefs, feelings, decisions, and behaviors. And consequently, the results tend to be regrettable.
The shy have a small circle of confidence, but the good news is that it is expandable. The more confidence you gain, the larger this circle gets, the less shy you feel.
22 Ideas to Increase Your Self-Confidence
Significant changes start with a first step. Here you will have several ideas to challenge yourself, and in the end, you will undoubtedly have evolved a lot.
When you free yourself from shyness, whether you are introverted or extroverted, you don’t have to worry about social interactions. You will only have to know how to use and recover your energy. Download the eBook, practice, and become your best self.
Awesome photos by: Pâmela Lima and Kitera Dent.