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How do I stop being shy and improve my connection with people?

heart to heart About the Questioner
Philosophy: I was baptised Salvation Army, then baptised Catholic, attended a United church, then became a counselor of a christian camp. I no longer attend church but I still believe in God.
Hopes and aspirations: I hope to be happy, make my parents proud, be successful in any sort of way, and I hope that the last two years of struggle has come to an end.
This comes from my eyes being open after a psychic reading with a wonderful woman who came out and did a reading with my horse when he was alive about a year ago. My horse died July 17, 2010. I had him for 7 years, I didn't need a psychic to tell me my horse and I had a wonderful amazing relationship. Riley, is/was the love of my life. He made my world go round.

I had a second reading on August 16th for some closure... The reading turned into more a reading about me since our relationship (me and the horse) was a lot about checking on each other. This time Riley "is" (still, on the other side) worried about my relationships with people. He compared it to my relationship with my current boyfriend of 9 months and my problem with connection and my habit of being a wallflower. I wouldn't care to change this if it wasn't for Riley worrying, and if I didn't feel so lost right now and ready to do something to change me. But how do I improve my connection with people? How do I stop being shy?

I seemed to have had a lot of "blows" the last 2 years that have really knocked me down. I have always been shy and had problems with connections my whole life. I believe it's stemmed from me being bullied in elementary school; in high school I wasn't bullied but I happily had a nice group of close friends and small groups of other friends. In college I broke out a lot and really became better with my relationships, with people/connections and all that. Then I started a job after my 2 year college diploma where I got bullied in my job by my boss. I was determined to keep it and I struggled for 9 months till I was let go. I struggled for 4 months until the end of my rent term, bar-tending at a strip club to make ends meet. I gave up in April and moved back home where I finally found a job... been at my job a year. I do this thing that I can become invisible in a room; I'm really good at it. I don't strike up conversations, I get nervous and scared around people. I Need to fix this.

Reply by Coach Phil Evans Phil Evans
One aspect of what you have told me is about being a wallflower and disappearing in a crowded room - so I'll go down that path for you...

Did anyone in your early childhood years teach you that "children should be seen and not heard"? And/or ... did any of your religious teachings lead you in that direction?

Also, being shy is often the result of being taught that you really have nothing to offer society, or you simply don't trust in your own ability to feel worthy of others wanting to know you (and other similar reasons). This bullying that you have suffered is also a sign of not standing up for yourself. We must all be true to ourselves Trina!!! Bullies can only bully us if we allow them to get away with it.

Now that might seem very challenging - and even rude as you see it - but if we can actually own our situations in life, then we can change them! Otherwise we will remain as the victim - and stay stuck in 'poor me' mode forever. When we take 100% responsibility for our 'stuff' - then we can make changes in a positive direction. Taking responsibility very often means learning new skills...

If you feel a lack of social skills and confidence around people is stopping you from getting the results you really want in life, this program would be our top recommendation... Communication & Relationships. The course is very practical, easy to understand and apply. It's designed specially to improve your social skills, so you can let go of social fears, anxieties and shyness, expand your social circle and leave a powerful, positive impression on people you meet..

Here's some further advice for you... We all have times in our lives when we really do get tested; when it would be easy to throw ones arms in the air and scream as loudly as possible; and even feel like throwing a massive tantrum!

There are also times when we are handed what looks and feels like a 'compounding effect' ... not just one test but two - or three - or more! And times like these are often overwhelming, to say the least!

At times like these, if you're ever faced with them, there are a few simple ways to maximise your ability to heal the way you feel, and the problems themselves.

  1. Share your situation and feelings with people that you trust; and that you feel are capable of being supportive. Remember that a problem shared is a problem halved!
  2. Get out and go for a walk every day if you can! And while you're out walking, look for every reason to be grateful for being who you are, and have a good awareness of just how many other people are far worse off than you! Yes - count your blessings; we've all got heaps of reasons to feel lucky!
  3. Become more aware than ever, of the beauty in nature; and look for the joy in the simple things, like watching birds and animals making the best of every moment!
  4. Do your best to lighten up as much as possible; with children being one of the best sources of that light-hearted energy! And ... they are usually very willing to share it!
  5. Remember that if we happen to hit a rock bottom; then the only way is UP!
  6. Be very aware of the importance of good health! (Physical; mental; emotional; and spiritual.)
And here's a small collection of mantras that I've recently written:
  • Happiness/sadness; good stuff/bad stuff; good health/ill health; are all fruits of the seeds we planted yesterday!
  • It is WHO we are, and WHAT we do, that makes us rich; not what we HAVE!
  • If you're being tested and challenged right now, do your best to drag your attention away from the problem, and focus it on possible solutions!
  • I embrace this moment and this day; trusting that tomorrow will be OK!
  • Today is the tomorrow we could have worried about yesterday; but chose not to!
  • If things around you seem to be going wrong; do you best not to go with them!
  • Instead of just counting your days; make every one of your days count!
  • We can beat most challenges by enlisting Determination, Courage and Perseverance as our allies!
  • Dreams are great! Dreams + Actions - even greater!
  • Remember to stay focused on moving Towards what you want; rather than Away From what you don't want!

Coaching copyright © 2010 Phil Evans, People Stuff
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