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Each person has their own personality and way of dealing with others. However, when it comes to communication in the workplace, there are certain features that can help and others that can disrupt your interpersonal relationships.
Shyness is a trait seen as an obstacle for many people. This is because, in general, shy people have more difficulty to relate with co-workers, because they care too much about the opinion of others or even their insecurity about his or her professional capacity.
To get around this situation, the first step is to understand that shyness doesn’t make anyone a better or worse professional. It’s only a trait, and just like any other personality trait, it can be worked on.
Below, we’ll talk more about overcoming shyness and share a few techniques that can help you achieve a successful professional life!
Are you curious? Come along with us!
What is shyness?
Shyness has different causes:
- Excessive self-awareness: you have an exaggerated sense of self-consciousness, especially in social situations.
- Excessive negative self-evaluation: you see yourself with a very critical eye and tend to evaluate yourself negatively, especially when compared to others.
- Excessive self-preoccupation: you often pay close attention to what is happening around you and you worry too much about people’s reactions.
Have you identified yourself with any of these situations?
Rest assured that understanding how to overcome shyness can be much simpler than it sounds!
Here are 9 steps that can help you with this task.
Step 1: Greet your co-workers in the morning
To begin to break your barrier of shyness, small attitudes are indispensable.
Start by saying good morning to all your co-workers, even if you don’t work directly with this or that person. The act of greeting them outside the work environment is also a good way to work out your inhibition.
This way, when you need to talk to this co-worker, it will be a bit easier to start the conversation.
Step 2: Try talking with someone sitting next to you
Try to talk to those who sit next to you more often, preferably on subjects not only related to work, such as sports, common hobbies, TV series and movies, among other subjects.
Shy people find it hard to talk. However, it is possible to gradually overcome this fear, establishing closer relations with a smaller number of co-workers.
Step 3: Look people in the eye
Have you ever noticed the connecting power that a simple gaze can provide?
Well, looking people in the eye while you talk is essential for you to inspire trust and demonstrates that you are truly interested in what they are saying.
Just be careful not to look obsessive. Pay attention to your body language and remember to always smile, since this demonstrates that you are open to dialogue.
If you still feel too uncomfortable making eye contact, start slowly. Practice in front of the mirror with yourself, study your expressions and at first, test with the people with whom you feel the closest.
Step 4: Reply to indirect greetings
Still regarding the previous tip: don’t look away from gazes!
Do you know those greetings that come from merely exchanging glances and nods?
Then reply to them! With this attitude, you will make a more open, receptive and friendly impression in your professional environment.
The same goes for any other similar context: shying away from glances gives people the idea of that you are disregarding them or that you are insecure with what is being said. So be firm and make your presence noticed.
Step 5: Maintain proper posture
Everyone has heard at least once in their life sentences like, “Sit up straight!” and “Stop looking down all the time!”
Body posture directly influences our thoughts and feelings.
When you adopt a body posture of someone who is brooding and insecure (curved body with eyes always focused on the ground), you will begin to see yourself in this manner, while preventing others from noticing you.
Unfortunately, or fortunately for some, your image directly influences how people will talk to you. By taking this kind of negative stance, many people may avoid giving you certain responsibilities or projects.
Step 6: Try to be more sociable
As valuable as the tips you are reading might be, just the theory won’t help you overcome your shyness.
Try to interact more with people, express your opinions and be friendly and communicative with those around you.
To overcome shyness, it is important that you focus on the subjects and the people you communicate with, not your difficulty in dealing with those situations.
Social interactions can be valuable sources of learning, as well as the creation of a network of professional contacts.
Step 7: Explore your qualities
To know how to overcome shyness, think about all of your qualities and things that you know how to do well.
This is a small attitude that has short-term results because by strengthening your self-image, you will feel increasingly more confident in the work environment.
Step 8: Take an acting class
Theater can teach you a lot about body language, communication skills and improvisation.
Acting classes focus on performing activities that work the body, diction and improvisation in order to foster collective conviviality skills and self-knowledge.
The classes also help students’ self-esteem, since it works on communication skills, as well as engaging them in a dynamic collective activity.
Although performing on stage may be uncomfortable for shy people, this is not an obligation. Only the classes themselves are a huge and effective stimulus to interact with larger groups of people and also to prepare to speak in front of the camera.
Step 9: Get out of your comfort zone
A person’s comfort zone works as a sheer psychological barrier for him/her to face challenges and achieve his/her goals and dreams.
Those who don’t face their own fears or who fear the unknown to the point of allowing themselves to stagnate, will automatically be condemned to a career of little prominence.
Getting out of one’s comfort zone is an essential step for those who want to know how to overcome shyness and become a more complete and accomplished professional.
The limits of the comfort zone are different for each person. While some feel blocked when speaking in public, others find it difficult to say no or deal with negotiations.
In order to overcome this barrier, you can start by doing different activities, such as dance classes, practice sports, physical exercise, etc.
Remember that what successful people have in common is the notion that security is illusory. Therefore, transgressing your comfort zone is indispensable for a more fulfilling life and so you can feel more active.
Are you shy?
Have you seen how small changes can radically change your relationship at work?
Shyness is not (as long as you don’t allow it) an obstacle for you to achieve all of your dreams and goals. Following the tips that we have set aside in this post, you will certainly achieve a much higher quality of life, and (why not?) gain that promotion or position that you have been dreaming about.
Of course, as we’ve said before, there is no point in just theorizing. You need to understand your points of improvement and apply these tips to gradually overcome your shyness.
Over time, you will realize that you will achieve the professional goals you have always wanted.
So, let’s shake off the dust and overcome shyness once and for all? Also check out the characteristics of an exemplary leader and you’ll be even closer to the career path of your dreams!