The Shyness Project

The First Day of the New Year: 2011, A Time for Change

The Shyness Project will be a year-long endeavor to confront my shyness, once in for all.  I created this project because my shyness has been interfering with my life for too long.  I do not want to go on anti-depressants or other shyness pills, do not want to pay a large fee for a short series of classes or sessions, and do not want to resort to drugs or alcohol. I want to take charge of my own life.

Plus, I want to challenge myself and see if I can follow through with this.  I’m afraid if I don’t address my shyness now, it’s going to continue to haunt me the rest of my life and keep me from doing a lot of the things I want to experience in life.

I want to be able to drive without worrying if I’ll get lost and have to ask for help. Or if I get in an accident I want to be able to talk confidently to the other person or the police.  I want to be able to travel abroad without worrying that I won’t be able to ask for assistance when I need it or make friends. I want to be able to teach English abroad and have the self-confidence to stand in front of the room and speak/teach.  I want to be able to make more friends but sometimes I have a hard time starting and continuing a conversation.  I want to be able to raise my hand in class without my heart pounding, my palms sweating, and my mind screaming to keep my hand down.  I want to be able to give a presentation without panicking and worrying for days, and even worse, bail out on it or turn the presentation down out of fear of embarrassing myself.  I want to be able to act goofy and fun in front of others instead of feeling locked up and constricted in my movements.  I want to be able to go outside by myself for a walk or run, or to shop at a store by myself instead of needing someone else to go with me.  I want to be able to make a phone call without making a huge deal out of it and getting extremely nervous.

I’m tired of letting shyness dictate my life, and keep me from doing all the things I’m capable of.  My shyness stands in the way of my dreams and ambitions, and I can’t let it stop me from doing what I want to do.  It won’t be easy, and the feelings in my stomach I’ll get from doing something I don’t want to do will surely be nauseating, but I have to start somewhere.  Even though I am often described as “the shy one”, I don’t like being labeled that and realize that this is more than just a little shyness.  It’s something that has gotten really out of hand and needs to be worked on.

Shyness alone isn’t a bad thing, not at all. But when it prevents you from doing what you want to do and leaves you so stressed out and fearful all the time, then it’s a problem.

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10 thoughts on “The First Day of the New Year: 2011, A Time for Change

  1. kindamixedup on said:

    What a good initiative. It amazes me that you decided to go on that journey on your own. Bravo. And you’re right, there is nothing wrong with being shy. In fact, many people are shy. But not being able to do the things you what to do and not being able to live to your full potential, it can easily become out of control.
    I wish you much sucess on your journey.

    • Thank you. 🙂 I probably wouldn’t have been able to keep up with it if it weren’t for all the support and very kind words from bloggers who’ve written to me. I told my mom that I was going to do this project, but since then I haven’t really talked to her about it at all and have been doing things all on my own, in secret from friends and family. I don’t know if that’s a bad thing or a good thing, but it works for me. I just got tired of being labeled as shy all the time and was tired of all my negative thoughts and worries. I felt like if I didn’t do something now, seriously, shyness would affect me the rest of my life and I wouldn’t do things that I want to do out of fear. My shyness almost even kept me from starting this journey and making it public, I guess I was afraid of failure and afraid of what I was going to put myself through.

      Yeah I suppose many people are shy. It doesn’t always seem that way though when I’m out with others or at school, and I feel like I’m one of a few. But yes, the biggest thing is that I want to live life to the fullest, and I don’t want to let fears get in the way of that, so I’m challenging them now.

      Thank you for writing to me and thank you for adding me to your blogroll! 🙂 I commented on one of your posts but I will check out some of your other posts soon!

      • kindamixedup on said:

        well, i think it’s ok that your friends and family aren’t fully aware of your journey, that way you don’t have unecessary extra pressure and you can focus on what you are ready to do, when you are ready to do it, as well as the risks you are whiling to take to overcome shyness.
        oh, and… don’t be afraid of failure. You might fail sometimes, but that’s ok. failure is relative and might be considered a success if it were seen by someone else. And even if you do something “wrong” or not as you wish you would have done it, i think it’s better to try than to nurse regrets. Not to mention, failure is a learning experience.
        a last bit of advice: don’t let people label you. anything they can label you doesn’t define who you are. 🙂 we’re more than just that.
        I’m in a similar journey as well and it’s funny how jan1, 2011 marked a new beginning for both of us. I definitely will be following you on your journey and dropping by to say hello from time to time.
        take care

      • Cool, thank you for making me feel better about it! 🙂 I do feel like if I told others about what I’m doing right now it would only make things harder and I’d feel more pressure, so that’s why I’m keeping it to myself and this blog. I just worry sometimes that some of my friends and family would be upset with me for not telling them and opening up to them about it, like I’m keeping things from them or something. It’s just something I have to do on my own for now, and maybe eventually I can show them this blog.

        Thank you, I’ll keep that in mind. Failure is a part of taking risks, and I shouldn’t fear it. There are a lot of good quotes on failure and taking risks that are encouraging. And yes, I agree that failure is certainly a learning experience.

        Yeah! 🙂 I’ll try to not let labels bother me too much or let anyone define me by their labels. There are a lot of different aspects and qualities about people, and labeling seems to disregard that and just point out one or two things.

        Oh really? I will definitely have to check out more of your posts soon then to see how your journey is going. Haha nice, you started on New Years Day too? A new year is always a good time for change. 🙂 Thank you, I really do appreciate it! I’ll be following your blog too and seeing how you’re doing. It’s nice talking to you, I feel comfortable opening up to you already! 🙂

  2. Brittany, this is such an inspiring project you’ve got going on here! Having the gusto to recognize the things that stand in your way and tackle them regardless of how tough it seems is an admirable thing. Best of luck to you on your journey!

  3. Sounds like you’re a girl with a plan! Good luck.

  4. nam tran on said:

    You are a remarkable person. I’m amazed at the level of maturity that you posses. You inspire me to continue my journey as well. Good luck to you and all your endeavors!

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