The Shyness Project


Ugh, I was trying really hard to raise my hand in psych class tonight, but still I couldn’t do it!!  I had read the chapter in advance, written out all the notes in advance off of her powerpoint notes that she’d be showing tonight, made flash cards, knew the material really well, and even had about 7 possible questions I could ask on the side of my notes, and STILL I didn’t raise my hand!

Why is this class so hard for me to participate in?  Is it because there are more people and a majority of them are older than me?  I guess I do feel a little intimated, I think I’m one of very few high schoolers in the class.  But I got an A on the last test and she said there were only 5 A’s total in the class, so it’s not like I’m not doing well in her class or what I say isn’t going to be intelligent enough.

It’s just when that class gets going, I get in this comfort zone that’s hard to break out of.  It’s easy to hesitate and not act when she pauses.  I’m very envious of the people who can just speak aloud what they want to say or ask questions on a regular basis.  It seems like my questions aren’t really that necessary for me to ask, because I already know the material so well and don’t really need my questions answered since they’ve just been thought up for the sake of asking a question.  And the questions I thought of she often went over so there wasn’t really anything I could say after that.

So maybe I should try not doing my notes, reading, or making the flash cards and see if I can think of more questions when I don’t know the material as well?  I don’t know, this is tricky…I was in the right mind set tonight too, feeling confident and like I could do this.  But I just couldn’t move my arm and ask what I had prepared.  I’m definitely going to keep trying though.

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8 thoughts on “Frustrations

  1. kindamixedup on said:

    hum…. i don’t know about this. If you understand the material so well and you have such good grades, maybe there is no need to ask questions just for the sake of asking questions. In my humble opinion, of course. Perhaps it is the thought of knowing you want to participate in this class but that there seems to be something holding you back that’s annoying to you?
    It would be really great if you could spontaneously raise your hand and all that if you have a question, but if it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen. I think it’s ok too, especially since you’ve made such a good job in your other classes and discussing to teachers.
    Or, maybe there would be a way for you to express your opinion in that psych class instead of asking questions? Does your teacher encourages discussions and debates? Yet I know psych class are usually very static and the material is pretty straight foward, at least the ones that I had. Although there was this abnormal psychology course I took a few months back and there was plenty of occasions for students to express their opinion and discuss during the class. Is there any way your psych class be a bit like that too? In that case, perhaps it would be a good alternative.

    • Hmm yeah I don’t know, I’d like to say something in class but I’m not sure how to go about it. I guess by participating I would like to let the teacher know that I’m interested in her class and she’ll probably get to know me better if I raise my hand. I think she can probably tell because I look and act interested and sit near the front, but still I’d like to raise my hand for something. We’ll see though, maybe there will be an interesting topic that I can add to that doesn’t involve asking or answering a question.

      Thanks. 🙂 I’m glad that I’ve been able to participate in my other classes too, because it’s definitely gotten better with time. And now I have recent memories of success when I’ve raised my hand so I can remind myself of those times when I’m in doubt.

      This class is pretty straightforward as she simply has a whole bunch of slides to go through for us to copy down all of the class time, but other people have brought up some of their experiences or questions on the subject matter which can sometimes turn into a bit of a discussion. Thanks for all your comments, I enjoyed reading them! 🙂

  2. Hey girl.
    Just popping in to tell you I gave you the Stylish Blogger Award.

  3. Hmmm … The reason why you are asking questions is because you are trying to overcome shyness. It’s not really about getting the answer.

    So, with this in mind, I think you should lower the bar for what you ask. Notice how plenty of other people will say questions which seem to have obvious answers to you.

    Since shyness is basically a fear of disapproval, trying to say things which “are intelligent enough” is one more way your shyness manifests in approval-seeking behaviour.

    • Yeah, that’s why I would like to ask a question in that class. We’ll see how it goes, I don’t have this class again until 2 weeks because of some inservice days.

      I can see that, and I think I worry too much about what I’m saying and how exactly I’m going to say it. I’ll probably have to try the “raise hand quick” approach again to calm down some of the anxiety. Thanks for commenting Sean! 🙂

  4. You’re going to be frustrated more times than you can imagine in the future. Just wait until you get married someday! The trick is to deal with it honestly and ride it out.

    • Haha yeah I bet marriage involves a ton of frustration! I know frustration is normal and it’s kind of a good thing in a way sometimes because it shows that you care about something/someone. Honesty and riding it out sound like good advice though.

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