For years, I have struggle with a debilitating problem called – Shyness.
For some of my friends that may be reading this post, they may scratch their head, with a question mark appearing on their face, as they wonder, “what is she talking about?” “She’s not shy!”
Well, I am, but not the kind of “shy” that is afraid of being around people. To be honest, I have no difficulty with approaching people in a social setting, and introducing myself. I enjoy mingling, meeting people, and learning about them. In that area I am extroverted. However, when it comes to sharing my writing, I have suffered from something that I call “introverted-shyness.”
I’m not sure if this is a writer’s problem or just mine, but there was something in me that felt a bit awkward about sharing my work. In the past, I found it difficult to be open with others and say, “I write and have a blog.” Whenever I wanted to say this, there was always a strange feeling that would come over me. I felt uncomfortable inviting people to peruse the pages of my blog.
Yet, when I would get the courage to share my writing and blogging aspirations, I hated the next question. “What is the name of your blog? I would like to read it.” I would smile and take a deep breath, as I would hesitantly give my URL address. I would watch as they typed it into their phone to either look at it later or right there, at that moment, in front of me. That is when my heart would begin beating in a rapid pace, making me feel as if it was going to jump out of my chest. (Dramatic isn’t it?)
When this would happen, a nervousness would come over me, as I stood directly in front of the person, watching them look at my blog. It was scary. I felt as if I was standing on a stage with everyone peering at me, looking at my performance with scrutiny. As they shifted through my blog, I would meticulously review the expression on their face, looking for their reaction. I would try to determine if they liked it, if they found an error, if they understood my content, if they connected with my writer’s voice, if they thought it was stupid, or if they questioned why I was even blogging. Then after they were done, I would walk away with a sense of uneasiness, wondering if their compliment was sincere, or them not knowing how to tell me that it was horrible.
These feelings took over me for a long time. It wasn’t until one day, I began to sincerely look at myself and my goals. I wanted to write full-time in the near future. I wanted to share my voice with the world. So, if that was what I was looking to achieve, “How could I be shy?” I had to share my work. I had to share my blog. I had to share me.
And with that newfound understanding, I went forward with doing just that…Sharing. And soon, it became easier for me. That feeling of awkwardness seemed to slowly vanish.
Just recently, I went to an event, where I mingled with people, introducing myself, and being asked questions about my work, hobbies, and more. To some, I shared that I was a writer and I had a blog. Of course, saying that left the door wide open for the question, “What is your blog address?” I responded, this time without the weary smile, fear, and hesitance.
This was when I knew that things had changed within me. I understood that I could no longer let the debilitating problem of shyness overtake me. I had to be open to share myself with others. Sharing my writing and blogging is the only way that I will achieve my goals of getting my voice out to the world.