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How to develop Communication Skills for a person who is very shy ?

Updated on September 18, 2008

Some people find it hard to believe that once upon a time, I was seemingly interminably shy. I had an extremely low level of self-esteem, and it translated into a form of paralysis when it came to social situations. Ironically, it was a love of politics that helped me turn it around. When I was in my mid-twenties, I was approached about running for elective office. I chose to run for Selectman, which in many New England communities is the top elected position. I didn't win, but the upshot of the experience is that I endured a baptism by fire. When I walked into a room full of strangers who were potential votes for me, I was forced to sink or swim. Ultimately, it was my fear of failure that overrode my fear of speaking in public, or even in private.

Ironically, even though I didn't win the race, I feel I emerged from the experience a winner, because it transformed who I am. My level of self-confidence has skyrocketed in the past 15 years, and I no longer go into a situation being fearful of failing. I put my best foot forward and hope for the best.

Incidentally, one critical point to make about communications in general is that 80 percent of all communications is non-verbal. Something to think about.

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    • Trsmd profile image

      Trsmd 8 years ago from India

      thanks for sharing your experience

    • profile image

      dlhoh 8 years ago

      Thanks for sharing. I guess courage is the first step.

    • Eileen Hughes profile image

      Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia

      All through my younger life I had no confidence at all. It was really not until i started playing darts in my early forties that I actually became more confident.

      Being shy is a pain. You miss out on so much by not being out there and joining in on different things. Good hub I agree with you.

    • profile image

      Gems4friends 8 years ago from Spokane, WA

      Boy, talk about skippnig all the baby steps. How does a terminally shy person even agree to step into a political race?

      I agree that one has to make the decision to step up and do something about shyness, but your method is kinda like going from being a couch potato to jumping out of airplanes. :)

    • crashcromwell profile image
      Author

      crashcromwell 8 years ago from Florida

      Gems:

      I can understand why you would say that. All I can say is that in my case, jumping in with both feet was what it took. I was feeling like my life was slipping away and if I didn't do something drastic, I never would. Baby steps would have given me too much of a cushion, and I probably wouldn't have ever taken the leap.

      Jim Henry

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