To clarify from the beginning – extroversion does not mean that one is confident, talkative or outgoing, it does not mean that one cannot be shy or suffer from social anxiety. What it means is simple – extroverts, as me, “gain energy” from the outside, from “positive” social interactions. We’re invigorated when with others, precisely with ones that are kind to us. We’re dying when alone or in interaction that doesn’t meet our presumed idea/image.
When you take to consideration that extroverts need others to feel good, it will appear clearly that there is more pressure for us to grow anxiety and to be shy, just because our mood depends on people’s judgments.
Of course shyness is counter-productive if you want to be liked (just as much counter-productive as arrogance). But as mood, common anxiety is like weather – it is real, it affects you, but even if it doesn’t make sense, there is no real way to change it. Most common advice – “just be yourself”, or “be confident” is just as stupid as saying “don’t be sad” to someone depressed. Write that down.
In my struggle I used social technology/engineering as my raincoat/umbrella to protect myself from destructive force of anxiety. I learned methods of how to talk to/pick-up women. I exercised how to auto-promote in way I want to be perceived. I gained skills that are commonly took as something granted, innate or given by “higher power”. I built up my social muscle. The storm is like it was before – freaking heavy, but now I have a chance to not get that wet.
My point is – if I could posses this knowledge, then you can. If I could learn these skills, then you can too. It’s not only me with one example – I’ve seen it while coaching others. Go and learn how to communicate better/more effectively even if you do not suffer from anxiety – it is the best investment of your time and energy ever made. Whether you’re a CEO, a freelancer, artist, scientist, janitor or student – you have to communicate with others. There is no avoiding the weather – be prepared. Use books, workshops, training in your workplace, internet, my blog, or send me an email with questions if you consider it a good idea (;)). Demand evidence, analyze the logic behind proposed ideas, call the bullshit when it’s bullshit – absorb knowledge and skills in hardcore, Charisma Workshop style!
– Przemek Kucia aka That Polish Guy Who Tries To Encourage Others And Himself To Learn As Much As It Is Possible And Still Thinks It Will Be Too Little!