Somehow, almost everyone around you has no problem with it. You see them flirting and laughing away like it's no big deal. But for you, the thought of approaching someone you're into literally paralyzes you. And dates? Let's not even get started. Luckily, there are some ways you can get over it that don't involve getting blackout drunk and embarrassing yourself.
1. It's All in the Eyes
The eyes are a window to the soul for a reason. If the act of going up to someone and saying "hey" makes you shudder with fear, try just holding their gaze for a couple of seconds. It's a quick, effortless way of gaging someone's interest in you. Plus, it can be pretty fun once you throw a few smiles in. See if you can turn it into a little game. Go back and forth a bit. Before you know it, they'll be coming up to say "Hey" to you.
2. Let Your Body Language Speak for You
80% of communication is non-verbal. Score. So take a look at how you're standing or sitting during your dates. Are you facing your date with crossed legs and folded arms? Or is your body language open, expressing your interest? Try to keep your posture straight, too. It'll do wonders for your confidence, or at the very least make you look the part.
As a shy person, you might also have a tendency to keep your jacket and raincoat on in the middle of a hot and stuffy bar. However, if you want to connect, you'll have to take all of that off. Don't be afraid to get yourself comfortable so you can really get comfortable.
3. Find Common Ground
When you're in the early stages of getting to know someone, shyness is pretty normal. It's nothing you need to beat yourself up over. It only starts to become a problem if you can't get past the point of being strangers. If you do find yourself drifting into that never-to-become-friends zone, never fear! There is an easy solution. Start by asking questions. Lots of them. People love to talk about themselves. It can even make them more into you. Once you find out your shared interests - whether it's cooking or bungee jumping - that's when your confidence and flirting skills can slide their way into the conversation.
4. Compliments Go for Miles
Your first instinct when someone gives you a compliment might be to reject it. You'll come up with any excuse to completely refute their statement. Drown out that self-criticism and just say "Thank you." You can look away and blush, but just let them know you've taken the compliment and that you appreciate it.
Once you've done that, you can move onto bigger and better things, like (drumroll please) giving back a compliment. However, don't just pay him a compliment just for the sake of it. Find something you genuinely enjoy and make sure he knows it. You'll leave him glowing for days.
5. Find Your Good Luck Charm
Find a magic item in your room or your closet to keep with you during times you know you'll be flirting. Whether it's a favorite pair of shoes, a bracelet or a pair of earrings, everyone's got one. All it takes is that extra somethin' to you feel beautiful. Perhaps your lucky charm will give you the confidence you need to go forth and flirt confidently with that cute guy across the hall.
At the end of the day, shyness is a natural, if not charming trait. If you're feeling stuck in it, these steps might be the way to go.