How To Overcome Shyness

If it’s one aspect of game that is heavily emphasized by the community is the approach part of game. After all, if you can’t even establish contact with a desirable female, how would you expect to move on to physical escalation, texting, dating, and having sex with her? I will touch on how to develop mental fortitude and how to overcome shyness can be applied to other areas of your social life as well.

How To Overcome Shyness: It really just is Arousal

Few realize that approach anxiety is not restricted to approaching alone; in fact, a better term for it would be pre-action arousal. I choose the word arousal because some people don’t experience anxiety but excitement, but the symptoms are the same: heightened awareness, increased heart rate, and colder extremities.

Whether you are about to approach the girl, make out with her, or pull her to your place; every time you have to take action–that comes with risk–you will experience PAA.

The good news is that it becomes more manageable with experience. The first time is always the hardest, but through repeated action and feedback, the bridge becomes stronger and sturdier and crossing it gets easier. You just need to gradually expose yourself to the social situations that make you uncomfortable.

But it’s the first that is always a problem. It can refer to the first approach ever; or maybe just the first approach of the day. You feel that insane inertia and can’t approach. You give yourself excuses, resting on your past successes. “I had three numbers from yesterday so I think I’ll chill on the approaching today.” Or, “Pick up is not really for me. I am not extroverted/socially adept/in state. I just need to get rich and ripped and girls will flock to me.”

The moment you realize this, it’s time to snap out of it. Stop the excuses and start pushing through the bullshit.

How To Overcome Shyness: Pleasure in pain

Without passion, you will not be motivated to endure through failures and rejections. Whether it’s a passion for women, self-improvement, or just the act of pushing beyond your comfort zone, love it. Love every aspect of it.

Find pleasure in the pain. As cliche as it sounds, failure is a great teacher. Pain is a characteristic of growth. But you should not accept it passively. Adopt an active role in your growth. Find the lessons in your failure, don’t just let it slide by without tearing it apart and finding out where you went wrong and then taking steps to prevent it from happening again. Practice active learning and develop the craftsman mindset.

How To Overcome Shyness: Trust/Love the process

Don’t be eager for results. They will come if you apply the right actions and attitudes. If you try to find shortcuts and magic bullets, you may find them, but they will leave as easy as they came.

The thing about hard work is that it builds character in tough times. If you put in two years of effort into learning just how to approach a girl, get her number, take her out, pull her back to your place and seal the deal, you probably will be able to do it almost anytime very easily, compared to the guy uses alcohol to get the same bravado.

Which version of game is more likely to stick in the long run? Which version of game can be translated to other areas of life such as risk taking in business, and pushing yourself in the gym? Alcohol or dedication?

How To Overcome Shyness: Master your fate

It is important as a man to exert your will on your surroundings. It means to take an active involvement in everything that happens. Nothing happens “to you”, but you are the engineer of your destiny. You approach girls because you are exerting your will onto the girl.

Every action has a purpose; it’s intentional. To be active is to be willing to risk your safety–to put yourself in harm’s way. To face perceived danger. As Walter White puts it, “(You are) not in danger; (you are) the danger.”

Persistence to constantly cross the scratch lines and jump into the fight when it’s time to fight. It’s not just about sizing up your fears. You can beat your chest, you can bare your teeth, you can growl, but it’s all empty to the one who throws the actual punch.

Likewise in game, you can talk theory all day. But it is the one who actually experiences what it’s like to talk to a real life woman–what it’s like to grab a woman and make out with her–that knows game.

Stop letting your fears or your complacency prevent action. Fucking take it. Man the fuck up: jump into the deep end and keep swimming towards the finish line.

Happy new year. And may we keep to our resolutions.

*****

How To Overcome Shyness THROUGH TAKING ACTION

How To Overcome Shyness: REALIZE YOU ARE NOT ALONE

Approach anxiety is something that every guy faces when he first decides to take action and approach a girl. The nervous tingly sensation in your body. You suddenly become hyper-aware of your internal states–your heart beats faster, your mouth goes dry, your hands start shaking, your knees go weak. You tune out peripheral stimuli and focus on the girl. Your mind tells you to move; but it tells you not to at the same time. Visions of possible failure plays in your mind. You can’t think of anything else. You hear your buddy telling you to go, but your feet just won’t move. Read on to learn how to overcome shyness through taking action.

I’ve been there. Everyone–well, almost–I know who has approached a girl on the street has been there. You might think that this a problem that is uniquely yours; an insurmountable obstacle that requires some sort of anxiety-relieving medication to overcome. Guess what, it’s not. It really is not. That being said, it still is one of the reasons why guys don’t even take action in the first place. They know at the back of their mind that they will not be able to approach a girl confidently, and they avoid this pain by not trying at all. They give tons of excuses as to why it is not their personality to do so, or how pick up doesn’t work in Singapore.

I’ve heard every excuse in the book, met guys who ask for my help but literally shut down the moment I ask them to go talk to the average looking girl standing by the pillar.

How To Overcome Shyness: MY EXPERIENCE WITH APPROACH ANXIETY

I, too, was one of those guys who gave excuses not to approach when I knew I had to. It took me some months to finally strip the self-delusion and adopt a “no excuses” manner of gaming. Some call it the x-second rule, I call it the “no excuses method” (opening the girl before I can finish saying the phrase “no excuses”).

But even so, I realized that it was not the best way. You can destroy the barriers in your mind, but you will likely not have enough willpower left to continue a conversation after a few approaches. Each time you force yourself to approach, you are depleting a finite, tangible resource.

I spent the next year experimenting with different methods of eliminating approach anxiety once and for all–and eventually I did overcome it through sheer desensitization. However, for a period of time I lost all motivation to approach, not because of fear but because I no longer had any emotional response to approaching a girl. It just became a routine for me where I would walk up, deliver the compliment, make her laugh, set the date, and get the number. I could not see the joy in approaching anymore–or so I thought.

Occasionally there would be a dimepiece (perfect 10) that would pass by and I would let her go by without approaching her at all. I hadn’t lost my approach anxiety after all! Rather, I became desensitized towards approaching unremarkable girls. I merely raised my threshold of arousal. This was not the direction that I wanted to develop in. I went out less frequently and spent more time reflecting on how I could climb out of this hole that I dug myself into. My friends who didn’t do pickup thought I was crazy. Why would I not be happy that I don’t feel anxiety when approaching a girl?

I knew there was a problem, but I didn’t know what it was specifically.

Then a revelation dawned upon me. It was true that my approach anxiety hadn’t entirely disappeared. And it was a good thing. After not approaching for two weeks, I felt myself giving excuses all over again. “This time”, I told myself, “I’m going to try something different.” Rather than exercise strength of will to overcome the mental barrier that left my energy depleted, I tried reframing the experience. I built a new “system” and mindset to pickup–one that is less taxing on my mind. I have not heard this approach to anxiety being discussed in the community thus far–at least not anyone on my radar. The idea is still novel.

I am confident it will bring a new paradigm to game and help anyone who wants to start get use their fear to start approaching. Approach anxiety is not your enemy; it only is if you adopt an ineffective mindset.

Here are the five ways approach anxiety is to your advantage:

How To Overcome Shyness: KNOW THAT REGRET IS WORSE THAN REJECTION

This may seem obvious to some, but most guys don’t really believe this in their core. Perhaps some smart ass will disagree. It doesn’t matter. Regret is a useless emotion. You may think that it will spur you on to grab the next opportunity, but really, it doesn’t. Every time a guy says “I’ll approach the next girl I see/you point out”, they almost always don’t. Instead of living in the past (regret) or future (next time), focus on what you can do now. Rejection is infinitely better than regret without a doubt. I’ve written articles extolling the virtues of failure over success and failure over inaction.

Rejection you can learn from; regret is delusional. I have never met a guy more miserable at getting rejected than one who regrets not approaching. Most of the time when a guy gets rejected and comes back to me for feedback, he usually comes with a very motivated attitude, happy that he did the approach, and is usually excited to go again. I’ve seen this; I’ve felt this. Rejection is not as bad as you think it is. Instead of resisting rejection, try to reframe the emotions.

How To Overcome Shyness: APPROACH ANXIETY IS REALLY JUST AROUSAL

Approach anxiety is scary because you think of it that way. On an objective level, your body is just experiencing certain effects in response to an imaginary stimuli (i.e., you haven’t approached, but your body anticipates the fear). Rather than call it anxiety, I like to call it arousal. It is more neutral, and it frames the symptoms (increased heart rate, hyper-awareness, etc) in a manageable way. Even better, call it approach excitement. Removing the mental states from the two emotions, the physical indicators for both are exactly the same. “Fear versus excitement” then boils down to “unknown versus known”. We fear the unknown, and get excited if we anticipate good things.

One way (which is the old way) is to approach and then focus on the good outcomes and use the good experience to inform your beliefs. This requires a lot of reference experience and takes a toll on you. Another way is to focus on the positive outcomes you have experienced–they can be second-hand experiences. For example, you’ve seen someone else approach and it went well, or you hear from an actual girl that she likes being approached and so you no longer feel the anxiety. Reframing your mental states helps shape your beliefs associated with the physical state. You are essentially attaching good emotions to the physiological symptoms.

How To Overcome Shyness: MISATTRIBUTION OF AROUSAL

Misattribution of arousal is a psychological phenomenon that occurs when we mistakenly assume the cause of our arousal (in the case of the experiment, the arousal is fear). This tends to take on a sexual nature because our brains prefer attributing the source of arousal to a person rather than to a situation. Being sexually stimulated by the girl you are talking to does help. It strengthens your intent and gives authenticity to a direct approach. If you are sexually aroused by a girl and you go up and complement her on her fashion sense, you will be congruent in your presentation of self and will be less likely to make the girl wary of you.

Misattribution of arousal is not a bad thing. It is something that occurs on a subconscious level that you can use to your advantage in approaching.

How To Overcome Shyness: YOU WILL SEEM MORE AUTHENTIC

This is why I had a problem with a lack of approach anxiety–or arousal. Approaching a girl no longer made me feel anything, and thus I lacked the authenticity and congruence that was there before. Girls have an innate sixth sense for these kinds of things. If they don’t feel that you are genuine or congruent, they will become wary. Also, she will mirror your emotional states back to you. If you are afraid, she will feel afraid as well. If you are excited, she will feel excited. If you are apathetic, she will feel apathetic as well.

Different girls respond well to different types of game. While it is hard to gauge what type of approach you should use, you should know how to adapt. Or at least try out different approaches. For confident girls who look like they like to have fun, I usually go in with a strong, high energy, fun approach. For the shy girls I lower my intensity and actually intentionally feel awkward to mirror her emotions. For the girls that look domineering and masculine, a weak approach might be useful because these girls respond to dominating interactions. If they feel in control, they would be more likely to stop and entertain you. But I usually avoid them.

My default approach is sprinkled with a little bit of anxiety to make the girl feel less threatened. If I come off too smooth she might be wary of my charm. If I come off to afraid she will not feel dem ‘gina tingles. It is a fine balance where I show that it’s not something I do very often but yet I am confident enough to talk to her. My opening line, for example, would be: “Hi. I know this is random but I was over there with my friends and you walked by and something told me I had to come over and meet you. I really like your style and wanted to see whether your personality matches it.”

What is important is not the words, but the tone of voice and body language used. The magic is in the subtleties.

How To Overcome Shyness: FIND YOUR MOTIVATION

Lastly, perhaps most importantly, you have to find what motivates you if you want to know how to overcome shyness. If you take the above mindsets to pickup, there is no need to approach any girls for practice. I used to come from the camp of approaching every girl I see. It not only is tiring, but when a girl you don’t care for doesn’t reply you or rejects you–it feels worse. Like Jim Carrey said, “

[Y]ou can fail at something you don’t want, so you might as well take a chance doing what you love.”

In the same vein, it is much better to approach girls that you want to. But don’t let yourself be overrun by rationalizations. Be honest with yourself. Find your motivations. Perhaps it’s the thought that the next girl might be your future girlfriend. Or perhaps you are motivated by competition with your bros. Or even competition with yourself. Or curiosity.

Whatever motivates you: capitalize on it. Use that drive to keep you going. Forcing yourself to do what you hate (e.g., approaching girls when your entire body is resisting it, or approaching unremarkable girls) is one of the key reasons why most guys quit. They fail to see the fun and the excitement in game. Don’t make the same mistake.

If you want to be in it for the long run, you have to learn how to enjoy yourself.

*P. S. This article is should not be taken as a substitute for medical advice. If you feel that you need professional help, don’t be ashamed to seek it out. Ultimately, learning how to overcome shyness through taking action is only one out of many ways.

If you found this post useful, great! But all that knowledge means nothing until you put it into action. Stop procrasturbating and start taking action...first by being a part of our closed-doors, roundtable of elite players in Singapore. Click here to see how you can get access to The Social Gym and start working your social muscles.
J Machiavelli

J Machiavelli

Headmaster and founder of The Social Gym, an inner circle of elite players who aim to take over the world one date at a time.
J Machiavelli