Unfortunately, I have been gifted with the horrible trait of shyness. It is so difficult for me to work up the nerve to strike up conversations with strangers, which makes it very hard for me to make friends.

Now I’m not one of those people who are always shy and never talk. Once I’m comfortable around people, I actually get very loud and talkative. But it’s very difficult for me to meet new people since I don’t initiate the conversation 95% of the time. It is always the other person (The other 5% is when I’m feeling particularly confident or daring, I happen to notice something really cute the other person is wearing and compliment them, or I’m introduced to them by another friend). Now, while I’m glad that other people try to get to know me (otherwise I’d never have friends), I really wish that sometimes I wasn’t so darn shy and could speak easily with people because I’m generally a friendly person and love making new friends. It’s always the initial steps into a gradual friendship that get me.

It’s even worse now that I’m in college. I know practically NO ONE here, unlike high school were some of my middle school friends were as well. And since everybody in college has a different class schedule, none of my former classmates are in any of my other classes (and it doesn’t help that its community college so I will probably be with these people for only this semester). I was also afraid that all college kids were the kind of kids that I wouldn’t be able to relate to or be friends with, as I’m the youngest in all my classes.

But after a few days went by, I realized that it’s actually not that hard to make friends. After arguing with myself in my head and gathering up my courage to talk to people, I found that most people are generally nice and easy to talk to. And me being so young doesn’t hinder me in making friends as much as I thought it would. In fact, some people were shocked to learn I was so young and they told me that I don’t give off the impression of being fresh out of high school. (Apparently, I don’t talk like a kid my age should).

Now that I feel much more confident in talking to people, I’m gradually getting over my shyness. Of course, I will always have those “first-day-of-school” jitters and worries, but I know now that if I just take a chance and talk to people, chances are we’ll become friends.

Unless that person happens to be as shy as me because it is very¬†difficult for two shy people to talk to each other for any length of time. I have realized this when trying to befriend the (really cute) guy sitting next to me in art. He is the epitome of a shy guy (he won’t talk at all unless you talk to him first), and it always bothers me that I work up the nerve to talk to him, just so that our conversation will easily die within two sentences. But I haven’t given up, and I find that trying to hold a conversation with him has actually helped a bit in getting over my shyness as I am usually the one who has to initiate conversation. So maybe this will be good for me in getting rid of my cursed shyness. Now if only I had the guts to let him know how adorable I find him.

But I guess that’s another social aspect I’ll have to work on. Talking to girls is easy for me as I can relate to most girls on just about anything if I try. But guys? Especially guys I find cute? They’re a whole other story. Talking to them is like me trying to speak Latin fluently: very, very difficult.

But hey, if I can get over my shyness with strangers, I can eventually get over my shyness with guys, right?

Photo courtesy of peyri via Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0).