Think You’re Too Shy to Date? 4 Things You Need to Know

Meeting new people can be intimidating – especially for those of us who are shy and tend toward introversion. A quick look at our more extroverted acquaintances can leave us feeling jealous or even hopeless. We think that we could never be that outgoing,

There is no need to feel hopeless, though. Your shyness or anxiety in social situations don’t make dating impossible! There is still plenty of hope for your romantic life. Here are four ways to improve your outlook when it feels like a dating life and your shyness aren’t compatible.

1. Be honest with yourself

honest with yourself

Begin with a good, honest self-assessment. Are you introverted and shy because of your personality? That’s perfectly normal. But there might also be an insecurity of one kind or another that makes your shyness feel more crippling.

Ask yourself if you are hurting from rejections in the past. Do you have a lack of confidence in your physical appearance? Is there a specific characteristic that you think hurts your interactions with others? Spend time in reflection and prayer to dig down and see if there are deeper roots to why you are shy.

Sometimes, locating the things that cause you to lose confidence can help you pinpoint things to be proactive about. If you find that some of your insecurities stem from areas you can work on, try to develop a game plan. Even more general self-improvement goals might help improve your confidence. You might try things like going to the gym, teaching yourself another language, or learning a new skill you’ve always admired.

2. Start small and yield big results

Start small and yield big results

While identifying problem areas and trying to plan out ideas for self-improvement can definitely help the issue, it doesn’t mean that your dating life will suddenly seem easy and totally non-intimidating.

You might still find yourself overwhelmed at the thought of embarking on an evening out alone with someone you barely know. That’s not to mention the idea of approaching someone to ask for a date! If this is the case, you might try to build practice and confidence by working on being more outgoing in your everyday life. 

Now I know (personally, because I’ve often felt this way…) that it can feel intimidating and even pointless to try talking to strangers for no apparent reason. It’s a lot easier to go to the self-checkout at the grocery store. It’s not too challenging to give a brief, “Fine,” what that barista asks how your day is going. It’s easy to pull out your phone whenever there’s a possibility someone will try to make small talk.

Don’t do these things. I mean, you can, but they won’t be helpful when you’re trying build your social skills and feel less intimidated by dating.

Read more: 12 Date Ideas for Introverts That Will Make You Want a Second Date

Try to challenge yourself. Make a goal of talking to one person (or two, or three!) that you don’t know everyday (and that monosyllabic answer about your day doesn’t count). Maybe even try joining a social activity of some kind that will force you to be more outgoing. Try a softball or bowling league if your job has something like that, or maybe a ministry at your parish would be the ticket. Anything that feels like a small push outside your comfort zone can really help get you in the habit of talking with others. And the more it becomes a habit, the less you should feel intimidated at the thought of dating.

3. Realize that everyone (even those of us who are happy!) can benefit from therapy

benefit from therapy

If you struggle with shyness in what seems like a pretty big way, there is a real possibility that counseling could help.

It’s easy to think that therapy is for people who are messed up, not for us. But the reality is that social anxiety is something counselors and therapists help people through all the time. Depending on the severity of your struggles with it, counseling might be just what you need.

Read more: An Introvert’s Guide to Navigating the Dating World

A trained counselor can help give you tools for overcoming negative self-talk. They can help you if you’re having trouble finding the root of your insecurity. If you’re feeling hopeless or depressed over the matter, talking it out with a professional might help you in ways that nothing else can.

4. Pray for help with your struggle

Pray for help with struggle

I absolutely do not think that praying for help will automatically make your shyness disappear and make dating a breeze. However, like all struggles, asking God to assist you will definitely help.

Don’t be afraid to be specific. Ask Him to give you the strength to overcome any feelings of hopelessness you might be having. Ask Him to help you find a great therapist to help you through this, if that’s what you need. Try asking God to help specifically in the area of self-confidence.

Try meditating on God’s love for you, on how He created you in His image and likeness. But, most importantly, keep in mind that God has a plan for your life and wants you to find happiness.