"Don't be shy!"
That's what people tell me if I ask for advice about how to make living on campus an easier transition to make. On August 26th I'll be moving in on campus. I'll be five hours away from everything that I know, and I know it's going to take me a bit before I'm comfortable being there. And so I ask people how to make it less difficult being away from home, and it's always the same. Always "Don't be shy!"
But I've ALWAYS been shy. Since I was a little kid, in daycare! (Well, I don't know if you'd really call it daycare.. My mom watched other people's kids at our house. So I got to stay home with my mom, and other kids were just there.) But anyway. I've always been painfully, embarrassingly shy. And truth be told, I hate it. But I'm so uncomfortable and awkward around people I don't know.
I am trying to not be so shy.
At Columbia-Greene, I was a tutor. I had to talk to people I didn't know. Well, I didn't know people at first, but as the semester went on, I got to know them. I got to know the people I was tutoring. I got to know some of the other tutors.
I talked to people in my classes, especially my creative writing class and my psych classes, because I loved those classes. Those classes were the ones I felt confident and safe and everything in. Maybe it was the teachers. Maybe it was just the people in the classes. Whatever it was, I talked to people in those classes. I made friends in those classes.
I took a Public Communication class. I gave the speeches in that class, no problem. Well, I made it look like no problem, anyway. I was so nervous and freaked out every time I had to be in front of the class. I rehearsed my speeches until I knew them forwards and backwards. I could say them from memory, without even looking at my notes, yet I still brought the notes up with me. I made friends in that class. We hung out after class, talking about our dislike of having to give speeches.
Probably the biggest thing I did to try to get over being so shy? I played frisbee. There seems to be something about college kids that draws them to those flying disks. It was so easy to be with people like that. I just had to find one person to toss the frisbee around with, and sure enough more people would join, and we'd eventually have 6 or 8 or 10 people tossing the frisbee around. We had fun. I loved it.
But I'm still shy around new people. I can't just jump into a new scene seamlessly like some people seem to be able to do. And I hate that about me.
So I'm asking for help. This is me, typing up a blog post, asking whoever is reading to help me. HOW can I be less shy? How can I make moving in at campus easier, less terrifying? (And please, please, please, don't just say to be less shy.)