I Grew Up Painfully Shy — These 5 Habits Slowly Built My Confidence

Start by lifting other people up

Michael Thompson
SIMPLE

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In old family photos, I’m easy to spot: I’m either hiding behind a soccer ball or latched tightly onto my mom or dad.

I was terrified of meeting new people as a kid. Throw in the fact I stuttered, had coke-bottle glasses (think Ralphy from The Christmas Story except with paralyzing acne), moved every year or two for my dad’s job, and I can’t remember a day when I didn’t have to wipe the sweat off my hands before shaking someone else’s.

If you’d told me I’d later end up moving to new countries on my own and helping people improve their confidence, communication skills, and relationships for a living, I probably wouldn’t have liked you very much. But that’s exactly what happened.

Like most positive change that takes place, this didn’t happen overnight and it definitely wasn’t always fun. By slowly pushing myself, however, I eventually got comfortable in my own skin. Out of all the hacks, tips, and tricks I’ve tried, the five habits below have paid the biggest dividends.

1. Give confidence to others

“Stand like an alpha!” “Project your voice!” “Just take the jump, Johnny!” In certain situations, this typical advice can be beneficial…

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Michael Thompson
SIMPLE

Co-creator of two cool kids • Storytelling Coach •.Fast Co., Insider, Forbes • Free storytelling guide here: https://bit.ly/3h1KZeT