I am shy.
No, really. I am.
I find it very hard to go up to people I don’t know and start a conversation. When I was in business for myself I had to go to these marketing/networking functions to try to drum up business and I would often find myself quietly walking around hoping and wishing someone would come up to me and start a conversation. I’d often leave without having talked to a single person. If someone would start a conversation with me, then I was totally fine. Ice broken. Friends forever.
Whenever possible I take someone with me to a functions where I don’t know anyone. Just recently I took my 13 and 15 year olds with me to a non-profit event. I knew the organizers, but I knew they would be busy so I wouldn’t be able to do my typical stick-like-glue-to-your-side-so-I don’t-have-to-be-alone thing.
They are shy too, so the three of us sat in a corner and talked all evening 😀
I recently realized that this shyness comes off as a bit of snobbery. Especially if one minute I am chatting like crazy with someone I know and the next minute I am hiding in a corner trying to look suave. I suppose the people I don’t chat with think I’m avoiding them?
The moral of this story: If you see me at a party or some sort of event and I don’t know you, come on over and chat. We’ll be BFFs, I promise.