You can be an assertive, confident introvert. Here’s how.
Think for a moment…
Do you ever, as an introverted man, feel like your quiet nature is sometimes misunderstood by others?
Do you want to…
- speak up for yourself more,
- boldly ask women out,
- go on more dates, or
- attend more social gatherings
… yet feel uncomfortable doing those things?
Happily, today’s post is just for you!
We’ll be talking about how you can do every one of those things (and more!) and still remain true to who you are.
Before we jump in, however, let’s take a step back.
Why, as an introvert, might you think you need to get out of your shell?
When you’re an introvert, the world can sometimes feel like it was designed by extroverts, for extroverts.
You may regularly see images of men being the “life of the party,” or you might read advice that encourages you to simply “go for it” and approach women in the gym (for an “introvert-friendly” guide on how to do this, check out this blog post).
All of this is often easier said than done, yet it may cause you to feel tempted to change aspects of yourself in order to “get out of your shell.”
Happily, it is completely possible to develop the powerful, confident, and assertive sides of yourself and keep the introverted qualities you know and love.
Now, let’s dive in.
First, let’s define what we’re talking about.
Often, an introverted man will come across the phrase “get out of your shell” when he is searching for advice on things like dating and approaching women.
If you like being an introvert and spending time by yourself, you might pause at the thought of someone telling you to change your ways just to fit in.
Indeed, introverts have so many wonderful, attractive qualities and can be truly great friends and partners. Of course you want to hang on to those aspects of yourself!
However, introverted men like you (along with every other person in the world!) tend to share a few qualities they wish they could improve upon. For example, you may want to learn how to…
- feel less shy in social situations,
- become more assertive with their needs, or
- get comfortable taking part in fun activities like parties or festivals.
When you feel limited or constrained from doing the things in life that you would really like to do, that is the shell we are referring to in this post.
You can break through that shell and go through your days full of robust, assertive confidence and still return to your peaceful introverted nature curled up with a good book at home when it suits you.
There is no need to change who you are at heart; the goal is simply to address the things you feel are limiting you from living your best life.
So, how do you do this?
Take one actionable step at a time.
Essentially, to get out of your shell is to work through that feeling of unease that holds you back from doing something you’d like to do.
Perhaps the best way to overcome your anxiety about doing a certain thing is to do that thing anyway, live through the process, and afterward realize that it wasn’t so bad after all.
In psychology terms, they call that method “exposure therapy.” It’s a highly effective way of proving to yourself that you’re stronger than you think you are.
Every time you look your worries square in the face and don’t let them stop you, you raise your threshold for discomfort just a little bit. You also learn piece by tiny piece that you are way more capable than you ever gave yourself credit for.
So, what’s the best way to get started?
Try one new thing that scares you every week. Just one!
After you’ve done your “scary thing” for the week, you can rest assured that you have made some great progress, and with that well-earned comfort, you can feel great about returning to your quiet ways for a few days.
Your personal list of “scary things” could look very different from someone else’s. For the purposes of this post, we’ll use the example of confronting general social anxiety. This is a challenge many introverted men experience, and one that can absolutely be overcome with practice and exposure.
Things you can do to confront your social anxiety head-on might include…
- walking up to an open, approachable stranger and beginning a conversation,
- making eye contact and smiling at people you pass in the grocery store,
- asking a woman out,
- going on a date,
- inviting some acquaintances (beyond close friends!) to have lunch or drinks,
- cold-calling some new clients to boost your business,
- popping into a coworker’s office just to chat, or
- going to an archery or painting class where you don’t know anyone.
Personalize that list until it’s full of items you feel inspired to confront. The items should be clear, definitive actions you can take that currently make you feel uncomfortable.
The goal is to push your boundaries, bit by tiny bit, every single week.
Write or talk it out.
Often, the very act of seeking out a therapist, confiding deeply in a friend, or keeping a journal is one of those “scary things” you may have always wanted to do. Now is your chance to face that particular challenge while you’re on a roll.
The goal here is to open yourself up and share every last detail until you understand how your mind works and what truly makes you tick. When you understand your own emotions and behaviors, you begin to realize what actions you need to take in order to heal, improve, and get stronger.
Of course, this takes time. Ideally, commit to this process for at least three months before you decide whether it’s helping. Give yourself much, much longer than that to make real and lasting progress.
While therapy and journaling can often wander to wherever your mind needs them to go, there is one key thing you can do to center and keep yourself on track:
As you work your way through your list of boundary-pushing actions, keep a list of all the items you complete.
That way, you can look back at your progress in a few months and realize, “Wow, it doesn’t faze me at all to stop by Jen’s office and say hi during lunch anymore!”
Being able to look back on how far you have come is one of the most effective and powerful ways to give yourself the boost to keep going. Progress begets motivation.
To effectively get out of your shell and stay out of it over the long-term, give yourself the recognition and appreciation for all of those baby steps along the way.
Conclusion on how to get out of your shell while staying introverted:
Being an introvert can be an awesome experience. It’s even better when you feel capable and confident in yourself.
Today’s post explained how you can achieve exactly that by…
- understanding the difference between being a healthy, well-rounded introvert versus dealing with social anxiety or other limiting factors,
- pushing your boundaries gradually with one challenging task every week, and
- examining yourself deeply through therapy, journaling, or confiding in a friend as you keep long-term track of your progress.
Additionally, be sure to download our free ebook, “Why PUA Doesn’t Work for Introverts & What Works Instead.” It not only shows you how to work on the things you’d like to improve about yourself, it also explains why many of the traits you already have are extremely attractive and effective.
Perhaps you feel like your “shell” is extra robust and you could use some help making the first cracks. In that case, sign up for our Magnetic Confidence program. You’ll learn how to develop and enforce healthy boundaries, exude positive energy, and attract relationship-oriented women into your life. Check it out here.