Tuesday 20 February 2018


Reader Catrin hates speaking out in class... HONEY TANBERRY has some words of wisdom to help her through!

Catrin says:
I’ve never been the most talkative person but recently I’ve been finding it really embarrassing to talk in front of everyone. When the teacher calls my name, my mind just goes blank and then other kids start to laugh. I know the answers and my grades are fine so why can’t I show it? The worst is when we're asked to do a slideshow in front of everyone or if we're at assembly. People must think I'm stupid. Am I just shy or is there something wrong with me?

Honey says:
You won't believe this, but I was shy once, back in Year Seven. I was still quite upset about Mum and Dad splitting up and the last thing I wanted was to attract attention at school - so I totally understand about not enjoying speaking up in class. What changed? I went off the rails a bit and stopped caring what people thought, and I DON'T recommend that to you... but you CAN step back a little and try to see the bigger picture. As a teen, your own feelings can seem so big and so important that it's hard to think of anything else - you're so concerned with not making a fool of yourself in front of others that it becomes a huge issue, and you get anxious, tongue-tied, hot and bothered. The truth is, everyone else is also wrapped up in themselves... they're not too worried about what you do or say, unless you draw attention to yourself by showing your fear and anxiety.

How do you get past the shyness? It can help to bluff your way through... act as though you're confident. Slowly, things will ease up, and each time you survive a potentially awkward moment you can congratulate yourself on not letting the shyness win. Most of us can manage this for a short time. Slideshows are a pain... not many people enjoy giving them, but pick a subject you love and focus on getting your message across. Alternatively, get sneaky and record a soundtrack of words and music to accompany your images... you might just get away with it! Being shy is natural for many of us, but it doesn't have to be a label for life, and it definitely doesn't mean there's anything wrong with you, I promise! You're just human... like us all!

Cathy says:
Good advice from Honey - what would YOU add to it? COMMENT BELOW to have YOUR say!

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