If you have ended up here after Googling ‘dating tips for shy guys’, don’t worry, you are not alone; dating feels especially hard now, with the popularity of dating apps, and unrealistic expectations due to social media. You can easily feel like you may as well call it quits and settle down with a dog, and if you suffer from shyness. The whole idea of dating can feel quite impossible.
But don’t give up just yet.
It is far more common than people think for men to be shy. Many will be scrambling around searching for dating tips for shy guys before a night out, just some are better at hiding it than others; so if you have been in romantic situations that didn’t work out as you had hoped, or you have been on dates that have been a painful few hours of awkward silence because you can’t find the words to say due to shyness, then we are here to help. It’s not a simple fix, and it will take a lot of work and courage on your part, but it is, by all means, doable. We have compiled a list of the best dating tips for shy guys that we can give, in order to help you combat your fears, grow your confidence, and sweep your next date off their feet.
Forget Past Experiences
In order to move forward, you can not look back; it is so easy to dwell on your past experiences of awkward encounters or rejections. But that will do nothing for you, except make the next occasion worse. Do not overthink your past ‘failures’. If you do, you will be so focused on what has gone wrong, that you will be setting your next date up for disaster before it has even begun. It is the same principle with all things that require mental strength; if a football player spends three hours before the game thinking about the bad throws he played during the last game, then he is already setting himself up to do it again. So, give yourself this break, and wipe out all memories of previous dates. Stop thinking about all the things you should have said, all the things you wish you had not said. Or the feelings you experience when the night ended with you never seeing them again, this is a new beginning and you must treat it as such.
Women Are Just People
Take a moment to think of all the people you speak to on a daily basis. Like your work colleges, your boss, your mum, the barista at a coffee shop, the server in the movie theatre; day-to-day you will speak to a lot of people. How many times do you feel uncomfortable or sheepish during these times? Most likely, not very often, they are just people, right? Well, this is exactly how you need to view your date, as just another person. Someone just like you. You might be reading an article about dating tips for shy guys, but how do you know she hasn’t been looking up dating tips for shy women?
Remember that the woman you date with is just a person. She is no different than the woman who gave you your coffee order this morning or the woman who stopped you in the street to ask for directions. Stop letting your romantic interest interfere, and start acting and reacting how you would with everybody else.
Don’t Worry About Your Appearance
Needless to say, there are always exceptions, but in general, dismiss everything you have seen on TV and in the movies about what physical features women want in a man. Life isn’t a Hollywood production, and even most women scoff at the endless number of films where the beautiful woman ends up with the handsome man. Unfortunately, because of this constant barrage of nonsense that we see on our screens, far too many men have come to believe that they are not handsome enough, or their body isn’t good enough. Please stop this thinking right now. While you cannot actually go out and survey regular women in the street, if you could, you might just be surprised by the results. I’m sure you have heard it a hundred times before, but women are not visual. They don’t notice nor focus on physical features half as much as men do; of course, a woman will want to have an attraction to her partner, in the same way that men do. But that attraction will come from your personality much more than from your face or body.
If you feel comfortable asking women in your family, or you have women in your social circle, it is worth having this conversation with them. Just as an assurance for you that generally, women don’t care that you haven’t been to the gym in a year. They don’t care that you don’t have a six-pack or are not an Instagram model. Your face doesn’t have to be perfectly symmetrical with a razor-sharp jawline. Trust me, throw on a nice shirt and you are good to go.
Date In A Comfortable Environment
It is pretty standard that dates start out in coffee shops or dinner. but a great way to help with shyness on your date, is to have the date in an environment that you are comfortable in. If possible, arrange the date to take place somewhere that you feel relaxed. Maybe in your spare time, you enjoy hiking, surfing, or going to the batting cages. So use that as the date location; how can you let your shyness override you when you are doing something that you love to do. It is also a perfect way to have fun with her. She will be excited to tell her friends about this guy who she went on a date with. Who arranged something different than sitting in a coffee shop for a few hours. And if she is on the same page as you hobbies-wise, she will be excited to see you again.
This is true and helpful with both extrovert friends and extrovert dates. Often, people who experience shyness or are more introvert need to be around extroverts in order to help coax them out of their comfort zone. So, try and hang out more with outgoing people and let some of their energy rub off on you, over time you will find yourself becoming a little more like them, even if it is just little by little. When it comes to dating don’t think because you are shy, that it is good for you to try and match with someone equally shy, the idea that you can bond and connect over this feeling will not work how you think it will, instead you will be sitting in silence making small talk, with you both wishing to be anywhere else. You need balance, therefore, you need someone who is the opposite of you, go on a date with someone who is uninhibited, someone that you normally think would not be able to be around a guy who is more on the sheepish side; there can’t be any clockwatching or fake laughs with a person who is unreserved, they won’t let it happen. Extroverts like to be with introverts so they are not always fighting to be the loudest or the center of attention, and since introverts are happy to let these types of people take the lead, they can be some of the best friends and the most suitable romantic partner for you.
Pretend To Have Confidence
Wing it, wing it, wing it, this can not be stressed enough. We have all had moments in life where we have had to improvise; perhaps there has been a presentation that you completely forgot about and had to make it up on the spot. Or maybe a job interview where they have asked you an unexpected question but you said what they wanted to hear as if it were true and you ended up getting the job. There are a whole host of examples people, including you, could give of situations where they have confidently acted like they knew what to do or what was happening. When in reality they had no clue, but with a little bit of improvisation, they made it through the other side. Now, think of the last time something like this happened to you. Think about how you handled it and how you got through, and then do the same on the date. Just let your confidence improvise. If you pretend well enough, not only will your date have no idea that you are shy, but if you pretend to be something for long enough, eventually it starts to come naturally. Of course, you can’t keep up a pretense with the same person forever, but if all goes well, then in time, you won’t need to pretend to be confident anymore, because they are probably now your girlfriend and your relationship will organically fall into a comfortable state and take away the shyness you feel during early dating. If you still find yourself struggling a little, then read dating tips for shy guys again and again, or if you are comfortable about it, talk to your girlfriend about it, if your relationship is the right one, then she can and will help you, and reassure you that you no longer have to feel that way.
Related article: How to Build Confidence
Change Your Desire
Okay, this one may sound crazy, but what if you change whatever it is that you are hoping the outcome of the date to be? Stick with us, here. Most of the time the biggest pressures we feel in life come from ourselves. We are our own harshest critic and we normally have the much higher expectations of ourselves than others do. We are always so worried about letting other people down but we constantly make ourselves feel like we have let ourselves down, it’s a mind-blowing thing, and all it does is increase whatever stress, pressure or anxiety we are feeling.
Say you are running a race and you tell yourself that you have to win, in fact, anything less than winning, and you will feel like you have failed, then you run the race and come second; now, you put so much pressure on yourself to win that you can’t appreciate that you came second, something which all the other runners in the race, aside from the winner, would have been thrilled to have achieved. So, if you go into a dating scenario feeling like the only outcome you will be happy with is another date, a goodnight kiss and/or something more, but you leave the date with another one planned with her, but nothing more, you will feel like you have failed, when in reality, congratulations, you have another date! Don’t pay attention to how well you think your friends’ dates go, or what the guys in the office tell you happened after their date, there is a high chance they are exaggerating, and in actuality, you have probably had much more success than them with scoring a second date.
Don’t Second Guess Situations
It is very easy to misinterpret a sign or signal. Create a whole new negative meaning in your head, well stop. Don’t look at things like her going to the bathroom, looking around the room every now and then or looking at her phone as signs that she is bored. These are just regular human habits, even checking one’s phone, while it may seem rude, has become a subconscious reflex for most people. If you notice these things and take them to mean that the date is not going well, you will panic. If you panic your shyness will only increase, and then you could end up ruining the date all by yourself; don’t guess and create a story in your head as to what you think is happening, it can only end badly. Instead, really look out for the positives; Is she smiling sincerely at you? Is she responding to what you are saying with genuine interest? These kinds of actions are a lot more difficult for people to do without it seeming like it is an act, therefore, these positive signals are far easier for you to not misinterpret.
Boy, this is a big one. We can all try our best to hide our real feelings by changing our facial expressions; when you are asked if you think a baby is cute, you nod and smile no matter what you truly think, if your boss asks if the project you are working on is too much for you to handle, you shake your head and tell him, of course, it isn’t, as your mind is whirling around at a hundred miles per hour trying to figure out how you are going to handle the project yourself without admitting you need help. But changing your body language is not so simple, body language can tell everyone what you are actually thinking, regardless of what your face is saying. You can be talking politely to a colleague at a work event, but if your feet are pointed away from them, then it is clear that you do not want to be there.
If you are in a conversation and your arms are folded, and your back is stiff, then again, it screams to the other person that you don’t want to be there. These are the types of signals you need to make sure you don’t give off with your body language when you are on a date. Don’t sit or stand talking to them with your arms across your chest, have your body square on with theirs, not slightly off to one side like you are ready to leave at any moment, and maintain eye contact, don’t allow yourself to sit there looking at the floor because you are too shy to look her in the eye, look up, glance away for a second if you want to, but keep your eyes off the floor. Your body language needs to be open, it needs to say that you are happy to be there and that you are having a good time, she will also feel more relaxed because of it.
This is a suggestion, but we offer it with a warning to be careful. You should absolutely not be using women that you are not interested in as practice to build confidence. Instead, you should practice just simply talking to strangers. Even for confident people, it is not always so easy to go up to a stranger in a bar say, and start a conversation or ask if they are interested in a game of pool. So don’t worry if you find this one difficult. However, make a conscious effort to talk to strangers whenever you are out, whether you are at a sports game, a bar or wherever it is that you hang out; you don’t have to become best friends with these people, and you may never see them again. But every time you go up to a man or woman who you have never met before and start a conversation, you will feel happier and more confident each time; be it about the weather, food, their job, any small talk topic you can think of, it does not matter. Being the first one to make the move takes a lot of courage. In the end, you will feel like a seasoned pro at starting conversations and going on a date will seem a lot less scary.
Related article: The Best Icebreaker Questions For Adults
See The Funny Side
Being shy is very misunderstood, especially if you are a guy because you are all born so manly and outgoing, right? It is hard to get people who don’t experience any kind of shyness to understand what it feels like; after all, how can you expect someone who doesn’t have to think twice about asking someone out, or asking a girl/guy for their phone number, when they only walked into the bar 30 seconds earlier, to ever believe that someone can feel nervous, clammy and go blank at even the thought of doing such a thing. Well, you can’t. Some people will say they understand but then never fully can, and others will have no idea. Sometimes we have to make light of our own situation in order to help someone else understand it better, making on a few jokes about being shy on the date will let her know that you are shy (but, hey, you’re funny too), without making it the focal point of the evening; tell her that before you arrived at the date you sat in your car reading an article on dating tips for shy guys, make it lighthearted and chances are she’ll even find it endearing.
Spend Time Chatting Online
The great thing about dating apps is that rejection doesn’t happen face to face. So while it still sucks, it definitely sucks less. But talking via a dating app, or through a messenger app can be a perfect introduction to each other’s personalities. You can end up spending a fair amount of time talking, as if you were on a real date, except you aren’t sitting there worried that she will see you shaking, or stuttering your way through a sentence. Spending a few weeks getting to know a woman before you go on a date in person can help you combat a big part of your shyness. By the time you get to an in-person date, you will feel like you are on the 10th date. And are no longer overthinking the evening as you would have before. There is no shame in online dating. There are plenty of people who would be an ideal match for you if you are willing to give it a chance.
Overcoming shyness won’t be an overnight thing, it will be a process. You must not expect yourself to have it all fixed and figured out by the time your next date rolls around if something goes wrong. Don’t be defeated, breath and start again; just never let your shyness become a defining part of your personality. Let your other shining traits come through and you’ll be just fine.