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Are some people predisposed to be shy or lack confidence?


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There's a little bit of that Part of it is how the person has been brought up, their genetics, and so on.


One thing people don't seem to acknowledge is, if you're starting from miserable, it's not that easy to slap on a smile and be Captain Confident. I'm the youngest of three brothers, and I was constantly the human punching bag, the one who wasn't allowed to play with my brothers, the one who was punched because I wouldn't stop asking questions, and when the neighborhood guys came over (when they were in high school and I was maybe nine or ten), I was the human wrestling dummy. Oh, and add to the fact that everyone (my brothers, neighborhood kids, and kids at school) would purposefully provoke me because they thought I was funny when I was seething with anger.


That said, I don't have a very good starting point to be confident. I wasn't good at sports, I wasn't very tall, I had asthma and allergies, I needed glasses, and my ADD was very disabling.


Now, it is possible I could have said "Screw it! I'm hot stuff! Everyone should be so lucky to be my friend!". But without a reason to think that, I would have to be delusional.

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Confidence builds when you are living your life and venture into new ground. It just comes from you being you. The times I have developed it were when I wasn't thinking about developing it. I go after something that I enjoy and want to accomplish, and it if the result is some form of liberation, confidence is built, because I see what I am personally capable of doing, and want to share that energy with others. The overflow of love for yourself and confidence that you build is shown without having to think about it. You don't have it if you have to look for it.

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I think if people aren't shown that they're worth something, they don't feel that they're worth something. It's like the really good looking guy or girl that's told endlessly that they're attractive. After a while, they get mad confidence in their ability to attract a partner based on their looks, so they succeed at the dating game.


If you're an average or geeky looking guy, you might be told you're cute, but those same girls don't usually go out with you. This is a slam to your esteem, because you wonder "they think I'm cute, so why won't they go out with me?"


Shyness usually comes from a lack of confidence in a person's abilities. If you've had a million girlfriends, you'll have confidence that you can attract another girl. But if you've never even had one girlfriend, and you're in your mid to late 20s (and everyone is going, "I would never sleep with a virgin"), you start to feel a lack of confidence in being able to attract and keep a girlfriend. And then when those same girls chase after the guys who have had a million girlfriends, you start to feel inadequate, because you aren't like those guys.

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Can a person lack confidence purely as a result of their own self-sabotaging? If so, why does this happen? Where does confidence come from, and what happens within people who lack it?


Oh yes, I watched my ex do this for so long...


My own confidence is also a bit shot. I've always been predisposed to being a shyer person around others.



There is one thing I notice in common with me and her: Parents.


When I was growing up, I was disciplined in a very abusive manner by our current standards. it made me more apt to being quiet, covert, and easily anxious.


When she was growing up, her mother was very spiteful to her - even reminding her constantly about how her birth wrecked her mother's body and how hard it was. Things like that...


So she carries guilt with her, and the sense that she isn't really worth mush - even if her mother later improved and expressed her own atonement after she grew old and lay on her deathbed with cancer. My dad is apologetic too, now, but see, that damage is already done.


It all goes back to how you were treated as a child by your parents.

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I agree with you on some aspect lonewing, parents do effect a persons personality. My childhood probably made me shy as well. During the summer none of my friends would even call though we were really really close. No children my age lived in my neighborhood or general area, and my parents restricted how far I could go on my bike. Everyone in the neighborhood I grew up in were old so I spent my time playing videogames.


I moved schools later on in life and was without any friends for about 4 years or so until I moved to college. I stayed friendless in college for about 2 years until I hooked up with some people I saw from school.


But then again, I was never the one to be the leader. I wanted to be and thought it would be cool, but I end up finding my place as the "smart guy".


Then again it could be our culture. Men have more dating problem in American then other countries. If girls are looking to pick up men, they just make eye contact for a few seconds, the guy walks over, and she helps out with the conversation. In America, if you can get eye contact the guy will be left to ask questions and basically carry the conversation. Most guys don't talk to girls if they simply get eye contact, so most girls don't try it very often.

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One thing people don't seem to acknowledge is, if you're starting from miserable, it's not that easy to slap on a smile and be Captain Confident.


Now, it is possible I could have said "Screw it! I'm hot stuff! Everyone should be so lucky to be my friend!". But without a reason to think that, I would have to be delusional.


I think if people aren't shown that they're worth something, they don't feel that they're worth something


Yeah I find this coming up a lot too. Most of the time the lack of self-esteem or confidence is because of the problem, not the other way around though unfortunately it's negative reinforcement too (an unhappy person is probably not going to be more attractive after all).


I'd like to believe that I'm a good looking attractive guy but I've had nothing to say otherwise besides a few online comments. The rest of my life is telling me I'm not attractive so forgive me for thinking it's delusional to believe any different. Maybe when I get some evidence to indicate otherwise.

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i agree with most of your points, especially lonewing and organs. I am in the same situation where my upbringing was very violent, and there was always a tense and volatile feeling when i walked into the house. It definitely did not help my self-esteem and confidence growing up. Heck, I went to my first dance in my junior year of high school. Although I've had a girl friend before, it always suffered in the end because of my mindset. This girl i talk to right now is going through what is basically described by you guys. Although less violent, it is very abusive and hurtful verbally. They degrade her value so much and its really hard for me to encourage her and for her to accept it. She told me something that i thought about and found it really true, that parents try to live their child's life for them as if it was a new start for themselves.

My confidence isn't that great right now either, I doubt myself a lot, even when there is no logical reason to. Its hard to overcome and it drives me nuts most of the time

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If you end up with her, all I can tell you to do is to be the most confident, positive and uplifting person you can be to her. Positive reinforcement will have an effect, as will simply unconditional love.


And expect her to grow past you and move on once she gets her own wings. I know my ex did.

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my goal is just to get her to be happy more. I often give her advice when she is telling me about some problems she is facing during the day. I try to help her believe in herself more but i sometimes feel that i am a little too serious haha, so i try to cheer her up. I'm not sure if she finds those talks very serious but i do sometimes and i just feel (again without any real reason) like it gets a little tense.

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I've read that thing about parents living their child's lives, that sort of thing. I've heard of it before too but never really stopped to ask what it actually meant?


My parents have sheltered me A LOT. They aren't strict in the typical asian sense but they are/were VERY over protective and because they put up so many walls (or questions) everytime I socially wanted to do something, I essentially "learnt" not to - go to school/uni then come home. They also don't see anything wrong with being mid-20s and well ... my position. But I don't think that's what the expression means. On the other hand I can see how it might be in how that they don't care about the romance/love part because they already have that.


Anyway never being taught to approach people (any surprise my parents still don't talk to strangers?) means I never learnt it, never practiced it, never habit, so now when trying to do it, it takes way way more personal effort ... but I'm getting places, just nowhere romantically.

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In any nature vs. nurture argument, I tend to realize that it's ALWAYS a little bit of both.


Genetically, some people are shy. It's just the way they are. Some people are quiet. Some people are loud. Some people are somewhere in between. Animals are the exact same way.


However, the way in which you were raised can also drastically affect how you turn out as an adult. You might have had over-protective parents, under-protective parents, were constantly bullied/teased, constantly had people kissing your ass, etc.

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