Several of the ladies have asked me about this issue – “What do I do if there is a guy I am interested in, but I am too nervous to look at him or talk to him?”
Well, that is definitely a problem!
Guys are not mind-readers. So – if you are super nervous or shy – they may not be able to tell that you are interested at all.
Let me give you a few suggestions to consider and pray about. Remember – I am not the Holy Spirit. Whatever He has to say to you is WAY MORE IMPORTANT than anything I might suggest. The reason I give some practical suggestions and advice is because many girls have no godly mentoring women to look up to and zero examples of healthy romantic relationships/marriage. I am not an expert. But we can start a discussion together about this important topic:
WHY DO YOU FEEL SHY?
- Are you focusing on what you believe are your “flaws” like I did?
- Are you looking to men or other people to give you value, approval and/or worth?
- Do you have a naturally introverted personality that makes it more difficult to reach out to other people?
- Do you have a fear of something going wrong if you talk to a guy? What are your fears? Let’s talk about them and hash through them together.
- Are you comparing yourself to women in the media or other women and feel like you don’t physically “measure up” so you feel ashamed of your body?
- Do you have a speech impediment or phobia of speaking in public or meeting new people?
- Do you freeze up and go blank about what to talk about?
- Are you afraid of rejection?
- Focus on the positives and blessings God has given to you – physically, emotionally, spiritually, mentally. Apply Philippians 4:8 to the way you think about yourself. You know that little voice that is constantly telling you awful things about yourself? STOP BELIEVING THAT VOICE OF THE ENEMY! Take every thought captive for Christ and compare what you are telling yourself to the truth of the Word of God!
- Find your worth, value, love, acceptance, approval in Christ alone. Be content in Him regardless of what other people do or say about you. Your goal is to please Him and honor Him alone.
- If you are introverted by nature – you may have to push yourself a little bit to consciously smile brightly, make eye contact, say “Hello!” in a pleasant, confident tone with a sure voice. This is something that you can practice and get better at in time. I work in a retail pharmacy and learned to smile and say hello to EVERYONE. A retail job or a volunteer job in a nursing home or orphanage or hospital might give you some experience interacting with a variety of people and might help you gain confidence in talking with people. You can also practice speaking to everyone in the room at church or Sunday School or in Bible Study. You may want to practice in front of a mirror, or even better – practice and record yourself on video so you can watch yourself and refine your smile and approach.
- Focus on asking friendly questions about people (in a pleasant way, not like it is the inquisition). Or have a cute/funny brief story to share. I have some twin stories (about my identical twin sister and me) that are great ice-breakers for me if someone doesn’t seem to be warming up. If you begin practicing being friendly and kind to everyone (where and when it is safe to do so), you will gain confidence in yourself and your ability to introduce yourself and make small talk with other people.
- Compare yourself to God’s Word and ask Him to empower you to be the woman He desires you to be. Ask Him to mold you into the woman of HIS dreams to bring great glory to Himself!
- You can actually plan ahead of time several topics to have in mind to pull out to talk about when you are meeting new people. Nothing morbid or too serious. Something interesting and light would probably be good. You can also read up on some funny, wholesome jokes to work on your sense of humor if you want to.
- Ultimately – this is where we trust God’s sovereignty to work out what is for our best and for His glory. Rejection HURTS!!!!!! But if we can rest in the acceptance and love of Christ – we can remain unshaken even when others turn us down.
MY STORY (This may be TMI for the guys – Consider yourselves warned. I am going into detail like this to help out the ladies with their issues.)
Every woman has some physical feature(s) she doesn’t like. I don’t have a curvy, “womanly” shape – and there were plenty of people in middle school and even at other times in my life who were happy to point that fact out to me – in front of lots of other people. It really hurts when others criticize and make fun of your size/shape, the color of your skin (mine is very pale) or other “flaws” in your physical appearance. I can still wear a girls’ size 14 top. Like – from the little girls’ department. I have to buy undergarments in the little girls’ department to this day. I can sometimes wear a 0-2 in women’s – but many times my proportions just don’t work with women’s clothing on top. Clothes shopping can be a nightmare!
In middle and high school and even after that – I saw myself as “not woman enough” because of the taunts I have received and because I compared myself to other girls. I became convinced that no guy could ever be attracted to me because I was “so much less than” what the world says is beautiful. So for a long time, I didn’t feel feminine at all – all I could see was how imperfect I was. On top of that, I looked about 12 until I was way over 30 years old. When you are 40 and look 25, that is awesome. But when you are 30 and look 12 and people think you are in middle school and are appalled when you are pushing a baby stroller around – it’s a problem. Or when the patient in the pharmacy demands to see your driver’s license when you are 27 years old – because he thinks you can’t possibly be old enough to drive, much less be a pharmacist – it’s very frustrating.
I let my perceived flaws, other people’s rude and thoughtless comments about my figure and the media’s standards affect my feeling of value and self-worth instead of looking to Christ to find my full identity, worth, value, acceptance, purpose and joy. To overcome my shyness and awkwardness – I eventually had to mourn what I didn’t have and accept what I did have and be confident in myself through Jesus – even though I didn’t match the world’s definition of beauty.
It is so easy to make physical beauty into an idol that becomes more important than loving Jesus. That is a self-defeating sin that will leave you feeling worthless, discontent and utterly void of purpose and satisfaction. Jesus is the only way to contentment and true joy and peace! Not being a certain size, certain shape, certain color or having worldly beauty.
Thankfully – my husband loves my shape and in his eyes, I have no flaws. He looks at me and sees a ballerina’s figure – and to him, I am drop dead gorgeous. What freedom and what a gift to have a man who loves me for me and who accepts and adores me.
I learned to stand tall and be confident in this body God gave me. I run about 6 days/week and am in the best shape of my life physically – at 40 years old. Now, I focus on being grateful for what I have. I don’t allow myself to dwell on negative physical characteristics or compare myself to the world’s models of beauty. I don’t even compare myself to my identical twin sister anymore! I have never felt more feminine, confident, sexy and powerful as a woman as I have the past few years when I learned what godly femininity really means, how to be a godly wife and to set my heart totally on Christ. My deepest desire is to have a beautiful spirit in God’s eyes and in my husband’s eyes – a gentle and peaceful spirit that does not give way to fear and is of great worth in God’s sight! This physical body is a temporary tent. I do my best to be a good steward of this body – but my real beauty isn’t in my body – it is what God has done in my soul! That is what I pray for each of you to find!
There is no beauty that compares to the radiance of the joy of Christ lighting up your face, your smile and your eyes!
What issues do you have? What have you tried? What has worked? What didn’t work? Let’s talk about this together!