Friday, 29 May 2009

Say Goodbye to being Shy.

Do you have a bout of the bashful? Even the most brazen of us still feel self conscious now and again. Shyness is one of those uncomfortable feelings you would rather not have, sneaking up on you and making you feel insecure, alone and scared.

Can you agree with any of the following statements?

I find it very difficult to talk to new people
I lack confidence with people
I feel tense and nervous when I try to initiate a conversation
At work I have difficultly talking to other people
I often tense up and forget what I was about to say when I am talking to some one new.
I am especially nervous when talking to someone I fancy
I often replay entire conversations in my head and wish I had said something different
People see me as quite when really I don’t want to be.

Touching the lives of around half of the population shyness has been a subject for much research and can even be scientifically measured. Varying from person to person it can strike out in any kind of social situation affecting your feelings, thoughts and behaviour. How self conscious do you feel? Are you scared or nervous around new people? Are you insecure and hold back saying or doing something because you’re concerned about how others might respond? The key to being a successful and sought after nail technician is to communicate with your clients, providing a relaxing atmosphere and allowing them to enjoy the experience they have with you. Beat your self consciousness and see your clients come back for more.

Eye contact

It is hard when you’re shy to look some one in the eye, some one who is self conscious may feel that allowing others to see into their eyes is allowing them to see their thoughts. Get out of this habit by practicing with a friend, sit opposite them and gaze into their eyes. You will probably end up rolling around on the floor in a fit of giggles but it will teach you how easy it is to catch some ones eye and be confident not to look away.

Get to know you’re self;  Ask your self….

· ‘What is important for me today’?
· ‘What does success mean to me?
· ‘If I had a spare £1000 which charity would I donate it to?’
· ‘What would I do if I had a year left to live?’
· ‘What three things would I take to a desert island’?
· ‘What three things do I admire about me?’

Self awareness is intrinsic to changing your behaviour and beating shyness. Knowing what is integral to how you feel and developing a sense of humour will go along way to finding your self. Do this by asking your self a profound question each day, you may be amazed by the answers. Learn to discover how interesting you are and develop a passion for life and a purpose for your day. When you brush your teeth in the morning, look at your self in the mirror, smile and give your self a compliment. Tell your self something you would only express to some one you love and deeply care about. Once you feel comfortable telling yourself you look nice, you will be able to practice this on someone else.

Stop labelling yourself

Don’t create a self fulfilling prophecy by telling others how shy you are. Fake it till you make it by saying ‘I am fine at meeting new people’. If you find you’re self in a social situation and start to recognise those feelings of insecurity, try acting as if you’re not shy. Image some one you admire and respect, and put yourself in that person’s shoes. Don’t judge your self, accept all your imperfections, would you criticize your best friend the same way you criticize your self. Give your self a chance to shine become your own best friend.


F – family
O - occupation
R - relationships
M - moneyPractice small talk
While your working on your clients nails it is not enough to answer ‘yes’, ‘no’ and ‘fine’ when some one asks you a question. You need to keep your clients interested and at ease while they are having their treatment, keep the conversation flowing by telling them something of your day, and then ask them a question in return. Worried about what to ask? That’s easy just remember F.O.R.M. Ask plenty of questions and others will think you’re fascinating, letting them talk about them selves will make them feel good.
“How much was your holiday to the USA, we are thinking of going?”
“Are you enjoying your new job, what is your new boss like?
“Has Mike been busy in the garden now the weather has turned out well?”
“How is your family? Did Katie do well at her sports day?”

Fake it

Did you know you only have 10 seconds to impress a stranger, not to mention a prospective new client, in order to instil confidence and faith in your abilities you need to project a calm and assertive attitude to your work. There are some great ways to look self assured both within and out of the salon.
· In the salon your nail station should sit facing the door, this also works at a restaurant or in a meeting, facing the door is generally the power position.
· Make large fluid movements with your hands, confident people will gesture and occupy more physical space.
· When you walk into a room walk straight through the middle, keep you back straight and face forwards, when you approach a new client extend your arm first to shake hands. Initiate contact.
· Keep your hands away from your face and don’t fidget or fiddle with anything.
· Avoid looking down, and keep your neck straight.
· Express how you think or feel about subject; don’t keep your opinions to yourself.

It is important to continue to re educate yourself in this industry developing new techniques to use on our clients. However improving social skills can go along way to boosting your confidence, motivation and develop business. It is safe to say we are all worried about how our business will survive in these hard times, but now is the time to play dirty, and find a unique selling point to your business, becoming a better person while your at it. Check out these books to help you on your self help journey. Make it work for you with these challenges. Each day try a new way to improve your life, by doing the simplest of things.
What to Say When You Talk to Your Self by Shad Helmstetter ISBN-10: 0722525117, ISBN-13: 978-0722525111.
Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway by Susan Jeffers ISBN-10: 0091907071 ISBN-13: 978-0091907075

Say goodbye to being shy with these Dare by day challenges.

Monday – ask three strangers on the street then time.
Tuesday – make small talk with some one you don’t know.
Wednesday – smile today at three strangers, remember smiling is infectious.
Thursday – tell your client a funny story about your childhood
Friday – complement three clients and make their day
Saturday – ask a client a question which may help you solve a problem.
Sunday – look in the mirror and smile at yourself, see your reflection as a confident, self assured person with a fantastic future ahead.

This Article was written for SCRATCH magazine March 2009 by Sam Biddle