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Is it just my nature or was it due to the environment I was raised in? Throughout my life, I’ve always been a shy person and feared of being judged. Every time in my life when I had a choice to try to work against this and face my fears, I habitually took the easy way out and always avoided standing out due to which I slowly ended up digging myself into a hole. What I mean by this is that every time I avoided social interaction it became harder to interact with people. Now I also suffer from social anxiety. I ended up settling into my comfort-zone and never stepped out of it. As such, I never faced any challenge that’d change me and as a result improve my social and communication skills but now, I’m going through a time in my life which gives me more opportunities than ever to break out of this loop and that is my university life. This essay is about how Once I was crippled by my flaws and how I’m now endeavoring to change for the better.
(Shyness in simple terms is the act of avoiding social interaction or not knowing how to properly communicate with others.) Although I was always an introvert, I didn’t fear being judged at the start.
My school life was a rough start as the school I went to initially was a mess. I frequently got bullied and was failing my class. This was a contributing factor towards my current state. Due to this I was enrolled into a different school. My academic performance drastically improved and although not talkative, I participated in class and in plays or presentations even though I was always nervous in front of a crowd.
I was praised by my teacher for being quiet in class, so when I acted contrary to that I was scolded. Disappointing my teacher was something that really affected me, so I made sure I remained quiet in class for a long time even though now I know that I hadn’t done anything wrong at that time. This was also a contributing factor.
In 5th Grade, I botched 2 plays (or presentations) I had taken a part in where I forgot few of the lines I had memorized and I went dead silent. It took me about half a minute to start talking again. This invoked in me the fear of being judged and laughed at, which is social anxiety. This is where everything went downhill at a drastic rate.
After that experience, I started to avoid participating in extracurricular activities and stopped participating in class in fear of giving the wrong answer and being laughed at. Later on in life I lost confidence in myself and became depressed. I started considering myself worthless and missed out on social events and gatherings. As such, I never really became good friends with anyone and immersed myself into video games at home. I have closer friends online than in real life, which says a lot about my state.
Sometime amid my college life, I had an epiphany and came to realize that I hated who I had become and that I wasn’t going to succeed later on in life if I stayed stagnant and squandered the opportunities I had in my college life and my upcoming university life so I swore to myself that I’d strive to change. Now, I grasp every opportunity to improve myself. I formulated a schedule for my daily life and abided by it, started taking my studies more seriously and got into my preferred university, hung out more with friends, started participating in class and before I knew it my college life was over. Now I have closer friends whom I still talk to and while I’m still afraid of being judged, I’m less shy than I was before. The four years of university life that I have ahead of me are arguably the best for development. It is the best environment to grow, learn and become an overall better person. Although I’m still fairly quiet in class, I try to be talkative so that I can connect more with my classmates and get to know them better. I try to always greet my teachers and participate in class, I try to step out of my comfort-zone and give interviews for societies. All of these factors and the upcoming opportunities such as class projects and events will help me change for the better and little by little, I’m starting to look forward to the future rather than being afraid about it.
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