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Taking on Shyness

If you have a shy child, you are certainly not alone. It is important for parents to know that shyness can be a normal part of childhood. Millions of children are shy for a variety of reasons; some overcome shyness, while others do not. If you have a shy child, there are some things you can do to help your child become more comfortable! First, it is important to note that not all shyness is a problem.

Sometimes shyness is just a child's temperament, and it may just be her personality. It is not necessarily a bad thing. Shyness becomes an issue when it inhibits a child's ability to function and do things on an ongoing basis. For example, if your child refuses to get involved in anything or speak to other kids, that may be a problem. Take a patient approach, and follow some proven tips to help children overcome shyness, and you may notice your child coming out of her shell.

Things to Remember About Shyness

  • It is important to not label your child as being shy, especially in front of her. If you do, she may begin to take on that role and live up to it, as she is being boxed in to something she may find hard to change.
  • Discuss the issue with your child to see if there is a reason for her behavior or if she has fears that need to be addressed. You might want to suggest she try journaling to get her feelings down on paper.
  • It is important to teach your child how to make friends and get along with other people. You can do this by role playing.
  • Don't push a shy child to do things against her will. It is fine to encourage, but being pushy or forceful will likely backfire. You may want to try using a positive reinforcement tool, such as a behavior or reward chart, in order to motivate your child to open up and do more.
  • If you want to get your child into activities and she has reservations, suggest doing something with a buddy so there is at least one other person she knows doing the same thing. You may also want to try getting her into individual activities, which gives her a chance to excel, without the pressure of also making friends.

Being a Positive Parent Helps Children Overcome Shyness

It is often outgoing parents that are frustrated by a shy child. But kids can be reserved for any number of reasons, or no reason at all. So don't take your child’s shyness personally, and don't feel that there is a clock to beat in helping your child become more socially comfortable. By being encouraging and consistent, you can help your child be comfortable in almost any situation!