Get rid of shyness?

Oct 13, 2007
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Hey guys,

of course I want to get started in magic, otherwise I wouldn't visit this forum ;)
But there's a problem...I'm a really shy guy, maybe even a very shy guy. I also have shaking hands if somebody is watching...and in this case somebody could really be everybody...even parents and friends.
Please don't misunderstand this thread, this should NOT get an emo-post, in general I'm quite happy with my life ;)

Ok...let's go on. I know...you should be yourself and so on, but nobody is entertained by a stuttering guy turning red and messing up one trick after another because of his shaking hands. No.

My question now is:
Are there any of you who were shy before starting magic and became more easy-going and relaxed? Would be great if you could differentiate between nervousness only and shaking hands, I think they are a bit different.
Of course some tips or reasons for your change of characters are desired, too.

Ah, what I forgot. I'm 16 yeras old, so there's still a lot of development waiting for me only because of the age ;)

- muhazz
 
Oct 24, 2007
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Sound like Me

Wow, you sound like me when I started out in magic. I was a very shy guy, when I was 15 I didn't even want to go into convenience stores to pay for gas for my mom. I was very shy! So when performing, you'll of course be shy and shaky, it's easy or not easy to over come, depending on how much you love magic.

I love magic a lot, so it was easy for me to over come and I'll tell you how. First of all, practice your magic a lot! Over and over and over and over! Even if you think you have it, keep practicing it! I practice a trick for about 2-3 weeks (even if it's extremely easy) before I ever perform it. This will make you more comfortable, you'll be more confident that you'll perform it well.

Shyness is something you need to get over, you can't live life being shy. I found that out, I have more fun now not being shy then I did being shy! How did I over come this shyness? Well, I love magic and knew I had to do it to make my life better. Do something you don't think you'd ever do. Just, walk up to some girl you don't know and talk to her, or, doing something crazy in front of a group of people. If that's a little to hard to do because you're shy, well, then do what I did. Be in some plays (I know plays can be gay), but they really get you less shy! I've done 3 plays and now I'm not afraid to ever perform for anyone!

If you get over your shyness, if you really love magic and want to perform, you will be able to perform. So the question is, how much do you love magic? Are you willing to put yourself out there and get over the shyness. I did, you can too! Getting over it will not only help your magic, but you're life. Trust me, life is more fun being crazy and not being shy! ;)

Tyler
 
Who isn't shy when it comes to magic when they first start out. here's the deal man. EVERY SINGLE magician I have talked too hated the preperforance stage of their magic. Think about it, you work so hard on a hand full of tricks, in this case lets say 3. Bizarre twist, biddle trick, and ACR. I worked on nothing but these 3 effects for 3 YEARS! just those three tricks... I picked up a deck set of bizarre twist, did it, biddle trick, acr. then i thought about it. what am i do this to myself for. I haven't fudged on any aspect of this effect for 6 months and I'll be damned if I let this conquer me! So i went to an outlet mall... and sat in one spot for 2 hours just doing flourishes and looking at people that worked by being far too shy to say hey check this out.... But when i was about to leave this girl breanne walked up with her 3 friends and said "you got cards huh"... I said "seems to me I do" she said "show me something" I did and the reactions where the best thing I could have ever asked for, for a first performance. So if you love magic and your shy, your a magician you want to trick people into see something that isn't there.... so just go ahead and trick someone into asking to see something. tease them with flourishes, tell someone you are a magician they will ask and you will say.... "ok" Breanne is the best thing in magic that I have ever encountered. Just grab a deck and do a self worker, that way if your hands are far too shaky as long as you don't drop cards your good to go and get out there. You can do it if you tell yourself you can. Or the other option is first video tape it then ask your parents to watch and if you get a smile from you parents thats a damn good feeling. hope this helped ttyl after you surpassed your fears of failure and just fail already... you will mess up but get back on the horse, you will learn you only get kicked off X amount of times because then you get sick of messing up and you hone in on your skills and mess up no more.
 
Oct 31, 2007
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there are som exercises you can do, but one of the most importants things is to be confidence with your material, if you practice till u can perform it almost automatically, then you can enjoy your moment with other people...
one of the most important thing for me is to STAY
I mean its obiously that you are going to stay there to perform, but i mean really stay, if you have confidence on what you do u have one "less problem", so you can focus on enjoy the company of the other people an share with them all that you have to give

one book that i found great, about this litlle problem is the mystery method...
is a book of pick up art, but explains why we are "shy" sometimes in life and how to get rif of it
if you also are starting on this world of magic i recomend you darwin ortiz ' s strong magic book
you wont find 1 trick there... but u will find something more important for me, how to deal with the audience
 
Sep 1, 2007
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Missouri, USA
Muhazz,

I had/have the same problem as you. My advice is to just do it... Don't worry about messing up, don't worry about shaking, just do it. Like Tyler I was very shy but I found ways to strengthen my weakness. I was the drum major for my band, which helped me immensely with being shy. Even with that, though, I've found it extremely easy to still be nervous with my magic. Just work your way through it and don't doubt yourself. I find myself not wanting to perform because I'm afraid of making a mistake, but when I take the risk and actually show somebody magic they are amazed. It's a great feeling.

Just my thoughts, hope I helped some.

Peace
 
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Oct 6, 2007
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YAY! I get to help someone!

So all of what eeryone has said is all good, but i think thyeh ave missed out some important stuff, ill be repeating alot, but here goes:

1. Practise A LOT, don't try and rush into performing a trick. Practise until youre sick of it. Becuase once you can do it automatically, YOU WONT BE AFRAID OF MESSING UP. You dont have to be all tense and try and concentrate on your moves.

2. Perform alot- If you perform a lot the nerves will one day just go away. If you get used to performing for real people then the nerves will actually go away.

3. Try and be more social- try and meet lots of new people, and try to be more talkative. This can make you less shy as youll get used to new people.

So practise alot, meet alot of new people and perform alot!
 
Oct 13, 2007
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WOW guys, thanks a lot
That was quick...and much...and good ;)

But I've got some questions about a few posts.

check out aaron fishers tips on terror on his site
its pretty good
Didn't find it on his site and google "aaron fisher"+"tips on terror" didn't find anything too. Are you sure it's from aaron fisher? A link would be great ;)

tease them with flourishes, tell someone you are a magician they will ask and you will say.... "ok" Breanne is the best thing in magic that I have ever encountered
Whats breanne? A trick?

I already thought of doing some plays and got asked too...I think I will join them now.
Ouuuuch...talking to a completely random girl, that's hard. Maybe on a party or concert...definitely not at school (though...there would be a great "target"...hehe).

You really helped a lot guys, but I have some tips too. Maybe there are other people who nned also help.
I saw a reportage on shy people a few days ago, tips in there were some exercises like
- dropping a fork in a restaurant and ask for a new one
- alway pay with coins and do it reeeaaaallly slowly...
and so on. Just learning to handle attention from many people with small things.

Thanks alot again. Im really pacified now...seems to be possible to get rid of the shyness ;)

- muhazz
 
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Oct 13, 2007
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Oh, I got another exercise for me (and maybe some people out there too).
Telling long stories and jokes. Yes, that plaine and simple, but I actually hate (and avoid) to do it. Don't know why...maybe the attention and the fear of the punchline to fail...
It should give you some perfomance skills.
 
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I'm very shy as well, here's what I do (or attempt to do).

- Know that even if what's coming is going to be scary, know that the reactions you'll get afterward will be priceless and the whole point.

- Have a routine down. Have several tricks memorized and back-up tricks ready. Expand, so you don't have a problem when (maybe) your cards fall in a puddle.

Good luck!
 
Oct 13, 2007
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Hey guys,

i got another question. A few moments ago I read about the part about tension in paper engine. What's about that? Any experiences with it?
 
Sep 1, 2007
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I posted a two-part thread over at Ellusionist earlier this week called Who Are You? that believe it or not actually does deal with stuff like this.

At the root of things, people are shy because they're not the person they want to be. They don't trust in themselves, they don't possess self-assurance, and they don't think people will like them for just being them.

Kind of sucks. I should know, I've been there. The good news is that it can be fixed, and this will also solve other problems in your life as well. The short answer is that you need to create a positive idealized self-image and then take steps to live it.

Think of people in life who you look up to and think are cool. Other magicians, actors, athletes, entertainers, artists, family, friends, etc. Make a list of those names and why you think their cool. Write down their attitudes, mannerisms, lifestyle habits, anything. Then start trying it out for yourself.

Granted, this is the incredibly uber-short version of my articles, but that is the springboard for everything. PM me and I'll send you the links to the full articles (it's fairly heavy reading, so if you do have a sandwich or something ready).
 
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Zac

Oct 21, 2007
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Appalachia
www.myspace.com
Hey man, not to shoot you down, but if you're shy I'd avoid telling long stories or jokes unless you know 100% without a doubt that these long stories/jokes are incredibly interesting and/or funny. I'll explain why.

Shyness, Stage fright, etc. is known to communication scholars as communication apprehension. You start thinking about what could go wrong, not what will go right. And if you start telling a long story get half way into it, and start to see people yawning or they get bored and start saying "get to the point, etc." I'd hate for you to make that effort and then get your confidence shaken even more. Start off small, with quick a few quick jokes you know to be funny, then work your way to long stories.

The biggest thing I've learned in all my years of study both academically and through practical study (ie. performing both music and magic) this is huge in communication literature, is visualize. Start off small. Practice a few tricks until you can't go wrong. And visualize yourself performing them perfectly for your parents or close friends. Then do it. Proceed from there.

Like the above posters said, everyone goes through the shaky hands nervous stage. And it's nerve-racking, but once you get that first incredible reaction you'll realize it's totally worth it. And once you get super confident, which will happen with time, you'll love that nervous energy that comes with performing a new trick.

Hope this helps,
Zac
 
Oct 13, 2007
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Hey guys, thanks for the great answers again.

I'll start with Steerpike.
At the root of things, people are shy because they're not the person they want to be. They don't trust in themselves, they don't possess self-assurance, and they don't think people will like them for just being them.
Oh dude...I think I hate you ^^
You actually said what I've known the whole time but didn't want to be real, because that's a harder problem in my opinion. I realized very many times already, that I'm not the person I want to be, but I also really don't know what kind of person I want to be what it makes even worse. I thought about it lots and lots in many sleepless nights...but still got no answer.

Think of people in life who you look up to and think are cool. Other magicians, actors, athletes, entertainers, artists, family, friends, etc. Make a list of those names and why you think their cool. Write down their attitudes, mannerisms, lifestyle habits, anything. Then start trying it out for yourself.
Oh yeah...I already did too. Didn't do it with famous people (actually not knowingly) but with some friends though. But again I have no clue...very different attributs, which can't be combined, are really cool. I was only able to focus one thing: self-confidence. But that only emphazises the importance of self-confidence and doesn't show me how to get (in showing me what person I want to be)...

So. Let's move on.
And if you start telling a long story get half way into it, and start to see people yawning or they get bored and start saying "get to the point, etc." I'd hate for you to make that effort and then get your confidence shaken even more. Start off small, with quick a few quick jokes you know to be funny, then work your way to long stories.
I didn't mean THAT long ;)
I just wanted to point out, that there's really something to tell and it lasts a while. Nothing extra-long.
Actually I'm seen as a very funny guy by me friends, but knowing my fear of those "long" jokes I like to make people lough with only one or two words in the right moment. Actually not more than a funny comment.
With these measures I wanted to change that point.

But honestly...I tried already...hmm...more wanted to try this morning in school. I looked for some short jokes before...found some...but I couldn't do it. I were too afraid of that f****** moment of silence after a bad joke. But I wasn't sure if these jokes were really funny and there was also now good situation...so...maybe on monday.



Damn...this thread hase gone VERY personally.
But seriously...this shouldn't sound like an...a good english word is missing...emo thread. I dont wan't to cry somebodie's eye out. I really tried to keep it factual and I hope you guys are not pissed off.
And of course I don't exspect serious psychological help from you (how could you with those informations?), but maybe there are a few helpful pieces of advices or interesting stories about yourself out there in your head ;) Now you also have a more detailed picture of me, so some future questions are answered and some answers will be more precise ;)

- muhazz


P.S. I'll continue posting proceedings or backlashes, you'll hear from me soon.
 
Sep 1, 2007
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Oh yeah...I already did too. Didn't do it with famous people (actually not knowingly) but with some friends though. But again I have no clue...very different attributs, which can't be combined, are really cool. I was only able to focus one thing: self-confidence. But that only emphazises the importance of self-confidence and doesn't show me how to get (in showing me what person I want to be)...

No, no, no, those are just excuses. Focus on the external for now, not the internal. To fix up what's inside of you, you first have to get the outside polished.

Give me an example of a magician that you admire and we'll work from there.
 
Sep 1, 2007
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A magician purely as an example. If you want to list an actor or musician or athlete or something similar, do that as well. The important thing is that it has to be someone you look up to.
 
Oct 13, 2007
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Like promised before I want to give you a small report about my progress...it's quite personal and long so...you might be bored ;)
But for some people with the same problem it may be helpful and encouraging.

First, Steerpike, I thought about you questions a lot, but I haven't found somebody who I really look up to. Of course some people are cool, but none of them had that status of an idol. I have to say...i didn't really move forward in finding myself. I indeed decided a few things to myself which I consider as important to me...but there's still alot to do. =/
I think time will change a lot here...I'm only 16...
By the way...is 'indeed' used correctly in the sentence above? But let's move on...

Although I didn't find myself yet I think I developed a lot. My aim was to do not avoid situations where ...yeah...where what? Actually it's hard to express in words, but in my mind the aim was accurately defined. However, I presented a lot of working results (after a group work) in front of my class voluntarily and I talked to a lot of strangers. Most of them were people like salesmen in shops or employees, but I felt a lot more relaxed and cracked some jokes, too. Ok..one...but it still was a joke and a stranger...;) I tried to really ask those people everytime I had a question and it worked pretty well. They really didn't byte o_O
I'll give you two examples, so you can see which situations I mean. It's no big deal and most people will wonder what's so special and hard about it...but in some parts it really was.

Today I talked to a few employees at a bank and at a post office and it was really a complicated situation...I wanted to do something, but I only did know the correct english term and not the German one (I live in Germany and German is my native language) word for it so I had to paraphrase it. And my mom was with me, but I did it. Was quite funny ^^
I know...doesn't sound great, but I'm quite happy with it for now.

Aaaaaand....2 days ago I talked to two (actually three) strangers and they were normal people. The first conversations was started by the other, an older man (ok, what means old, about 30-40 :p) and later on his, actually pretty cute, 15 year old doughter jumped in. And we talked about half an hour and I almost forgot about an important date.
Later on I asked an older woman (now over 40) for the way to the train station and she had to walk the same way, so I decided to walk with her and I started a conversation of...hmm...let's say 20 minutes.

Yes...no big deals actually, but like I said before- I'm happy at the moment. My mother even recognized the change and talked to me about it. It's hard to put the results down in words, but I'm really more relaxed now and I hope the progress will continue...

Next aims are...hmm...actually they stay the same- what could I do more? Ok...there's a lot. Maybe I should be able to talk to people without a reason...that's at least what many posts here in the forums say. But...oah...no, no. I think it's quite bold to adress someone directly for a small talk, I won't do that.
But I'll try to be more funny in such conversations...I often think about saying something funny and don't do so...I'll try.
I also will prepare some jokes and present them to my friends, since that's like performing with a patter. I still hate the spotlight on me during the joke and the fear of messing the punchline up...

So:
- continue with not avoiding situations where...you know?
- prepare 5 jokes for school or friends and present- and really present them, confident and with some rhetoric, them in a suitable moment (quite unclear this definition...but I know for myself when a situation is suitable and when not)
- try to talk more about ME in dialogues
- have the heart to be more funny in dialogues (damn...strange phrase but can't think of a better one)

So..that's enough for the next few weeks.
Ah, and be more confident in things like hugs, handshakes and so on. I don't want to alway awate the action of the others...in future I'll offer my hand.

Max :)
 
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Sep 1, 2007
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on Theory11.
Magic is a great way to get rid of shyness. I have two different, personalities, I guess you could say. Now don't take this the wrong way... "Oh man, stay away from that mattjones kid on the forums, he's bipolar." It's not that at all.

Sometimes I really feel like a performer and I'm ready to meet new people, do some magic, and get some experience performing, as well. Other times I really don't feel like a performer and I'd rather fade into the background, and not interact with anyone. It's all a matter of mindset.

Sometimes I know ahead of time if I'm going to see people that might want to see some magic. A party would be a good example. I try to get in the "performance mode" and be ready to be entertaining by the time the party rolls around.

Like I said before, you can be the shyest, most reserved person in the world but if you feel like a performer. You can amaze.
 
Oct 18, 2007
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I haven't been performing magic very long, but my opinion might be worth at least something.

I'm would say I'm extremely shy. Even if I'm in a crowd of strangers, as long as I'm with a friend or something then I'm pretty open with everyone else. But often when I'm just by myself I tend not to go out of my way to talk to complete strangers. So I kind of have a similar problem as you, just maybe not so severe.

I've found that if I have any sort of prior connection with the spectator(s), whether I'd had a class with them, or we had a mutual friend, or I'd simply seen them around a lot but never really met them, then I'm a lot more comfortable approaching them and performing. If you already have some sort of association with your audience then grab hold of it and make it work for the better. Act casual and both you and your spectator will be more at ease. Now, that's the hardest part, right? Being casual is a real chore when I'm nervous. But it's really the key. Talk to the specs like you've been friends for years. If you get shaky and your voice quivers (mine does when I perform new effects) just pause, take a deep breath, maybe even tell the audience how nervous you feel. If they're not total jerks then hopefully they'll have sympathy and be nice, "going easy" on you. It always helps to have a sympathetic audience. But make sure you don't come off as pitiful or something like that. Simply act politely and nice and they will be sympathetic if you're nervous.

When establishing that initial connection act really friendly. Don't push too hard by trying to crack 3 different jokes in 60 seconds. Introduce yourself, ask their names, smile, try and find some common ground. Finding common likes or dislikes or even something as simply as being born in the same place is a great way to establish a connection. But again, don't push too hard. If they happened to grow up some place you know, don't even ask if they know your cousin who lives there, chances are they don't, and questions like that can be uncomfortable for some people, I don't know why.

Once you have some common ground, a connection, make it a positive one. The worst part about being shy is that you don't think people will like you for who you are, and you're afraid to be someone you're not. All that it really takes for someone to like you is to be friendly and courteous. Make sure you're in a good mood when you perform. Be polite and mind your manners. Cracking jokes is a good way to get people to like you, or even like you said you already do, just make funny comments off other peoples statements while you perform. I never tell jokes, but I constantly base funny comments on other people's statements, and that can make a very relaxed atmosphere because you are interacting with the audience in a positive way, and it's not just you being funny, you and the audience are doing it together. Same thing with the magic. Don't be some guy performing a bunch of tricks. You should be creating magic with your audience, not at them.

I don't know if that made any sense. If you want some clarification I'm happy to help. Good luck bro!
 
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