Honestly, I'm sure you've heard it all before. When I was still in college, my worst grades involved presentations and speaking in front of people. I managed to land a great internship at a Fortune 500 company, and I am still not sure how I managed to get it. My first few months, I continued with my problems. I had to give a presentation just to my team, and I could not stop shaking. The problem with this was my lowly position held some power...I would have to meet with several department heads and make them accountable for several different areas of weakness.
At some point, I realized something profound: if you seem to know what you are talking about, people will assume that you do. Since I do know what I am talking about, I simply need to be as assertive as I can be about everything. It took some practice. At first, I had to completely take control of my breathing. I would sit with my non-dominant hand resting on the other...when I felt anxiety coming on, I would literally claw into myself as discretely as possible. I forced myself to look into the eyes of all of the other people: male, female, and whatever else they threw at me. By the time the internship was ending, I was just about free of any social anxiety. I still had the whole "it feels like everybody here knows I am a virgin" thing swirling around my head, but I was able to put it away.
Unfortunately, I won this battle a little too late. I spent 6 months unemployed, wondering if I was going to end up back in fast-food land preparing burgers and asking people to combo things up. Then, a second chance came. I got a great shot at an interview for another company. They weren't Fortune 500, but if I scored it and the company went under I would still have non-intern experience to shove onto a resume.
So, I went to the interview and immediately turned the dial on my air of "I am supposed to be here, and I know what I am talking about" around to 11. I managed to score the position, and I sat directly across from a guy who was outgoing yet submissive. He would call our team leaders "sir" and "ma'am" and would completely submit to them as if their words were final. They looked at him like a lackey to do work. He rarely could have a personal conversation with them, and if he did it came off as forced...like a conversation at a family reunion or something. Meanwhile, I would get the better and more sensitive projects to work on. I could speak to the team leads in a more familiar tone, and I could give and receive suggestions and feedback readily. Everythings still seems really good.
So, what does this have to do with love-shyness. I'm sure several of you have probably read things like the stuff at fastseduction.com or whatever else said they could help you start meeting lots of gorgeous women or some other bs. There was one good point I remember specifically: An alpha male will not just be good at meeting women, but will be good at all aspects of his life: his job, his hobbies, etc. Well, while I am still hopeless when it comes to meeting women, I don't have any fears about speaking to them anymore or what should be happening. I can make eye contact with anybody, and I can give a smile. Not to mention that having a salary paying career is a good thing to bring up in a conversation.
Anyway, while my internship itself backfired, it really did help to end the chapter of my life where I felt nothing but hopelessness. The confidence and assertiveness you are looking for may not need be found in actual interactions with women. I'm sure that the workplace is not the only other option, either. Find an environment where you can make people believe you are important and fan out. Just remember: You are exactly where you should be doing whatever you should be doing to whomever you should be doing it. You should not be nervous, because you are in the right place. As long as you believe in this, it is true.
I'm sure I've picked up some other personal mantras that are helping me out in life. I'll be sure to post whatever else has helped me through. I kinda classify myself as a "recovering love-shy male" right now because I'm still having problems meeting and dating women. At the moment, I am blaming my also recovering love-shy wingmen for being to afraid to drive in this crappy midwest weather. I have made great progress, though. The last time I went out, I met four women. One of them, I screwed things up but didn't let it get me down. Another was just looking for somebody to flirt with her...not for a relationship or even a hook up. A third was acting whore-ish, and I was just one of the many guys who got fifteen minutes of her attention. The fourth was in a serious relationship, but she was happy to have somebody to dance with. A year ago, I would have sat in a corner in a constant state of melancholy and failed to meet all four. I think I have come a long way.
I even managed to hook up with a girl recently, although it was unrelated to confidence. Another woman explained it to me like this: When the woman hits a certain point in her cycle, she really needs sex. Most women have a boyfriend or somebody they can go to to take care of this. The rest will sit in a bar and let guys hit on them. Of them, some women will get annoyed at the guys hitting on them and become desperate. At that point, she will go pick out a guy who cannot turn her down...somebody attractive, yet who looks like he is having a bad night. She will start the conversation with something along the lines of "You don't seem to be having very much fun." From there she will start chatting him up and even buy him drinks. Eventually, she'll take him home and try to get him even more drunk while watching some TV show or movie. Then things just happen. The next day, this man is no longer needed. In my case I didn't ask her, but since she lived out of state I assumed she had a boyfriend back there so I was a liability to keep around much longer.
I mention this because you guys tend to be the wallflower in the corner, so there may come a day where you are "most attractive man not having a good time" and may think you are really lucky. I want you to understand this is NOT the beginning of a relationship, but it makes good practice for interacting with a woman from "hello" to the bedroom. I also want to make sure you understand this is NOT a reason to continue with your passive behavior. Also, you still need to act comfortable and social while you are talking to her or you may creep her out. In the last year, this was the third time I was in this situation. The other two times I managed to blow it one way or another. Of course, I thought I was blowing a shot a true love or something (not just sex) so that made me feel even worse.
Anyway, I hope anybody who reads this can find something worth applying to their lives in this somewhere. Good luck.