Without a doubt, the biggest problem in my life when I was very, very shy was talking to women. I didn't think they knew I existed. Yet now it's so easy and their reactions to me are so different. I want to make a condensed and very specific list of steps on meeting women and talking to women. This isn't a guide on how to pick up women though and asking them out within 5 minutes of meeting them. Fastseduction.com, Pickupguide.com,....there are some great sites out there for that.
There are many ways to strike up a conversation. You could just find someone you like, walk up, say "Hi, I was noticing you over there and I wanted to come over and tell you how beautiful you look". Saying it with great eye contact and with a smile, she might really like that and you two could click really well. But realisitically, if you're very shy like I was,....doing that may seem absolutely impossible. The 4 steps I list start small. This is ideal for a college campus, or in any other casual area (bookstore, coffee shop, etc). Not clubs and bars. There are too many other factors going on in those places. Stick to the easy places.
That's it. Let's get to it:
Find some women! In class, that's the easiest area. Outside of class, just sitting around, waiting, that's another possiblity. In the cafeteria, student bookstore, virtually anywhere on campus. As long as she isn't rushing off to go somewhere, you're fine. Does she look approachable?
You need to be in a relatively confident and self assured state of mind. Dwelling on the past, thinking about challenges in your life, etc....this isn't going to help. I talked about the body language and eye contact needed in "The building blocks of self confidence". Just feeling relaxed and approachable. A great state of mind makes this all alot easier!
You need to know what to say. Don't make it too hard in the beginning. If for example, you have difficulty even saying Hi (yes, I was in that position before), don't think that you have to start flirting and romancing women like Don Juan. I practiced each step until I was comfortable. At first, it was just saying Hi and making some initial small talk. Then after that, I moved onto the next step (in this case, talking about something other than school). Then I got good at asking questions and finding out about their lives and sharing my life.
Here's my take on what the "talking to women" spectrum looks like:
1. Saying hi, how's it going, etc (Initiate contact).
2. Making some small talk (this is a cool class, isn't it?)
3. Moving from facts and opinions into personal things (finding out about her as a person)
4. Develop some sort of common interest and make a connection.
5. Ask her out, flirt, hang out, stay in touch, etc.
See where exactly you are right now out of those 5 areas.
The objective of #1 is to initiate contact. It doesn't have to be elaborate. Just a simple, sincere, "Hi, how's it going" is fine. Or commenting on something, such as the situation around you. The key here is to just take the first step.
The objective of #2 is some small talk (fluff talk). Something to break the ice. Commenting on whatever is around you, that's always a safe topic. "When's the best time to find parking around here?" "Is that Chemistry class really hard?" Again, just keeping it simple.
Let's say you're at number 2. You can get some small talk going, just on facts and opinions. Talking only about school for example. If you want to move the conversation into something more personal, ask questions like,...
"oh, you're a marketing major. So, what would your ideal job be?"
"What do you like to do for fun when you're not doing all that homework?"
"So, where do you like to hang out around here?"
Again, there are a million possibilities. Facts and opinions don't create any sort of connection among people. It's just fluff. There's a natural progression in most conversations. If you just met someone, odds are you aren't going to say "Hi, my job is really bothering me, what would your ideal job be?", lol. That's not the way it works.
Be sure of course to share your own stories so it doesn't get one sided. Such as,...."oh interesting. Yeah, my ideal job would be,....". Or "you like to travel too, cool,...I just went to..."
After talking about personal things and finding a connection between the two of you, it's much much easier to move to step #5 and ask her for her number to keep in touch, or just to hang out as friends if that's what you want.
In my experience, if she:
Touches you at all during the conversation, on the arm or hand, if she gives lengthy eye contact, if she asks you questions about yourself,....you're in good shape!!! Those are key signs of interest. Those signs can mean she's being friendly, or that she likes you romantically. At the bare minimum, she likes the conversation so far! Watching for any of those 3 is important. Women don't go around touching just any ol' guy, even if it's a casual touch. That's a very positive sign if she does. And asking questions about you and lengthy eye contact, this means she's not bored with you. Women can still be interested in you if they don't show these signs. Perhaps they are shy as well. Everyone is different. But if you see these signs, you're doing really really well.
After the conversation is over, focus on what you did right. There's no need to over analyze it or make it bigger than it is. Just some simple things I focused on:
-"I took action, some guys would be afraid to do so"
-"I learned something about her"
-"The more I talk to women, the easier it gets"
-"Compared to where I was a few months ago, I've made major progress"
And if I thought I did something wrong, no big deal, I'll just remember it for next time. I spent 90% of my time thinking about what I was doing right and maybe 10% on some minor improvements. The more action you take, the better you'll get, so there's no reason at all to place too much importance on any one conversation.