I'm dealing with issues bigger than just getting a girlfriend or getting laid. I have these inner-game issues and fundamental skills that I need to work on in order to not only attract women, but also to improve my life in general. So, although I would like to have a girlfriend for once in my life, I've decided it's more important to focus on improving my inner-game and social skills. Thus, I'm no longer thinking about how to get a girlfriend, but how to become a better person overall.
I'm very serious about this and really am going to do whatever it takes to become the man I want to be. So, I've been reading up on material related to overcoming shyness, improving my social skills, and gaining confidence. I've bought "How to Win Friend and Influence People" and "How to Stop Worrying and Start Living" by Dale Carnegie, "100 Ways to Overcome Shyness", a couple books on body language, a book on overcoming social anxiety, etc. I'm following some life-coach people such as Tony Robbins, who has a lot of good advice. It's a lot of information to take in, and as I go through it, I'm trying to apply it into my life otherwise it's useless. For example, I'm monitoring what I think everyday to immediately get rid of negative thoughts and think more positive ones. Also, I'm trying to be happy everyday even if I'm not where I want to be in life right now by focusing on the good and not the bad. I've read in Dale Carnegie's book that happiness comes from within; it's not a matter of your external circumstance. So, although I have no friends and no girlfriend, and almost no social life, I'm going to try to be happy anyway by not focusing on these things I don't have. It's always better to be happy no matter what.
I am also taking other steps to change by getting out of my comfort zone or "old-self" routine. Several times, I have forced myself to make eye contact with and smile at strangers when I'm in public. I try to talk more to people, although I still have been struggling with this greatly. Additionally, I am joining a few college clubs where I can practice socializing. I'm a little nervous about making a bad impression because, since the same people go to the club, I want to be somebody who they want there. I don't want to be a shy, socially awkward guy. If I'm come across that way on the first visit, then subsequent visits could be awkward. Is this a bad way to think about it? Also, to help myself, I've decided to join toastmasters, but not yet. I don't think I'm ready to jump right into public speaking. I think it'd be better to build up to that first by doing these other things.
I feel good to be taking steps to change to who I want to be, who will still be me, but a much better version that I haven't been able to bring out yet. Progress feels very slow because, although I'm doing these things, I still struggle in much the same way as I have been. Sometimes I wonder how long it is going to take to become the improved me. A year of consistent action? Two years? Ten? I sometimes worry that it will take too long or that I may not get there, but I have no choice but to try anyway. Do you think I'm going about this the right way? Is it good that I'm not focusing on improving my attraction skills with women? Don't get me wrong, I deeply desire to experience having a girlfriend - someone I can love and physically and emotionally connect with. I want to feel what that feels like, but I think I have deeper issues that need addressing first.