Twisted Sleeve

Blog

Twisted Sleeve was a blog about confidence for shy girls that I ran in 2014. I also made a few guides for shy girls as part of this project.

Below you’ll find the archived blog posts from Twisted Sleeve.

You can also click here to download The Letter Every Shy Girl Needs To Read, and here to download The Shy Girl’s Manifesto.

Archived Blog Posts

Twisted Sleeve Has Grown up!

You might have noticed that there have been fewer posts around Twisted Sleeve recently. Well, that’s because it’s been growing up behind the scenes. The Prompt I love, love, love blogging. For lots of bloggers, posting regularly is a real struggle, but I’ve never...

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12 Confidence-Boosting Gifts for Shy Girls

Christmas is coming up, but forget about clothes and gadgets. What I want for Christmas is a huge great bundle of confidence! It’s a shame you can’t just buy that from Amazon… But, while I can’t serve up a pile of self-esteem alongside your roast potatoes, I can give...

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You’re Being Judged Every Day (Here’s Why That’s OK)

Have you ever had a conversation in which you’ve agreed 100% with everything the other person said? I don’t think I have, at least not any full on conversations that lasted longer than ten minutes. Even when you talk to your best friend, if you have one, I bet there...

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Why It’s Good To Be Shy

Most of us think of shyness as something bad. Some of us would go so far as to say that it’s a curse. Maybe a few of us even feel like it’s ruining our lives. But have you ever stopped to think that shyness might not even be anything bad at all? Shyness Isn’t...

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How To Stop Feeling like A Loser

Do you ever feel exhausted by not being good enough? Like, do you ever just feel like giving up with the trying hard because you’re so rubbish that you’re never going to please everyone/fit in/be cool? I think I know why this happens. I think I know why we constantly...

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Birthday Post 2014: Being 25 and Learning To Like Myself

In 2011, I was having a particularly bad year, so on my birthday, to cheer myself up, I decided to make a list of all the things I’d done that year. I was surprised by how much I’d done and I enjoyed looking back over an entire year, so I’ve done the same thing around...

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On Finding Your True Identity And Your People

I’ve always been jealous of people who have found ‘their people’. Of people who know what ‘their thing’ is. You can usually define them using just one of their characteristics or interests because that characteristic is pretty much their entire life. I’ve gone to...

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An Alternative View of Friendship

I get a lot of emails from Twisted Sleeve readers asking me for advice with friendship issues. I’m never quite sure how to respond because, to be honest, friendship really isn’t my forte. I’ve always seemed to cycle through friendships and annoy the friends who do...

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An Introduction to Safety Behaviours

You walk into a party and you can’t see anyone you know, so you scurry over to the food table and pretend to really care about whether to have the sausage rolls or the mini pizzas. Your teacher’s looking for someone to answer her question, so you flick your eyes down...

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Why Are You Reading This?

Why are you here, on Twisted Sleeve? I know you’re shy but why are you here, really? Is it to feel a little more normal, by showing yourself that you’re not the only one who finds everyday situations difficult? Is it because you actually want to do something about...

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What If All You Have To Do Is Feel OK?

In May I was at a conference called Alive in Berlin. After my experiences of being on edge at previous conferences and parties, I desperately wanted to prove to myself that my confidence had improved and that I was capable of talking to strangers at a conference. But...

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The Curse of The Clever Kids

It would seem that a lot of us shy girls are kind of clever. From the emails I’ve had from those of you who you have read the letter every shy girl needs to read, we seem to be a pretty talented bunch. So my guess is that you do or did well at school. You generally...

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DIY Self-Esteem Is Here!

Over the last year, I've gone from not understanding why people liked me to really, genuinely liking myself. It's been a fun journey of getting to know myself, my flaws, and my wants, and I'm amazed at how much my opinion of myself has changed. I wanted to help other...

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Liking Yourself Is A Choice

I’ve been interviewing a lot of people recently for the first ever Twisted Sleeve course, DIY Self-Esteem: How To Start Liking Yourself. What’s amazed me about these interviews is how different but also similar everyone’s stories are. It seems that everyone has a very...

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How To Grow Your Confidence: Introspection

I believe confidence can be broken down into two strands: Practical confidence – the confidence to do things Internal confidence – self-esteem While practical confidence is something non-shy people don’t tend to struggle with so much, almost everyone experiences low...

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The Exercise Lie That’s Not A Lie

You know when you’ve got period pains – not even the really bad ones, just the normal ‘ugh’ ones – and you’re supposed to do P.E. or some sort of exercise? And how it’s the last thing in the world you want to do? And some annoying know-it-all tells you that exercise...

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Are You Suffering from Ugly Duckling Syndrome?

My girlfriend’s really glad she didn’t meet me when I was younger because she cracks up whenever she sees a photo of teenage me. I wore glasses pretty much until they became cool.  If I wore my hair up, the top bits frizzed out around my head. If I wore it down, it...

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Wondering Why That Piece of Advice Didn’t Work for You?

A while ago a Twisted Sleeve reader told me that a lot of confidence advice she’s read has actually made her shyness worse. That, by following advice written specifically for shy people, she’s become even more paranoid. Now that got me worried! First up, that is not...

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The Simple Way To Stop Panicking

You have your money carefully counted out before you’re anywhere near the front of the checkout queue, but you still manage to fumble around and drop the coins as you go to pay. You drive too fast round bends because the car behind you is right up your backside,...

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How To Stop Taking Everything Personally

Us shy folk tend to take everything personally. Only one ‘x’ at the end of that text? My crush can’t be interested in me. My friend said she doesn’t like red hair? She must have been hinting about my almost ginger hair. I only got a C for that essay? I’m never going...

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The First Step To Not Caring What People Think of You

So far in my life I’ve had a perm, really short hair, even shorter hair, dark brown hair, red hair, blue and pink streaks, extensions, and now an ombre style. I love changing my hair. But you know what I think looks really cool? Dreadlocks. I think girls with...

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Do Stuff (Plus An Amazing Opportunity)

Last week I was thinking about why I want to help shy girls become confident. I realised it’s because there’s so much I want to do and I know my shyness sometimes holds me back. I don’t want that to happen to me anymore and I want to make damn sure that doesn’t happen...

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11 Quotes about Being Yourself Which Actually Mean Something

I love quotes and inspirational sayings but one thing that really annoys me about a lot of them, particularly those to do with confidence and identity, is how vague they are. They’re all ‘just be yourself’ and ‘stop caring what other people think of you’ and you’re...

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The Simple Way To Avoid Being Massively Uncool

I pretty much always assume that other people are cooler than I am. If a friend raves about bands I don’t know or waves some apparently clothes trainers under my nose, I figure she’s cool and I’m not. It’s always been like this with some of my friends. They’ve always...

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What Does ‘Shy’ Mean?

My original aim with Twisted Sleeve was to help people like me to do whatever they want to do in life. I happen to have always been this quiet, shy, awkward goody two shoes who doesn’t really rate herself, so I decided to help other shy, awkward good two shoes girls....

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You Never Know Who You Might Become

Ok, guys. A few weeks ago I won a scholarship to go to this fun conference in Berlin called ALIVE in May. In case you're interested, here's the video I made which won me the ticket. A lot of it is about Twisted Sleeve readers :D So Alive in Berlin is about personal...

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This Is Why You Think You Suck

People always say you need to separate your actions from yourself. You are not your failures. You are not your successes. All that shizz. I never got it. I always struggle to take on board bits of advice from other people until something happens in my life that I can...

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Why Being Yourself Is Like Taking off Your Bra

Today’s post is a little bit special. See, it’s part of the Thriving Blog Tour which is being run by Hannah Braime from BecomingWhoYouAre.net. As shy girls, I reckon you’d get a lot out of reading BecomingWhoYouAre, so make sure you pop on over there and take a read....

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4 TED Talks Every Shy Girl Needs To Watch

So if you ask me, you guys are a bunch of talented soandsos who just don’t know it yet. From emailing back and forth with those of you have got in touch with me, I know we’re a pretty creative bunch with a tonne of different interests. I believe that inside each of...

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Is This The One Thing You Need To Be Yourself?

A couple of times last year I impressed myself by being particularly chatty and taking the lead and not caring what strangers thought of me in social situations. Each time, I was massively proud of myself. Have you ever been hanging out with friends or strangers and...

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How To Grow Your Confidence: Confidence Challenges

Everyone has a slightly different definition of confidence but, generally, it’s agreed to be some kind of belief or trust that everything will work out okay and that you will be able to take care of yourself. Confident people aren’t scared to ask shop keepers where...

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Too Shy To Comment?

When I started Twisted Sleeve, I knew I’d have a hard time getting my readers to talk to me. If you’re shy, you’re not exactly going to plonk yourself down next to me and start nattering on about what you did at the weekend, are you? One of the things I was most...

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The Shy Girl’s Guide to Introversion

As a shy person, you’ve probably been described as ‘introverted’ before. Maybe you identify as an introvert. My guess is that you’re not 100% sure what an introvert is but you figure you probably are one. ‘Introvert’ is one of those words that doesn’t mean what a lot...

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Are You Broken?

Trigger warning: This article is a teeny bit deeper and darker than most of the others on Twisted Sleeve, so consider giving it a miss if you’re really sensitive. I remember when I was in that ‘Ooh, this is new!’ stage with my first serious girlfriend. She bought me...

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Why Every Shy Girl Should Have A Dream

Since I launched Twisted Sleeve, I’ve spoken to quite a few of you by email. Now you might not believe this but, damn! Us shy girls are an interesting bunch! Reading, writing, drawing, acting, playing musical instruments – check us out, being all artistic! But, even...

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What A Takeaway Pizza Taught Me about Being A People Pleaser

One night, eating a takeaway pizza at my friend’s house, I found myself wishing I was eating something healthier. See, I’d been travelling for a week and I’d eaten so much junk. Normally I’m all for chocolate, takeaways, and sweets, but I was starting to feel pretty...

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A Simple Trick to Stop Feeling on Edge in Public

Last year I was on a plane when I realised how insanely on edge I was feeling. I began rehearsing ‘Can I have an orange juice, please?’ when the air hostess was still about five rows in front of mine. I worried about turning the page in my book in case the tiny...

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What Are You About?

Once, when I was climbing a mountain on a school trip (ok, so it's the only mountain I've ever climbed), my form tutor told me I needed to get excited about something in life. Just like Tom, my boyfriend at the time, was into cricket, I needed to get passionate about...

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Why It’s Good To Love Yourself

Have you ever taken a photo of yourself and posted it on Facebook? Or have you ever dared to say that, actually, you think you did pretty damn well in that exam? Or admitted that, yes, you are a bit of a brainbox? If you've ever owned up to being good at something,...

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Are You A Good Person?

You're shy. You've not got much confidence. You don't rate yourself all that much. But are you a good person? And why does it matter? What Bad Things Have You Done Recently? At my cousin-but-not-really-my-cousin's baptism last year, my...

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How To Dare To Have An Opinion

People are always asking you to have an opinion on something. Should we order the Meat Feast or the Vegetarian Supreme? Do you want the window seat or the aisle seat? Even in French class at school, they’re obsessed with finding out whether you’d rather live in a city...

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A Secret about The Cool Kids

You know who they are. They strut into class late, like they’ve barely noticed the other people in the room. Whenever there’s one nearby (and you can always tell when there is – the air gets kind of prickly), you glance at your shoes. Too sensible? Too shiny? Your...

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