Shyness tends to affect your ability to interact with other people because you don’t really have that much confidence in yourself or what you’re saying and so you convince yourself that you’re better off not saying anything. Thus, school life can be quite a challenge when you’re shy, as part of the school experience is socialising with other students. School is supposed to prepare you for adult life and so it is important to be able to communicate with others for the sake of your future. If you struggle to talk to other people this will affect your ability to form relationships and therefore every other area of your life.
You’re not generally conscious of how significant your shyness could become when you’re younger, though. All you know is that you don’t feel particularly comfortable being around people you don’t know or in large groups of students. You tend to prefer your own company and are happiest when you’re reading a book or engaged in any kind of activity which doesn’t involve the potential for embarrassment. When you have to speak to your classmates there is always the danger that you’re going to say something stupid and make a fool of yourself, which is precisely what you don’t want to do when you’re at school.
Thus, you may opt to keep yourself to yourself, so that you appear rather aloof to your classmates. You might have a few friends that you hang around with at lunch, but you’re never going to be the most popular student. Shyness definitely doesn’t make school life any easier, as you are at greater risk of being picked on and bullied because you seem defenceless and are vulnerable to attack. If you were popular you would probably be the one doing the bullying or, if not, you would at least have someone to stand up for you. Unfortunately, when you’re mostly alone, the few friends you do have don’t want to become victims themselves.
Being bullied at school can undermine what little self-esteem you have and won’t exactly make you feel inclined to socialise with your peers. You may enjoy studying, but the whole school experience is tainted by the thoughtless and insensitive comments of some of your peers. The learning aspect of school may be fun, but when you’re shy the social aspects are less so. It is not only in the classroom that you’re affected, but also when it is lunch time and during after-school activities. You can feel rather isolated and may even come to dread having to go to school when you know you’re going to spend the rest of the day feeling anxious and miserable.