If you don't ask, the answer is always going to be "no". This is a mindset I've taken with me this past year and it's something I'll continue doing moving forward -- "just ask".
I've always admired people who are confident enough to speak up in a crowd to ask something or aren't afraid to ask for what they want. If you know me, I'm introverted and hate confrontation. It's taken 21 years, but I've gotten to the point where I'm confident enough in myself and my abilities to ask what's on my mind and not be afraid of judgement. These are some steps that I've taken to get to this point:
Put Your Pride Aside
This is a tough pill for a lot of people to swallow. For a long time, I was scared to ask questions because I was afraid of appearing dumb or being rejected. I've learned that it doesn't matter what people think of you and odds are, others have the same question. If you're worried about being rejected from something, at least you asked and took the risk.
Not Asking is a Missed Opportunity
Like I mentioned earlier, when you don't ask, the answer is always no. Whether it is asking for that promotion or that cute guy out, just go for it! There's a good chance that the answer is yes, and if you don't ask, it's a missed opportunity and you will never know what could have been. If you get an answer you weren't looking for, it can be tough, but at least you know and you won't have to ever wonder "what if".
It's A Process
Like everything in life, it's a process. I'm still afraid to ask for what I want or to speak up, but through my experience, I'm far happier when I let my guard down and just ask. There are no regrets and even when I'm rejected, at least I know I tried, That alone, makes it all worth it.
The next time you're hesitant to ask a question, I encourage you to go for it! By not asking, you're doing a disservice to yourself by potentially missing out on an opportunity. It's hard to gain the confidence overnight, but take small steps by "just asking" at least once a day.