I just have that expression; the one that provokes complete strangers to say "Smile...its not all bad!" As a teenager I was unable to string a whole sentence together, convinced the whole world was watching me.
Now from time to time, as the professional in me greets my latest client, ushering them politely into my treatment room, my inner five year old is braced against the door frame, screaming with every fibre of its tiny body. Adult and child have a little discussion later.
I chose a job that provides a daily barrage of people's secrets. After a decade or more I have discovered the antidote to self-consciousness. We are all the same. My psychodrama in constant replay is pretty much like your psychodrama. Given an opening we are dizzyingly within the centre of our own universe. We love to gaze upon ourselves. (Observe the success of blog sites!) We are so firmly intent on our own imperfections, the imagined flaws of others don't rate a flicker.
Thanks to pondspider for the smile. I am reminded that shyness is obsolete and the smile transcends.