Well my experience was just like yours. However, playing tight has a definite downside especially when you begin playing with people regularly and they target you when you limp into hands or when you have the blinds. Two, actually, you should be playing a drop looser at the start, playing a greater variety of starting hands. In fact, just showing them you do play suited connectors and pocket pairs, will make you more difficult to read. But the general rule is as the tourney progresses and the blinds increase you do have to loosen up some;especially at critical junctures such as when your table becomes short stacked and there seems to be little movement, you must adjust and play looser or the blinds will eat your stack. Also, when the blinds are big, and also when you are close to the money, you have to win some hands. Otherwise, you will limp or sort of limp to the final table. My experience is that tight players also tend to limp not raise.
All these things, to the extent, you are not doing them, can be worked on and practiced until you reach a comfort zone. Then, playing more aggressively will begin to become second nature.
Tight players also are generally master short-stack players. When necessity calls, they seem to know when to pull the trigger. Why wait until then, pick more preferred situations earlier.