Oct 29, 2008

Overcoming social anxiety?

I got a few emails lately from people thanking me about the blog and hoping to follow my steps in overcoming social anxiety. I know I heard this before and I didn't believe it and I know that probably the people dealing with this will feel that overcoming SA is the right way out of their misery, but I did not overcome it. It's still there, every day, every encounter. I just don't beat myself up over it. I'm OK with it and with myself.

I thought that the way out of it was to have at least one close friend, and I tried and I'm still trying to get there. I made a few tries and never quite got to it. Part of it (maybe the biggest part) is that I don't really have time to dedicate to a friendship. Maybe I created this lifestyle to avoid getting to close. It seems to be a pattern either in my choice of friends or in the way I am interacting with them. But that's fine. I just go on and try other people and other ways.

I also hate telephones. They are perfect for getting things done, clarify stuff, setting a meeting, managing an activity and keeping everyone in the loop, but just talking? It seems that anytime I try it, there is a bad signal, there is no return of calls after leaving a message, it's the wrong time, etc. Plus, I like to drive when I'm driving, work while at work, eat dinner with family and spend time with my kid when I'm around. This leaves open the between 9:00 PM and 7:00 AM... who would talk to you then... oh and did I mention that I also like to sleep at night? What a solid argument for avoiding yet another means of interaction!! See? I did not overcome social anxiety. I just accept it as part of who I am. It is my charm!

In conclusion, my advice is to not look for overcoming anxiety, but accepting it. Once you accept yourself for what you are, you become less tense and you do your best in most situations.


Lauri said...

I just discovered your blog today, and I love it already! I've dealt with SAD for longer than I can remember. I think the worst part of it has been the beating myself up, blaming myself even, for having it to begin with. I completely agree that simply accepting it makes all the difference in the world. SAD is just a challenge to face, it doesn't define who I am. Life is SO much more enjoyable when I'm able to see it that way.

Arpita said...

Quite an unusual blog. I enjoyed it.
Everyone can’t take the situation as easily as you did and undoubtedly you deserve to be appreciated for this. I learned about another term named social phobia. These two terms are not totally synonymous, but not totally distinct either which I learned about here: http://www.social-anxiety-solutions.com/social-anxiety-disorder.html
Actually almost all people have social anxiety; it is a kind of shyness a person feels in a certain social situation. Some people get anxious when meeting someone new or having to speak in front of a group of people.
But sometimes the social anxiety feelings are so intense that they keep the sufferer from leading a normal life. These people actually are in desperate need for help. If possible then they need to get professional help.