I really want to enjoy myself so I am trying to get a bunch of strategies together to help me fight my anxiety - in this case I think it's called social anxiety.
I was sitting at the kitchen table mulling over my pathetic life and realized that one of the big reasons I am afraid of this party is that I AM BORING !
And if you have social anxiety issues I bet you are boring too!
Why We Are Boring
Mind Too Busy With Negative Thoughts
If you are like me when you enter a new social situation your whole mind is constantly wrapped around thoughts like:
- "I feel really uncomfortable here"
- "I bet no one will like me here"
- "Why am I so weird?"
- "I will probably start blushing or stuttering"
- "He hates me"
- "I am not as good as these people"
We are so "busy" inside mentally that there is very little room left for interacting with others.
In fact there is very little room left to even think about what to say to this other person.
This causes us to be at a lack for words - which equals boring!
People like people who are interested in them!
If I am worried about what people will think of me or what I should say next or how they might be judging me or how unattractive or unlikable I must be I am not really in tune with the other person at all.
When our heads are filled with negative nonsense about ourselves we are focused on OURSELVES - not on getting to know others - which also equals boring!
Worried About What Others Will Think
The negative thoughts keep me from taking a chance. I am worried this person will dislike me because I am blushing, or because I like knitting, or libraries or because I am afraid to do normal things.
I tend to try to quickly figure out what this other person might like and say those things - or just agree with everything they say.
I can almost become a clone, an average with nothing that might cause others to disagree with me or to not like me - which also equals boring!
How To Become An Exciting Person
It's actually easy (to say anyway) !
As a starting point -- just reverse the above traits that make us BORING.
Start Thinking Positive Thoughts About Yourself
Be proud of who you are.
Tell yourself that everything about you (including how you blush or stutter or feel anxious) are all part of the wonderful bundle of uniqueness that is you!
I have a friend named Tomas who is the geekiest looking guy with a face and body that you can only call unique. His personality is way out there too - never holds a thing back and just blurts out the strangest comments.
All of the things about him make him who he is. Yes he could get plastic surgery on his large nose and tiny jaw to make him look more traditionally "manly". He could tone down his thoughts and filter most of the unusual stuff out. He could slouch his tall gangly frame and hide his thin biceps.
But if he did - what a huge loss to the world that would be! All of these qualities are part of what I find so endearing and special about Tomas. He wouldn't be as great as he is if he "fixed" or hid these aspects of his true self.
So if I am a bit anxious or nervous that is ok - right now that is part of who I am. Shy and nervous can be endearing. I am ok now while I am anxious and I will be ok if I become even more anxious or if I become more relaxed.
Connect With Others
Pretend you are a journalist and have the assignment of really getting to know this new person you are meeting. Your mission is to find out what is going on with them, what makes them tick.
It doesn't really matter if they "like" you or not. This is about connecting with and getting to know what makes this unique person who they are.
Stop Filtering Who You Are
Walk into that room like you own the place. You have a total right to be there. Be proud of yourself and show it in the way you hold your body as you walk, stand and talk.
Be who you are. So many people - especially those with social anxiety, filter their opinions and personality and thoughts until they become so watered down and so average and so in offensive that it is hard to tell who they are.
I am one of these people and I need to stop!
Are you guilty of this too?
The world needs you , and the world needs me! To be who we really are, to be unique, to contribute and to connect.
It' s really a big waste of the beauty of recombinant DNA for us all to be the same!
Let's you and me go get that world that needs us so badly!!!
(PS - I have begun to try out these tips at a recent gathering at a coffee shop - they work!)
(PS again - there is a Part 2 and 3 or more coming as well - stay tuned!)