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Almost as long as I can remember I've struggled with not being able to take it easy in social situations. Was it face-to-face or even just a skype conversation, with a friend or a stranger, with many people or just one-on-one.

I tend to not properly think through what I'm saying and tend to just spill out something, sometimes more or less inappropriate things or too much (personal) information. I get really frustrated when I can't express myself properly and instead do it completely wrong or poorly.
I sometimes stutter and forget what I was about to say. I also do a lot of awkward silences where I somewhat unconsciously "panic" about the whole situation (especially with strangers) and can't think clearly/concentrate on the situation. Sometimes I don't even talk at all even though it would be required.
I think I might clearly come off as nervous and that's something I really am in those situations but I wouldn't like it to show, really. Some people have also noted that my non-verbal communication makes it look like I don't want any people around me and that I want to just be alone, which isn't always the case actually. I actually like to talk to people if I only could express myself properly and have enough time to think my response. I don't know but some people seem to get a bit uncomfortable if I take my time and think.

It's really a problem and I think that it draws people away from me because they may think I'm too awkward to talk to or I send out these vibes that I only want to be alone, or so. I suppose that's one reason it is quite difficult for me to make friends.

Do any of you experience anything similar? How do you cope with that? What to do to not be like that?
 

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I certainly struggle with this as well myself. It's probably not exactly the same thing you go through. There may be some actual brain differences in myself. My processing speed isn't as fast as the average person.

I don't do terribly in all social situations though, but I am far from being a great speaker or persuasive person a lot of times. I try to accept that I am a quieter person, and even potentially an introvert. Haha. I can kind of relate to your second post on this thread...sure it may be seen as cute or whatever, but it sucks to be incompetent really at times. And frustrating.

Working on your facial expressions and faking it a bit could help you perhaps become more approachable. If you work on your smile or making yourself look more open in a conscious way. This is just a thought. I don't really know of any official good system to follow to improve these skills.

It's good that you acknowledge that you like to talk to people. I like to talk to people on occasion too. Remind yourself of this, and this may kind of ease the anxiety of talking to strangers.
 
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Just be yourself (I know this advice will only frustrate you)
be fine with who you are first. It sounds like you feel unsure or afraid while you shouldn't be.
It will actually get better, the older you become (trust me on that).

If you are alone much of the time; it might be this. At least that was my problem, and the symptoms where very much the same. What you need is to interact with people more. (yeah, I know, sounds painful, but it pays off).
 
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Sunset Stripper
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Sometimes you just have to feel the fear and do it anyways, expose yourself to these situations to get experience in how they work. Something that helps me is to "humanize" (for a lack of a better word) the people I interact with that cause me to have anxiety. Think of them doing the most humanly thing possible, or going through something innately human. Such as going to the bathroom. DO THEY SEEM SO SCARY NOW??? This legit helps me. Think of them being scared to talk to someone, or anything that would help you relate to them.
 

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Not an admirable solution, but alcohol helps in a pinch.

Other than that, you kind of have to just get more social experience. Realize that everybody's worried about saying awkward stuff, and nobody remembers said awkward stuff after a couple minutes.

If you socialize with the same group enough, they'll ignore your body language.
 

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Electronica Wizard
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In order to be comfortable, you have to learn to accept things that you cannot change such as who you are. The things you can alter is how you feel about yourself. Take good care of yourself in appearance, in your thirst for knowledge and in health. Set yourself as an example to others that this is how you want to be treated.
 

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Almost as long as I can remember I've struggled with not being able to take it easy in social situations. Was it face-to-face or even just a skype conversation, with a friend or a stranger, with many people or just one-on-one.

I tend to not properly think through what I'm saying and tend to just spill out something, sometimes more or less inappropriate things or too much (personal) information. I get really frustrated when I can't express myself properly and instead do it completely wrong or poorly.
I sometimes stutter and forget what I was about to say. I also do a lot of awkward silences where I somewhat unconsciously "panic" about the whole situation (especially with strangers) and can't think clearly/concentrate on the situation. Sometimes I don't even talk at all even though it would be required.
I think I might clearly come off as nervous and that's something I really am in those situations but I wouldn't like it to show, really. Some people have also noted that my non-verbal communication makes it look like I don't want any people around me and that I want to just be alone, which isn't always the case actually. I actually like to talk to people if I only could express myself properly and have enough time to think my response. I don't know but some people seem to get a bit uncomfortable if I take my time and think.

It's really a problem and I think that it draws people away from me because they may think I'm too awkward to talk to or I send out these vibes that I only want to be alone, or so. I suppose that's one reason it is quite difficult for me to make friends.

Do any of you experience anything similar? How do you cope with that? What to do to not be like that?


Coming from a person with anxiety, the only way to overcome your fears in social situations is to keep practising.
Put yourself into situations that you are afraid of. You can start off by going travelling alone by yourself, or take up some classes that are related to your hobbies and meet some new people, or do some volunteering work. Put yourself into social situations and keep practicing. Instead of running away from your fears, you have to face your fears bravely and overcome it.

I remembered when I was 5-6 years old, I didn't even dare to speak to my classmates. I'd either nod my head or shake my head whenever people talk to me.

Then when I was 7-12 years old, I started opening up a little bit. I was able to speak to my classmates when they talk to me.
However, I was still very anxious in public places, I freeze up whenever I have to speak to the sales staff in shopping malls.

My anxiety followed me from childhood all the way up to adulthood.
I refused to submit to fate however and I keep pushing myself out of my comfort zone. In order to overcome my anxiety, I tried out all sorts of techniques.
I worked in telemarketing jobs, I worked in retail jobs, I worked in a student care centre.

And just a few weeks ago, I was at my job serving this customer and this customer started asking me, "Are you the owner of the shop? Because you are able to speak so fluently."

I wasn't the owner of the shop actually, but my "fluency" in my speech is because I spent years practicing it ;)

I still have a little bit of anxiety but at least I've improved a lot over the years. So yeah, the way to overcome your fears in social situations is to push yourself out of your comfort zone and keep practicing non-stop.

Hope my advice and my life story here has managed to give you some insights into your situation, good luck! ^^
 
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