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Discussion Starter #1
You know what annoys me greatly? Fear.

Someone took a magazine that I wanted at a hangout and I'm too -scared- to ask for it, or even - damn it - about it.

Why am I scared? I don't get it. What's he going to say or do that makes me so nervous? All I have to do is go up and go "hi, I noticed you have this magazine - are you reading it? If not, can I have it?".

But here's the thing: I have to wait for an answer and then respond accordingly and I can't do it. I don't trust myself to think on my feet, but yet I won't plan out all the possible answers that could be given.

I can think of 'no' or 'yes', and that's it. But I know it might not be a simple no/yes. If anyone gives me a response which means I have to make a spontaneous decision... wow, the thought scares me. I'd probably back off if it wasn't an instant yes. My voice will go high and I'll be all smiles (out of fear or something). I'd probably go 'oh never mind, thanks anyway' and leave.

And I hate that I would do that. I'll feel foolish. Why would I feel foolish? I'm not sure. Because I didn't get what I wanted? I was rejected. I take it... personally? As if, if I'd known how to ask I would've gotten it.

Paranoia? Social anxiety? Competitiveness? (with a stranger! for a magazine?).

Am I messed up? Does this sound like anything out of the Enneagram/MBTI?

Help! :(
 

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Yeah but they are more afraid of you if you don't ask for the magazine.:kitteh:
 
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I used to be EXACTLY like that.

Now... trust me on this. Seriously, RELAX. Do NOT worry. Do NOT try to think of an answer before asking. If you are RELAXED and NOT WORRIED about what you're gonna say next, a natural reply will come up. Just don't WORRY.

If you WORRY, you block out the creativity that your mind demands to come up with an answer (however obvious it may be).

So don't worry about what you're gonna say next. The reply will naturally florish :)

Go ahead and try it with a few people that you won't see again. You get some really weird looks when you do it wrong (that's actually hilarious when you think back!), but most of the time you'll do it right :)

Maybe you get this relaxation thing right away and don't have any issues with replies. If you don't... well, get ready, because awkward (and, in hindsight, hilarious) situations will arise!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
@Einstein: What do you mean? Do I come across as scary in my post? :s (I did keep sneaking in glances at him though as I wrestled with whether to go up and ask or not... and we made eye contact. He probably wondered why I kept looking at him).

@ENTJam: Relaxxx is not a word I'm very familiar with, however, I shall tryyy... *eep*. Edit: Okay, wait, my default reaction is to backoff and accept ("oh nevermind, thanks anyway" to save me from awkward situations), so are you saying I should ditch my backoff reaction and say anything but that?

(did you notice what happened here? you gave a response and I immediately accepted it, without being able to articulate a deeper feeling I had. I had to come back and edit my response after thinking 'but wait, that's not the end of the story!'. It happened again! Even though I thought I was relaxed... maybe I should wait 5 seconds before I post to make sure I'm not accepting as a defense mechanism? >.<)
 

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@ENTJam: Relaxxx is not a word I'm very familiar with, however, I shall tryyy... *eep*. Edit: Okay, wait, my default reaction is to backoff and accept ("oh nevermind, thanks anyway" to save me from awkward situations), so are you saying I should ditch my backoff reaction and say anything but that?

(did you notice what happened here? you gave a response and I immediately accepted it, without being able to articulate a deeper feeling I had. I had to come back and edit my response after thinking 'but wait, that's not the end of the story!'. It happened again! Even though I thought I was relaxed... maybe I should wait 5 seconds before I post to make sure I'm not accepting as a defense mechanism? >.<)
I'm just like that. Most of the time, specially when it's a matter of opinion, I tend to say something "not entirely correctly" (it's not that I'm lying, but my "impulse response" tends to be wrong, for whatever reason). But that doesn't hurt my communications TOO much... Maybe you're being a little bit too self-concious that you WILL screw up?

Psych studies show that we tend to believe that everything we do is about 6x more noticeable than it actually is (for example: you do something stupid. Everything you think people thought of you will be 6x better or 6x worse, etc.). You really shouldn't worry about a response. Do take some time to respond... if you don't want to leave an awkward silence, you could try saying something like "Hi, are you reading that magazine?" "No..." "Hmmmmmmm....... do you mind if I borrow it?"
 

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@Einstein: What do you mean? Do I come across as scary in my post? :s (I did keep sneaking in glances at him though as I wrestled with whether to go up and ask or not... and we made eye contact. He probably wondered why I kept looking at him).
I mean what's wrong with everyone being afraid of each other?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm just like that. Most of the time, specially when it's a matter of opinion, I tend to say something "not entirely correctly" (it's not that I'm lying, but my "impulse response" tends to be wrong, for whatever reason). But that doesn't hurt my communications TOO much... Maybe you're being a little bit too self-concious that you WILL screw up?

Psych studies show that we tend to believe that everything we do is about 6x more noticeable than it actually is (for example: you do something stupid. Everything you think people thought of you will be 6x better or 6x worse, etc.). You really shouldn't worry about a response. Do take some time to respond... if you don't want to leave an awkward silence, you could try saying something like "Hi, are you reading that magazine?" "No..." "Hmmmmmmm....... do you mind if I borrow it?"
Yeah, my impulse responde tends to be wrong in most situations as well... (well this is my immediate thought, so I can't really be sure how 'right' it is... ummm) but particularly so in situations where I'm feeling passive. If I'm absolutely not scared of someone, I can usually get out what I want to say.

I'm usually scared, although I don't know why. In this instance though, I wasn't sure if it was just fear or if it was something else mixed in. I really want a name for this thing I'm feeling/experiencing.

I mean what's wrong with everyone being afraid of each other?
It's not so fun when it cripples you - and everyone - from achieving the simplest of things.
 

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I'm usually scared, although I don't know why. In this instance though, I wasn't sure if it was just fear or if it was something else mixed in. I really want a name for this thing I'm feeling/experiencing.
Think of it this way: humans are social creatures - they WANT to be approached, and are flattered by being approached. Being approached makes them feel important, which is one of the most basic human desires.

Once you feel that you are doing a favor by approaching them, things should get easier. That's how I look at social interacions.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Think of it this way: humans are social creatures - they WANT to be approached, and are flattered by being approached. Being approached makes them feel important, which is one of the most basic human desires.

Once you feel that you are doing a favor by approaching them, things should get easier. That's how I look at social interacions.
That sounds similar to what I used to do: I used to tell myself that people already like me so it would be easy (to do whatever I wanted to do). It took a lot of mental energy to put myself in that state of mind though, so I couldn't keep it up.

I tried your suggestion and it's a bit easier, so thank you for that. It makes me feel a bit superior though... which is not a feeling I'm comfortable with. I'm kind of more confident being unconfident, if you know what I mean. >.<
 

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For the magazine problem, I would suggest that you re-frame your question as a statement. This is a beautiful thing once mastered.

As it is, "Can I have that magazine when you're done?" does two things that you don't want:

1. It puts you in a defensive position, since you are asking for something that someone else currently "owns".
2. It sets you up for dreaded rejection, because the only response that that person can give you is "yes" and "no". (This is probably where the fear stems from).

So, re-frame that question as a statement. "When you're done with it, I want that magazine." A statement is definitive. There is no response and likely no conversation about it. In fact, the person may feel pressure to just give it up. A statement puts you on the offensive.

And when you get really good at it, re-frame a question into a statement that has no window for further conversation. "When you're done, I want that magazine. I have an interest in finance and want to see if it's worth subscribing to."
 

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I tried your suggestion and it's a bit easier, so thank you for that. It makes me feel a bit superior though...
Hmm... In the beginning of this year, when I was literally starting conversations with almost everyone I met (specially the pretty girls I'd never have the guts to talk to before), I felt awesome and, well, superior. Now that I have reflected on it, I figured out I did come off as arrogant and as not-caring, and I was just starting conversations to prove to myself (and others?) that I COULD start conversations (I was very shy during H.S.).

I don't think that's what you mean, but what you said did remind me of when I "reflected" about this a few weeks or a month ago. Make sure you are humble about this - you're feeling superior because you feel like you are granting a favor by talking to them, is that right? If so, in a normal conversation, as a rule of thumb, you should listen more than you speak. You will come off as more attentive and smarter, also caring.



"When you're done with it, I want that magazine." A statement is definitive. There is no response and likely no
I... think... this could be interesting to get started but... this is my personal opinion, I don't think one should talk to others by giving orders (which is how I would feel if I was saying that or listening to someone speak like that)... I don't think it's gentle or graceful.

Suppose you are sitting in the waiting room of a doctor. You're reading a magazine. Someone comes up to you and says:

"When you're done with it, I want that magazine." I will be like, "okay, sure!" and a smile, but that's because I always do that. On the inside, I'd be "Well, that's one arrogant gentleman/lady" and "You want this magazine? Well, good for you."

However, if someone asks "When you're done with it, can I have that magazine?" I will be like, "yes, of course!" and mean it. Most likely I will finish reading the article I'm reading and I'll give the magazine to the person sooner than I would if I disliked her, or if the person talked to me in a condescending tone.




OP, you must realize conversation is a two-way street. You may speak in a way that makes you feel good, but not the other person (ENTJs might have issues with this, normally labeled as arrogants), so be careful. In my opinion, a conversation with a stranger is suppose to be a humble exchange of pleasantries.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I'm thinking enneagram type six, phobic. I also see some nine traits. Also, maybe some runaway Ni.

@MBTI Enthusiast , what do you think?
I can see why you think it sounds phobic. It does rather. I'd like to add that it's only around strangers that I'm fearful. Within my family, I can be quite aggressive. Especially, when it comes to my parents: I'll resist any attempt by them to - what I perceive as - dominate me. For example, if they're trying to convince me of something, I'll resist, and be pretty loud, harsh, and vocal about it (== aggressive, I think).

For the magazine problem, I would suggest that you re-frame your question as a statement. This is a beautiful thing once mastered.

As it is, "Can I have that magazine when you're done?" does two things that you don't want:

1. It puts you in a defensive position, since you are asking for something that someone else currently "owns".
2. It sets you up for dreaded rejection, because the only response that that person can give you is "yes" and "no". (This is probably where the fear stems from).

So, re-frame that question as a statement. "When you're done with it, I want that magazine." A statement is definitive. There is no response and likely no conversation about it. In fact, the person may feel pressure to just give it up. A statement puts you on the offensive.

And when you get really good at it, re-frame a question into a statement that has no window for further conversation. "When you're done, I want that magazine. I have an interest in finance and want to see if it's worth subscribing to."
That's pretty assertive (almost aggressive), and I guess it would work if the other person could be intimidated like that. I don't quite trust myself enough with strangers to enter a game like that though.
 

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You know what annoys me greatly? Fear.

Someone took a magazine that I wanted at a hangout and I'm too -scared- to ask for it, or even - damn it - about it.

Why am I scared? I don't get it. What's he going to say or do that makes me so nervous? All I have to do is go up and go "hi, I noticed you have this magazine - are you reading it? If not, can I have it?".

But here's the thing: I have to wait for an answer and then respond accordingly and I can't do it. I don't trust myself to think on my feet, but yet I won't plan out all the possible answers that could be given.

I can think of 'no' or 'yes', and that's it. But I know it might not be a simple no/yes. If anyone gives me a response which means I have to make a spontaneous decision... wow, the thought scares me. I'd probably back off if it wasn't an instant yes. My voice will go high and I'll be all smiles (out of fear or something). I'd probably go 'oh never mind, thanks anyway' and leave.

And I hate that I would do that. I'll feel foolish. Why would I feel foolish? I'm not sure. Because I didn't get what I wanted? I was rejected. I take it... personally? As if, if I'd known how to ask I would've gotten it.

Paranoia? Social anxiety? Competitiveness? (with a stranger! for a magazine?).

Am I messed up? Does this sound like anything out of the Enneagram/MBTI?

Help! :(

Practice is everything. Do it with someone u are comfortable. Ask for stuff. Just like that. And when u want something ( like a magazine) just clear your mind and go for it. Don't think of the result, don't think about what u are about to do. If it helps, think that u are "undercover". That .. u are wearing a mask and no one can tell that is you. See how other people do it and try to do the same.
I'm curious about smth tho, if u were to ask for smth for someone else , would be scared to do it too? Or only when it's for you?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Practice is everything. Do it with someone u are comfortable. Ask for stuff. Just like that. And when u want something ( like a magazine) just clear your mind and go for it. Don't think of the result, don't think about what u are about to do. If it helps, think that u are "undercover". That .. u are wearing a mask and no one can tell that is you. See how other people do it and try to do the same.
I'm curious about smth tho, if u were to ask for smth for someone else , would be scared to do it too? Or only when it's for you?
If it were strangers, it doesn't matter who I'm asking for, I'd still be nervous. (Oh and, I don't have anyone I could call a friend, so can't really practice, although it is a good idea.)

Ok, so I'm reading all these replies and I'm increasingly feeling like if i did adopt any of these strategies, I would be being someone I was not. It's a very strange - possible negative - attitude, but everytime I try to change my behaviour to something more positive I feel like I'm betraying myself. Like I could change, and deep down, I don't want to change when I don't even know what I'm changing from.

I think the reason for the above is that I used to have a pretty strong self-image internally (whether it was accurate or not is another matter, but I believed it for the most part), but had an experience that caused me to re-evaluate my entire perception of myself. Ever since then, I've become painfully aware of the fact that I'm not what I thought I was. Now I don't feel grounded, since I don't know myself, and it's important to me to know what I am before I 'become' something else.
 

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If it were strangers, it doesn't matter who I'm asking for, I'd still be nervous. (Oh and, I don't have anyone I could call a friend, so can't really practice, although it is a good idea.)

Ok, so I'm reading all these replies and I'm increasingly feeling like if i did adopt any of these strategies, I would be being someone I was not. It's a very strange - possible negative - attitude, but everytime I try to change my behaviour to something more positive I feel like I'm betraying myself. Like I could change, and deep down, I don't want to change when I don't even know what I'm changing from.

I think the reason for the above is that I used to have a pretty strong self-image internally (whether it was accurate or not is another matter, but I believed it for the most part), but had an experience that caused me to re-evaluate my entire perception of myself. Ever since then, I've become painfully aware of the fact that I'm not what I thought I was. Now I don't feel grounded, since I don't know myself, and it's important to me to know what I am before I 'become' something else.

U cannot change who u are. That is impossible. U can only improve yourself. I was suggesting ways that you could trick your nerves ( coz IMHO , your nerves get in the way) and become more confident.
Another explanation would be that u are sociophobic person. Of course that's just an opinion, and I might be wrong.
 
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