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How to deal with social anxiety

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Elesdee95
  • Elesdee95

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#1

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:02 PM

I'm quite new on these forums and I know a lot of people probably find it boring to read stories about life as long as they involve other people struggling to fit in the society, but I'm making this topic in hope that whoever's dealing with social anxiety will visit this forum to help each other, because that's how I managed to fight and suppress depression and anxiety, through a social/medical forum, where we shared experiences and made each other feel stronger.

First off, I saw there was a topic with similar discussion, but this one I thought it's a conversation we're elaborating on a more detailed basis. So I'm calling for all the people that gone through this social problems to come here and discuss, because it's not only for me, but for everyone dealing with this. Of course, everyone else that knows how to help people in need, are more than welcome.

So my problems started because of the much use of the PC, well that's what my mother claims. I reckon and I know PC totally changed my behavior. When I was in my early teen ages, I used to be a nerd, playing a lot of video games, but things weren't that bad, you know, it was for the first time I was owning my own PC and my parents had nothing bad against it. I got to mention that my parents were divorced but because of me, my mother thought we might move back again to my dad. As I was in my last year of gymnasium, I was deepened into playing games, more and more addicted. Climate inside the family changed though as well. My parents were arguing almost every night and I just couldn't express a few things to make them stop doing it. Probably because my dad was a dickhead and he still is an dickhead and he wouldn't listen to me, at least for my inside peace. This situation deepened my social situation. I was depending on no friend, my classmates were nothing to me and I was almost skipping school to come home and play games. I was spending my whole day in an one single room of the house, with my mother, because my father was always an closed minded prick and he didn't wanted to have his family back together.
So this is the background of my teen ages. sh*t didn't changed in the last two or three years, just with sightly adjustments. I'm living in a new town, with my mother, but this time it's me that makes her cry and not my father. My behavior is of a totally retarded person. I don't do shopping, I hate going in public, I hate walking, I hate talking to my relatives, I just like sitting in house. I never these kind of activities and I was never going to leave the comfort zone. I know I'm probably social anxious + lazy c*nt. And I decided to make a topic here because of something that happened today. I made my mother cry, probably not the first time, that's for sure. I was an annoying idiot and I didn't wanted to help her with shopping because she wasn't buying me a new cellphone. She went totally nervous and started hitting me but I had no reaction. In the end I went helping her, but you see, only after she started wiping. Terrible.

So that's the background of my last five years or so. I want to change. I don't want my mother to have such a prick in her house. But I don't know what to do. I have no guide.

Oh and this is not made for me exclusively. People who suffer from social anxiety just join in and discuss what helped, what's your background etc.

TextureData
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#2

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:06 PM

Woww,

Heavy story man.. I Feel terrible right now sad.gif

user posted image


ForumName
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#3

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:09 PM

Yeah you MUST be new here if you expect anyone on the forum to not be a complete dick to you on this thread.

Anyway, I really have no idea what to say to you. I've never had any problems talking to people. I'll be honest, I don't like it sometime, but I do it anyway and am quite good at it. It's just natural for me. It would help me help you if you gave me some specific reasons why you don't like crowds, hanging out with people, ext.

Elesdee95
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#4

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:16 PM Edited by Elesdee95, 03 May 2013 - 09:18 PM.

QUOTE (ForumName @ Friday, May 3 2013, 21:09)
It would help me help you if you gave me some specific reasons why you don't like crowds, hanging out with people, ext.

I don't like crowds because I feel like they are staring at me and sh*t. That's annoying. When someone looks at me I tend to feel "stomach butterflies" or something similar, really shy. Especially now when I got a short haircut and I have an obsession regarding my ears and I feel really ashamed of them although I've been told by my relatives that they're nothing wrong. I've never been bullied because of that.

I don't like to hang with people just because I feel like it's going to be a boring routine.

DestaliusDark
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#5

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:33 PM

I'll throw this at your face : http://www.reddit.com/r/anxiety http://www.reddit.com/r/depression
Go get help there, it's a much better place to talk about your feelings, i help people there sometimes.

Hope this helps a bit :-)
Just a reminder, people here are dicks so, don't post any feelings here xP

Apex.
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#6

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:41 PM

Trust me man, I know how you feel. For me it's more of a health anxiety, depsite being perfectly healthy I'm very hyper-vigilant.

I didn't go to a college interview today because I'm a pussy and I've took a year off school because of it. It usually results on me being online all the time because there isn't much else to do, which ends up creating a vicious circle. I don't like to complain about it though, I understand that's it's my fault and only I can get over it. Feels like my life is on pause really, but oh well I'm sure one day I'll be normal wink.gif

ForumName
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#7

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:47 PM Edited by ForumName, 03 May 2013 - 09:55 PM.

QUOTE (Elesdee95 @ Friday, May 3 2013, 21:16)
QUOTE (ForumName @ Friday, May 3 2013, 21:09)
It would help me help you if you gave me some specific reasons why you don't like crowds, hanging out with people, ext.

I don't like crowds because I feel like they are staring at me and sh*t. That's annoying. When someone looks at me I tend to feel "stomach butterflies" or something similar, really shy. Especially now when I got a short haircut and I have an obsession regarding my ears and I feel really ashamed of them although I've been told by my relatives that they're nothing wrong. I've never been bullied because of that.

I don't like to hang with people just because I feel like it's going to be a boring routine.

Just a quick note, I'm not great at giving advice, though I'll still try. From a medical standpoint you can take a few natural remedies to help you. These include Kava, Magnolia bark, Phellodendron bark, St. John's Wort, and Passionflower. If you stop drinking caffeine it may also help. When I fail you can check out this thread about...well....the same thing:

http://www.gtaforums...ic=548836&st=40

or

http://www.gtaforums...8555&hl=anxiety


I'm thinking real hard as to how to help you, it's hard for someone without this problem to understand I guess. The main thing is to just not worry. It may seem hard, and I won't understand how hard it may be, but that is simply the most important thing. In reality, this may seem harsh depending on how you look at it, but no one gives a sh*t about you. No one is looking at you or your ears. They are too caught up in their lives. If no one has ever commented on your ears, then they are fine. Even if they do, who cares? The only person you have to live with is yourself.

When in crowds, know that no one cares about you. No one. They don't look at you and probably hardly even notice you. As said before, the main thing is to just not worry. People are looking at you, who gives a sh*t? Hell, you should take is as a compliment, all the ladies not being able to take their eyes off you.

If someone next to you is looking at you and not someone in a crowd, just start talking to them. About the weather, GTA, whatever. Once you start talking you will instantly forget how shy you feel, and who knows you may make a new friend. Being shy is a natural part of life, anyone who tells you they have never been shy is not telling the truth. That feeling is a key part of us. We feel it if we doubt ourselves(I've convinced myself I'm the greatest person on Earth, call me narcissistic but at least I'm never depressed about how I look, how smart I am, ext.), and we feel it because of our natural need to be accepted and the fear of not being accepted. Once you start talking to someone and know they will not reject you the feeling will go away very quickly.

You could also have some self-esteem problems. One of the easiest ways to fix that is to start hitting the gym and the books. If you get As in school (Pulling an all night studying and being the only one in your class to get a hundred on the test is a great feeling) AND become a sexy stud with all the ladies salivating at the thought of being with you your self-image will grow substantially, after that everything falls into place. If you convince yourself you are amazing you will BE amazing, trust me.

Hanging out with people is not boring if you have the right friends. Me, I love doing new things, feeling new rushes. My friends are like me, we go skydiving, scuba diving, the works. Every once in a while I'll sit down and play video games with a friend, but that rarely happens, if I do that I'm alone. If you have the right friends then it won't be boring at all. Just find people who do the same things as you. You must have a hobby, find someone who has the same one and do it with them.

Anyway I hope my incoherent ramblings somehow helped you!

The Yokel
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#8

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:51 PM Edited by GTAvanja, 03 May 2013 - 09:53 PM.

If you think the problem is computer and games then just stop spending so much time on those activities. Start exercising instead. And I think you should seek professional help instead of seeking help from random people on the internet. You're using your problem to get an answer on how to fix it. It's like injecting heroin in order to get a vision of how to cure your heroin addiction.

F4L?
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#9

Posted 04 May 2013 - 01:27 AM

QUOTE (GTAvanja @ Saturday, May 4 2013, 08:51)
If you think the problem is computer and games then just stop spending so much time on those activities. Start exercising instead. And I think you should seek professional help instead of seeking help from random people on the internet. You're using your problem to get an answer on how to fix it. It's like injecting heroin in order to get a vision of how to cure your heroin addiction.

Forumname has some good points there. Vanja here has some good points as well, heed those advices.

I had a mate who had pretty bad social anxiety, I all but forced him to get the f*ck out of his house and come do stuff, just to walk around, go to the shops, the movies all that stuff, he used to make bullsh*t excuses all the time, but eventually, he got out more and more. He told me that I was part of the reason, now I hardly see the guy because he went and found his own friends (He and I have no mutual friends) and is always out doing stuff. I can't really understand how hard it is to get out, but I can empathize a little.

My advice is to absolutely force yourself to leave the house and go to a shopping centre, and just walk around, over time you will get better at it, take some money with you and buy some lunch, browse a few games, go to the electronics store, look at some TV's. From there you build your way up. These issues are in your own brain, and it's up to you in the end to overcome them. Like Vanja said, seeing a doc could help a lot as well, but seriously, just throw yourself out there, there is literally no other way you're going to get out without going out, if that makes any sense.

headmetalbanger
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#10

Posted 04 May 2013 - 02:45 AM

PC too ruins my life (2008 - part of 2013), since 2001-2007 was less addict. I'm 22 now and I'm wake up because I want finish my lost career in the next 3-4 months and join in the life again after of many sadness and depression (Not at all, I can control me).

I'm tranquil/serious person but I don't have problems with conversations or something. Try @finn4life say: walk, buy things, listen music on the parks, sleep and wake up early and just be yourself.

WhitValid
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#11

Posted 04 May 2013 - 05:37 AM

I was more or less bound to my apartment for two years, a couple of years ago. People offer solutions like "stop your routine". Well that's a nice idea but it's that very idea that paralizes you. If you have access to a car at all, I would start there. I noticed some crazy sense of empowerment on the days that I worked up the courage to drive to McDonald's drive-thru. There was security/privacy/seclusion in the vehicle, but still it was a good exposure to the outside world, from a safe distance. Eventually I would go into a gas station, so on and so forth. Wish you the best. Wish everyone with these problems the best.

Tuff Luv Capo
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#12

Posted 04 May 2013 - 07:37 AM

I relate a lot to this. Being in my room was my safe zone, and I still very much am a creature of routine in that I need that safety spot. Every day was and is made better by knowing that at the end, I could play my video games. I will always need that time by myself with my games. Always.

Elesdee95
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#13

Posted 04 May 2013 - 01:34 PM

So after a looong time I've gone to shopping by myself, also helped my aunt with shopping. Feels better to be helpful man. I even received a gift from my auntie after that. smile.gif

Sanjeem
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#14

Posted 04 May 2013 - 08:26 PM Edited by Sanjeem, 04 May 2013 - 08:34 PM.

QUOTE (Elesdee95 @ Friday, May 3 2013, 21:16)
QUOTE (ForumName @ Friday, May 3 2013, 21:09)
It would help me help you if you gave me some specific reasons why you don't like crowds, hanging out with people, ext.

I don't like crowds because I feel like they are staring at me and sh*t. That's annoying. When someone looks at me I tend to feel "stomach butterflies" or something similar, really shy. Especially now when I got a short haircut and I have an obsession regarding my ears and I feel really ashamed of them although I've been told by my relatives that they're nothing wrong. I've never been bullied because of that.

I don't like to hang with people just because I feel like it's going to be a boring routine.

Just know that all those pointing fingers are the most insecure assholes you'll never get to know. The thing you must find within yourself is inner peace and happiness. Who cares about what other people think, even if they are looking at you, which they probably aren't, who cares. I know what you mean, you feel like the "Eye" of society is watching your every move and that other people's opinions matter so much. The truth is, the only time other people's opinions matter is when things really important come up in your life, like job interviews, or friends opinions and family. Those sorts of thing. Anything else in my opinion, is just somebody else trying to embarrass you so that the chances of them being embarrassed are less.

But the truth is, whilst you may think people care what you look like, they really don't. People are so full of themselves that although it may look like they are fully paying attention to you, really they are just worrying about themselves and how they appear to everyone else. It's a curse, a curse I used to have myself and now that I realize this, life is so much better. I'm not saying go on a rampage and be like "f*ck it, I can do what I want" but just realize that just because a guy points and shouts "Hey Look at that Nerd, he's pathetic" doesn't mean you should be intimidated or shy. The only person that allows yourself to be intimidated is you, once you realize that the world is a filthy place and just accept that, you will find things in life will intimidate you less.

Also, when people do, do these things, don't react in a way that gives them a means to make fun of you even further. If anything do the exact opposite, don't provoke them and try and cause a fight, that might not go your way. Just nod and smile at them or something, as if you don't care, because at the end of the day feeling sorry for yourself and scared of people WON'T HELP YOU. If you react in a way that just says to the person that really they are the fool and your fine, they will stop doing it eventually and if they don't, just know that they aren't getting the pleasure they would if you reacted in such a way.

I used to be a school bully myself, How I've changed, since I realized I myself was an insecure bastard, now I'm not.

Hope I helped. Have you never seen a "cool Nerd". Those people who go to parties, raves whatever the hell and where glasses and look like geeks and what not. I see them all the time, and I always think, Jeez what the hell are they doing here, then I realize, they're guys just like me wanting a good time. If your social skills aren't that good, hiding in the house won't help. These are just general things you need to build on...

have you never seen a guy who looks like yourself on the train or something and realize that he looks geeky, yet he is totally confident and fine. Maybe you should just try and be like them, because at the end of the day, we can't change the way we are. Not physical appearance anyway, and if you think getting plastic surgery will help...just don't, people who get plastic surgery are the MOST insecure out of all...

archfiend
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#15

Posted 05 May 2013 - 08:59 AM

I had what I consider severe social anxiety for years, I just couldn't leave the house.
My parents would offer me 50 if I would go into town or something but I couldn't go, sometimes I cried to be honest.

I'm not going into to much detail because I don't like sob stories, but I want to give you some advice from a fellow social anxiety sufferer to another.
Go to bed early, this really helped my anxiety, I used to go to bed at 3 or 4 am and my anxiety wouldn't let up. Now it's more under control, sleep deprivation really f*cks with you.
Physical excercise, this ones critical IMO. Doctors say physical excercise like running is better for you than any anti depressant, and trust me that's true. I feel physically and mentally sharper for it. I recommend you walk/run at times when no one will stop you and talk to you so as to put off.
somebody here has already mentioned avoiding caffeinated drinks. Too right they're bad for you, I totally avoid sh*t like like that and junk food now.


OmegaEvolution
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#16

Posted 05 May 2013 - 12:55 PM

I could explain to you in detail how your anxiety is linked to internet addiction, however since no one is likley to read it i'll leave this video here for people to watch.

If you have OCD, anxiety or social anxiety and use the internet a lot this video will reveal all.


baguvix_wanrltw
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#17

Posted 05 May 2013 - 06:10 PM Edited by baguvix_wanrltw, 05 May 2013 - 06:12 PM.

Some good suggestions imho though I'm not sure if I'd agree for example with the coffeine thing but that might just be different from person to person.

We have a case like that in my family that we just talked about today, the guy is over 50 and has basically never left his house after school ended. He has never seen a psychiatrist (as far as I'm aware) and has never received any real help from the family.

He tried to commit suicide a few months ago; his older brother had come to his place to "clean up", he just started throwing away anything he didn't see fit, like old books etc. His younger brother - being a compulsive hoarder, perhaps slightly autistic (some signs seem to point to it though they could easily be symptoms of something else), very smart and having a ton of general knowledge, has social anxiety and has never once in his life even had a single real friend, let alone girlfriend - couldn't deal with that and took too many pills, a neighbor noticed the closed blinds though (which were usually never closed) and called the cops. They were able to get him to a hospital just in time.

Well, that's a pretty tough case imho. He has two older brothers, one who cares for him and the other one who apparently only wanted to clean up because he wanted to move in. That guy was always a piece of sh*t so hearing that didn't surprise me much.

The other difference to the OP's case is that he did not become like that because of PCs. He was always like that, always had the tendencies to lock himself away from the world, and when school was over he just went into unemployment and kept staying at home all day every day. His mother did the shopping for him until she died 10 years ago or so.

He's always sweating profusely, is very large in all senses of the word, not necessarily a good looking man, which he is aware of and which just stresses him more.

Btw, I don't mean any offense and maybe I'm completely off with this idea but I think OP's problem was not a PC either, it's just convenient to have someone or something to blame.

That doesn't mean people should blame themselves, far from it, noone is to blame for feelings and (mental) health issues. It's also nothing to feel sorry for. But imho it can be worked on.

The guy from the above story has, as much as I dislike to say it on some level, never been better than after his attempted suicide. He's starting to be more outgoing now, is more interested in what's going on in the lives of the other people in his family and he generally just talks more.

He still doesn't have any friends except for the one brother, and we're trying to come up with ways to get him into a position where he actually wants, by himself, to have more social contact. That's not easy, at least I had trouble coming up with good ways, I only had one: get the guy a PC. Yes that sounds weird considering the OP etc. but this guy only ever sits in his small dark room and reads the same books over and over again. He doesn't go out (except to go shopping), he doesn't talk to anyone, he doesn't write, he doesn't even watch TV anymore.

So I think getting him a PC might work - first of all it's not an intrusive thing like throwing away his stuff. Second, I don't intend to force him to get one (or actually we'd pay for it anyway) but just want to give him more things to do for when he chooses to be alone - and I think he definitely needs to be left with that choice.

Third, the Internet. The way I figure it it might be easier for him, the big sweaty uncomfortable guy, to not be forced to have direct, physical contact with people in order to socialize. The Internet adds a layer of (presumed) anonymity, and it gives him the chance to think thoroughly before saying something.

It might be, or so I think, a good first step for him. He could read something new for a change instead of the same old books and have a chance to talk to people without having to feel uncomfortable because of his self-perceived appearance.

I really liked the car idea too, that made a lot of sense to me since the thought behind it (small steps) fits well with my own. So I checked that out, turns out the guy has no license and his brother was sure that he was far too anxious to drive, he said he actually jumps away every single time he sees a car coming close to him, even when it's just driving normally on the road... so I'm afraid this won't work in this case, that guy is tougher to crack. No surprise since he has been feeding his mental issues for almost 40 years...


TL;DR: So yeah do I have a point, I'm not sure. Well, maybe one. I think the key is not forcing people into anything but to get them to want to change by themself.

And OP, glad to hear you're making progress. But I don't think you need to think of yourself as an asshole, retard or whatever insults you like throwing at yourself. Every person on this planet has problems, some physical, others psychological, most have both.

You already made the first step, or actually many more than that, you realize your problem and you say you want to change. All you need to do now - of course, the second biggest step after beginning to work on yourself in the first place - is to actually do it, and it seems that you are from what I understand. Congratulations icon14.gif

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#18

Posted 05 May 2013 - 06:22 PM

QUOTE (GTAvanja @ Friday, May 3 2013, 14:51)
If you think the problem is computer and games then just stop spending so much time on those activities. Start exercising instead. And I think you should seek professional help instead of seeking help from random people on the internet. You're using your problem to get an answer on how to fix it. It's like injecting heroin in order to get a vision of how to cure your heroin addiction.

I'd echo these thoughts, though kind of a funny observation there at the end. True though

But, I'd also point out/ask... Is this "social anxiety" a self-diagnosed issue here? Part of the problem with doing that is, you might match the symptoms of that sure, but there might be something else underlying, or compounding your issues. Talking to a professional is your best course of action really. Your problems could be related to some other type of underlying anxiety issue and generally in such cases depression also develops too, of course I'm not saying you probably have any of that... That'd be kind of beside the point of me trying to tell you to not self-diagnose.

All I'm saying is that, it sounds to me that your problems to deeper than just social issues. I don't mean that to be offensive, but I think it would really behoove you to talk to a professional about this.

Elesdee95
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#19

Posted 05 May 2013 - 08:30 PM

Yes, I am self-diagnosed regarding the social anxiety issue. I also suffer from anxiety and depression. Those were also self-diagnosed, but they were right at least. Don't get me wrong, I went to a psychotherapist and nothing changed, he didn't even gave me a diagnosis or explained what's going on with me.
I'm quite not sure if this is a social anxiety problem or not. It could be but not as severe as it is to some people. For example I went out with some classmates the whole day today and I wasn't even stressed about what people care about me/my obsession regarding ears. No, I was totally there to have some good time.

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#20

Posted 05 May 2013 - 08:50 PM

Start meditation and start lifting. Having a good body will really help with your confidence and anxiety.

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#21

Posted 05 May 2013 - 08:53 PM

Elesdee95: I know you weren't addressing me but it's still good to hear. I don't know if the thought gives you comfort but like you said yourself, there are worse cases out there. I'm sure you can change what you dislike about yourself, it appears you're capable of that. But yeah, good luck still and all the best for the situation with your mom.

Oh and I'm not a big fan of psychologists either, only of psychology. I think mental self-healing is very powerful, but it requires the wisdom to understand the problems and to find ways of fixing them. Otherwise it can hurt more than it helps. So one has to be careful.

Elesdee95
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#22

Posted 05 May 2013 - 08:56 PM

I don't have enough time lifting, because I need to spend more and more time studying for the exams. I tried to work out at home, I have two dumbbells but I'm afraid to try harder because my biceps muscle and pectorals hurt afterwards and then my anxiety triggers and makes me think it's because of the heart.




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