For a few weeks, I have found it hard to function, I keep telling myself I’m lazy, but if it were just that my annoyance at myself would be enough to motivate me. It feels like something more, something invisible holding me back from moving on, one day in the house turns into two, then that turns into a week until it becomes a well thought out process to allow me to leave the house without feeling like I’m going to overflow with anxiety. It’s not necessarily big things that will set me off, sometimes it’s the tiniest of things, for example I accidentally drove into a plant pot on my drive, this would just be something small to laugh at for anyone else, but because I knew someone had witnessed it, it affected me the whole day, I felt nervous doing everything, my motivation dropped and I just felt stupid. Many people just think Anxiety is a word that gets thrown around and people do not suffer with it. It is very real, and very unpredictable. It can surface in small ways, such as nervous scratching or stumbling over one or two words when you speak, but it can also culminate in very tearful, snot-filled breakdowns that leave you feeling weak, tired and very silly. It can also affect daily things that everyone else just does without question, like meeting friends in a pub, I would quite honestly rather cancel on people that go and meet a group of friends knowing they will all be there and I’m arriving by myself.
Meeting new people is also a struggle, we are social beings, we want to interact with people, but knowing there will be a few new people on a night out is enough to make you want to put your pjs back on and sit in front of your fire. So many things go through your head if you make the attempt to leave your comfort zone and meet someone new, for instance “How do I say hello? Do I do a full on Hey! How are you?! Where are you from? Have you any pets or kids?” or do you do a more understated “Hey?” Then if you do the less full on greeting will these people then think you are rude for not asking about their lives and ultimately not like you anyway? But then if you give them a full on in depth greeting and life questioning this may be too much detail and prying into their lives, they may think you are rude and weird for a completely different reason, and ultimately dislike you anyway. So, all in all we talk ourselves in and out and around and around of the conversation that could happen within 5 minutes, and conclude that we will look weird either way and they will dislike us no matter what we do, so stay at home.
We are not rude; in fact, we care so much about what you will think of us that we think ourselves into a frenzy.