anxiety · life · social anxiety

Negativity is everywhere

I feel like shit. These past few days I’ve progressively felt worse and worse to the point all I see is negativity in my life, with nothing positive about anything I’ve accomplished. Every perceived failure or wrong action I’ve had thus far is like adding more weight to my assortment of things to be depressed about.

I was stuck with two newcomers during my last coloring meet up, and that made me very nervous. I wanted to begin a conversation with both of them, but beyond brief pleasantries and introductions, I was terrified to say anything else. I hoped things would get better when Annelise arrived, and it did, but I stayed just as anxious and withdrawn as I was before, while she and the others gradually moved into casual conversation. I was stuck in a prison of my own making that I couldn’t break out of. More people came, but I got even more anxiety because of the sudden changes. One person showed up unplanned because he was supposed to go to work that day, but instead, he decided to spontaneously come to the meetup. Another person was late, and a third person who had been hosting an event separate from mine showed up to my event after he was finished with.

I felt robotic and stiff trying to give the appearance of calm and confidence whenever someone tried to draw me into a conversation or prompted me with a question. I would push myself to answer someone if it was a question or inquiry directed at me, but then my energy in doing so would only be sustained for that one moment before I was assaulted by a rapid fire of continuous anxiety and all I would want to do is to withdraw myself from everyone and stop talking.

There were some weird moments where I did feel a reprieve, in which the anxiety would lessen and I could bring myself to say something more than just a sentence or two. But overall, the anxiety was always there.

Towards the end of the meetup, we got to talking about introverts. One girl commented that I seemed like a true introvert because I was so quiet. I owned up this and agreed that I am an introvert, but internally, I was mortified because I have a negative association with my introvertism. I understand she probably didn’t mean anything bad by saying what she said, and her perception of me is just her observation of me.

This Thursday I had set my hopes on attending an afternoon meditation class. I specifically wanted a day to go there by myself and be able to meditate and relax without having the stress of seeing anyone from the social anxiety meet up group. Brian has been hosting a meditation class at this same location once a week on Tuesdays, but then he broke from his routine and also hosted a class on Thursday. There went my plans of going to the class. I admit I let my negativity (about how I did for the coloring meet up) cloud my views on how horribly things would go if I went to the meditation class with Brian and other people there. Of the people who did RSVP to Brian’s event, I had either met most of them before or are friends with them. Yet that wasn’t enough motivation to help me to go.

Now I’m upset at myself for basically making the wrong choices in both situations. It’s made me grumpy and moody for the last few days, and now I’m seeing negativity in everything I do. I was supposed to go hiking on Sunday, but now the event is postponed because of rain and a possible hurricane moving into the area. While it’s not my fault that the event got postponed, I’ve taken it like it’s another personal failure of mine to add to my existing pile of failures.

The only supposedly “good” thing I’ve gotten in the last few days is a letter from the therapy services office that I sent my application to. I’m on the waitlist for the fall to be placed with a therapist, and they’ll contact me when there is room. I’m still skeptical about therapy. Will it really help me? I’ve struggled in the past 3 years of flip flopping between getting depressed because of my anxiety and at the same time trying to hang in there but having no idea how to get myself out of this funk.

Therapy won’t be cheap, and the letter says I have to pay $40 for the first session. They have a sliding scale to allow a lower fee, but I’ll have to fill out a different application and see if I get accepted or denied. Either way, if I start therapy, I’m going to need money.

This leads back to my job search issue. I’m still too much of a scaredy cat to call the store I want to apply for to check if they are still hiring or not. Will I ever do it? I don’t know. I don’t have a whole lot of faith in myself when it comes to making phone calls. Every phone call I’ve ever made, I literally feel like I’m hanging over a cliff with only a thin thread holding me up and it can snap at any minute. And every time I have succeeded with a phone call, I feel relieved afterward, yet also feel I escaped imminent death within an inch of my life and I never want to put myself in that situation ever again.

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2 thoughts on “Negativity is everywhere

  1. As someone who has thought a lot about mental health, I very much appreciated your honest post about what it is like to live with social anxiety. I think that therapy will definitely help – it is not your fault that you are experiencing anxiety – and there is a whole profession devoted to helping people to getting their mental health back on track.

    I completely sympathize with the anxiety about the job searching – interviews can be extremely stressful. Since you are a great writer (seriously, your writing style is so clear and accessible to the reader), maybe you should apply to some remote writing jobs – freelancing will offer you the opportunity to build your portfolio, make some money, and work in your home.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your feedback. I always enjoy reading opinions and suggestions that readers leave for me. It often helps me to know other people’s perspectives on my situation.

      For remote jobs, I have no idea where to begin looking. It’s extremely easy to find fraudulent and too good to be true job advertisements on the Internet. If you have any good tips about where I can begin my search, I’ll all ears.

      I once got accepted as an online video captioner. My job was to type out all spoken dialogue on any given video and then sync the dialogue text with the audio on-screen. I was paid real money for captioning the videos, but it didn’t pay very well. I was paid something like 40 cents per minute, and captioning and syncing a 5 minute video is actually a lot of work. At times it took a whole day for me to finish everything. It was also not very fun to be sitting in front of a computer all day and knowing I would only be paid a couple of dollars for finishing one video.

      Like

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