I’m starting a series, Overcoming Social Anxiety, that will chronicles my experiences of becoming more social (in person). I’m very social online but this is the beginning of something new and exciting. (I hope so anyway). Here is my story about my first time out in some time.
Yesterday, I decided to try a young adult group in my area. (Just for privacy, I will not reveal the name of this particular group). I talked about going to this group for months now. Part of me not attending this group was my anxiety. I’m nervous when I go into new situations, especially those that involves a lot of people. By the way, there were over 600 people at this young adult group. (I was amazed that God was a part of each young adult life. The aura was amazing. The Spirit was felt in that service). Back to the pre-service jitters. I had them. They were bad. I almost did not go. I almost made excuses such as I haven’t finished up my to-do list for the day, I don’t have the best outfit, my hair is not right, my eyebrows are not on fleek (new term but I like it), etc. However, I wore the outfit that I was comfortable wearing. I didn’t know what to expect. I worried about being judged (being called awkward which I heard three times by the way). Not everyone in every situation will be pleasant and welcoming. I need to remember this as I move forward in my social life whether that’s with church, becoming a part of the bloggers’ circle, whatever the case may be. I have to remember that I am who I am. If I get called awkward, then that is plainly someone’s opinion. Most people won’t know me and I can’t assume that people will automatically think of me as weird, awkward or odd. I just can’t.
The perks of going to this group:
- Worshipping with people my age
- Hearing a much-needed message for my current circumstances
- Overcoming social anxiety a bit (going in the first place)
- Meeting some people who made me feel welcome for my first time at this service
The cons of going:
- Not knowing anyone and everyone
- Letting my thoughts control me
- Feeling not a part of the whole congregation
- Feeling a type of way about the Pastor. (He was welcoming. He introduced himself. I found out that we have something in common-We are both from Chicago. He thank me for being there and for my compliment on his message). I just thought that he would have talked to me a little longer. Maybe find out more about me, have some welcome packet (or something), and give me some information about their small groups. (He was still nice and ask if I would come back. I said I would).
My evaluation is solely of my own beliefs and being caught up in my feelings. I did realized that I need to give things time. I can’t keep running away after something doesn’t go as well as I would think or for hearing “awkward”. I’ll never flourish into a social butterfly. I struggle with social anxiety but with others’ encouragement and getting myself out there, I will be able to overcome this once and for all. I will be able to carry a full conversation without stuttering, skipping words, or not pronouncing words the right right. I will be able to host my own events, and be the laid-back girl some folks know me to be with everyone.