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How do you know it’s social anxiety vs. Being introverted

melhil
melhil

I’ve always been quiet and shy and now that I’m in my 30s I’m unsure whether I have social anxiety or I’m an introvert or if introverts have social anxiety. I don’t like being one on one with people I don’t know well or coworkers. I feel better when there is a group of three if I have to be in a social situation. I rarely go out after work with peers. I avoid people. I even find that I’m not comfortable with my own parents at times, carrying a conversation or chatting seems strained. What do you think? Does anyone else feel like this?

3 Replies
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Hidden
Hidden

You sound like an introvert. Just like me. We do have anxiety around groups, and very much have our minds on something else. The key is to find something you are passionate about and embrace it. Then surround yourself with others who enjoy the same thing. I find when in this environment the anxiety is trumped by excitement. And of course us introverts need to have plenty of alone time in a safe and cozy environment, where we focus on our craft and passion projects. Whether it be arts, business, volunteering, etc. it is the way we recharge our souls. Tip: Be confident in your commitment to yourself. Surround yourself only with those who bring you joy. 🙏🏼

Strongheartforever
Strongheartforever in reply to Hidden

Really love this answer and agree wholeheartedly. Give your attention to what empowers you and recharges you. Work with your hands. CBS news just replayed this great story about how working with your hands helps your brain and lowers stress. The doc in the study came up with a term “behaviorceuticals” instead of pharmaceuticals. I think this is good for us introverts. I am an organic farmer and when I get to planting micros and shoots and other seeds I find my mind takes flight to a happy place. Also find it fascinating that we have unique talents that level out the deficits. Have you heard of avoidant personality types? Gotta force yourself outta your comfort zone if you avoid certain situations. It gets easier and easier and then you find out, hey, I love people, they actually help me release the pain instead of worsening it. Wishing you the best!!

Hi melhil,

You’re pretty much telling my story. I’m an introvert with social anxiety. For me the weekends are hard when I’m home and idle. I rarely go out unless it’s to the store.

During the week I’m fine at work and get along well with my coworkers. Though whenever there is a work group event, I find an excuse not to go. Crowds overwhelm me. And they’re usually for extroverts and are clicky.

I wish I could meet others like me where we could hang out for companionship and support.

Nevertheless, you are by no means not alone.

Best,

MZ

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