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November 15, 2014

I am an extrovert. I love to talk to people. I love to be the center of attention. I love to make connections and I especially love sharing things I’m passionate about with other people. This is why I have a blog, do theater, work in retail, and am planning  a podcast.
However, I also have some pretty bad social anxiety. This comes into direct conflict with my desire to meet people and spend time outside my own house.

2014-10-09 09.52.07I’m shy. I like letters more than phone calls. I’m worried that people won’t like me, that I’ll do the wrong thing, that I’ll mess up and ruin my chances at becoming a friend. Things in my head escalate rapidly from “tiny mistake” to “world ending apocalyptic event that ruins your life forever!” So, it’s hard for me to make plans with people.
I’m afraid of being an imposition. So I will almost never initiate plans unless I feel very confident in my relationship with someone. I can agree to plans made by the other person, but I’ll almost never make the first move, as it were.

Photo from the Birmingham News

Photo from the Birmingham News

Why am I telling you all this? Well, because this week I have socialized my butt off. (Not really. That would be an awesome exercise plan though!)
Monday I had lunch with a friend who had been away for a long, long, looooooooooong time. Then, after work, I met up with another friend for drinks and conversation about writing. Friday night I had dinner with another friend who introduced me to three new people (two of whom, it turns out, are customers of mine.) And then this morning I had brunch with one of my best friends from high school. And it was all great and I loved every moment of spending time with them.

Photo from The Homewood Star

Photo from The Homewood Star

There’s always a “but.”
All of that cut waaaaaaaaaay into my writing time.
That is more socializing in one week than I’ve done the entire time I’ve been home from the Writing Excuses Retreat.
I really kind of want to go crawl in a hole right now, drag a book, a mug of tea, and a blanket in after me and post a “No Trespassing” sign outside it.
Which is exactly what I can’t do. I’ve got a NaNoWriMo* write-in tomorrow afternoon at the store.
I also work 6 days a week in retail and education. Not the two most solitary professions.

dragonageThis sort of feeling is usually a good indication that I need a day to myself with the aforementioned tea, book, and blanket. Another thing I do is spend some time with a videogame. I can exorcise a lot of frustrations attacking digital enemies. (I’m especially looking forward to Dragon Age: Inquisition coming out on Tuesday.)
So, I have a question for you. What do you do to recharge when you’re overwhelmed?

11 Comments leave one →
  1. November 15, 2014 4:12 pm

    I game and I read. Both take my mind away from the stress of life. I am so look forward to
    Inquistion, got mine on preorder, love the series. 🙂

    • November 15, 2014 4:14 pm

      I do too! I splurged and ordered the Inquisitor Edition. I’ve never gotten one of the super, deluxe packages for a game before. But they seduced me with their quill pen and journal!

  2. November 15, 2014 5:38 pm

    I consider myself an introvert, despite having absolutely no problem with socializing. I once heard the quote that being an introvert or extravert has nothing to do with what you like, but with how you recharge: extraverts recharge by having people around them, introverts recharge by being by themselves for a while. I’m definitely the latter.

    What I do when I’m overwhelmed is usually read a book, or withdraw myself for a while, when I need to be alone. When I’m home from a social experience(that can be a lecture, or work…) and I need to recharge, I usually just turn on my desktop and start gaming for half an hour. When I’ve done that, usually I’m good to go to do the non-social things(writing, university stuff…) so I guess that’s what I do when I’m overwhelmed.

    • November 15, 2014 5:42 pm

      What do you play?

      • November 16, 2014 3:58 am

        I meant mostly computer games – I’m a big fan of Minecraft, but apart from that, I generally only play strategy games(Age of Empires, Total War, Anno…).

      • November 16, 2014 10:32 am

        Cool. I havent gotten into Minecraft, but im very fond of Terreria. My laptop cant handle most of the games out these days.

      • November 16, 2014 12:57 pm

        Back before I had a good gaming computer, I gamed on my laptop and that poor computer couldn’t really handle even Minecraft at its lowest settings. When I got my driver’s license, I rewarded myself by buying a new desktop computer, built especially for gaming. It’s a beast and it really helps that now I game on a different computer then what I write on – I rarely get distracted by gaming nowadays 🙂

  3. Trina permalink
    November 15, 2014 6:27 pm

    I’m an introvert. I have some of the anxiety, but little of the desire to meet new people. If I get kinda overwhelmed, I read. But when I get super overwhelmed, I binge netflix. 😉

  4. November 15, 2014 7:14 pm

    I know where you’re coming from…though I consider myself an extrovert and I LOVE talking and meeting folks, sometimes it’s just WAY too much! Sometimes, just sometimes, I don’t want to be ‘on’ all the time. I mean, it’s waaaay too much pressure to always be the person to start conversations and keep the crown going and keep things moving. It’s just too much to always be the one planning and doing and etc., etc.

    However, in your case, you are at least trying AND you have acknowledge the difficult in doing that. Most of us trying to keep going even though we KNOW we need to sit our butts down somewhere! So kudos to you!!

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