Anonymous #1
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hi guys,
im anon just because i feel so pathetic rn and need to get this out of my system, so i can get some clarity. basically today was my first outing at university, and i feel so drained. the girls i was with were all so fun and mingling and talking with each other, whereas i was just always quiet and left out. honestly, i leave myself out.

its so silly. it feels like i always want someone to ask me questions and then, i'll respond or like im a little child who needs someone by their side for them to open up. im so ****ing disappointed at myself and angry as to why i do this.

honestly, it always been like that with me. whether that was school or work or literally anywhere, im always the one who never speaks much, and is very quiet. they must be thinking im so child-like, and shy and just not mature, and a bore. growing up i was always the quietest person and the most isolated one. i didnt ever have many friends, not because i didnt want to, but just idk why. for the context, im from an ethnic minority group and was always the only one looking 'different' in the class and that made me feel so estranged, and made me have this concept of me vs them. i now know that its not about how i look or where i come from, because lots of girls from my background are completely fine. i just dont know why i cant do it.

i also am a very boring person, i dont have any exciting interests or obsessions to talk about, like the latest tech or tv show or songs. and i dont know what to talk about. im also older than them all, i know all these things dont matter, but i dont ****ing know how to act like a sociable person.

i dont even know why im writing this here, but has anyone ever felt that way? and are there any tips on how to overcome it?
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Anonymous #1
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i also know and am very comfortable being a quit introverted person, like it doesnt bother me in itself. i dont mind being by myself and not talking to anyone. but what kind of a life would that be, where i'd have no friends and not have the ability to mingle with ppl, and id be so just anti-social and abnormal. thats why i try to go out of my way and meet ppl but its always the same story.
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Anonymous #2
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(Original post by Anonymous)
hi guys,
im anon just because i feel so pathetic rn and need to get this out of my system, so i can get some clarity. basically today was my first outing at university, and i feel so drained. the girls i was with were all so fun and mingling and talking with each other, whereas i was just always quiet and left out. honestly, i leave myself out.

its so silly. it feels like i always want someone to ask me questions and then, i'll respond or like im a little child who needs someone by their side for them to open up. im so ****ing disappointed at myself and angry as to why i do this.

honestly, it always been like that with me. whether that was school or work or literally anywhere, im always the one who never speaks much, and is very quiet. they must be thinking im so child-like, and shy and just not mature, and a bore. growing up i was always the quietest person and the most isolated one. i didnt ever have many friends, not because i didnt want to, but just idk why. for the context, im from an ethnic minority group and was always the only one looking 'different' in the class and that made me feel so estranged, and made me have this concept of me vs them. i now know that its not about how i look or where i come from, because lots of girls from my background are completely fine. i just dont know why i cant do it.

i also am a very boring person, i dont have any exciting interests or obsessions to talk about, like the latest tech or tv show or songs. and i dont know what to talk about. im also older than them all, i know all these things dont matter, but i dont ****ing know how to act like a sociable person.

i dont even know why im writing this here, but has anyone ever felt that way? and are there any tips on how to overcome it?
I can relate to a lot about what you said. I’ve just started uni now and you’ve just got to let go of worrying about saying the wrong thing and just speak like you would if you were talking to a close friend. Stop thinking everyone is judging what you do and say because it’s all in your head. Everyone is too busy thinking about themselves and what others think about them. Idk if u drink but I found drinking a bit before talking to people gives me a boost of confidence as well and let’s me be more myself and less shy. But most importantly just make an effort, be friendly and make the other person feel comfortable talking to you. Listen to what they’re saying with intent, if you’re listening to them talk and thinking about what to say next, you’re not really listening to them. Being awkward isn’t real, it’s all in your head, don’t dwell on the past and just try to invent yourself as a new confident person. Act like someone you’re not and it becomes so much easier. Hope that helps!
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Anonymous)
I can relate to a lot about what you said. I’ve just started uni now and you’ve just got to let go of worrying about saying the wrong thing and just speak like you would if you were talking to a close friend. Stop thinking everyone is judging what you do and say because it’s all in your head. Everyone is too busy thinking about themselves and what others think about them. Idk if u drink but I found drinking a bit before talking to people gives me a boost of confidence as well and let’s me be more myself and less shy. But most importantly just make an effort, be friendly and make the other person feel comfortable talking to you. Listen to what they’re saying with intent, if you’re listening to them talk and thinking about what to say next, you’re not really listening to them. Being awkward isn’t real, it’s all in your head, don’t dwell on the past and just try to invent yourself as a new confident person. Act like someone you’re not and it becomes so much easier. Hope that helps!
i try that. i swear i did. when i went out, i went with the mindset that im a very sociable person, and it was all going normal. but then, as the other girls started to talk to other like people who were there and all, i just got very secluded and reserved. and they too were almost never making eye contact with me, but with the rest of the group. idk, i dont have anything to say. i just look at them and wonder how they do that. like they were talking about tv shows and travel, but i dont watch many shows or go to travel. like what am i supposed to say. and i also have such a soft and quiet voice as if im a little scared child.
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0ptics
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(Original post by Anonymous)
hi guys,
im anon just because i feel so pathetic rn and need to get this out of my system, so i can get some clarity. basically today was my first outing at university, and i feel so drained. the girls i was with were all so fun and mingling and talking with each other, whereas i was just always quiet and left out. honestly, i leave myself out.
I know it’s hard but do you specifically know why you’re leaving yourself out? Is it because you’re scared of making a mistake when socialising? Is it because you feel like your social skills are weak when compared with other girls at uni? Is it because you’re scared that they’ll judge you if you mess up? Like I said, it’s hard but self-reflection and specificity will help to gauge how well you can socialise and where you need to improve.

(Original post by Anonymous)
its so silly. it feels like i always want someone to ask me questions and then, i'll respond or like im a little child who needs someone by their side for them to open up. im so ****ing disappointed at myself and angry as to why i do this.
Do you think that you respond like a little child? Looking back at any times that you’ve socialised, would you say that you respond like a little child or that others perceive you to be one?
(Original post by Anonymous)
honestly, it always been like that with me. whether that was school or work or literally anywhere, im always the one who never speaks much, and is very quiet. they must be thinking im so child-like, and shy and just not mature, and a bore. growing up i was always the quietest person and the most isolated one.
Are you sure that they think that? How do you know they think that? To truly test that, I’d look at past experiences of socialising and see how many people, out of the total times you’ve socialised with, truly thought that about you. I know you say you’ve been the quietest, and the most isolated person when compared with your peers but I know there has been times where you’ve socialised. It doesn’t have to be in school.

(Original post by Anonymous)
i didnt ever have many friends, not because i didnt want to, but just idk why. for the context, im from an ethnic minority group and was always the only one looking 'different' in the class and that made me feel so estranged, and made me have this concept of me vs them. i now know that its not about how i look or where i come from, because lots of girls from my background are completely fine. i just dont know why i cant do it.
You say you don’t know why you can’t make friends? Once again, self-reflection can help!

(Original post by Anonymous)
i also am a very boring person, i dont have any exciting interests or obsessions to talk about, like the latest tech or tv show or songs. and i dont know what to talk about. im also older than them all, i know all these things dont matter, but i dont ****ing know how to act like a sociable person.
The interests doesn't have to be interesting, just something that people can refer to, IMO. Not knowing what to talk about makes sense but that’s just due to spontaneous talking and not knowing what to say etc.

What do you mean by a sociable person? This term would be different for everybody.

(Original post by Anonymous)
i dont even know why im writing this here, but has anyone ever felt that way? and are there any tips on how to overcome it?
Yep, and still am!

My tips:
be specific, why are you anxious? why do you feel you can’t make friends etc.
you might think that improving anxiety improves socialising. Wrong. Improving socialising actually improves anxiety.

So how do you improve socialising:
- make a scale of 1-10 of how anxious you are. 1 meaning there’s no anxiety and 10 meaning you’re fully anxious. Let’s say you’re a 7/10. Ask yourself, what would I do differently to get 6/10?
- human exposure. This might sound hard at first but the general idea is to keep it simple. Say a simple “hi” to someone, whether that’ll be the cashier, your lecturer, or just someone you know that you won’t engage a full conversation with (if you’re not ready for that yet).
…I’d give more advice but this post is getting long. If you want more advice, ask me and I’ll try and provide as best as I can.

best wishes!
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by 0ptics)
I know it’s hard but do you specifically know why you’re leaving yourself out? Is it because you’re scared of making a mistake when socialising? Is it because you feel like your social skills are weak when compared with other girls at uni? Is it because you’re scared that they’ll judge you if you mess up? Like I said, it’s hard but self-reflection and specificity will help to gauge how well you can socialise and where you need to improve.


Do you think that you respond like a little child? Looking back at any times that you’ve socialised, would you say that you respond like a little child or that others perceive you to be one?

Are you sure that they think that? How do you know they think that? To truly test that, I’d look at past experiences of socialising and see how many people, out of the total times you’ve socialised with, truly thought that about you. I know you say you’ve been the quietest, and the most isolated person when compared with your peers but I know there has been times where you’ve socialised. It doesn’t have to be in school.


You say you don’t know why you can’t make friends? Once again, self-reflection can help!


The interests doesn't have to be interesting, just something that people can refer to, IMO. Not knowing what to talk about makes sense but that’s just due to spontaneous talking and not knowing what to say etc.

What do you mean by a sociable person? This term would be different for everybody.


Yep, and still am!

My tips:
be specific, why are you anxious? why do you feel you can’t make friends etc.
you might think that improving anxiety improves socialising. Wrong. Improving socialising actually improves anxiety.

So how do you improve socialising:
- make a scale of 1-10 of how anxious you are. 1 meaning there’s no anxiety and 10 meaning you’re fully anxious. Let’s say you’re a 7/10. Ask yourself, what would I do differently to get 6/10?
- human exposure. This might sound hard at first but the general idea is to keep it simple. Say a simple “hi” to someone, whether that’ll be the cashier, your lecturer, or just someone you know that you won’t engage a full conversation with (if you’re not ready for that yet).
…I’d give more advice but this post is getting long. If you want more advice, ask me and I’ll try and provide as best as I can.

best wishes!
thank you sm for such a detailed reply! basically idk for sure why thats the case, but i think part of it is that i cant get past our differences, like i always feel as though they look me as an 'other', and similarly i just cant get past the differences between us. i guess because i was always brought up in an area in which i was the only one who looked different and had a different culture and all that ethnic immigrant stuff, so i was always on my own and only ever hang out with ppl like me. but i know there are plenty of ppl who are different, yet they make great friends with everyone, idk whats up with that.

the thing about being like a child is that if i am in a group, everyone is talkign about say their favourite tv show, but i will not share mine unless someone asks me. like it sounds so silly, but yeah. i also just have a very soft and queit voice, im not loud. i can be only with ppl i trust and know very very well. its probably also because i do fear as though they judge me, although not in the moment, but thats probably whats happening in my subconscious.

by sociable, i mean i dont make friends easily. it takes at least a few months to speak up to anybody, idk why but ya.

i do think im quite introspective but meh, it hasnt ever helped me much. i just tend to overthink everything. also, the thing is because of all this, most times, i cant even be arsed. like i just wont care to go out of my way and make friends. and i honestly have never gone out of my way to make friends, just do the basics and if i have friends, thats great, otherwise im alone. it sucks, but yeah.

i'll try to practice your advice, and pls do share more tips and your experience as well, if u dont mind sharin.
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yotsr123
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(Original post by Anonymous)
thank you sm for such a detailed reply! basically idk for sure why thats the case, but i think part of it is that i cant get past our differences, like i always feel as though they look me as an 'other', and similarly i just cant get past the differences between us. i guess because i was always brought up in an area in which i was the only one who looked different and had a different culture and all that ethnic immigrant stuff, so i was always on my own and only ever hang out with ppl like me. but i know there are plenty of ppl who are different, yet they make great friends with everyone, idk whats up with that.

the thing about being like a child is that if i am in a group, everyone is talkign about say their favourite tv show, but i will not share mine unless someone asks me. like it sounds so silly, but yeah. i also just have a very soft and queit voice, im not loud. i can be only with ppl i trust and know very very well. its probably also because i do fear as though they judge me, although not in the moment, but thats probably whats happening in my subconscious.

by sociable, i mean i dont make friends easily. it takes at least a few months to speak up to anybody, idk why but ya.

i do think im quite introspective but meh, it hasnt ever helped me much. i just tend to overthink everything. also, the thing is because of all this, most times, i cant even be arsed. like i just wont care to go out of my way and make friends. and i honestly have never gone out of my way to make friends, just do the basics and if i have friends, thats great, otherwise im alone. it sucks, but yeah.

i'll try to practice your advice, and pls do share more tips and your experience as well, if u dont mind sharin.
get a costumer service job where you're constantly speaking to people to develop your social skills.
also keep mingling with different people at uni (societies, flatmates etc) and keep speaking to them.
eventually your social skills will improve.
social skills are a SKILL lol, you've got to keep developing it.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by yotsr123)
get a costumer service job where you're constantly speaking to people to develop your social skills.
also keep mingling with different people at uni (societies, flatmates etc) and keep speaking to them.
eventually your social skills will improve.
social skills are a SKILL lol, you've got to keep developing it.
yeah, thnx.
i am thinking of getting a job at retail stores or as a cashier, so that i can practice more. but uni gives me so much anxiety, i hate going there.
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yotsr123
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(Original post by Anonymous)
yeah, thnx.
i am thinking of getting a job at retail stores or as a cashier, so that i can practice more. but uni gives me so much anxiety, i hate going there.
yeah, definitely do that.
yeah i get that about uni, however keep trying to put yourself out there, it really is the only way you'll be able to stop being shy.
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UniOfLincolnStudent
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Hiya,

First of all this is so normal! You would not believe how many people go to uni (and in most settings) and feel so overwhelmed. My biggest tip/advise is say yes to as many social things as you can comfortably because this will give you more things to talk about naturally. In addition to that you are more likely to find the people that you click with and are comfortable around… uni is a great opportunity for this, especially lectures… sit with people and just chat about the work and then you can move the conversation on to things like what they’re doing after the lecture Remember everyone at uni wants to make friends and most people are scared they won’t so go for it

Having said this, give yourself time to yourself, do things you enjoy (the things you enjoy are probably a lot more interesting than you think they are, so don’t be too hard on yourself). It’s important to take time for you to relax and enjoy your own company.

I can also recommend what most people refer to as “freshers chat”, ask things like: what are you studying? Where do you normally live? Did you take a gap year? What accommodation are you in? - again all of this will help you find common ground and speaking points (I still do this and I’m going into my 3rd year at university haha)

Finally, societies are a great place to make friends if you can find one you feel is interesting or your drawn to then I’d say give it a go because it gives you some common ground to start with.

Hope this helps! And please don’t be disappointed in yourself, you are going great for having just gone out in the first place!!

Best wishes
Harriet
2nd year Biomedical Science Student
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by UniOfLincolnStudent)
Hiya,

First of all this is so normal! You would not believe how many people go to uni (and in most settings) and feel so overwhelmed. My biggest tip/advise is say yes to as many social things as you can comfortably because this will give you more things to talk about naturally. In addition to that you are more likely to find the people that you click with and are comfortable around… uni is a great opportunity for this, especially lectures… sit with people and just chat about the work and then you can move the conversation on to things like what they’re doing after the lecture Remember everyone at uni wants to make friends and most people are scared they won’t so go for it

Having said this, give yourself time to yourself, do things you enjoy (the things you enjoy are probably a lot more interesting than you think they are, so don’t be too hard on yourself). It’s important to take time for you to relax and enjoy your own company.

I can also recommend what most people refer to as “freshers chat”, ask things like: what are you studying? Where do you normally live? Did you take a gap year? What accommodation are you in? - again all of this will help you find common ground and speaking points (I still do this and I’m going into my 3rd year at university haha)

Finally, societies are a great place to make friends if you can find one you feel is interesting or your drawn to then I’d say give it a go because it gives you some common ground to start with.

Hope this helps! And please don’t be disappointed in yourself, you are going great for having just gone out in the first place!!

Best wishes
Harriet
2nd year Biomedical Science Student
awww thank you sm!! its just such a struggle sometimes. i really appreciate your words and message.

i think the biggest problem is that i want to get to know more ppl and different ppl than me, but i just cant break through the barrier of like differences and stuff, u know. i like dont know how to talk, idk how to explain it properly, but yeah. i'll try to stick to making friends with ppl im comfortable with, and then widen the circle (hopefully).
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0ptics
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(Original post by Anonymous)
thank you sm for such a detailed reply! basically idk for sure why thats the case, but i think part of it is that i cant get past our differences, like i always feel as though they look me as an 'other', and similarly i just cant get past the differences between us. i guess because i was always brought up in an area in which i was the only one who looked different and had a different culture and all that ethnic immigrant stuff, so i was always on my own and only ever hang out with ppl like me. but i know there are plenty of ppl who are different, yet they make great friends with everyone, idk whats up with that.
(Original post by Anonymous)
the thing about being like a child is that if i am in a group, everyone is talkign about say their favourite tv show, but i will not share mine unless someone asks me. like it sounds so silly, but yeah. i also just have a very soft and queit voice, im not loud. i can be only with ppl i trust and know very very well. its probably also because i do fear as though they judge me, although not in the moment, but thats probably whats happening in my subconscious.
You fear that they’ll judge you? I know how that feels. To make it easier, you have to prove otherwise. You have to prove that they aren’t judging you, because they aren’t. And the minority that probably will judge everybody, just avoid people like that, but don’t think that everybody acts like that. Back to what I were saying, prove that they don’t judge you. By that, record the interactions you have between them and observe their behaviour. Are they really judging you? If you observe long enough, you’ll get into the habit of thinking that not everybody judges.
(Original post by Anonymous)
by sociable, i mean i dont make friends easily. it takes at least a few months to speak up to anybody, idk why but ya.
Sounds interesting. Have you ever mentioned this to anybody in real life: parents, teachers, schools etc.?
(Original post by Anonymous)
i do think im quite introspective but meh, it hasnt ever helped me much. i just tend to overthink everything. also, the thing is because of all this, most times, i cant even be arsed. like i just wont care to go out of my way and make friends. and i honestly have never gone out of my way to make friends, just do the basics and if i have friends, thats great, otherwise im alone. it sucks, but yeah.
This is hard but if you want to make friends, you have to put in the effort (I mean you’re on TSR asking for advice so I doubt that you don’t want to make friends). I know it’s not easy but would people want to be friends with somebody who has this mindset? You have to put something in the table for people to realise that you’re a nice friend to hang out with. Obviously, this would take effort but isn’t hard work worth the rewards? Take your A-levels as an example.
(Original post by Anonymous)
i'll try to practice your advice, and pls do share more tips and your experience as well, if u dont mind sharin.
Let’s see. I’d say to just get out there and socialise, in small yet progressive steps. You might have anxiety from doing so but keep in mind that this anxiety will most likely be short-term, whereas if you don’t tackle this anxiety problem, the anxiety will be long-term. Short term or long term anxiety, take your pick.

Don’t expect yourself to be fully social just yet. Keep in mind that this is a small, gradual process, not one that can happen instantaneously. If you feel demotivated to socialise, just remember the reward at the end.

Therapy could also be a good option. You don’t have to do this alone and they can understand and examine your problems better than me, or anybody on this thread for the matter! They also usually give life-changing advice. At the end, it’s your choice but do consider it.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by 0ptics)
You fear that they’ll judge you? I know how that feels. To make it easier, you have to prove otherwise. You have to prove that they aren’t judging you, because they aren’t. And the minority that probably will judge everybody, just avoid people like that, but don’t think that everybody acts like that. Back to what I were saying, prove that they don’t judge you. By that, record the interactions you have between them and observe their behaviour. Are they really judging you? If you observe long enough, you’ll get into the habit of thinking that not everybody judges.

Sounds interesting. Have you ever mentioned this to anybody in real life: parents, teachers, schools etc.?

This is hard but if you want to make friends, you have to put in the effort (I mean you’re on TSR asking for advice so I doubt that you don’t want to make friends). I know it’s not easy but would people want to be friends with somebody who has this mindset? You have to put something in the table for people to realise that you’re a nice friend to hang out with. Obviously, this would take effort but isn’t hard work worth the rewards? Take your A-levels as an example.

Let’s see. I’d say to just get out there and socialise, in small yet progressive steps. You might have anxiety from doing so but keep in mind that this anxiety will most likely be short-term, whereas if you don’t tackle this anxiety problem, the anxiety will be long-term. Short term or long term anxiety, take your pick.

Don’t expect yourself to be fully social just yet. Keep in mind that this is a small, gradual process, not one that can happen instantaneously. If you feel demotivated to socialise, just remember the reward at the end.

Therapy could also be a good option. You don’t have to do this alone and they can understand and examine your problems better than me, or anybody on this thread for the matter! They also usually give life-changing advice. At the end, it’s your choice but do consider it.
i hadn't really thought about judgement in that way, definitely reasonable. will try to keep that in mind.

the thing about my behaviour, no i havent, but tht's because i'm assuming it's a normal thing for shy ppl in general? idk.

yeah, i'll try putting the effort. the thing is i then also have this thought that maybe staying by myself is not all too bad, y'know? like i do enjoy my own company, its just that i lack social interactions and things/experiences with other ppl, that's all. but idk if like its better to stay by yourself or to work extra hard and be with friends?

do you think its better to take small steps, or just immerse myself into extreme social situations? like i've thought about this, and idk if maybe forcing myself instead of being slow would help me more, you know what i mean? also, i've tried therapy, doesnt do anything for me. its just like talking to someone, and the other person just listening. it doesnt even scratch my problems, but thanks for the amazing suggestions
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0ptics
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(Original post by Anonymous)
the thing about my behaviour, no i havent, but tht's because i'm assuming it's a normal thing for shy ppl in general? idk.
It usually is but there could also be a condition involved that makes them anxious. Take me for example, I’m autistic which is why I also have trouble making friends, but I’m making progress. Of course, it could just be social anxiety but I’d check with someone just in case.
(Original post by Anonymous)
the thing is i then also have this thought that maybe staying by myself is not all too bad, y'know? like i do enjoy my own company, its just that i lack social interactions and things/experiences with other ppl, that's all. but idk if like its better to stay by yourself or to work extra hard and be with friends?
That’s your choice to make. If you feel like you enjoy your own company, then do so. If you feel like you would rather spend time with others then I’d say to try and make a few friends. I’ve also seen people who hang out with friends when they have nothing to do but revise alone in the library. Maybe you have the same approach? It’s up to you in the end.
(Original post by Anonymous)
do you think its better to take small steps, or just immerse myself into extreme social situations? like i've thought about this, and idk if maybe forcing myself instead of being slow would help me more, you know what i mean?
I’d say to take small steps. When you take extreme steps, it’s very likely for anxiety to overwhelm you and for you to freeze there, which (in my experience) would subsequently cause you to interpret this as them being judgemental. And this cycle repeats again. Besides, when you reach extreme social situations through small steps, anxiety and negative thinking would hit you less, making said situation easier.
(Original post by Anonymous)
also, i've tried therapy, doesnt do anything for me. its just like talking to someone, and the other person just listening. it doesnt even scratch my problems, but thanks for the amazing suggestions
That’s fair and no problem.
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Anonymous #3
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Hey OP, it’s interesting to hear your story since I’m exactly the same way but a guy, it’s strange. I had the same issue, I didn’t make many friends during university. I’m in my final year and know a few people here and there. I’m still working on it. But from my perspective being “introverted” you usually don’t see the appeal of a lot of social activities where people sit down to seemingly just chat or hang out unless they share a common interest with you.

Something that helped me was watching some of those Netflix series If you can, or listening to that music, staying up to trend etc can help you connect with other people. You also said you were a boring person, Howcome ? Are you in societies ? Do you have hobbies ?

It could also be that you’re either missing social signals or don’t know what to do with them. I joined a society and didn’t know how to handle a bunch from people subtly trying to start a friendship dynamic that would be useful later on etc so it’s good to just work on that and try to understand what other people are thinking or trying to do.
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14.64%
I've got a good idea about the choices I want to make (31)
11.07%
I'm researching but still not sure which universities I want to apply to (26)
9.29%
I haven't started researching yet (16)
5.71%
Something else (let us know in the thread!) (13)
4.64%

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