Social Anxiety

Hi I would like some friends please

I would like some friends please.

When I first went to university in 2008, I lived in a hall of residence, best time of my life right? No. The first few weeks were the worst, I was incredibly shy and not sure how to come out of my shell, that set me up for the rest of the year. I went the whole year with not many people knowing who I was which was incredibly lonely for an 18 year old. That is not to say 2008 was a terrible year altogether I had a good group of school friends who kept me going and some fun was had. That experience of not being able to make friends has kind of held me back ever since, and now having thrown my self in to the deep end of moving to a new country I am reminded that I have grown a lot in the last 10 years but there is always the danger of me going in to my shell.

Making friends as an adult sucks, especially when you have moved to a city where you barely know people your own age. But I went to my first party over the weekend, my first party since my own farewell party from Wellington back in February. I was so so close not to attending, I was coming up with all the excuses:

  • I’m currently about an hour out of the city coming home at night would be a mission (and it was a mission).
  • I’ll be awkward (I was a little bit)
  • I’ll say something stupid (I did).
  • I don’t know anyone going (big lie I knew a bunch of them).

I am happy to report that I am pleased I attended, it was a boost to my confidence. That evening reminded me that I could still socialise and talk to people. It was the first time in months where I got to meet people my own age. I’ve been so use to hanging out on my own for so long I think I definitely needed a night out. That doesn’t mean I wasn’t dreading it, I spent all day in bed thinking I don’t want to go, but I have to go. I was saying things to myself such as “You can do this Anushka, you are a grown up 27 year old person who can go out and be social.” Once I got to the bar and the liquid courage set in I was alright.

I met some nice people and who knows if I will actually get the chance to hang out with them again, it might just only be through their Facebook updates, but hopefully I can continue to push myself to go out and do more. Melbourne is a pretty rad city to live in even if you don’t know many people, so it should be even better with a good group of friends.

I let that bad experience in 2008 define me for a long time, although insecurities remain, I am more confident and more sure of myself now. As I have mentioned before in other posts the more you push yourself, the better it will get. I really need that to continue to be true. In order to get out and meet people you have to find that extroverted side of yourself, its definitely there and ready. If there are other shy introverted people reading this post, I hope my little story of hanging out in a Melbourne bar for a few hours on the weekend can encourage you to go out and find what you want too.

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