Editor’s Note: Social phobia is a form of anxiety disorder that is not the same as introversion. The following story comes from the personal experience of a friend who did not want to see a doctor. It is regrettable that she did not want to see a doctor, but she has been actively trying to recover herself.
Narrator: Fu Lumei
I have studied dance, painting and vocal music since I was a child. I have performed on stage many times. I am also a major in arts in university. The nature of my work has always been planning, negotiating and organizing with foreign countries. I have also been the head of media departments for several years. All along, everyone has the impression of me that I am confident, enthusiastic, energetic, easy to adapt to the new environment and become one with everyone.
But three years ago, under the reminder of my good friend, I found that I was afraid of socializing.
It’s hard to talk to people
At first, at its worst, I couldn’t even go shopping alone because I didn’t want to ask the price, let alone make a counter-offer.
I also don’t get to know my colleagues in the new work unit. In a unit with less than 50 people, it took me two years to recognize all the people. It was only because I had to contact them at work that I got to know them.
In the corridor, if I can hide from people and do not meet, I will not meet. If you can’t say hello, you will never look at it again-not lofty, but unable to open your mouth.
Last month, I was also said by the leaders at the next higher level during the meeting that I [what is all right, just don’t say hello to people, don’t like to communicate with people].
Fortunately, the leaders directly under me who are familiar with me all think that I am very energetic and cheerful-but this is also an improvement after working together for one year every day.
It all started from a depression three years ago.
Since I realized my social fear three years ago, I have started my own psychological suggestion.
I reminded myself that dealing with people is not as big a deal as what. I never had stage fright before and had a lot of hosting experience. This seems to have little effect.
Looking back now, this kind of fear came from the emotional frustration three years ago, when the boyfriend who was about to get married betrayed himself.
At that time, my self-esteem was severely hit by emotional defeat.
I lost confidence, became autistic and depressed for more than a year, and lost interest in everything. At that time, I was not interested in everything I liked before, and I wanted to sleep every day.
After realizing my problems, I also tried to change. When I went out, I found that I could not speak or make a sound…
That kind of feeling is very weak, not dumb, but guilty, talking to strangers has no confidence, no confidence.
With friends, life becomes fresh.
For this reason, I read a lot of books and tried my best to adjust myself, with little effect.
Through constant attempts and self-summary, I realize that my social fear comes from lack of self-confidence, which comes from the psychological blow of emotional defeat. The sense of loss brought about by betrayal makes me subconsciously avoid social activities and even cut off all acquaintances.
For two years, I relied too much on WeChat and only had regular contact with three or four people.
Fortunately, with the patient company and encouragement of my good friends, I began to actively look for self-adjustment methods other than reading books and do what I was good at before to find self-affirmation.
So I started painting, practicing calligraphy, keeping a diary again, quit movies (I was a screenwriter major, and movies became my way of escaping from reality after social fear), quit alcohol, began to practice songs, and resumed dancing and yoga every week.
Most importantly, I tried something I have always resisted-sports.
Through long-distance running, anaerobic exercise and outdoor camping, going out to take photos and learning cooking, new things can see progress one after another in a short period of time, greatly enhancing my self-confidence and making it easier for me to affirm myself.
Especially in early 2015, I wore a cow suit to run during the New Year run and accidentally made it on the front page ~
After that, when I silently brushed the circle again, many strange runners gave me friendly and warm encouragement. Gradually, my mood became cheerful and my social fear became less serious.
New relationships bring new problems.
However, when I thought I was going to overcome this psychological problem, I had a new relationship after more than two years of empty window.
My boyfriend is very kind and honest to me, and there is nothing empty, which makes me uneasy.
When he took me to his house and played with my brothers and sisters of the same generation, I accidentally discovered that I had my own high school classmates.
The inexplicable fear just came.
How to describe it, I can obviously feel that I am thirsty and flustered, and even break out in cold sweat sometimes, but I force my willpower to suppress this panic.
As a result, I felt deeply collapsed and powerless after every communication.
Couples face each other together.
At first, my boyfriend thought I was melodramatic, because he thought I was normal most of the time with him, only occasionally uncomfortable.
Later, he understood that I had a psychological problem and suggested that I go to see a psychologist. But I knew that I had recovered too much and that the crux of the problem was there, so I did not go to see it.
Therefore, he used practical actions to help me relieve my bad emotions, and was very grateful to him for actively finding ways to solve it for me after understanding it.
Every time he goes out to meet friends or peers, he will introduce me in advance and take the initiative to find more topics to guide me to speak. I also try my best to take a deep breath and calm down my mind so as not to let fear prevail. After all, my heart does not want to be controlled by this fear. I still want to return to my lively, cheerful and agile appearance before.
Through our joint efforts, it took us half a year to finally not be afraid to look at his friends or stay in the same space.
The problem is still there, and I am still working hard.
In fact… it is still quite bad at present, but I am working hard, at least at present, when dealing with strangers who know that they will not have what interests, it is very natural and normal.
After six months of leap-forward recovery, I seem to have entered a plateau period. I want to use better methods to make my mind more natural and better.
Although the number of palpitations is less and less, I still clearly remember that it was only three months since the last time my palms were sweating and I was holding myself to communicate with others… and it was only two days since my voice became smaller and smaller while I was talking… I still had contact with people five or six times…
I am not introverted. I know very well that my confidence has not returned to normal after being hit hard, but this feeling is really weak sometimes. I want to adjust myself better.
I think this kind of situation, in addition to the understanding, care and patient companionship and guidance of friends and family, it is more important to correctly understand oneself and actively adjust oneself.
I said so much accidentally, but I really felt deeply. I haven’t summed up my situation all the time, so I should sort it out for myself and continue to work hard.
Editor’s Note: In the end, the editor did not force [Amway] regular treatment to Fulumei, because her current progress seems to be good. Perhaps, she will naturally receive appropriate help at the right opportunity in the future.
I hope her story can also inspire you, because even with the help of formal treatment, the strong will to recover oneself is still the key to recovery.