David Morin

How to become less self-conscious when all eyes are on you

If there’s one thing I remember from school, it’s the terror of arriving in the mornings.

I remember clearly that walk over the school courtyard, feeling everyone’s eyes on me like lasers scanning my every move.

I used to become so self-conscious that it felt like I’d forgotten how to walk. I had to manually control every move my body made and was certain that now, people didn’t just look, they probably took notes and had discussions about what a strange breed I was.

It wasn’t until one of my last years in school that someone told me something that permanently changed how I viewed things.

He said, “When we arrive at school, no one notices how others look because they’re too concerned with how THEY look”.

That comment applied so specifically to my situation, that I couldn’t get it out of my mind. The following morning, I decided to try something I’d never done before.

I decided to study everyone else at that courtyard.

To my surprise, people did totally different things than looking at me.

People looked nervous, fixed their hair, tried to catch a glimpse of their reflection in the school windows (in the corner of their eyes, so that no one would notice).

At that moment, I made two realizations:

Realization 1: People are incredibly concerned about themselves, so concerned that they have a limited ability to take note of others

I later in life learned that when they DO notice someone else doing something weird, they’re often just relieved that they aren’t the only one who does weird stuff.

Realization 2: When I realized how uncomfortable most people are, I became more comfortable.

This is a weird psychological phenomenon: Imagine walking into a room of people who you know are the most confident, socially savvy people who’ve ever walked this earth. You probably feel intimidated.

Now – imagine walking into a room full of people who are anxious, who will wonder what you think of them, who wish they could become more confident. Now you feel more confident.

What happened at that courtyard was that I’d put the others down from the imaginary pedestal I’d assumed they all were up on. When I took them down to my level, they stopped intimidating me.

Realization 3: When I focused on others, I became less self-conscious.

When I forced my attention out of my own head and paid attention to those around me, I automatically became less self-conscious. There’s a simple reason for why this works: Our brain can only focus on one thing at the time.

Since then, study after study has confirmed this: When test participants are instructed to focus outwards they feel less self-conscious and more confident. (As a side-effect, they also become better at making conversation, because when they focus on others or focus on the conversation instead of their own performance, it’s easier to come up with questions that you can build the conversation on.)

Click here: Learn how to make interesting conversation with anyone.

How does this apply to you?

The next time you’re about to enter a social setting you feel self-conscious in, try analyzing the people around you instead of thinking of how you might come off. See what that makes you feel.

But what about in conversations?

When I opened my mouth around strangers, I felt like they would judge my every word.

I later learned that I was overly afraid to make mistakes and show weaknesses. What helped me overcome that fear was to share those insecurities with others. This method makes us stronger because we then feel less worried about hiding our weaknesses.

One of our community members, Mathilda, bravely shared this about one of her fears. I hope it can inspire you to open up like she did:

“I’m insecure about not sounding smart enough. Sometimes I forget the words I want to say because of my anxiety and overthinking. I feel like I lose track of what I was going to say and sometimes find myself cutting it short because I get so nervous.”

So, write down in the comments: What are YOU afraid of being judged for? Also, do you see someone else in the comment you share a fear with? Reply to them and let them know that they’re not alone feeling like this. We’re all in this together.

Write down below what you’re afraid of being judged for and see what others like you in the SocialPro community write.

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Comments (152)

  1. Tim

    Evreything I say and eveything I do.
    My appearance
    My sense of humour
    Lack of social skills
    Inability to ‘read’ people / situations

    • Tim

      Lack of spelling ability
      not proof reading

  2. Anonymous

    Things I’m afraid of being judged for:

    -that I don’t wear makeup
    -that I look young compared to my actual age (people will think I’m immature and incompetent)
    -that I don’t know what they’re talking about / am not in the loop / do not like “popular” things
    -the way I dress (it’s not a taste issue for me but it is a financial issue but people don’t know that)
    -that I seem nervous (so they’ll look down on me and see me as a lower social status)
    -that I seem bored (which is true sometimes because they are talking about something boring. sometimes it’s just because I’m too anxious to show emotion.)

  3. Rehan

    I’m afraid that people will see me as weird because I’m so quiet and to myself. Especially in work settings where all my coworkers are so interactive. I even notice that my actions are a bit.. off. I see the body language of everyone around me and that they’re uncomfortable or feel the awkward tension I bring when I’m around them; I hate being that person and I really do feel like I’m better than how I come off, but I just can’t shake my bad social habits. The scary thing is admitting to myself that I am the way I am, which took a while for me to understand because I felt like I was lying to myself about my own personality.

  4. Alethea

    I am self conscious about my appearance, because I have heard people making negative comments and staring. I feel like most people are not interested in what I have to say and try to avoid conversations with me. So, I keep my distance because I do not want to bother or bore anyone. I had important people in my life they me that I am boring. I have had a boss and others say I don’t have a personality. I often find myself in one sided conversations where the person talks about themselves and when I try to share, the conversation comes to an end. This has made me feel like the only reason want to talk to me is to dump their problems or spread negativity. I have cut people out if my life because if this.

    • Rehan

      I can relate to this so much, it’s nice to know I’m not the only one because anxiety really does a good job at making me feel alone and strange. I like being helpful and being the one to bring smiles on someone’s face but just like you I don’t want to bother anyone or make them feel cornered with my awkward conversation skills. Literally any long conversations I have with someone are usually based around negative things or for them to vent without worrying about me spreading any information, because who am I going to tell right? Sometimes I cut myself out of peoples lives because I feel like I’m doing them a favor…

  5. Lapeed

    When I enter a social gathering I feel like everyone is watching me and judging me negatively.
    I also fear to speak up my opinion in a grouo discussion

  6. Trudy

    I’m afraid of speaking out especially
    In a group.scared that I might say senseless, insulting things.Scared that I might say things that won’t make sense.That people would disregard what I say.That they will think I’m a fool for saying the things I say.

  7. Mar

    I’m afraid that no one cares what I have to say, that I’m uninteresting, I’m afraid they’ll say that my opinions wrong, or that they’ll make fun of me, that I’ll embarrass myself,it’s like I need every conversation to be perfect and always flowy, I except everything to be great or perfect, it doesn’t help that I’m just a huge fat coward, who’ so insecure with her self.

  8. L

    In high school I used to be scared of talking in front of my classmates. My anxiety got so bad that I had trouble sitting in assembles because I was worried that someone behind me was talking about me. I would start sweating from the anxiety and eventually I started skipping assembles. I am off to university now and I am feeling really anxious about how new people see me.

  9. Lynn

    Hello, I am also afraid of being judged for not saying the right thing at the appropriate time. I feel socially awkward sometimes and loose my train of thought due to anxiety.

  10. Kelly

    I was not very smart at school either and certainly not super social. Now though I have done ok in life I have a good job that earns reasonable money. I worry though what people think of me way too much, definitely something I need to stop. I stress that others dont like me and talk about me behind my back in my workplace.

  11. Nr

    I get nervous when i talk to my classmates and get even more nervous that it might show that i am nervous. Ive known them for 11 years now but i still cant get out of my shell at school, and its destroying me that i cant be myself and get to know them and allow them get to know me, especially since ill graduate soon.

  12. B

    I’m afraid of looking stupid/vapid in public, or if not, looking conceited. I think this stems from early high school, where I did not achieve well academically. That is no longer my situation and I am well-educated and have a competitive job, however I constantly am aware of people perceiving me as stupid or worthless, even though in reality they are likely not even thinking about me. Knowing the reality of the situation yet still feel anxious is difficult, and even when I overcome the stupidity thing, I worry I come across as conceited and vain. Can’t seem to win! (But managing okay with it)

    • Kelly

      I’m the same! I was not very smart at school either and certainly not super social. Now though I have done ok in life I have a good job that earns reasonable money. I worry though what people think of me way too much, definitely something I need to stop. I hope things have got better for you. 🙂

  13. Brennen

    I feel really awkward when I’m in a group of people. Especially if we aren’t doing anything. I don’t know how to say it but it’s like my hands don’t know what to do, so I’ll just cross my arms or something the whole time and even though I may be tired of crossing my arms or whatever I’m doing I feel like everyone will judge my every move. It makes it extra difficult if there are any girls in the group especially if it is a girl I find attractive. But a lot of that has to do with the fact that I don’t have any sisters and most of my friends are boys.

  14. B

    I often know what I’m doing but due to my anxiety I worry it’s wrong and then don’t do it or mess it up this makes me worry that people think there’s something wrong with me or that I’m dumb.

  15. G

    I feel anxious when talking to people because they will think I’m boring and in short conversations, they wouldn’t wanna talk to me again.

  16. N

    I sometimes feel anxious when going into a building because everyone would be staring at you and judging you. So I just look down and quickly hurry to my seat.

  17. T

    Afraid of not sounding as smart or being as smart as my peers.

  18. N

    I’m running for Student Body Officer at my school and I’m worried that people won’t even notice me, or I will mess things up and become awkward and not get voted.

  19. Nick

    I’m afraid of not being able to start up a conversation with people and being seen as the awkward one.

  20. A

    I have always been the quiet type. I usually didn’t have much to say. Growing up, I’d see all the other kids in my classes carrying on in conversations, at lunch, in the halls, even during class. I would often wonder how they could have so much to talk about throughout the day.

  21. P

    I’m scared that when I talk to people I won’t be able to keep the conversation going, as I run out of things to say. And this is because I feel as if I’m not up to their standard, such as they always have better clothes, they are prettier and I’m a bit overweight. I feel that if I’m myself around strangers I won’t be liked because of my insecurities. But I really do want new relationships and friendships.

    • Kelly

      This is exactly my problem too 🙁

  22. Lauren

    I’m generally afraid of making a bad impression. When I speak in groups, I’m afraid that people will think I’m unintelligent, inarticulate, or boring. Sometimes I’m afraid that people will find a fault in how my hair or clothes look. I’m afraid that people will only speak to me out of politeness and not because they like my company.

    • P

      That’s exactly like me as well. Also because of my insecurities I feel as if people will think I’m just a downbuzz

  23. Steph

    I’m afraid of being judged for not being smart enough or interesting enough. I’m afraid people will think I’m boring. I’m afraid people will look down on me or see me as useless.

  24. Anonymous

    My Mind Goes Blank In Social Situations,,,

    • R

      Same… that’s the biggest problem for me. I can’t even focus on that person and come up with things to say because I just notice surface level things… if anything the conversation I come up with would last 15 seconds and end with awkward silence and walking away regretting even showing my face in the first place

  25. MariA

    I feel ashamed of being poorer than my friends, of looking less “cool” , lively , brave, dynamic ,open minded and social than people my age.

    • Mar

      I iterally feel this way all of the time! Sorry for you though.

  26. Anonymous

    When walking into a room full of people my eye’s blink uncontrollably.

  27. Jeff

    I’m afraid of being seen as stupid or just plain weird. It doesn’t help that I have Aspergers and can’t figure out all these unwritten social rules that come naturally to others so I’m afraid of looking like a freak

  28. Tete

    I am afraid of people looking down on me. They think I am not capable of doing things. They see me as a low life human being. I am afraid not proving that I am smart , I am afraid of looking unimportant, worthless, and more . I am afraid of this because nothing proves that I am better and I know that I am not a great person. I wish that I am funny, social and more but I feel selfish saying these things . So I just not show that I want to be needed.

    • R

      Everything you said was on point with how I feel about myself. I feel that I’m smarter than how I come off and people treat me like I’m a kid or just plain slow.. I feel like there’s just so many things I do know but they never pop up in my mind when I need them because my anxiety or whatever it may be just clouds all of my thoughts and memories. All I can think about is everything you listed and more. How quiet I am, I feel like a zombie trying to fit in.

  29. Benjamin Taylor

    I’m afraid of being judged by other people.
    Afraid of looking like an idiot when I’m in a group.

  30. Anonymous


  31. Anonymous

    I’m afraid of group discussions in class… Afriad of being wrong and looking stupid or incompetent in front of others. I’m scared of what others may perceive me as… timid or unitelligent. I want to become more self-confident and more bold.

  32. Anonymous

    in afraid of being judged by my appearance. I’m afraid people will think I’m lazy and not really trying very hard or that I’m arrogant or stuck up. I am terrified of having to stand up for myself to women. or men.

  33. Tom Lennon

    I worry about what people think about me.
    I worry incase I say something stupid and cause a lull in the conversation

  34. Madison

    I overthink just about everything. Especially if it is talking to people. I’m afraid of talking too much and wasting their time. Or what if they actually don’t want to talk to me. What if I accidentally offend them. These are just a few of the things that go on in my head. In the end I just worry the whole time instead of talking to people.

    • Cynthia

      Same here

  35. Mohammed

    My main weakness is feeling too self-conscious and nervous when people are talking to you and directing their attention to you. Unless I’m comfortable around the person, it usually results in this uncomfortable, nervous feeling that originates in the gut, and the feeling also causes nervous laughter or smiling very often.

    I’m also not comfortable or confident around strangers or girls that I like, to the point where asking someone out or confessing my feelings is a daunting task. Sure one can reply “there’s plenty of fish in the sea” and that it’s just a girl out of many, but if I really do like someone and want to be with a particular person instead of just any girl, her rejection is going to affect me more than asking or confessing to a random cute girl.

  36. Mohammed

    My main weakness is feeling too self-conscious and nervous when people are talking to you and directing their attention to you. It results in feeling uncomfortable and some nervous laughter.

    I’m also not comfortable or confident around strangers or girls that I like, to the point where asking someone out or confessing my feelings is a daunting task. Sure one can reply “there’s plenty of fish in the sea” and that it’s just a girl out of many, but if I really do like someone and want to be with a particular person instead of just any girl, her rejection is going to affect me more than asking or confessing to a random cute girl.

    • Mohammed

      Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that, regarding what I was talking about in the first paragraph, that the feeling completely goes away if I have physically or mentally exerted myself in some way, as in exercising (physical) or talking in front of a whole crowd (mental). I feel the most loose and at ease when in these states for some reason.

  37. Matt

    Firstly I’m actually impresses with this so far as I come across many self help that’s aimed at self gain not help so thank you firstly to all that share and help. I’m the same really I feel people will assume I’m a creep if I look at them so I look everywhere but and if an attractive lady is opposite me on train I freak thinking don’t look she will think I’m leering so I state st my phone out the window but anywhere instead of her direction so there’s my fear being judged for being a creep which I’m not but let’s be honest attractive is hard not to look at

  38. Anonymous

    I am afraid people judging everything I do..the way I talk…people might think I am so dumb …the way I dress ..how not so fashionable I might be..or how I lack taste ..how I can’t fit in any group at all…I am scared of how people see me when I suggest something. Let’s say in a discussion…I always end up not suggesting anything no matter how correct it is..I feel like they would take my points as the dumbest point ever…it is so frustrating that I prefer being alone..not having many friends.. before I do anything I will always ask myself …what would people think of me…would they like it?

  39. Anonymous

    I’m scared of people thinking I’m stupid, as sometimes when I speak I overthink and say things that don’t make sense, cause sometimes I just don’t know what to say.

  40. Anonymous

    I’m insecure about almost everything and that’s so annoying. I fear that i’m not witty or smart enough, I’m not ‘cool’ like most people my age, I’m not @ least funny or charming, fun or lively. I feel i’m ‘just there’, u know, dumb, lack sense of humor, normal( as opposed to being lively, spontaneous and fun), bland, boring, uncool and this sucks, it makes me think that immediately i open my mouth to talk people would get uninterested and bored, i feel my talks and conversations are irrelevant and my stories or experiences are sometimes sad. It has consumed me so much that when asked to give my opinion on something I seem not to have any, I can’t even answer a simple question, my mind goes blank or even if i do have an opinion i just keep quiet because i know it wont even matter cause no one would agree, understand or see the angle I’m coming from so i might end up having to explain myself and sounding even dumber, more stupid or weird (boring kinda weird). This makes me overthink what to say, how to say it and i eventually get stuck….. I sometimes think everyone hates me for no reason whatsoever and that has hindered my ability to make friends.

    These days i realized that i’m fed up and tired of trying to make friends, get people to like me or at least acknowledge my presence, connect with people… it has become exhausting for me (The thought having to force conversations even when i notice the other party is loosing interest, being forced to stay among a group a of people awkwardly silent and the only thing i can do is smile and laugh while listening to others talk, say insightful things or simply try to be humorous just to lighten the mood and later regret that I was silent and that I should have said something) and i’ve literally given up trying even though it still bothers me like hell.
    I know this isnt the best thing for my life coz i still have a long way to go and one needs connections and connecting with people to survive or even make it in life. I try not to let the fact that i don’t really have friends and cant connect with people bother me…. but i can’t. Every now and then it just hits me that i’ve spent over 20 years on earth and i don’t have close friends not acquaintances (coz i think i have a lot of those)… real friends that know me in-depth, understand, accept and respect me the way i am…. in spite my countless flaws. There are people in my life that think we are friends and i observed that the relationship is formal most of the time, they aren’t completely free with me and me with them.

    • Mar

      Its is terrifying how much I can relate to this comment. I’m in highschool dealing with this. I’m almost done and it sucks bc I don’t have many friends cant talk and everything is social. I’m 18 btw,

    • R

      I can relate.. I’m not even close to my own friends and family. There’s so many things I don’t know about them and honestly I don’t even feel like there’s much to know about me.

  41. Anonymous

    I fear that I’m not witty or interesting enough and that it’s important to be the class clown as this is heat people remember and are drawn to funny people. I then get so anxious about not being able to pull off being funny that I get tongue tied and then feel like I’ve completely failed. This doesn’t just happen with new people but even with close friends as I fear that friends will notice my awkwardness and get bored of me easily because I’m not funny.

  42. Clarus

    I am really anxious about the way people judge me. Before I even leave the house, I will be full of anxiousness about what people would think about my clothes. When I am talking to people, I always felt really uncomfortable and I didn’t even know what we’re supposed to talk about. I always just answer the question given by the other person with a short answer that made the conversation stop at an awkward silence. Even then, I will be thinking what I should say in that situation and end up never saying anything because I am afraid of how the person will react. The same thing happen with online conversation in Discord or whatever, I rarely participate as I don’t even know what I should talk about.

  43. Albin

    I can be really judging on people fast. After one mistake. Probaply cause i judge myself so hard. I think everyone hates me for no reason what so ever. And that becomes a handicap in social situations

  44. Anonymous

    When asked to give my opinion on something I seem not to have any. I can’t even answer a simple question my mind goes blank

  45. Ananya

    Thank you for your wonderful support. I am most afraid of thinking if i sound interesting enough? is the person talking to me bored because of my irrelevant talks. I feel i maybe sound irrelevant and boring.

    • Anonymous


      I feel this way too, along with the feeling that I’m not funny enough. I even fear that close friends will get bored with me because of this. I try to relax and tell myself that I don’t have to be the most interesting or the class clown for people to love me and try to focus on my good qualities and what I can bring to the conversation ; good listener, kind, non judgmental, empathetic etc.

  46. Jim

    I’m always afraid of saying something really stupid, or that people won’t agree with me, or that I won’t have anything to say at all. It makes me overthink how and what I say and get stuck in this self-perpetuating cycle.

  47. CP

    Group convos have never been my thing. Most of the time I either not say anything at all and look unapproachable or I say something so out of left field that I come across as weird. It is so hard for me to find a sweet spot since most of the time group convos are centered around small talk, something I am absolutely terrible at. Whenever it does move past small talk, so many people are chiming in I find it hard to speak up and when I do it is always at the wrong time. Most of the time I just avoid groups of people that I don’t know very well just to save face.

    • Anonymous

      I’m the same way! Small talk is something I’m terrible at, and I find myself stuck in the awkward silence.

  48. Some Guy

    Whenever I get into a large group, I always worry that people will not exactly accept me… like they’ll think I’m boring and awkward, possibly even try shooing me off. This makes me feel that I don’t exactly belong there but leaving without saying anything the group will just be weird. This makes me forced to stay in the group, awkwardly silent as I see others talk and laugh. Later, I regret that I was silent and that I should have said something… thought that I was overthinking and should’ve said a line or two. Maybe I might’ve been accepted and thought to be the “fun guy” of the group. But whenever I get into the same or another group, I come back to the awkward silence. I try thinking of what to say, but when I try to, the words just don’t come out of my mouth. I just can’t improve on my social appearance. I’m quite comfortable with the people in my school and society, but meeting strangers get me frozen, not able to talk at all. At this point, I try to stay out of the spotlight, make sure that I don’t get noticed. I want to improve with this… but I don’t know what to do. What should I do?

    • Yvette

      Maybe you should change your intention whenever entering a group dynamic. You mentioned that if everything went well, you would want to be seen as the “fun guy” of the group. I think that that can be a lot of pressure put on yourself especially around people that don’t know you that well (presumably). I think the best advice that I have gotten to come across less awkwardly in groups is to smile and laugh at the jokes often. If you change your goal to be just coming across as a open, friendly person, people will probably be more receptive to what you have to say when you do eventually speak up. Another tip is to approach groups where you already know 1-2 people in it. That way, you can feel comfortable directing a conversational topic their way that everyone can relate to and other people in the group can join in.

      Hope this helps! Still struggling with it myself.

  49. Ricky

    I’m scared of people judging my looks, how I act and smell. I’m terrified of talking to strangers and making friends because I think I will make a fool of myself and I don’t want to get hurt.

  50. Anonymous

    I fear that I am not good enough for people. That I am not the brightest, funniest, charismatic, outgoing guy everyone wishes I was. I’m constantly fearing people notice the mispronunciations of words, phrases that I’m not using correctly, it’s a constant battle with myself about how people are perceiving me. I try to relax, focus, not let it get to me but the fact that I’m attempting all these other things distracts me from what is actually going on which makes everything worst. This has a toll on my self esteem as well.

  51. CB

    Although most of the time I can have a basic conversation with people, I often get intimidated to say something funny/more on a personal level. Getting close to people is hard for me – even when I regularly talk with someone, it feels like they view me as more of an acquaintance than someone they have a deeper bond with. Usually when I make conversation, it is only about very surface level things like school/sports. Even if I do ask more personal questions, that is where it ends, and it never comes up again. Idk, just kind of frustrated.

  52. Sebby

    I’m scared people will just ignore what I say, or they won’t agree with me, or they won’t like me, or they don’t really want to be around me, they are just tolerating me. I’m scared to approach people because I’m scared they don’t actually want me there. I’m scared of people’s opinions of me. Do they think I’m too quiet? Too arrogant? Too smart? Too different from them? It’s gotten to the point where I’m not usually honest in the conversations I have because I’m too scared to be.

  53. Erin

    I stutter in conversations with people when I view them as socially more valuable than me. Sometimes it’s trying to impress a potential mate, or trying to talk to my boss, or even people in the same position as me at work who I feel are better than me at the job.

  54. Zai

    I wasn’t in the light spot in my whole life , I was just listening all the time so it’s scary to me to think what to say and think fast , I say full shit that no one understands not even me , I’m afraid to be judge as weak person and to be left alone , to be left for not being good enough , or worse bitty , I hate that , I don’t want people to think I’m not amazing , I’m thinking too much and be stressed like I can’t breathe right , overthinking is driving me crazy .

  55. Linda

    Not knowing enough or not at all; about current or past events.
    Not, remembering someone’s name or where we met or what we talked about.
    Stumbling or mispronouncing my words.
    I tend to speak backwards. The last part of my sentence should of been said in the beginning. I think this comes from years of being self conscience. I turn red just thinking about a situation that happened or is about to happen.

    • Zai

      I don’t know why I’m writing this , so anyhow , about talking backwards , there was too many times when I did that , and people don’t get it and understand the opposite , in example “I like tea then coffee” what I mean that I prefer coffee first but they understand that I mean that I prefer tea first , I guess I should organize my words before saying it and being slow to know what I’m saying , you agree ?

  56. Anonymous

    Its uncomfortable to feel judged by my color. To walk in a room as the only woman of color can be overwhelming.

  57. Anonymous

    My face, my hair, my teeth.

  58. Anonymous

    Honestly when someone has an entire story to share with me I never have anything to say that relates to the situation and end up just replying with a comment or two. I find that I don’t have anything interesting enough to share so I tend to stay quiet. I ask questions just too make it seem like I’m in a conversation.

    • John

      Wow, I thought I was alone! I have very charismatic friends who have lived lives that one would love to experience. They’ve done it all. They have the best stories, always entertaining the crowd. And then there’s me, quiet old Johnny who lives in his friend’s shadow. When I’m alone, they always ask me about my friends, “ where is he?” “If he were here, we’d be having so much fun”. It breaks me everytime. I just don’t know how to have fun times with people. I feel like I’m just someone who happens to be there.

  59. Anonymous

    I’m afraid to sound boring.I never have funny memories to say or funny thing in general

  60. AG

    I’m afraid to come across as dumb. Especially with people that intimidate me easily- such as very confident, honest and extrovert people. I very easily run out of things to say in a conversation because I overanalyze everything. I have a hard time keeping eye contact with a person for too long, because I feel intimidated. And, I am terrified of conflicts- every time someone has made me sad or angry, and I really want to tell the person how I feel, I always end up not doing it, because I am so afraid how the other person will react, and that I will stand dumbstruck and full of anxiety as I usually do.

    • Anonymous

      Hi AG – i just noticed your comment about eye contact. One method i learnt that really works, is that if you look directly at their nose, they cannot tell! Honestly try it. It makes it so much less intimidating for you, without having to maintain constant direct eye contact, and they have no idea. win-win !

  61. Mohamed

    I get scared always from revealing any of my non important secrets from my important secrets list to avoid breaking up with for example my friends even when I feel that I am close enough to tell them these secrets some times these secrets are feelings towards them most probably +be but I gets scared from their reaction so I thinks of making one of my friends(boy) who is as close as i or more to that girl to give hints but i also get scared that he reveals what i asked him to do.

  62. James

    Im afraid of not knowing things i feel i would be expected to know in work situations. Saying i dont know doesnt feel like a valid answer sometimes with colleagues or customers.

  63. Anonymous

    I’ve been afraid of being rejected by others for being awkward or anxious in social situations ever since I started struggling with social anxiety.

  64. Katie-Jayne Boardman

    I’m afraid of people thinking I’m a loser. I’m afriad of sharing my true opinions in case I get judged for them.

  65. sanaullah

    whenever i get out of hostel room or home i feel like everyone i come across at my way has something bad about me on his mind and he or she is judging me for that and then i try to to act like to show them i am not like this and this makes me more anxious and panic because at that moment i think they caught my weakness and then i try to escape the situation and even dont get the things done for which i was out of home .

  66. Anonymous

    There are so many sore spots in communication between people now. Everything seems to have an agenda. I feel very incompetent and judged for things I may say without any intention to slight or offend. I commented that I liked the color of a guys shirt, and was rebuffed with a downward glance. I guess that you should not comment on appearance due to defensiveness? It can produce. Women have have a harder time if they are correct weight and attractive. I am forever stuck talking about the weather only.

    • Melly

      Dude this is somewhat me! I’m scared I might offend someone if I speak in acertaron way or if I don’t say “thank you” sincerely enough. Like yeah…..it sucks.

    • Anna

      I know, there seems to be a ton of unspoken rules. I am afraid to break them and be judged for that.

      • Jonn

        I’m always afraid to do something that is socially unacceptable or do it the wrong way, and end up messing the whole thing up. I hate it when someone has to step in or say “no it’s okay, just leave it, I’ll take care of it”. I feel like I failed at such a simple task and whoever I’m with is judging me on it. It happens all the time. I feel like a loser

  67. Dennis

    I’m afraid that I’m a joke to everyone and I just dont know it.

    • Jonn

      I know I’m a joke, I see them laughing and staring all the time. Why don’t they help me out? Show me instead of laughing at me…but then again, nobody wants to spend their time helping a loser, they have better things to do. They live interesting lives, why waste it with someone so stiff and boring?… they just couldn’t care less

  68. NT

    I can relate to so many of what people have posted here. Sometimes you think you’re the only one feeling this way. I think people are judging me as being slow and not that smart. I try to talk and make friends but soon feel excluded. I cant think of the right words and become intimidated by people that speak really well.

  69. CL

    I have tried sharing how I feel with people I work with. If I am nervous or anxious, I might make a joke to let them know how I feel. I try to help if someone else might be feeling nervous. I share my experience to set them at ease. I always praise them for their achievements so they feel empowered. However, I think this has made them judge me. Now, I get the impression that I am judged as weak or incompetent for admitting to my feelings. Maybe it would have been better to say nothing about my anxiety. It has made me angry that the people I trusted now treat me like a child. My hard work and achievements are not recognized. I am very good at my job, but I am still seen as less worthy because of my anxiety. I am not included in decisions which effect my work and I am never given a raise, even though my responsibilities are increased. When I try to talk about it, I am dismissed. It seems like I am a slave to those I work with. I am considering quitting my job and starting over. I won’t feel so confident about sharing my feelings or giving praise again. I thought I could relax and share more about myself at work as long as I performed well at my job, but it seems that it did not work for me. Now I am more anxious than ever.

  70. Ambar

    I’m scared of being persieved as the “quiet girl” when its not that I’m quiet its just that I’m so in my head and anxious i cant concentrate and i panic in conversations .when I’m not comfortable with a person I feel so helpless too ,like I’m trying o talk to them in my mind but my body will to physically let me speak.im not self conscious or not confident i am in fact the opposite but i cat express these to others

  71. Sally

    I am afraid people will think am not smart enough so I hold back to any thought that I may have,,I also get very nervous speaking in front of a people whether I know them or I don’t .I also think people despise me because I am small person

  72. Gill

    I fear people finding out the ugly truth about me. I can’t sustain friendships and often have no friends. My confidence is so low I avoid people now, and rarely attend social events. I’m sure I look aloof and unapproachable. I’ve spent years perfecting this.
    The sad truth is I’m lonely and afraid. So afraid I’m isolating myself so I don’t feel rejected.

  73. Mia

    I’m afraid of not having anything to say and making awkward silences which I always do and can’t get rid of it

  74. Kevin

    I’m afraid of like failing with something or just embarassing myself in front of an attractive girl, and if i’d do that i’d probably miss out on her.

  75. Paul

    I get caught in my own head with fears of not being smart enough if I engage in a conversation, at the same time I am overly concerned about what people think of me for how I like and how much money I make and when this is going on I cant find anything to say or think to say and it almost becomes a panic then I get scared that they think I am weird and introverted and it becomes a total melt down.

  76. Adam

    I am afraid people will reject or judge me harshly. I am worried think I am ugly and have a big nose. I am afraid people think worse things about me. I am afraid I will be ridiculed.

  77. Kk

    My worry is when I come into room that I will be judged for my awarkd body language.if someone there ask me who’s this how to respond without coming off backwards or unsure how to respond back to them any help from the group would be great

  78. Kashif

    Being judged for my speech. I’m not the greatest speaker in the world & when I get around people I tend to stutter alittle bit. My mind goes blank often and I often force words out which makes it worse.

    • Anonymous

      I feel the exact same way my head is always blank when it comes to people and talking to them

    • Erin

      I also stutter when talking to people I perceive as superiors (even if there is no reason for me to think they’re superior). It’s embarrassing and I wonder if they noticed how I trip over my speech and relate it to me being nervous with them. It scares me because a bad person could really use it to hurt me.

  79. Zhanique wilson

    I’m afraid of being rejected, left out. Judged. Being boring to people because I’m always trying to think what else to say since I always go blank while talking to others.

    • anonymous

      I Have the same feeling. I fear that ppl will think that I am too clingy

  80. Swati

    Worried about how to act if someone makes fun of you.you don’t feel good but how to respond..n thanks a lot for ur mail…it means a lot..thnks n keep sending pls

  81. danial

    i am always afraid that the next is not judging me it really made me angry thinking about it i know people dont give a damn but still my mind working like this

  82. Nick

    As of lately, I’m afraid of looking like an aloof, stuck-up, and seedy asshole because I can’t look people in the eyes, don’t really say much, or don’t acknowledge certain people that I find intimidating.

    I’m also afraid I’ll run out of gas in the middle of the social highway because my energy for it is just so finite.

  83. Anonymous

    I am afraid of people noticing how awkward I am and also being laughed at for the boring, weird life I have because I was teased a lot in most of high school and college.

    • Anonymous

      I also faced the problem sometimes but you have to do follow the mantra..
      You are what you think of yourself..
      Not others

  84. Linda

    I’m afraid of sounding awkward or weird so I am very closed off and then get worried that I’m a boring person I get so worried about how I’m going to be received instead of just being myself

  85. Samuel Mcburney

    My biggest fear is coming across as boring, whenever someone asks me ( well what’s the crac am like in my head wtf I’ve nothing happing in my life since the last time we spoke. It’s like i cant think of anything humorous to say. This is a major problem for me I feel brain dead

  86. h.

    I’m afraid of being judged for speaking bad English. ;_;

  87. Sandy

    I worry about someone judging me for something I like. So I sometimes pretend I like something else. I now realize people aren’t friends with the real me. They are friends with the fake me. So I’m now trying to let everyone know the real me and not worry about being judged. It’s hard. But in the end I end up having friends that are similar to me.
    I use to worry about people thinking I’m weird then I realized that everyone is kind of weird in their own way. I like to find people who are as weird as me to talk to.

  88. Akumaru

    I am afraid of HOW do I look, did I attractive or not, and I can’t seem to make eyes contact with others. I always hesitate when try to make conversation and I can’t even say ‘Hello’ to the person i find interesting.

  89. Anonymous

    I am afraid of being judged as a dumb and uncivilised and ugly person.

  90. Ian

    Im afraid of going into a conversation. I never know what to say and I hate to always jave to use small talk I want to get on more of a personal level with people

  91. M

    I’m afraid of blanking In the middle of the conversation and not knowing what to say next. I’m also afraid people will think I’m dumb/weird.

  92. Conor

    I’m afraid of people thinking I’m a weirdo and a freak, of not accepting me for who I am.

    • Anonymous

      Please start loving yourself the way you are..and if you don’t like something about yourself then try changing that..focus on your weaknesses and improve

  93. Melanie

    I’m afraid of lot knowing what to say. Of having this deep blank, where anyone would think ‘what’s the matter with her?’

    I’m also scared of ruining my appearance of perfection throughout words, even if I know that perfection is impossible.

  94. B

    I’m afraid I look or sound weird, that other people would look at me or talk to me and be thinking “why is she wearing/doing/talking like that”. I’m afraid my outfits are ugly or mismatched or unflattering. I’m afraid of trying to be funny and just saying awkward things.

  95. Christina

    Saying something dumb.

  96. Conor

    I’m afraid I come across very boring and maybe even sometimes rude. I feel like I never have anything to say that’s interesting, funny or intriguing. When I am trying to be funny or sarcastic I don’t think people really get me. I really want to make connections with people outside of my family and close friend but struggle. I constatnhly feel like iv some sort of wall up protecting me but I don’t know what from. I do have days were I’m in a great mood and really get along with people but it’s up and down. I also feel like sometimes I come across as stupid when I’m not. I struggle to remember conversations I had with people as sometimes my brain just wonders of mid conversation. I’m afraid I pf coming accross as boring and that people don’t like being around me I sometimes feel like I’m being ignored by others.

    • Ian

      Wow you summed up my life everyday perfectly.

    • Anonymous

      I swear to God,same!

  97. anon

    i’m scared that i come across as a boring, unfunny person with no personality who can’t even hold a conversation properly.

  98. Anonymous

    I am always nervous people will judge me as being ditsy and stupid. I hate feeling incompetent and having no confidence.

  99. T

    I fear that when I start a conversation with someone, and after a while, I would suddenly go blank on what to say, that leaves the conversation dry and boring. Because I’m an introvert, I tend to overanalyze my words before I speak, and therefore I’m also afraid that there will be awkward silence, or difficulty in maintaining the connection with others.

  100. Tanu

    I fear public speaking so much , as soon as I walk towards that deadly stage , my heart starts beating so fast as if it wants to come out of my body. I could never frame my words , they come out like broken sentences.I am always afraid what the people in the audience must be thinking , they must be framing a view of me while I am talking and that view would be the truth that I am not at all confident, though I know everyone must be feeling the same as me.

    • Angelo

      That is my exact fear.

  101. Chanuth

    I am afraid of taking to more than one person and making a conversation interesting or even enjoyable

  102. Brad

    I am afraid of being judged as boring and not worth knowing.

    • anon

      me too, brad. me too.

  103. Oliver

    I’m afraid of being judged as awkward so that people won’t want to talk or be around me.

  104. Anne

    I can relate to Teresa’s comment below, however for a different reason. Most of my life I’ve been sensitive to prejudism, either directed at others or sometimes at me. I am Hispanic, but with European features so my heritage isn’t obvious to most people. Because of this, I become acquainted with people, that are ultimately prejudiced, but because they don’t know I am a minority, befriend me. Once they find out, the relationship changes and I am left wondering if it is prejudism or something about me that has nothing to do with where I am from. So I am doubly anxious and find it is easier to keep people at a distance. I know I can move on and choose to avoid those people, but sometimes you can’t, such as the workplace or neighborhood. My mind constantly wonders and it is so exhausting.

  105. Salem

    I am afraid sometimes that when I have a nice talk with someone that it might be the last one .

  106. Alyssa

    I’m afraid of being awkward I feel like I can never come up with an interesting topic or anything to talk about.

  107. Celia

    I am afraid I will get into a conversation that will go too long. If it goes long, then I get fatigued and have a hard time remembering my train of thought or words. Then I look stupid or weird.

    • Marguerite

      I am actually afraid of a lot of things. Sometimes I am afraid to socialize with other people, because I would not know how to start up conversation. I am very insecure about myself, and because of that it only encourages me to be more afraid of how I look, and what people think of me. I am afraid to talk to someone about the anxiety I always have, because I feel they would not understand, or they simply can’t help me.

      • You

        This is exactly me, we share the same thing bruv

  108. Anubhav

    When I’m going to attend any party or any marriage I feel that every one see me …if I make any mistake they laugh at me thy thing anything about me. And I feel that anybody try to abuse me like they are ignore me don’t want to talk with me . I feel like I’m a bore person. Anybody don’t want to talk to me .Im go to bathroom n just strt crying. Wht I do. Please help me otherwise i think always I live single …

    • David Morin

      Do you mean that people are actually abusive toward you or is it your fear that they will be (but never are)?

      If they are abusive, is there any way for you to find a new social circle or spend less time with the abusive people?

  109. M

    I’m afraid of almost every social situation, mostly what people Will Think of my personality. The consequences of my anxiety is that I Think I come of as rude, wich I probably do.. Really want to talk, be polite and answer questions without overanylizing Every single word. But when i answer I feel stupid because of my short or maybe arrogant answer and the feeling of being a rude person grows. My head just gets blank in social situations, every word is forced and it dose’nt reflect the real me. Sucks.(A messy comment but this is what I feel right now.)

    • Viktor Sander

      Thank you for sharing M. It’s ok to feel conflicted.

      I just wanted to add that I doubt I’d experience you as rude if your answers were short. At least as long as you make an effort to be polite. Then I’d understand you’re just anxious about it.

  110. Anonymous

    Being myself and confident in my ability to talk

  111. Teresa

    When I enter a room, my first concern is how many people are judging my looks, my clothing, my size. Once that anxiety sets in, I’m afraid to speak to anyone, whether I know them or not. When I do speak to someone, I pay more attention to their body language than what they actually say because I’m trying to be sure I’m not annoying them. It’s exhausting.

    • Viktor Sander

      Thank you for sharing Teresa. I think you are brave for sharing and being honest both with yourself and with us. You are definitely not alone feeling like this.

  112. Anonymous

    For one I’m already viewed as a person being dishonest or just making things up so when I’m around my work surrounding I question myself how these people view me??? I don’t explain myself because when I’m talking to someone the words won’t come out but If I write it I can bring my point across that way. People find me to be fussy.. truth is I can be annoyed but I rather not speak my mind but instead keep it in…however having that feeling that everything I say can be read or heard makes me quite uncomfortable because then I am being judged for things I say….

  113. Pelle Åkerström

    Spot on! its facanating how easy mindyricks can change ones persona. Im from sweden apology my english. Also, guess in the same kategori; it makes it easyer to remember others name if ur not reflecting on how “god” ur handshake was.. im bad with names.

    • Viktor Sander

      Nice Pelle! Both me and David are Swedish too, so that’s ok 🙂

      Hope you will start seeing improvements on your upcoming introductions.