14 ways to be less self-conscious

Scientifically reviewed by Ilene Strauss Cohen Ph.D.

When I was younger, I often felt self-conscious and socially awkward. In fact, one of the reasons I wanted to become a Behavioral Scientist was to be better socially.

If you feel anxious and embarrassed, this guide is for you. It will give you the tools you need to be more relaxed in social situations, get out of your head and into the conversation.

This guide is for everyone who’s too self-aware, but examples are geared toward adults who are in work or college.

Note: Sometimes, the underlying reason for self-consciousness is social anxiety. If this is the case for you, here are our reviews of the best books on social anxiety.

Let’s get started!

1. Focus your thoughts on others and not yourself

Self-consciousness comes from being overly concerned with how people see us. We worry that we won’t be seen as smart, attractive, or that others are judging us.

It can be exhausting, and with too little evidence to support the argument in either direction, we go straight to the most negative conclusion.

To get out of this pessimistic mindset, try shifting your attention to the people around you and your environment.

Focus not on what others think of you but on learning more about the people you’re with. Make it a point to find out one thing about every person you meet. It could be their job, their major, or what they did on the weekend.

The objective is to get out of your head. Put that energy into the people around you rather than into feeding an inner dialogue that’s holding you back.

2. Question your inner critical voice

It’s easy to believe the negative voice inside our head is always right. But have you tried questioning it? You might find out that it has little to do with what’s real.

Check the evidence from your life:

Can you recall a time you did something that proves your inner critic wrong? For example, if your voice says, “I always mess up around people,” remind yourself of a time when you did just fine, like when you hang out with your family and close friends.

Ask yourself if what you are feeling is reasonable? Or, are you letting fear or a perception you think others have of you, run the story in your head?

3. Know that others notice much less than we think they do (The Spotlight Effect)

In an experiment, students were asked to wear an embarrassing t-shirt.

By the end of the day, the students who wore the shirts estimated that 46% of the class had noticed. When polled, only 23% of their mates actually had.[1] In other words, their embarrassing t-shirt was only half as noticeable as they had thought.

What feels mortifying to us is usually having little to no impact on others. People are caught up in their own thoughts and struggles, too busy to worry about ours. The best thing we can do is remind ourselves that no one cares as much as we do, and even our own filter is not a perfect lens.

4. Know that it’s better to talk freely and say something stupid than to say nothing at all

I remember talking to a girl I was crushing on when I was in high school. She was talking about how her brother liked a band, and like a crazy person, I said, “Ya, I know.” Like somehow, I knew what group her brother liked. My crush looked at me strangely but kept going.

Did it make any difference to my crush? Not really. At this point, I can laugh about it, but at the time it felt humiliating.

Try turning the tables on the situation. Would you care if someone blurted out something silly? You’d probably stop for a second, think, “Hmmm, that’s a bit strange. They’re probably just nervous,” and move on, right?! It’s a moment in time, not forever.

5. Be mindful of your feelings rather than trying to fight them

Emotions tend to cling harder when we fight them and weaken when we accept them.[2]

When you are anxious, and feeling uncomfortable in a social setting, what are you thinking about? How does thinking about that make you feel? Happy, sad, nervous, jealous? What’s your body doing when you’re in your head and feeling awkward at a party? Are you sweating, jumpy, yawning a lot (a reaction to nerves)?

Simply accept how you feel rather than trying to change it.

Now focus outward. Talk to someone. Ask them how they’re doing. What brings them to this party/event? Do they know anyone? Then check your head. How do you feel when you’re talking to someone? Do you get any less nervous as the conversation goes on? If you were blushing, has it subsided yet?

Practice going back and forth between your inner thoughts and how you feel when you are talking to others. See if you feel better when you’re in your head, listening to your internal dialogue, or when you’re spending your energy on others.

6. Focus on your positive traits

This isn’t “think happy thoughts, and you’ll be fine.” Instead, you want to base your self-worth on your real, positive qualities rather than cynical and questionable self-talk. This is what we know is true:

  • You have talents and abilities that give you fundamental value.
  • This combination of characteristics makes you unique and memorable.
  • You are worth spending time with and knowing.

Try to list your concrete skills like your mathematical ability, you’re a good writer, you’re multilingual, you’re a great cook. Then there are your personality traits. You’re kind, honest, genuine, funny, enthusiastic, etc.

Even if you can’t make a full list today, write one positive quality down every day and then review the list every week. When you have a comprehensive list, read it every day. You’re training your mind to focus on what you do well and to be able to access it quickly.

7. Make sure you’re reading the situation right

Negative experiences can teach us to be on guard and defend ourselves from criticism and hurt. This can affect how we perceive the world and the people we encounter.

Those of us who are overly self-conscious might believe the world will judge us harshly because that is what we’ve experienced. However, as I’ve pointed out, people don’t care that much about how we act or what we say. Every new person you meet thinks of you as a blank slate.

When you’re in a scary social situation, ask yourself, “Is there a chance my past experience is affecting how I’m seeing this interaction? Is there another, more realistic way I can approach his conversation?”

Believe people will be friendly, and most of the time, they will be. If not, it says more about them than you.

8. See yourself as a social observer

People watching is fascinating, and it shows us how our basic humanity makes us all messy, foolish, and funny. Go to the mall, grab a coffee/tea, and watch people walk with their friends. Listen in as they sit beside you and talk, or as they chase their kids down the hall.

Now notice their body language, their tone of voice, and eavesdrop on what they’re saying. What we’re doing is training you to switch your focus from yourself to others and to think objectively about what you’re witnessing.

Are people relaxed or stilted? Is their posture good, or are they slouching? When they talk, are they quiet, or does the volume go up and down with excitement? The more we see others being their imperfect selves, the more we’ll realize this is what ‘normal’ looks like.

Go into this observer mode when you walk into a room of strangers. It can help you be less self-conscious.

9. Take for granted that people will like you and they are more likely to

This one is about the mechanics of being seen as confident rather than inhibited or self-conscious. When we feel uncomfortable, it can make us talk softer, hug our bodies with our arms, and speak faster to get the words out and move the focus off us as soon as possible. It can make us seem aloof, and even if we don’t intend to, it makes us less approachable.

Be confident and friendly right off the bat. Walk up to people with a warm smile and present yourself. If you’re uncertain about the details, look at how likable, confident people do it and learn from them. Assuming people will like you is a self-fulfilling prophecy. Assuming they won’t is, too.

10. Ask about people’s passions to take the focus off you

It’s easier to focus on someone else other than ourselves. When you meet someone for the first time, ask them what they do for fun. What are their hobbies, or do they have any pets? Listen carefully, nod, and give them signs that you are enjoying their story. Then add anything relevant that applies from your life. Things like your pets – what kind are they, their name, breed…or your hobbies. At the end of the day, you want to have a balance between learning about them and sharing about yourself.

The goal is to learn about someone else because it’s hard to be self-conscious when you’re focused on getting to know another’s interests and stories.

11. Make internal progress checks, not comparisons

Jealousy is a miserable emotion. It makes you feel small and worthless and sucks the joy out of everything. It’s like anger directed at someone else, but you are the one who feels crappy.

Avoid both overexaggerating someone else’s talents or trying to find flaws in them to make yourself feel better. No one is perfect, and tearing them down when you feel envious just retains the focus on you because you are still comparing yourself to someone else.

Here’s a thought: What if we were OK with the fact that someone is more accomplished than us? When we accept this, it helps us see ourselves differently.

Our value then has nothing to do with how successful we are or how good we are at something. We want to go from “I like myself because I’m good at…” to “I like myself.” (Period.) This makes our self-acceptance unconditional.

How do we accept that others are more accomplished than us and be OK with that? First, let that fact sink in, and allow all your emotions of envy and sadness to come to you. Accept those emotions rather than fight them. Now, you no longer need to fear them. Afterward, you will be less prone to comparisons.

Here’s another way to do it:

Instead of thinking, “Well, at least I’m better than them when it comes to X.” Say, “I’m not good at everything, which is OK because my value isn’t based on my achievements. I have value because I am 100% myself”.

Let’s talk more about how to be more self-accepting…

12. Make accepting yourself one of your personal goals

Self-acceptance is one of the biggest steps we take towards achieving self-confidence.

According to Aaron Karmin, MA, LCPC, a psychotherapist in Chicago, Ill, a person “who accepts [themselves] unconditionally as a worthwhile human in spite of [their] faults and imperfections does not experience the stress of self-consciousness.”.[3]

Here are some things you can do to accept yourself:

  • Decide how you are going to live your life. Will you let others define your personal image, your strengths, and your weaknesses? Try to move from blame, doubt, and shame to tolerance, acceptance, and trust.
  • Make a list of all your good points.
    • What do you do well?
    • What are you proud of accomplishing?
    • Whose lives have you made better?
    • Connections you’ve made with others.
    • Hardships you have overcome.

Review the list often, so you see your progress and acknowledge your gifts.

  • Take an inventory of the people close to you.
    • Are they good for you?
    • Do they reinforce negative self-talk?
    • Do they criticize or demean you?

Consider eliminating all the negative influences in your life.

  • Surround yourself with a positive support group of people who celebrate you.
  • Forgive yourself. If you made a mistake, realize you did your best with the information you had at the time, or you simply made a bad choice. But now you chose to move on and forgive yourself.
  • Silence your inner critic. Just because it’s hard to hear doesn’t mean it’s right or 100% true. If you wouldn’t talk to someone else like you speak to yourself, why is it OK to do it to you? You’re human like everyone else. Treat yourself as well as you treat anyone else, if not better.
  • Move on from your unrealized dreams. You can’t change the past. All you can do is move forward and continue to pursue your current goals.
  • Help yourself see how you make others’ lives better. It’s harder to see yourself in a harsh light when you acknowledge all the good you do.
  • Let it go – You can’t control everything. It’s not resignation. It’s a realization that your energy is better spent elsewhere instead of railing against the things you can’t change.
  • Try to solve your problems one at a time. First, step outside your head where all the worry and self-doubt resides. Take a dispassionate look at what you need to do to move past each issue. You could even try imagining that the problems you’re facing are someone else’s (if that helps you get away from your internal thoughts). Ask yourself what advice you’d give them (yourself) to help?
  • Practice Self-compassion – accept your flaws and love yourself anyway. Simple words, but for most of us, it takes years, if not a lifetime to master this step. The more you do it, the better you’ll get in every respect.
    • Even though you may not have much experience being kind and compassionate with yourself, you will start to believe these good things you’re telling yourself. Especially if you keep this positive internal monologue up. In many instances, it took years to get to this place of insecurity. It will likely take weeks and months to see progress and make permanent changes to your mental habits.

13. Practice thinking about other’s needs

Try doing thoughtful things for others. Consider their struggles, worries, dreams or regrets. When you do, you take the focus off yourself and you’ll connect with them. This will help you be less self-conscious.[4] It will also show others that you are caring, and you value them. Done selflessly, it will bring good things back to you.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Smiling at someone after you meet them. It could be a friend, family member, or acquaintance. Let the smile happen as you talk to them, so they know you are smiling just for them because it grows after you say, ‘Hi.’
  • Hold a door for someone.
  • Give a spontaneous compliment.
  • Bring a friend or co-worker cookies or a pre-made dinner if they are sick or need a pick-me-up.
  • Pay it forward. Pay for the coffee or drive-thru meal of the people behind you.
  • Keep your area tidy and organized if you work in an open-concept office.
  • Send cards for different occasions or for no occasion at all.
  • Give someone 100% of your attention and note what they say so you can follow up later. (Ask them how ‘it’ went. Make sure they are OK afterward.)
  • Consciously spend a few minutes every day thinking of the things you are grateful for.

A word of caution: Do not do these things to gain others’ approval. That puts the focus back on you. Do it out of sincere consideration for others. The purpose of the exercise is to focus on others and their well-being. When you do, you’ll become more compassionate and less self-conscious.

14. Consider talking to a Therapist

If your self-consciousness is inhibiting you or is a result of social anxiety, a therapist can be helpful. Having social anxiety is more common than we think, and deciding to understand and address the effect it has on your life is brave. A Psychologist or a Therapist will help you talk through your feelings, find out where they originate from, and give you the tools to unpack them and move forward.

Contact your insurance company or doctor for recommendations.

References

  1. Gilovich, T., Medvec, V. H., & Savitsky, K. (2000). The spotlight effect in social judgment: An egocentric bias in estimates of the salience of one’s own actions and appearance. Journal of personality and social psychology, 78(2), 211.
  2. Hayes, S. C., Strosahl, K. D., & Wilson, K. G. (2009). Acceptance and commitment therapy. American Psychological Association.
  3. Tartakovsky, M. (2018). How to Be Less Self-Conscious. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 17, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/blog/how-to-be-less-self-conscious/
  4. Bögels, S. M., & Mansell, W. (2004). Attention processes in the maintenance and treatment of social phobia: hypervigilance, avoidance and self-focused attention. Clinical psychology review, 24(7), 827-856.

Viktor is SocialPro's expert in communication and relationships.

He has a B.A. with a major in Psychology at University of Gothenburg and a B.Sc. with a major in Biological engineering at Chalmers University of Technology

Before he joined SocialPro, he worked as a relationship and dating coach.

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405 thoughts on “14 ways to be less self-conscious”

  1. I have problems to look people in the eye. It makes me very uncomfortable, like I feel that they are judging me. It is a lot worse with woman than with man. Also I struggle with posture and positioning during conversations, like I feel that there is something wrong with me inside. And I also really feel this fear of rejections and criticism.

    Reply
  2. I am afraid of being judged for my acne I have it really bad. But I just think to myself, other people have this problem too. And it’s just a natural thing people have to deal with

    Reply
  3. What I am scared of is talking to someone and them not liking me. I don’t know why but I feel like they’re talking to me but they really don’t want to or they’d rather talk to someone else. I’m also really scared of talking to them and just not knowing what to say so we’re just awkwardly standing there like not talking. I just need to stop focusing on whether or not they like me and actually listen to what they’re saying so I can respond. I also have a question. When your hanging out with someone are you supposed to be talking to them the WHOLE time or is it okay to have like a minute of quiet? Idk

    Reply
    • I feel like that as well. I’ve even tried talking with a couple people at different times and they just walk away. I know in my head that is a personality or social flaw on their part but in my heart I feel I must have been really boring, unattractive, etc…

      Reply
    • I can absolutely relate to so many of these comments.. I honestly feel as though I sound “dumb” when I speak and it’s really affecting my social life.. I just started a new job and considering I’m with my coworkers more than not, I worry about what they think of me.. When we’re all together in a group setting I tend to clam up and I feel awkward.. I worry I’m going to be judged harshly by my peers.. I find myself comparing myself to a fellow female coworker, such as; her sense of humor is better than mine, she’s a harder worker, she’s well liked by all my other coworkers and I want them to like my company just as much if not more than hers, etc.. I want to feel more confident in myself and who I am as a woman.. I really want to be able to not worry so much about what others think.. I use to not care what people thought about me and I so desperately want to get back to “not caring”, but in a healthy way, ya know!?!

      Reply
  4. Well, I read a lot of those comments. Like most of them I to feel that I’m afraid to join in a conversation because I worry about what to say and if others will think what I’ve said isn’t correct or intelligent enough. I find that the longer I stay silent at a Party or social event then the harder it is to break out and start talking. I always find it best for me to leave and come home early. Being by myself is far more comfortable for me than having to engage in any kind of conversation. I can quite easily get in my car a drive for miles on my own and be happy. Even stopping for food I feel uncomfortable when having to ask for the menu all on my own at a table. I’ll normally just grab a snack at a gas station then move on. I don’t socialize much but prefer to drink on my own at home rather than being scared to talk to others. What a crazy feeling this is.

    Reply
  5. When l was kid 6 or 7 l had very bad memory l forgotten names and things..and when l talk to people especially with my family and relatives thay start laugh and look at me with strange look,l felt l’m idiot,since l decided to not talk to anyone to not embarrass myself and l done.l spend my time in watching TV an’ study.l didn’t like to have conversation with anyone especially in public l became awkward,timid,anxiety and very quiet and shy and unhappy all the time l felt not safe with them all my life l asking myself what wrong with me l’m really idiot even l accept this ward till now and l hate this feeling of weakness it’s destroy my life and make me hate myself,my appearance even to have relationship with someone.l wanna to change(l wanna to show them the real Elham):)

    Reply
    • I’ve been through something similary. My family just wasn’t interested in everything I said and at some time I assumed that I’m weird and people don’t want to listen me. Now I’m nervous when I’m around new people because I’m afraid they will get that I’m boring and I’m not worthy of their time. So I just don’t talk at all and is difficult because I want to meet new people. But it’s so scary to let them know me, I’m afraid of rejection.

      Reply
  6. Ever since I can remember, I was incredibly nervous about social situations and how I would be perceived, so much so I would experience physical symptoms, full blown panic attacks. I remember having to give a speech in public and I would be stressed for weeks in advance. I thought that would change after puberty and after becoming an adult but the truth is I still struggle with the same lack of confidence. I think people are judging me and analyzing every action of word I say. I am incredibly scared of ridicule and sounding not smart enough, or saying the wrong thing in my social interactions so much I am intimidated by otherwise meaningless interactions like for example working in a retail setting or even on a call center. I get so anxious that my thoughts get blocked and I am unable to think clearly, then that adds to my angst and I am rendered completely incompetent.

    Reply
  7. Im afraid that People will call me än idiot just like the other kids did in school and im always nervous when meeting girls that look bether than me i usualy look Another way and pretend that ive lever seen them
    Sorry for my bad english im from Sweden

    Reply
    • I can anxious about being judged for my lack of extended family and have had people make negative comments that have been stupid such as ‘how come you don’t even have a sister ‘. How can you respond to that when it is something that is so clearly obvious ly out of someone’s control!.

      Reply
  8. I feel people think of me as a rude and proud person, probably because I have heard people talking about me behind my back or because I have been admonished multiple times in my childhood for being disrespectful towards elders. Infact I believe I am a little harsh especially when talking to strangers and acquaintances I know little about. But its some sort defence mechanism because of my anxiety. People I am close to, know that I am not a rude person. Moreover I feel I would be
    made fun of my accent and pronunciation. And I also feel judged as I don’t usually think or analyze my surroundings or media. e.g. If I read a book or listen news, I won’t make a mental review or too strong of an opinion about it . It would just be for a lighthearted, good read or general awareness but somehow people expect to make long, meaningful discussions about book and writer and stuff. Something I am incapable of. Don’t take me wrong; I love reading books and read and listen News regularly but can’t make discussions like that so I don’t tell anybody about my hobbies or stuff. I believe people think of me as a nerdy person who isn’t interested in anyhting beside compulsory syllabus of college.

    Reply
  9. I’ve always had social anxiety. I always tried to look better, act different, just to see if I would feel better about it but it only gets worse. I get the feeling that people are always judging me. It makes me more weird around people and get notice for bad.

    Reply
  10. I’m afraid that I will say wrong things that offends people. Afraid of sounding unintelligent. Afraid of sounding uninteresting. Afraid people might think I am arrogant and I’m all about myself if I share about what I think.

    Reply
    • I fear people negatively judging me, and I am worried about getting rejected. When I want to approach someone, my brain is literally telling me not to do it because of this reason. Even when I force myself to do it and have a conversation with them, I fear that I only seem more superficial and weird to them.

      Reply
  11. I’ve always had social anxiety all my life. I always tried to look better, act different and etc just to see if I would feel better about it but it only gets worse. I get the feeling that people are always judging me. I get so shaky then i just fall or something worse… but I hope to see how to feel better!

    Reply
  12. I definitely understand. I’m afraid of when I meet new people I wont have anything to talk about and they’ll be bored but the bigger fear is letting people especially people I wont to be in a relationship with know the real me, would they be annoyed and unaccepting of my quirks, how I act, dress etc. Its hard to be alone but scary to be yourself.

    Reply
    • I’m afraid people will judge me if I say something stupid or just not like me because I’m shy, I’m not a social person so it’s hard for me to make friends. But all I want is to belong

      Reply
      • Patricia, you have written very exact words – “all I want is to belong”. And it’s deep, like a line from a poem. This is my problem too. It’s good that there is such a program (David’s) where we can find people with similar features! It brings a lot of relief. I would like to correspond with someone who has the same problems. I would be pleased to talk about what bothers me and to get to know somebody’s life. What do you think about it, Patricia?

      • I fear being judged as dumb, akward, and uninteresting. At the same time a lot of people are so full of it, so I’m glad I’m not like that.

    • I have a hard time talking to be people because I am afraid they will judge me for sounding unintelligent or uninteresting or for saying something that might offend someone. I often times will not speak or cut the conversation short because I get so nervous that forget where my thoughts are going. This is not only around strangers but around some of my close friends. I fear being alone because I can’t open up to people.

      Reply
  13. I am fine WHEN I know Im at my peek condition like health, emotion and mental states but somehow it decays overtime. Fresh and ready in the morning and by noon, things get serious especially when people surround me.

    Words coming from all directions sound louder, my neck aches so bad and my fear that I am about to do something unpleasant goes through the ceiling.

    I know already that my brain can’t handle stress that well. It felt like my brain shuts down the moment I had these what I call “symptoms” of stress leaving me on a fight or flight state. Having this state makes me do stupid things like making poor decisions, unreasonably angry or any behavior a child would do.

    This is what I am afraid of. Being judged from every action I make during these stressful times.

    Reply
  14. I am nervous that people will judge me on my personality and think I am not funny or think I am shy, awkward and boring.
    I am afraid that they will just want me to go away

    Reply
    • I can completely relate.I obsess about these things daily, and my friends always tell me I’m just always overthinking, and not to worry.Best just to remember most people are nervous to, and just try do what you do with confidence:)

      Reply
  15. Am afraid of being judged by how scared I am to talk to strangers especially girls.Am also very scared of the way people stair at me especially the ladies at school, it makes me sick and it fills like am losing my mind.At times I get too nervous to the extent that I don’t even know what am saying when speaking to a lady , it like my brain disappears. Have tried may times to fight this but didn’t work out. At times I can’t even walk straight and it like am falling when people keep staring at me. I don’t usually put up a smiling face because I fill uncomfortable and, am like why does she keep staring at me, am I the only one in this hall.

    Reply
  16. I’m afraid of being judged by my looks, too ugly, too fat. With too fat comes that I think people will think I’m less intelligent (studies show that fat people are perceived as less intelligent) and lazy.

    English is my second language so naturally, I’m worried I’d forget words I wanted to say looking stupid. Sometimes it gets to the point that I become so nervous that I forget my own language too.

    And I’m afraid of being boring too.

    Reply
  17. Munish,
    When I walk I think everyone is judging me due to some irregularities in my legs. I fear to tell anything about the same. I tell them that it was an accidental injury that occurred to me when I was small, but in reality nothing has happened to me. I fear to tell them the truth now. It is definitely affecting some other aspects of my life. I feel anxious if someone would know the truth and make fun of me. I also have hand tremors which I think is caused due to the false story I have been telling others.

    Reply
  18. I’m anxious mostly in situations where there’s usually an expectation for me to be comfortable. When I’m serving I’m a lot less anxious, until it comes to taking the payment and I have to say “so any plans for the rest of the night?”, and carry on a small talk conversation. They make me so anxious. Also when I’m at family gatherings with cousins/uncles/aunts. Everyone is so close and carry on conversations with each other and I have always been extremely shy. I feel like I’m the only one in my big family who isn’t on that same comfort level as everyone else is with each other. And knowing that I’m supposed to be comfortable with my family makes me even more anxious.

    Reply
    • Just want to say I have the exact same feelings about my family! Everyone is so extroverted and they all grew up together but I lived across the country from everyone else. I am also very shy and feel ashamed that I dread going to family events because of this reason.

      Reply
      • I too have the same issues with family. Some family members have told me I have a chip on my shoulder, whatever that means. I just don’t know what to say. I am the youngest of 7 and didn’t share a lot growing up with most of them. I would rather listen and fade into the background unnotice. I want to be comfortable carrying on a conversation with strangers. I am a single senior and just moved to a new state. I want to meet people and enjoy my senior years.

  19. Im afraid of talking to girls. I always feel so weird when i am around girls and getting really nervous. Its like, why should they listen to me, i do not have any interrestimg to say. I also think more about how i look and stay cool rather then having a conversation with the girl.

    Reply
  20. I’m afraid of being judged for still living with my parents at 28, even though the only reason I still live with them is because I had some setbacks of a medical nature earlier in life. I’m also afraid of being seen as immature, dumb, and boring. Also,I have a slight speech impediment where I’ll sometimes pronounce r’s as w’s and I’m afraid of being judged for that. Finally, I’m afraid of coming off as clingy and needy because on the rare occasion where I do meet new people, I want to hang out and text them all the time.

    Reply
    • Hello
      Taylor! I want to support you. I’m just as afraid to seem immature, dumb and boring, like you. But I wonder how you like to hang out and chat at the same time. This is great and curious! I really like David’s program, but I don’t speak English. I would like to find a pen pal. You can definitely write to me and I will answer you with pleasure. My name is Aleh. You can write me on “Telegram” in the name @AlehSva or offer another messenger. I will be glad to answer you!

      Reply
  21. I’m afraid of being seen as boring, younger than my age, unsocial, supershy, awkward, making people uncomfortable. I often feel I have nothing to say and can’t take initiatives in social situations.

    Reply
    • Hi, Agnes! Your words about yourself exactly match the description of me. I don’t even know what other words I would add. Even such a detail as “I’m afraid to appear younger than my age” is surprisingly true. It’s good that there is such a program (of David) where you can find people with similar features! It brings a lot of relief. I think you are very lucky that you have access to the Awkward to Awesome program. Are you already in the program? What do you think about it? Can you write me. My address is @AlehSva on Telegram.

      Reply
      • Hi, Agnes! Your words about yourself exactly match the description of me. I don’t even know what other words I would add. Even such a detail as “I’m afraid to appear younger than my age” is surprisingly true. It’s good that there is such a program (of David) where you can find people with similar features! It brings a lot of relief. I think you are very lucky that you have access to the Awkward to Awesome program. Are you already in the program? What do you think about it? Can you write me. My address is @AlehSva on Telegram.

  22. Im afraid of being seen as different, weak, or nervous.
    Ive also got very small hands for a man. If Im on a downer, i often feel “small”
    Also I sometimes think that I am boring, and that no one is interested in what I have to say.

    Reply
  23. I am an introvert..and I avoid public places bcz of my appearances …I m petite and I feel like people are judging my body and laughing inside…I feel like everyone is staring me as if I m the only creature in this world…I feel afraid of being ignored..!most of the time when I talk to my relatives or friends they ignore me as if I don’t exist..it makes me feel so week and depressed!

    Reply
  24. I am afraid of being ignored and not liked. At times, when someone doesn’t reply to my messages within a certain time frame, I doubt they don’t like me anymore, or if I have done something wrong that they dont want to talk to me anymore, so I feel sad and I start thinking of stupid things that they might be thinking about me and that heck I should just not talk to them anymore, and while Im busy thinking of all of this, they reply back.. I keep reminding myself of “hey , they might be busy at work or something” but I still feel scared what if they dont like me anymore..

    Reply
    • Sonia, this is so true for me too! When they don’t reply or forget to reply I feel like I’m being ignored because they don’t like me anymore.

      Reply
    • I almost at times feel the same, but a little I have learnt is that, it your mind that keeps telling things and it is very difficult to doubt what the Mind is tell you especially in situations like this, but in reality it is the opposite of what you think.

      Reply
  25. I run away from abuse had no one to turn to
    People di not want to hear the story saying
    I had no right to talk about it
    But I did.
    I saw that I can make mistakes for the first time in a long time
    Allowing my self to be able to talk
    I know others have trouble to I learnt.

    Reply
  26. im always thinking how my actions can affect someone but always thinking from my perspective and not theirs. I always think that how my actions affect them in a way like how i would feel if someone does the same action to me.

    Reply
  27. I always worry about how awkward and annoying i am at social settings. My bf recently broke up with me because he thought i was too quiet and shy and not social. I am trying everything i can to make him realize that i want to be social and i know i can but my anxiety gets in the way. Everyone for the most part likes me and i always get along with everyone but the social aspect is causing problems and i want to fix it and get back with my bf. Even around him i completely shut down and i want to have better communication skills.

    Reply
    • He doesn’t really care about you. Why would you want to get back with someone who abandoned you because for who you are? He’s not worth it. Love yourself.

      Reply
    • About the communication skills, I found at that it is nervousness that makes you think that, have tried being around close relatives like your brothers or sisters or parents, this will let you know you have a great communication skill, it is the level of anxiety causes that.Am a victim to this.

      Reply
  28. Im a matyre student. I have been bullied, stared at, then ignored and excluded. Now I’ve moved to a new branch i get shaking even when wete sat listening to each other. I bite my lip because i find it trembling the whole time.
    Im afraid of being subjected to the same treatment because there are a lot of students in this class that just stare. I try not to let it bother me at look directly at them but it always makes me feel shocked wgen our eyes actually meet.
    Im afraid I’ll be judged for being old like i was before.

    Reply
  29. i’m afraid of being judged for my looks, the way i talk, the way i act, the things that i say out loud. every time i want to say something, i think about over 10 times before deciding whether i should really say it. but more often than not i don’t end up saying my thoughts and speaking up because it often ends up with me being nervous and anxious. i’m also afraid of being judged by how socially awkward i can be in social situations m.

    Reply
  30. I’ve always been annoyed at how awkward I can be in social settings. I’m almost always quiet around strangers and am worried that people might view me as aloof and not interested in making connections. Sometimes I don’t know what to say. I’m also worried that people might judge my appearance for some odd reason. People tell me I’m pretty, I have a boyfriend and I still feel like this. I act normal on the outside but deep down I don’t know how to break out of this cage of insecurity.

    Reply
    • you are not alone! i feel this all the time. people tell me i’m pretty/beautiful without me fishing for that kind of compliments and i have a bf as well but i still do get anxious about those issues. especially when in social settings. i somehow just don’t know how to act and what to say and i’m often the quietest in the group 🙁

      Reply
  31. I feel like the root of my social awkwardness is my stuttering problem. I have it since childhood & that’s what has held me back from speaking to strangers or really important people. I just avoid that. This has been happening for my entire life. Now it’s like I know for sure that whenever I speak, I am gonna stutter, which is exactly what happens. Sometimes I feel like even if I did manage to get over my stuttering, it’s effects like low self-esteem will last.

    Reply
    • Hey man, I’ve got a stutter as well. First off, good news for the stutter is that you can work on it and it will get better. Next I’ll say that I totally stopped caring what others think of it. I have accepted it, and embraced its part of who I am. If someone doesn’t like it, or makes fun of it, fuck em. They don’t matter. Just remember, all these other people have issues as well that they try to hide. The stutter is just an obvious one, it’s difficult to hide 100%. Most people can hide lots of stuff easily. You just have a little different hurdle. I can also say that once you start talking to people, they tend to just accept the stutter. I’ve had friends for years who have seen me at my worst stutter and they say they hardly recognize it anymore. I’m not a dude that stutters, I’m the dude that whoops all of them in sports haha.

      Couple tricks to help you out. When your talking, you need to slow down. Like way down. You gotta talk like you’re stuck in peanut butter. I know it sounds weird, especially when you’re talking but it comes out sounding totally normal. See, we get what’s called time pressure, we think we need to talk fast, to get everything out, but we end up talking so fast that we either stutter really hard and can’t get our mouth to open, or say 5 words at once that come out as a jumbled mess. So when you try to talk really slow, your nerves will speed it up so it sounds totally normal, all naturally. Also, you gotta remember to open your mouth. A stutter causes us to shut our mouth, tense up and from there you know the story. So focus on opening your mouth more and really enunciating the words. This will also help you to talk slower.

      And lastly, and possibly most important….BREATHE

      Reply
  32. I often think I will make mistakes in trying to express myself. I usually feel shy, anxious and blank out most time. Lastly, I struggle with flow in my speeches.

    Reply
  33. I was born in a small provincial town. Our family had their own house and yard. There was an ancient park nearby, and you could hear the sound of pine trees at night.
    I played with my comrades in war, Indians and cowboys, made crossbows and bottle grenades, fished in a river, swam in the lake, listened to jokes in the company in the evening, walked around the old park, rode a bicycle found in the forest, looked at the stars at night sky.
    And then my mother got sick and died six months later.
    After some time, the mother’s friend introduced the father to her friend in order to create a new family. There was the prospect of moving to a large metropolitan city. In a thrilling apprehension of a new life, I fantasize new friends, new games and hobbies. It was necessarily go-kart.
    Father asked me and my brother if we would like to move? I do not know what to answer.
    And so the decision has been made – we are going.

    A year and a half passed and I had to leave my homeland with regret and excitement, I said with sadness goodbye to the apple trees in my native garden to set off for a new life.
    My new family is my stepmother and her sister, my father and my older brother. We were received very well. We moved to their house – an apartment with two rooms. I was 11 years old.
    A few days later my stepmother took me to a new school. I remember this day well. It was September 1st. In the courtyard of the school a column of schoolchildren gathered for a festive procession on Victory Square. I stayed in this column among my future classmates to wait for the command “Come!”. We stood for a long time. I looked at the guys, listened to their merry chatter and embarrassedly noticed my embarrassment and awkwardness. I did not know what to say. It seemed to me that I forgot all the words. And I faithfully endured. I did not see another way.
    It would seem that this is normal. After all, around me were completely unfamiliar people from an unfamiliar city. I guess I thought so then. I will begin to get acquainted – I will begin to communicate.
    But it didn’t get any better. Weeks and months passed, and my own state of stiffness and confusion did not leave me. Most of all, I was afraid of changes between classes, when I had to get up from my desk and go somewhere … «to talk» and to pretend that I was fine and feel normal, calm and fun. It was a real torture – I wandered alone along the corridor to hide my confusion and helplessness. I was infinitely ashamed. I was angry with myself and felt my self-esteem disappear forever. From somewhere inside a terrible guess erupted that I was losing my mind. Until others have not seen it, there was a hope that it is still not so bad. But what if it breaks out? Then I will be locked up in the house of the insane, and an eternal loneliness will meet me among the madmen screaming from madness. And will I scream too?
    I was constantly looking for a reason why I am not talking. I could not understand. My comrades came up with my nickname – “fish.” A sign of eternal silence.

    Reply
  34. I worry that other people will think I’m boring. I wish I could find a flow in conversations but after a couple of minutes I just sorta dry up and go blank and smile and run out of things to say.

    Reply
  35. I’m scared of what people think about my personality. I’m an extreme introvert and being around very open people can make me anxious, if I don’t know them. I get extremely shy around new people, so afraid that they wont like me. And I hate it. I’m also veeery socially awkward to the point where I dread simple things like ordering a coffee from an employee. Every time I hang around people it’s like I get drained. And it’s not because I don’t like them, that’s just me as a person. And I might want to leave earlier than everyone else, not because I dislike the people I’m around, heck I might even love them! But I get really tired and just need to get away from people for a while. And I respect that others feel relaxed and get energized by being around others. And I think it’s time they respect that I need to be alone, with my book, in the darkness, to get my energy back. So, please, don’t try to push me out of my comfort zone. I’ll walk out of there when I’M ready,

    Reply
  36. I am afraid of being judged.I thought people’s think of me I am worthless,I ain’t fun, I ain’t good enough to have around,and that makes me more quiet than I am before

    Reply
  37. I am also afraid of people knowing I feel anxious or afraid. I fear people will think I’m selfish. Maybe it’s rooted in a deep-seated belief I will never experience good things so I go hard after temporary feelings of acceptance and stuff like that

    I wanna be successful but my health is meh
    Thank you for this
    I ask for guidance from the universe for strength in this health journey.

    Stop being afraid. Go and walk every day
    Wake by 11:45 no exceptions
    I want attention maybe afraid i won’t get it or this world is a competition

    I must love myself . ❤️ You
    I am no longer afraid of looking stupid in the way of lying in the perception of strong willed insolent people. My own opinion is enough… I love my mom even if she can be hard on me, she deals w a lot and I’m blessed. Dad loves me as well

    Make them proud. Work, man. Don’t be afraid of judgment
    If someone hurts you let God handle it
    It’s a big move. And move on.

    It’s about relationships but you just focus on growth outside the 3 days. Maybe getting a chat agent job for Th/Fri if I have to

    Don’t be afraid of losing time to not spending w family
    It’s better they see you happy

    PPM.

    Reply
  38. I’m afraid of blanking out cause of my anxiety. I always cut myself short and never get to truly express myself especially in new settings. I want to draw people in and then I realize I’ve forgotten all of what I could say and end up sounding immature or less intelligent than I know I can be. I’m shut down often by people telling me I’m quiet.

    Reply
  39. I’m afraid looking weird when i am alone (all the time). And being weird whenever i talk to someone, because i don’t know how to react and most of times i don’t answer anything cause idk what should i say. You know?

    Reply
  40. I am afraid of saying the wrong thing and being perceived as weird by my peers. I always felt as if I never fit with the in crowd or havent been able to connect to peers and ususally that makes me go with tthe so called “weird” group of kids. I guess I have a;ways worried about being popular and accepted and not judged.

    Reply
  41. My biggest insecurity is that I have this gynaecomastia (manboobs). And my friends would comment infront of girls. They make look like a joker infront of them and girls would watch me when I enter the class

    Reply
  42. My biggest fear is arriving early in class because i find a group of students socializing and I’m just standing there alone…I’m kinda embarrassed that i don’t have friends

    Reply
  43. A lot of people I knew before I got social anxiety look up to me like I’m a font of wisdom who’s untouchable and impossible to worry. And I am very hard to get to, so I’m worried that in showing vulnerability I’ll disappoint those who revere me and prevent any new people present from ever reaching that stage.

    Reply
  44. My biggest fear of being judged is people noticing how different and awkward I am compared “normal” (non introvert non adhd) . I try to do and say things that make me seem more normal.

    Reply
  45. I’m afraid that when I’m talking to people my face will turn red and I will sound stupid while talking because I’m so nervous I will forget what I was saying in the first place. I also worry that people will think what I have to say is meaningless or boring. If there is more than 1 person I am looking at while talking, I will usually stay quiet and then I worry that they will think I’m snobby or rude and even if I don’t talk they won’t like me.

    Reply
  46. Hello
    I am anxious about my appearance. My face, my body and my clothes. I think they are not good enough. I can improve the way I wear but about my body I can hardly make any difference. I am thin and my height is 1.58 m.

    Reply
  47. Hello everyone,
    I’m afraid that people will think that I’m weird or rude just because I have trouble talking to others. I don’t understand how people can think someone is being rude when they are just uncomfortable in front of others. I don’t speak to them because I know I’m below all of them, not above them.I often try to express myself through what I wear and my actions. I try to look my best in front of others hoping that they’ll try to talk to me. I know you shouldn’t judge people by appearance, but taking the effort to do my hair and buying new clothes is my way of showing that I want to not be invisible to others and just want someone to talk to. I always try to be polite and apologize if I mess up and say thanks whenever someone is nice to me. I hate the feeling of not belonging or just feeling like I don’t exist to others but at the end of the day, it’s mostly my fault for not having the courage to talk and make myself noticed. Sorry if this doesn’t make much sense, I’m really hoping these articles will help me be alone a more confident person!

    Reply
  48. I am afraid of being judged on how I may pronounce a word or just unsure of what needs to happen in each situation. At the same time be brave enough to ask for assistance when it occurs..

    Reply
  49. Hi everyone,
    Those stories are inspirational but please whateva happens plz do not give up ur lives are far more important than that even tho u have all these insecurities it doesn’t matter you are allowed to be who u want 2 be don’t try and live up to other peoples expectations it is such a waste of time (believe me) have faith that things will work out and just believe in yourself.

    Reply
  50. I just over think alot. And think I’m too stupid to talk to people. Even stupid people. Shi h is weird. When I hear people talking about boring shit it gets under my skin or when people laugh alot I feel angry inside like alot. Like I could murder them. I just feel awkward all the time. And if I’m talking and people aren’t actually listening to me I get upset or I’d I’m not getting g any attention I’m annoyed. I feel like I cant relate to anyone anymore so I kind of just hate people because they bore me. Even simple conversation feels like a waste of time. I mean hommy fucking christ if ur gonna talk to me say something interesting. I’m living with this girl I fi d attractive but her personality is so boring she just talks complete rubbish and acts seriously stupid when I know shes alot more intlleogemt than that. All her friends are really stupid uneducated people and I find them repulsive. I dont know if I’m just really depressed and cant bri f myself to be norm or of that’s how I really feel. I suffer bad health problems and anxiety. I had a bad child hood and my socal skills were always bad. I’m now 28. And I never really adapted as a person and I think that’s why I’m so messed up. Almost those years I should have gone out and met new people I didn’t. And Ig turned me into such a bitter person that I dint even know what it’s like to laugh anymore or dreamy enjoy something. I feel so bad that I think I want others to feel how I. Feeling so they are on the same level as me. .. as fucked up as that is.. I just camt be normal people try to start ck variations with me but I just instantly lose interest and maybe just walk away from them or leave the room. And say I have to go. It’s like I cant let a natural conversation happen.when I do try to have a real convo it sort of goes well but then it ends and I feel like kill g myself the silence is that bad. I wa t to cha ge but hkbestmy i dont relate to most people and i find them really simplistic and dull. I have rather good hobbies and interests and when i see peoples interests I kinda ask myself how are you this boring ? Watching tv all day or talking on the phone for hours. What hapoend to humanity.? M

    Reply
  51. I always have trouble speaking because I have a super quiet voice so a lot of time when I speak I think people are ignoring when in reality they probably just can’t hear me. But even though I know this, I still feel hurt when I know I’m not heard. I’m also just worried that they will just think that I’m not fun to be around.

    Reply
  52. PAC
    I am always overthinking and strongly believe everyone is judging me.This makes me very nervous among strangers. I am afraid to make mistakes so sometimes I refuse to speak or act.

    Reply
  53. So I’m my life I’ve moved a ton even though I’m only in high school and it’s been pretty hard for me. At my first school I had friends and was still pretty shy but I was comfortable. I usually was the one left out of things. I moved in the middle of the school year and had to leave the place I was most comfortable being myself. I started school in another state and I was super nervous. I really wanted to make some new friends but I was too scared to talk to anybody. I thought that they would think I’m weird or find what I say boring. I try to be funny but I guess I’m just not a super funny person. I became super self conscious about the way I act and talk. I made friends and they are super nice but I still was super quiet and was fine if I didn’t talk most of lunch. It was better towards the end of the year but whenever none of them came to school I never felt comfortable enough to go sit by anyone else. When that happened I would usually leave for lunch (since we ha open campus) and go find somewhere where no one would see me by myself. I finally was comfortable talking and hanging out with my friends but then my family decided to move AGAIN. I got super scared again having to start over and meeting new people. I’ve been trying to force myself to be more social by going to certain school and church activities. Whenever I get into a group of people I feel judged. I’ve been having a positive attitude about meeting new people and I think that it calms me down and helps. I’ve made some really nice friends who I hope I can become more comfortable around. School starts next week and I’m really not ready to start over again but hopefully this will be a really good year.

    Reply
  54. I’m afraid of talking in front of people.I am fearful of not being intelligent enough to hold a conversation. I feel scared when people ask me an opinion about a particular thing but my answer is not up to their expectations. I know that everyone is unique and has a way to look at things but at times I feel like I do not know what I am doing. Sometimes I feel that being socially interactive with people is very stressful.

    Reply
    • My friend when you’re around people like that just listen and ask questions. If someone has more knowledge than you it’s always smart to just listen and ask questions. Then they will see ur not done idiot who’s just standing there and not interacting or asking questions. If you dint know something tiny simply dint know it. It doesnt make you stupid. Life is all about learning. Be curious and ask questions and yiy will be fine and fit in perfect. Alit of people over think. But if you feel like it’s too much leave the room. Anyone who pushes anyone for not knowing something g is an a class asshole. I personally like to learn things myself and show initiative. I hate learning from others always have. That’s why my communication skills are bad I really just order my own company. But if I’m forced into a SoCal situation I just hold my head up and be strong. I honestly dont like most people… unless I have aknwthi g in common. Just live ur life and be urself good luck

      Reply
  55. I have recently transferred to a new high school and I had been kind of nervous how it would be atound new people but morover I was excited to meet new faces. My past hadn’t been too flattering to think about and I was confident that I would give my self a kick-start. But it wasn’t that truthful. I had made a lotof friends in the early semester but I got loosened up in the coming days and the same past flashed in my mind, I just couldn’t help myself overcone the negativity and I started finding faults in everyone which lagged me behind even. And today I think I am still there. from where I started and that is making me fall down even more…

    Reply
  56. I’m afraid when I talk to someone they’ll judge what I say or maybe what I’m wearing or how I look. I’m always sitting alone not talking to anyone for those reasons I always overthink things, and I’m afraid they might think of me as a weird person.

    Reply
  57. Im afraid of being judged by people about what i say, maybe its wrong, maybe they dont like what im saying, maybe they dont understand me. Im afraid of awkward scilences. I tend to get nervous sometimes when i speak to people and realise they are looking at me because i dont know what they think of me at the same moment. It is so complicated

    Reply
  58. I’m afraid of being judged for being my self and talking to people who I don’t know. I hope that I wont be afraid for a long time anymore.

    Reply
  59. I am fearful of not being intelligent enough to hold a conversation. Having stopped smoking, I have gained weight. I feel over conscious of my size and people judging me for how I look. I have all the insecurities known to man kind.
    I lose my train of thought trying to listen to the conversation because while someone is talking I’m trying to think of a follow-up response for after they stop talking.

    Reply
  60. I have been afraid that people will think I am inadequate. I have been afraid people will think I am not smart or that I am awkward. I have been afraid people will see the real me and decide I’m not worth getting to know or they will use that information to hurt me later on.

    Reply
  61. I am a emotional guy you know and also gay,which makes the things worst.i was afraid that i am being judged for the way i talk( because my tone is soft and low).i always think that my friends would misunderstand me,do not feel happy for my jokes and as if i am a distant one,not even sharing their slice of life,but also i understand everything in late,which i thought might annoy them.

    Reply
  62. I’m afraid that my story won’t make sense or I will forget key points or mess up facts. I’m afraid they will come back with a question that I won’t know the answer to. I’m afraid they will ask me my opinion on something that is controversial and if I answer truthfully, they will judge me because I know it’s different from their values and opinion

    Reply
  63. I’m a big guy. Always have been. I’m so anxious in public settings and think constantly of how others view me. I diligently watch what clothes I wear to make sure I look the best I can even for a quick run to the gas station.

    Reply
    • It’s great that you make the effort to look good. It’s even better when it’s because you’re happy about yourself and want to express that, rather than fear negative opinions from other people.

      Reply
  64. When I’m at work esp meetings, I feel like one of these guys / gals is waiting for me to slip up and show weakness, sometimes even when I don’t know what I’m talking about I still try to make it like I do, just so someone doesn’t get the chance to latch onto an opening that can be used against me to create weakness if ones not already there…but there are many, just hidden quite well!.

    I’m ok with being wrong so long as its properly addressed with respect, not used as a tool to put you in a box….

    Reply
  65. Everytime i leave my house often when i go on my walks, i tend to try to look like im not aproachable and i try to look bored so People don’t try to talk to me because i just wanna melt in the background. More than often if you are speaking to me you will notice that im really nice and kind but i don’t want people to know that if im trying to make myself hidden in public. And now i really can’t branch out of it so when i see attractive girls im kind of just awkward and it sucks. Meh:(

    Reply
  66. I’m scared people will find me to be just a boring housewife. I also don’t want to be seen as intrusive or nosy, so I never ask personal questions, even if the other person has volunteered some personal information.

    Reply
  67. i am afraid if people think stupid of me because of whatever i say. i feel like they are constantly talking negative about me and i am ot the one to be liked .

    Reply
  68. I have too many fears to count. I’m afraid of being judged as inadequate. I’m afraid of being labeled as stupid, boring, mean, and too ugly to love. No matter how much I have in common with others it just doesn’t seem to be good enough. No one ever remembers me. No one ever cares when I’m around or when I’m gone. People have told me if I want to connect with others just to be myself. But how can I be myself when no one seems to like the “real” me? This has created a circle of doubt. It makes me look at past, present, and future relationships as something that’s not meant for me. This has made me stuck. I can’t move on and it’s hurting me a lot in life.

    Things get better as you get older? Well, not for me it doesn’t.

    Reply
    • Hi Hope,

      I also have some of the same fears. I could’ve wrote the first 3 lines verbatim. Just wanted to share you are not alone. I’ve been working on healing my “not good enough” fears. I’m 45 and my social anxiety has gotten better from when I was younger. I remember a red blush that would come from grade school through my 20s. Sometimes, though, when I’m in a fearful place, it seems like it will never get better. I have to say I have made progress, though. I think there is hope. Just watching the video about O.F.C. helped me to go to an event yesterday and it turned out to be pleasurable. I wish the best for you!

      Reply
  69. I fear that I’m saying sth stupid and boring to everyone, and everyone thinks I should just shut up.
    But honestly, a lot of the social anxiety treatment don’t acknowledge a basic fact: people are shitty, and there’s a reason why we have fears—simply bcs people ACTUALLY hurt others all the time, and we’ve ACTUALLY been hurt. Am I gonna be persuaded that those incidents when people obviously show hatred and contempt in my face are actually just “in my head”? This is hard to understand by people possessing desirable social currencies like appearances, status and wealth, or someone who are lucky to never have experienced bullying of ostracism. The world and people those people see and drastically different than the world and people we—the less well positioned— are experiencing.
    I’ve heard classmates gossiping about one classmate and saying how what he/she said in class are stupid and irrelevant and should just shut up and how come someone like
    him/her could be admitted. I’ve seen people (well-educated adults, not high school kids) ostracizing someone considered socially awkward. Yes to me that person acts a bit weird and probably could benefit from thinking twice about what he/she says (even if I know that person doesn’t have ill intention), but aren’t we all just worried about being that person? How do we even know if we are? And what could we change even if we know we are that person, esp. when often we didn’t do anything particularly wrong?
    And about “bringing others down to my level”: doesn’t it just make us part of the problem by turning us from the judged to the judging ones? I like the “focusing on others” approach though, as long as the gaze is with curiosity rather than judgement.
    I don’t mean at all to criticize efforts to become social and to belong. I’m just really confused. I want to connect to people, see them and let them see me, but I’m also often sickened by what I see in how human society is operating and don’t want to be part of it.

    Reply
    • I agree with literally EVERYTHING you just said. it’s like your inside my mind. i especially agree/ relate to that point you made about people being shitty, and this stuff not being all in your head. my therapist has said that to me too many times and i get so angry every time she says it. social anxiety is tough, especially when you can’t talk to someone who understands every bit of it and who can also help you.

      Reply
  70. I feel I do not have any ideas / information to share. Is is due to the fact that i m constantly worried about what others think of me if i dont speak

    Reply
  71. I’m afraid that people will reject me if I start a conversation with them or even if I just say hello. Then I get into my head and am self conscious about everything I say and do, worried that I’m being awkward and the other person won’t like me and worried that I’ll run out of things to say or ask which usually ends up happening. When people walk by I do have the urge to say something but I usually don’t because I say to myself that it’s not necessary.

    Reply
  72. How I look; does what I’m saying sound right? General fear of being wrong or looking stupid and feeling inadequate.

    Reply
  73. Hi,

    It seems that am in my head a lot and fearful that what I say will not be meet with a reply. It usually is not, which leads to the next fearful thought and the next. I have a concern with not being smart enough and seem to be corrected a great deal of the time by others. I challenge myself to open up and have been successful on occasion but then dont know how to take this to the next level, which leads to distance between the person. Most think I am standoffish which is so uncomfortable. There is a great fear of eating lunch at work as end up being left on the sideline. Its so uncomfortable as others approach the table, see me and find a different place to sit.

    Reply
    • Hi Mary,

      I notice that instead of sitting near people and talking with them, I will feel more comfortable sitting in a seat a bit away by myself. I read somewhere that this was helping me to stay isolated. On occasion, I’ve challenged myself to ask if I could sit near someone or just sit down beside someone. Progress, not perfection! I also feel that I’m not smart enough or get tongue-tied with what to say. I like the O.F.C. approach that I watched a video on. It helped me get out of my head and that really helped with the awkwardness. I wish you the best!

      Reply
  74. I’m afraid of making people feel uncomfortable by trapping them in a conversation that is forced and awkward. So I end up keeping my head down and pretending that I didn’t see them. This makes the situation worse because I end up not saying anything and people think I’m rude. It’s especially bad with people who I know on a surface level, because they would expect you to say something to them, but I don’t know what to talk about so I stay silent. I guess that’s what I struggle with the most, those quick casual conversations you have when you bump into people you know for a short time. My brain just can’t come up with something to say in time, and it ruins the moment.

    Reply
    • I feel this exact same way almost every day. I am constantly in the position where I casually cross paths with someone, and one would expect a minute or two of small talk, but my mind goes completely and utterly blank. My instant fixation on how they will perceive me, overpowers my ability to think of anything else. Or other times, I can think of things to say, but the uncertainty of how they will be received prevents me from saying them. Either way, the result is usually awkward silence. I exert so much brain power filtering what I could say, I’m just left speechless.
      Similar problems exist when it comes to sharing opinions. I’m afraid if they don’t agree with me, I won’t be able to defend my view point, or will make a fool of myself trying. I often feel I don’t have the conversation skills to enforce my opinions in real time. My overarching fear is that whatever I say, or however I manage to say it, will lead to the perception that I am awkward, rude, boring, have poor social skills, or lack friends. In reality I don’t think I have any of these problems, but my behaviour that results from these fears seems to display exactly what I’m afraid of. It’s a ridiculous downward spiral. So far the only thing that has helped me reduce this is the realization that coming across as silent and rude is worse than coming across as awkward, so might as well settle for awkward. Lately I’ve been speaking more, at the risk of embarrassing myself. While what I say sometimes still embarrasses me, it seems to be less so every time. I have a little more confidence in what I say every time, which corresponds to less awkwardness, and thus less fear of being awkward the next time. It almost seems possible the downward spiral can be put in reverse, if one is willing to take a few first leaps.

      Reply
  75. I always worry that people are judging how I look. My clothes, my teeth, my hair. I worry that people are embarrassed to be seen with me. I worry about having nothing interesting to say. I get so down on myself that I haven’t seen my friends in over 5 years. It’s been so long since I’ve had a close friend or socialized that I’m not sure I know how to anymore.

    Reply
  76. I’m worried about being boring. I don’t want to say the wrong things and be laughed at or embarrassed, so I stay quiet. I end up overthinking to the point I don’t actually say anything. Self fulfilling prophecy type thing.

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  77. Recently I’ve become comfortable with my own quietness and am not bothered with silences or people not talking to me. Then again, I am starting to be afraid of missing out on things other people are doing, like forming relationships and having a fun time together. I ask myself, am I just being myself when I am quiet, or is it anxiety that is holding me back from knowing what to say, and actually saying it.

    Reply
  78. I’m afraid that I might not be able to understand what the other person is saying and not being able to answer his/her question because I don’t have confidence in my vocabulary words. I’m afraid of not sounding smart enough. I’m afraid of people’s attention everytime the spotlight is on me, meaning, when it’s my turn to talk when in a group meeting/social gathering. I’m insecured how well they speak, wishing, that I could at least have their 10% of confidence. I’m afraid that my words will fail me.

    Reply
  79. My fear essentially boils down to not being good enough, funny enough, interesting enough etc… whenever I talk to new people or try to socialize with strangers it initially goes well but I hold back because I fear being judged I guess. I forget how to be funny, witty and I close myself off… often find myself wondering how I’m supposed to behave even though I know I’m capable… result is that the concetsation dies down and the interaction usually never goes past that initial greeting

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  80. I get overly conscious about what people think about me. Whenever I have to talk with a new person I get so nervous that I forget the language itself and make grammatical mistakes and forget words when in reality I am good at that particular language. Also I cannot have a conversation with anybody with overthinking about it later on and then hating myself for what I said. I have the strong fear of being judged and it often leads me to fake myself in front of people. It just makes people hate me more and lose friends.

    Reply
  81. I sometimes feel like the most boring person on the planet. When I’m not with a few friends of mine who gets me I’m so awkward… I’m totally unable to start a conversation.. It’s like I have nothing to say. And it usually freaks me out so much that I end up not talking at all…Nobody ever comes to talk to me and when they do, the conversation dies after few minutes, so the next time they rather talk to someone else..I feel so hopeless like there’s something deeply wrong with me…

    Reply
  82. I’m afraid that people might think i’m dumb. When i’m with people i feel so small and my mind goes blank, i don’ know what to say and if i think of something it always sounds so forced. i feel that my personality is awful and they’ll get quickly bored, it’s like i’m wasting their time

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  83. I’m always the quiet guy, sure I can contribute to a conversation but I won’t start one. I’ve always had this fear of being judged for how interactive I was in a conversation, and as I listen to my friends speak I just wish I could talk more and contribute more to a conversation. And the more I think about it the less I want to say anything. I also struggle with being embarrassed, I’ve gone as far as skipping school to avoid a class presentation, I would tel my self I can do this but the closer the day of presenting cane the more anxious I got.

    Reply
  84. I am afraid of being judged for the wrong reasons. my personality is really bold when im comfortable around people like family, and around my only friend really, but I quite myself in order to feel better in public situations. Thats when I developed a twitching problem. Its extremely uncontrollable and embarrassing. Now, when I hear a sound coming from anywhere close to me, I twitch exactly right after. recently its not twitching its more like a coincidence problem caused by the twitching problem through time. Now when I twitch its because I hear/feel/see people around looking at me and thinking im weird or mentally challenged or frankly retarded. Im a klutz, and get really nervous when I fuck up because it adds to my reputation. I was never like this, and I have theories of why it started mostly death of my cousin I pulled back from society. but I truly think with the right help I could overcome this. So please I ask this one thing, does anyone know a place I could go for a few weeks maybe couple months so I can get therapy and most likely medication like adderall or something for anxiety. my friend tells me I have ADHD so I feel like thats also a factor to the twitching. I need help. simple as that. Im am in Florida so if anyone knows of a place please get back to me.

    Reply
  85. I am afraid of beeing judged for not getting well from my fatigue syndrom and for not beeing able to get back to work yet. I am also afraid of being judged for beeing shy and don’t beeing able to have a conversation with people I dont know at dinner parties. I usually end up sitting there with no one to talk to.

    Reply
  86. Hi how are you have a good weekend I am afraid of being judged for being shy being anxious and neverous all the time because I have high anxiety , autism , depression , and I think I have ptsd always stressed out 24-7

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  87. Im afraid of being judged on my weight, almost to the point I hate myself and I judge myself so it doesn’t hurt as much being judged by others. Or you know I’m worried someone might judge me for how I speak, some have literally called ignorant before because I didn’t know what they knew or talked like they talked. My life has always been a rollercoaster of emotions ranging from fear to outright rage because of my paranoia that others are talking about me… It’s gotten so bad as of lately it’s starting to ruin my relationship with my loving fiance.

    Reply
  88. Sometimes, I feel confident to face the spotlight but very soon my brain fade start and I am unable to speak anything.
    Many a time I ponder over what to talk about even when talking with my family members(except my mother).
    I hesitate a lot while expressing(due to filtering) my thoughts. It’s easy while writing because I can correct errors/ change the whole sentence-structure.

    Reply
  89. Did any of you ever just feel that you lost all interest in the people you get the chance to know?!
    Like, there is a lot of people I could get to know, but I am not in to whomever wants to get to know me, just feel so distant from most people; in my work I take a real interest in my collegues and even feel like I would like to know them even more, but in private life it’s just ‘been there done that, not funny’….its weird.

    Reply
  90. iam more afraid of hurting people’s feelings than being judged.i have a fear of i might hurt someone unintentionally by saying something,i would always nod in agreement to make them feel appreciated.i would always silence myself even if people had bad things to say to me because i feel like its better that im hurt than they feel hurt.

    Reply
  91. I feel the same way. It`s really hard to commute what i`m thinking and i get so nervous that i either just stop talking or just give up entirely and move on to an easier su

    Reply
  92. I fear that I will be judged for my way of speaking (especially English). As a result of which I end up stammering or speaking wrong words. Also, due to this I speak less or in other words I am unable to continue the conversation. I feel that maybe because of this people end the conversation with me.

    Reply
    • Hey anonymous answer, whoever you are, I have the same feeling. I’m quite good at English but still my language skills (whichever language it is) seem to be less when I talk to people who I feel are very smart. Because the person whom I’m talking to might think I am bad at English or something.

      Reply
  93. I am afraid that people will think I am boring. When someone new tries to talk to me i always try to paraphrase what they said or agree with what they said and then I smile and nod. I don’t try to add on to the conversation. But the truth is, its because i’m shy. So when people finish the converstation with me and leave, I always think its because they thought I was boring which leads them to not wanting to talk to me anymore.

    Reply
  94. I fear that people will think I’m weird or if I let them get too close, they will hurt me and then leave me. And I’m also afraid that because I have a larger body than lots of people my age, they won’t want to be associated with me.

    Reply
  95. I am afraid of being judged for my shyness and introvertness.It makes me think sometimes that the other people out there would not understand me or misinterprete my intentions.

    Reply
  96. Hello, thanks for your hard work <3
    I recently started to realise that everytime i talk to people or even pass by them i have to compare between us, it's the only way i get confident. I think it's kind of an inferiority complex. I think that self-confidence should be persistent

    Reply
    • Hi Alaa,
      I feel the same way – when approaching a new person I usually assess them and compare against myself. And if comparison is in my favor I have no issue communicating with them, but if for whatever reason I decide that they’re better than me, I become distant and try to leave the situation ASAP.
      I agree with you – Confidence is everything.
      Good luck to you on this journey of self acceptance and mastering social skills!

      Reply
  97. Hello, David!
    I’ve been reading alot of your articles these days and i can’t seem to stop haha.
    You see, my voice is rather soft and quiet, the type that’s hard to hear/understand. It makes talking to people hard especially when they are talking loudly and excitedly and can’t hear me. Normal group conversations are sometimes hard too bc i need to repeat myself and people get tired of it and stop asking me to repeat and choose to ignore me instead. Even if i speak loudly it’s still hard to understand.
    I’m getting better at making my voice level (during presentations) because once it cracks i think oh no they know I’m nervous over such a small thing.
    I wish i knew what to do.

    Reply
  98. My age Im a senior. My race. I live in a very mixed race community and my language. I’m white Caucasian and only speak one language English and I feel like other people of other cultures who speak more than one languages speak in their foreign language are talking about me deliberately in another language drliberatey either about me or to shut me out right in front of me. I tried to talk to a woman in front of me in a check out line to ask her a question and when she saw me she froze me out. It hurt because I was taught as a young white girl never to be snobby or mean to others because of skin color or cultural differences. Sometimes I want to be around only people of my own culture and race because I experience so much rejection by people with more than one language who know how to speak English but deliberately speak something else so I shut down and ignore them and the possibility of friendships starting at a bus stop or grocery store not good. I have become a recluse who watches movies borrowed from the library with my cat as my social outlet.

    Reply
  99. I’ve always been a shy person but since I started high school it seemed to get worse. I am now in year 10 and I still get the feelings of fear and worry when I talk to certain people etc. I’m terrified of speaking to strangers and I’m still worried to speak to some people in my friendship group. Recently it has been a little better but thoughts always rush through my head when I’m talking to them, thinking of how stupid I sound or what should I say etc. I just want to be able to feel comfortable talking to most people, whether I know them or not and not feel anxious every time I walk into school.

    Reply
  100. I’m afraid of being judge because of my body and I know that I get judge every day, at school or at home. I just want to feel confident but I don’t know how. I never have a real boyfriend or relationship because they don’t really like me the way I’m and I have trust issues. I want to resolve all of this but I don’t know how

    Reply
  101. I’m afraid because of my uncommon upbringing, not having either parent raise me, that others, who may have had a more typical family dynamic, can see about me, and perhaps even that there are obvious things within my personality and the way I am that only they would be able to tell about. I feel embarrassment which often is coupled with shame because of this, especially when something doesn’t land correctly in a social setting.

    Reply
  102. When I talk, I feel as though I’m such an outsider that people won’t be able to talk to me, and that they’re judging me for being different.

    Reply
    • It doesn’t matter that you’re different or not. See your differences as all the things that make you unique and those should make you proud

      Reply
  103. When I have to do any sort of public speaking in school, I often get nervous and have a panic attack. I worry that people judge me because of my panic attacks, and so I avoid talking to anyone in any classes that I know are going to have a lot of public speaking assignments.

    Reply
    • I’m exactly like you but I’m not nervous anymore because I tell myself if I believe in me there’s nothing to be afraid of so you should talking to yourself like a video and then watch it and little by little you’ll see your progression

      Reply
  104. My face gets red when I’m nervous or on the spotlight during social situations. I can feel it and so I over think it and worry that I’m being judged because it clearly shows that I’m anxious or nervous towards others which therefore makes me lose the ability to come up with anything else to say and then get very quiet or awkward.

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  105. When I open my mouth around people, strangers I feel like they would judge what I am saying and they don’t listen my point of view

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  106. When I open my mouth around people, strangers I feel like they would judge what I am saying and they don’t listen my point of view

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  107. I am the most anxious about people thinking that I am boring and that i am not funny. I also have nothing to talk about because I feel like I have no personality and there is nothing special about me. Whenever people ask: ‘Have you watched this film’ I never know what they are on about so I feel like I cannot relate and then the conversation come to a halt. I literally have nothing to say and I am not good at telling stories because I don’t think they are stories worth telling because they won’t make people laugh.

    Reply
    • I totally get it. Something that helps me is culturing myself. Pick an art or area of culture that interests you and learn about it bottom to top, then you have something to talk about. Its a good idea to start off reading wikipedia pages. Reddit and Tumblr are also good for immersing yourself in culture. Good luck brother!

      Reply
  108. This is so true. During a recent social event I had with my club members in college, I realized that some of the members who seemed very social and confident previously, were actually being shy and nervous towards me. During our dinner together, I had several people sat across me and I tried to talk to them and engage in conversations and I could just FEEL that they, even the confident ones, were literally talking to each other (who were already friends) and avoiding eye contact with me. I could feel them being nervous. At first, I thought ‘Are they avoiding my eye contact? Don’t they wanna be friends with me?’ but then as I reflect, I could see that they were just afraid to approach to a stranger. I totally agree with you David, on the note that the one who puts their guard down first is the one who wins ultimately.

    Reply
  109. Yeah I’m fedup with feeling like a outsider I often have people just talk over me Wen I’m saying stuff it makes me feel worthless

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  110. I seem to over-analyze my anxiety and worry of people’s perception of me. I rely too much on how I ‘feel’ too much. I have all the tools and knowledge to overcome this obstacle in my life. But putting it to use, that’s where the challenge begins for this brain of mine haha.

    Reply
  111. Today was a bad day for me(shy wise) . In class we had to play a game and I was picked to stand in the middle of a bunch of people and ask them questions but everyone was looking at me and so I couldn’t think of questions and my voice got highs and shaky .UHHHHHHGG! And I’m sure my face was really red. (Btw does anyone else’s voice get shaky when there nervous ?)

    Reply
    • My voice gets shaky when doing a speech along with really flushed red everything. I’ve gotten a bit better at coping with this but still fear being laugh at for being stupid or something.

      Reply
    • Whenever we’re made to read in class we all have to do it and my voice always goes shaky and I always stumble over my words so I get you

      Reply
  112. I’m such a fake! I’m a mental health support worker and am there for my patients and I am working allextra shifts to avoid my own life and insecurities – I do t attend any social events cosim either working or sleeping after my night shifts- I know this is not good for my mental health -but i hate social situations.

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  113. I don’t like talking too much because I’m not talkative and can’t deliver my thoughts perfectly. I hate this and I’m really tired of it. I’m not good at oral exams and don’t like talking to a girl. I stopped caring about people but I worry that will keep people away from me especially I can’t think about changing myself

    Reply
    • I feel the same way I don’t like talking to much, but my reason is because I’m afraid of being boring or not having something good to say so I don’t say anything at all. I feel like that does make people avoid coming up to me because they think that I’m rude or something, but I’m just afraid of having them not talk to me.

      Reply
    • I also struggle with delivering my thoughts well. I’m just not good at putting into words what I am thinking and can’t remember the word I am searching for most of the time. Sometimes it just feels like my mind is completely blank and that I have little to no inner monologue happening, as if I’m sleeping while awake. Makes me feel unable to express myself and share my thoughts and opinions. Very frustrating, I hate it. People who are able to talk fluidly literally fascinate me. Nice to have a kindred spirit:) Thanks for sharing.

      Reply
  114. First, I worry if I am not just weird and ugly.
    Then, I’m fa going on a camp with some people. They’ll forget that I have been with them: they sum up everybody except for me (to their friends). That’s even the truth with the people I have been with the closest on that camp: we have slept in one bedroom and we have been doing all the activities in a smaller group together.
    So, I’m gonna worry whether I’m not too invisible.
    Then, I go to school and people laugh at me, or they tell ironically ‘Nha, he is in love with you’ (about sb I don’t know). The whole story starts over and over again.

    Reply
  115. Honestly im always scared of judgments and how people will see me, in alot of things i do or say,im afraid to share my thoughts with others for them to not think bad of me, that im stupid and awkward or weird.. , and im really afraid of the way they will react to my comment, i always think that if i say something people will definitely mock me, sometimes i feel that being quite is better( especially with strangers or people i don’t really know) than talking and letting others judge me and discover the true me, alot of people in my family or i know find me quite, shy,nervous, and so arrogant lol cause i don’t talk to them ( i mentioned the reason above).

    Reply
    • I’m really shy around people I don’t know ,but I don’t like people thinking I’m shy so I try to talk anyways. But then I just say something stupid,or Tripp over my words,and my voice gets high and and weird sounding . When someone I don’t really know talks to me , I’m so focus on what I’m supposed to say next that I just blank and awkwardly smile and laugh . I’m sometimes scared to say my opinion on things bc I don’t want to judge. I’m really shy round confident people. When I know I’m going to some social gathering at night I spend that whole day stressed about it . I’m also really self conscious about my body . I think I come off as grumpy to some people when I’m being shy. I hate this cause it’s not who I am I’m really talkative round people I know. I Really Need To Work On This!!!!!!!

      Reply
  116. 1. I feel nervous anytime i need to share my thoughts on something or make a presentation because people might think I am not smart enough. So i tend to break in between words a lot, have shaky voice and hands and then i lose track of everything i had in mind.

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  117. Everyone thinks that I’m just quiet person but I’m actually really talkative if they would just get to know me . People that I never even been around tell me they can tell I’m quiet . But I’m not. I’m even shy around my cousins and relatives. Don’t like this rep . I hate talking to people I don’t know I feel awkward bc I don’t what to do with my hands and making eye contact is intimidating. Thanks for doing this I can tell it’s gonna help me a lot . .

    Reply
    • Same. I can talk for hours with someone I know well without worry, but with other people, I only speak when spoken to and find it really hard to approach them. Everyone thinks I’m quiet because of this, but it’s frustrating because I’m not.

      Reply
    • Emma I feel exactly the same – there’s so much about me that people don’t see because i don’t t have the confidence to let them see the real me and I get angry with myself – I feel like an “introverted” extrovert – I feel like just expressing myself amongst people like us who feel like this without people that know us xx please get in touch xxxx

      Reply
      • Hi Amanda ! I’m like that too. I love that we can talk to people who are like us and that there’s no judging! I feel like a “introverted extrovert ” too . Thanks for replying .Xxxooox

    • I have the same issue where people think im the weird quite kid but im only quite becasue nobody ever tries to talk to me and I have trouble making new friends so I dont really get chances to prove im not quite

      Reply
  118. Sometimes I’m afraid of saying my opinion on controversial things bc I think my opinion might be wrong . I know that I should speak my mind but a lot of times my opinion changes so I don’t usually say anything just to be safe

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  119. I’m afraid that people won’t agree with me or somehow get offended by what I say. I really just want make people happy but it’s like the harder I try to them happy the more I fail. It was hard enough to post this comment but I’m doing it.

    Reply
  120. I’m afraid that no one really wants to hear what I have to say, most of the time if I do talk people just talk over me. Which makes me feel like they are judging me that I’m not worth their time and I have nothing useful to say.

    Reply
    • I’ve only just posted my own stuff but came across your message – if you want to talk – my name is mandy and no one is judging you- you wouldn’t have contacted this group if you weren’t struggling – if you want to talk I promise use I wo t talk over you xxx

      Reply
  121. When I speak to most people I feel as they are judging the way I speak. Then not respecting me. They act like I’m just a child and what I say doesn’t matter.

    Reply
    • It’s so frustrating and disrespectful when people talk to you like you’re a child. It’s like they think that you’re somehow stupid because you’re not as social as they are, even though that’s not true. I’ve had so many people in school do that to me.

      Reply
      • I can relate. I also have ADHD which doesn’t help my situation and I also look very young for my age. Because sometimes I can feel confident, ready to say something, I say it and it comes out cracked or quietly spoken. Not stuttering, but just sounds like I’m scared because until right when the words are coming out my brain just makes them come out like that. I get where you’re coming from, it’s so frustrating. People who don’t have ADHD or social anxiety or just anxiety in general and don’t really know anybody or have been exposed to it unfortunately do not realize that people do have mental issues today more than ever and it is upsetting, but unfortunately in the society we live it there are going to always be people who just don’t get it and I don’t blame them because they’re are certain things I wish I was exposed too, but until I cared to do research and make myself more aware about not only my mental health struggles but others and started to focus on others and asking things like how are you and offering others help made my confidence sky rocket. Prove you’re teachers or friends or whoever is treating you like a child that you are capable. Yes, it will be hard, not going to lie. However, I learned that you can’t just expect things to fall in place, you have to work on yourself and take baby steps everyday. I like to set a goal for myself to talk to one person who I think hates me or may not like me everyday and just be nice. I kill them with kindness as Selena Gomez’s song goes. It makes you feel empowered.

  122. I hate how shy and quiet I am. Everyone knows me as the “shy” “quiet” one. I try so hard sometimes to talk more, and be talkao but then I freak out and start stuttering and then I get embarrassed and quiet down. After that I feel so awkward and I think that they of me as a weird quiet one. I am very talkative around people I know for a long time. I’m just not with people I knew not so much. I see so many people get used to people so easily. I can’t it takes me about 2-3 years to make me feel 100% comfortable with someone and start being more open, and talkative. I don’t want that, I want to feel like I can talk to people and not be the odd one out. I feel like since I’m so shy and quiet, people avoid me. I have a few close friends but we split up after going to different schools, I have a few close friends now but not too close, and I don’t feel comfortable with them as much as I want to be.

    Reply
    • I think I feel exactly the same way as you do and most times am scared of making mistakes and sometimes eventually make mistake in my expression due to over nervousness. Today in school a lady I don’t know sat beside me so I decided to greet and her, what I noticed when I said “Good morning” was a big shot that I felt it in my chest, I couldn’t say anything else until she stood up and left. It’s so tiring and fruastuating to be like this.

      Reply
  123. I am afraid that I am boring and not entertaining or funny so no one wants to listen to what I have to say. And then I sit there quietly and start to worry about how everyone must think I’m too quiet or “weird” because I don’t contribute anything to group conversations. Even when I can clear these thoughts out of my mind and not sit there completely self-absorbed in my own insecurities, my brain just doesn’t come up with things to add to a conversation or questions to ask. I just completely blank.

    Reply
    • I feel like I’m in this position a lot too. When I’m with people in a group, I very rarely speak to anyone and only talk if someone asks me something (which is also rare). I’m worried that they think I don’t want to be involved in the conversation so they decide not to talk to me or include me.

      Reply
    • I feel the same exact way. Like I have nothing to contribute. Nothing at all comes to my mind to say. It makes me feel stupid. It’s like I have a wall between my mind and my mouth. Sad thing is that my daughter feels the same way. She is only 12 but suffers with exactly the same thing.

      Reply
    • It feels like your describing me there, I get so worked up because the harder I try to think of something to say the more difficult it becomes and I just stand there in silence. I’m okay with my close friends but anyway be else it’s a nightmare!

      Reply
    • The same here. In the past 8 months I’ve joined a social group to find an activity that I enjoy and get to know new people. At times I find it hard to express myself, especially when I’ve been bombarded with tough situations from health scares rocking our family, finance or work situations in the last few months. Many times I feel I can’t contribute due to trying to keep everything together but knowing to sit at home alone is not a healthy option either.

      Other times I think that my work or things I’ve done during the week aren’t as exciting as other people’s stories so sit silent listening and nodding in the right places. Even when situations are getting better I am afraid to contribute too much as I don’t want to distract from others sharing as they might think I’m taking over or not worth listening too.

      I come away trying to figure out how I can best overcome being silent , or how not to convey how tough situations have been so the next time I go with a plan that often doesn’t work. I like being with the people, and doing the activity but get so frustrated and concerned that they might think why I even bother going. I wonder then if I’m the white elephant in the room and should I even bother to meet new people.

      Reply
  124. Well Im not “afraid” of being alone, its just that i feel like i want to be with my friends and im usually there early so im always waiting alone and i feel people are judging me and thinking that I dont have any friends? Does that make sense? Sounds silly like that

    Reply
  125. I’m mostly scared of being judged. I’ve noticed when I’m talking one on one with someone I feel comfortable unless the small talk is awkward then anxiety kicks. But in a group of people my anxiety is through the roof I guess this is because I feel if I spoken out there are more people to judge me on what I’m saying. I am an introvert, so feel as though my personality does not match everyone else’s constantly feeling drowned out by everyone talking therefore I get anxious thoughts about not Fitting in and keeping up.
    An add on… I avoid talking because I’m very self conscious about my teeth and my lips they way they look, and definitely the way they look when they are moving so hate drawing attention to them… I never smile with my teeth showing.

    Reply
  126. My biggest fear/ insecurity is not sounding intelligent and not being interesting. I have a lot of topics stored inside of me but when it comes to speaking about them I go blank and sometimes just can’t carry on a conversation.

    Reply
  127. My biggest insecurities is not sounding intelligent enough (aka using “big” words) or not interesting enough. Due to the nature of my work as a yoga teacher, I feel like it isn’t a respected profession because it isn’t paid a certain amount or it is inconsistent work. A lot of times, I feel like people get checked out after a minute of me talking…it makes me feel self-conscious and that they are unavailable when I’m talking. Especially when they interject and you can tell they weren’t listening…

    Reply
  128. I’m afraid to put myself out there – approach groups or unfamiliar people, express interest in doing things together, be more expressive (hugging, patting on shoulder, etc). These kinds of activities take initiative. I realize that I want to be more charismatic and outgoing. At the same time, fear of rejection, keeps my expressiveness and authentic self at bay.

    Reply
  129. I am afraid to suddenly try and be more open and talkative with people because they’ve already labeled me as the “shy, quiet one”. since I’ve already let people know me as shy that I have to uphold that character or else I’ll come off as fake and be judged even more. I’m excited to try these excercises with new people, but not sure how to open up around people that already have this perception of me.

    Reply
  130. I am afraid that when people look at me that they will know that I hate when people look at my face. They will sense the insecurity that I feel I am not that pretty and then make judgments. I am afraid that they will read everything about me and know everything the moment they look at me. I do not want to be read or examined. I am afraid

    Reply
  131. One thing that gets me super depressed is when I try talking to someone and they only give one-word responses, but then I see them chatting up other people who they aren’t close with. I wonder could be so wrong with me that people don’t want to talk to me. Whenever I’m hanging out with one of the few close friends I have and someone else comes along, even if that someone is another friend of mine, they always talk and ignore me. I’m sick of being everyone’s twelfth option and never a first choice, even to someone who calls me their best friend.

    Reply
  132. I’m always afraid I’ll be judged for the way I speak and my appearance. Although I’m almost 17, I’ve never really worn make-up and I pretty much always wear jeans and a hoodie. I’m worried that this will give the impression that I don’t care about my appearance when really I’m afraid of how people will judge me if I DO change my appearance. It doesn’t help that I have really bad social aniexty and whenever I talk to someone I don’t know that well they always seem to make some sort of comment about how quiet I am. I want to be someone who others can feel comfortable around, and me worrying about how people will judge my appearance and what I say doesn’t really help with that goal.

    Reply
  133. The thing I’m most self concious about is how quiet I am. I have been quiet my whole life but because of how many comments I’ve had about it my whole life, it’s created a lot of anxiety for me in social situations. So then I try forcing myself to speak, and all that does is make me say super awkward stuff, which gives me even more anxiety.

    I also just have a fear of judgement from others instilled in me from the way I was raised.

    The 2 things I want are a) to be comfortable and confident with just being quiet, and b) to be able to converse freely and effortlessly when I do want to. I don’t know how people think of things to say, especially when it’s small talk.

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

    Reply
  135. 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.)

    Reply
    • I’m really self-conscious about the fact I don’t wear make-up too. I’m very quiet in any social situation and the few friends I do have are all super pretty and I often feel like they see me as less because of the fact that I don’t wear make-up or wear designer clothes. I don’t usually engage in group conversations because I have a fear of saying something that they would consider to be weird or wrong which would affect their judgement of me. I remember when one of them asked me if I was okay because I’m quiet and they “can’t tell what I’m feeling.”

      Reply
    • You are not alone. Sometimes when people talk to me, I don’t know how to reply. I always use the same reaction because I’m not as interested. When I am interested questions pop up in my head so easily. I just want that for every conversation so the conversation won’t get boring, and won’t have a awkward silence in the middle of it.

      Reply
  136. 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.

    Reply
    • I totally relate to this – I too feel like I bring an air of tension and awkwardness. It is so hard – but it is not “who you are” in my opinion, just poor social
      Habits that can be broken!

      Reply
  137. 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.

    Reply
    • 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…

      Reply
  138. 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

    Reply
  139. 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.

    Reply
    • It’s refreshing to know that I’m not alone in feeling this same way. I feel like there is something wrong with me because I feel like I don’t know what to say in social situations and then feel like I am not smart enough. This turns into a vicious cycle making me really self conscious. This behavior is holding me back a lot from personal growth and where I want to be in my future career. I want to be a counselor/MFT but I wonder how I can ever achieve this If I can’t even talk to people 🙁

      Reply
  140. 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.

    Reply
  141. 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.

    Reply
  142. 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.

    Reply
  143. 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.

    Reply
  144. 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.

    Reply
  145. 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)

    Reply
    • 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. 🙂

      Reply
  146. 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.

    Reply
    • Ya same problem . I have no idea what to do with my hands and I hate eye contacted . The people in my class are really nice ,so they try to talk to me a lot. But I don’t what to say to them so I just laugh and blush . My hands get really red when I’m nervous so I try to hide them so people don’t know that I’m nervous . Uhhhg.

      Reply
  147. 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.

    Reply
  148. 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.

    Reply
  149. 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.

    Reply
  150. 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.

    Reply
  151. 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.

    Reply
  152. 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.

    Reply
  153. 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.

    Reply
  154. 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.

    Reply
    • 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

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

    Reply
    • Me to . I don’t feel as “cool”as them or as pretty . I also hate being with my friends with other people watching /judging how we act together (grown ups watching) but I know it’s all in my head

      Reply
  156. 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

    Reply
  157. 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.

    Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
  158. 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.

    Reply
  159. 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.

    Reply
  160. 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.

    Reply
  161. 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.

    Reply
  162. 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.

    Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
  163. 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

    Reply
  164. 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?

    Reply
  165. 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.

    Reply
  166. 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.

    Reply
    • 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,

      Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
  167. 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.

    Reply
  168. 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.

    Reply
  169. 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

    Reply
  170. 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

    Reply
  171. 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.

    Reply
    • Ananya,

      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.

      Reply
  172. 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.

    Reply
  173. 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.

    Reply
  174. 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?

    Reply
    • 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.

      Reply
  175. 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.

    Reply
  176. 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.

    Reply
  177. 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.

    Reply
  178. 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.

    Reply
  179. 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.

    Reply
  180. 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 .

    Reply
  181. 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.

    Reply
    • 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 ?

      Reply
  182. 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.

    Reply
    • 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.

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  183. 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.

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    • 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 !

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  184. 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.

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  185. 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.

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  186. 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.

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  187. 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.

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  188. 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 .

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  189. 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.

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    • 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.

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      • 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

    • 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

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  190. 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.

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  191. 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.

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  192. 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

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  193. 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

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  194. 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.

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  195. 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.

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  196. 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.

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  197. 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.

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  198. 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

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  199. 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.

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    • 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.

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  200. 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.

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  201. 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

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  202. 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

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  203. 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.

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  204. 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.

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  205. 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

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  206. 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

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  207. 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.

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  208. 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.

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  209. 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

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  210. 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.

    Reply
    • 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

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  211. 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.

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  212. 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.

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  213. 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.

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  214. 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.

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  215. 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.

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  216. 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.

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  217. 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.

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    • 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.

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  218. 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 …

    Reply
    • 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?

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  219. 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.)

    Reply
    • 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.

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  220. 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.

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    • 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.

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  221. 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….

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  222. 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.

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

      Hope you will start seeing improvements on your upcoming introductions.

      Reply

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