• Member Since 5th Dec, 2012
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LyraAlluse


I am a professional writer, artist, musician, website builder, and app developer. I have a Tip Jar for those who might be interested.

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Jan
26th
2017

I Am Working On Conquering My Fears · 2:54pm Jan 26th, 2017

As many people know I have social anxiety, depression, agoraphobia, PTSD, OCD and other emotional/ physical disorders as the result of genetics but also growing up in a highly abusive household, being abused at school, and also being abused in the workplace.

I've been trying to think of ways to conquer my fears of leaving the house but I haven't thought of any solid plans.

I have trouble going to the store, bank, or other places where I have to interact with people so I do most everything online. I also only leave the house at night so I will be able to avoid as many people as possible if I absolutely have to leave the house for some reason (like make an emergency trip to the store).

I also work out of the home because I can't handle the stress of being around people in the workplace. I have trauma from being sexually harassed at a few jobs I've worked at or physically abused (one boss threw a stapler at my head and there are lots of other examples of abuse I've faced in the workplace as well). So because I have been hurt by people at home where I was severely abused (sometimes not even allowed to leave my room or eat for days at a time among other things), at the workplace, and by teachers and classmates at school, it is hard for me to really trust being around other people for long periods of time.

I thought about maybe joining some local clubs but if I am around people too long I usually get short of breath and will pass out. I don't do well interacting with people face to face. That is the thing I have the biggest trouble with.

So I am starting by going for a walk every day. It helps me maintain my health and I don't have to interact with anyone if I don't have to. Although there were a few times people tried to talk to me and I got really upset and had to go home, hide, and cry for a while.

Anyway, if people have any ideas on how I can be more comfortable outside of the house or around people let me know. I would love to hear some of your ideas and thoughts.

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Comments ( 71 )

Is their any areas for socializing around you? Try going their with a set amount of time (five minutes for example.) then every week add a minute or couple of minutes or whenever you feel comfortable to add more time.

Really glad to hear you are taking those monumental baby steps towards conquering your fears, power to you my friend!

Only ideas I really can think of is to think as positively as you can when you are outside and try to maintain it when light fears began to rear their ugly heads, maybe it can help stave off them becoming fully fledged fear that would force you back inside earlier than usual and thus preventing you from gaining a bit more of a foothold outside.

When it comes to people and interacting, maybe set milestones for yourself, as in like one of these days that somebody happens to greet you, before you try to retreat from them as quickly as possible, maybe give them a little wave or something like that?

This is all quite relevant to me as my best friend online, she has a form of social anxiety although it is far less severe than this, and I have been trying for the longest time to see if she is ready to get used to my voice through one way calls so we could eventually build up to a fully fledged vocal conversation. Patience, optimism, and diligence is all I can really approach it with.

4397165 I know that there are Meetup groups around the area which all engage in various things. I'm not really sure which one I want to join. But I could look into it. And like you said, just take things one step at a time.

4397166 Interacting with people is my worst fear because I really don't know what to talk about. I just feel that I usually don't have a lot to talk to people about.

Eventually the subject of where I work or details about my family will come up. I work from home so I don't have to interact with people and I also take care of my mom who has Vikings Disease. I don't have any family because I left an abusive household and everyone took my abusers side and disowned me. See? Both aren't really pleasant subjects to talk about.

I just don't really feel like I fit in with most normal people and normal conversations never seem to lead anywhere. They just cause me more stress and anxiety. So I have a lot of trouble with one on one discussions.

4397168 how about listening to your favorite music to help calm your nerves when you decide to take your walks, helps me when i do it i get lost in my fav music when i walk that when i see ppl greeting i simply gove a smile wave or a nod of greeting

4397177 I don't really have a music player or anything and my cellphone recently broke too. I usually just think of ideas for my writing, art, and music while I walk. I get lost in thoughts about creative stuff and try to tune out the world around me.

Waving at people or smiling at them is one of the things I don't like to do the most. I would rather just be ignored. I always feel pressured when people force me to interact with them and having people smile, wave, or great me while I walk is one thing that sets me into hyperventilating or passing out.

I try to avoid people as much as possible when I walk but it doesn't always work out that way. Sometimes I am forced to interact with a few people and I get short of breath and have to go home and hide/ try to calm myself down the rest of the day.

I usually have to spend weeks at a time mentally preparing myself to go out with even people I know. So interacting with strangers on the street is near impossible for me. I try my best, but I always end up feeling upset, sad, and even sick the rest of the day after having to talk with people.

This is why I rarely (up until recently) left the house. Walking is at the very least getting me outdoors but I am still not keen on interacting with other people. I of course am trying to work on that, but there are certain things that are out of my control because of my emotional disorders.

I am always going to feel tense, short of breath, and awkward around people because of my social anxiety. I am always going to have trouble leaving the house because of my agoraphobia. I'm trying really hard to manage these things but it is a challenge.

If you wanna be able to join clubs take baby step and slowly start getting to know people and introduce your self to bigger groups and if it stresses you out try using calming techniques like deep breaths or do something that calms you. You can even try getting "lost" in your mind it helps me! I hope this helps!

4397221 I think joining a club or group of some kind would be a step in the right direction. Although I am not sure which group to join. Being around people is very stressful for me, as is having to interact with them. But I guess if I joined a group with a large amount of members where I wouldn't necessarily be noticed, that could be a step in the right direction. I just have to see if there are any large groups like that in my area.

4397173 if you don't want to talk about your family and life, you can politely decline. People generally ask as a courtesy, not because they want to put you on the spot.

4397243 what is agoraphobia?

*hugs* I'm usually not good with words, but as someone who also has anxiety, what usually helps me is finding a good stress relief. For me it's drawing, so whenever I've just been through an attack or I've had a bad day, I'll go home and draw. I don't know what'll work for you, but I'm sure you can find something.

Also, something else I've found, there's a group on here, Anti-depression ponies. I don't know if you're already in it, but if not, there are a lot of nice people there who give great advice. They've helped me through a few tough times too, and sometimes when I'm really stressed I'll look through the forum at what the people say there. I think they can help you too.

I wish I could do more to help. You will be in my prayers my friend:heart:

Edit: Just saw that you're in the group:twilightsheepish: Whoops.

I'm convinced that there isn't a fear out there that can't be conquered. I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors mate, and I'll be keeping you in my prayers.

learning an orchestral instrument might be good. It'll look a bit weird at the start with everyone being younger than you, but the crowd experience gained from playing in orchestras is really good mentally.

4397269 I could change the subject as well, I suppose. Or I could leave out a lot of details. Like I could just mention that my mom is my family and I am helping to take care of her. And I could just mention that I work from home without adding any other details.

Hmmm... well, what I normally do is blast music in my ears at max volume until I actually need to talk to someone (like the cashier). But... looks like that isn't an option. Now, I don't think immersion therapy is a good idea in this case, because that's just unnessecary stress. But I like Everfree's idea. Maybe join a club. But like you said, a really big one where you won't always stand out. At least get used to being around people before interacting with them. But take it slow. But if I think of anything else I think may work, I'll let you know immediately.:twilightsmile:

4397296 Agoraphobia is where you are afraid to leave your home/ go outside.

This is the official definition: Agoraphobia is an anxiety disorder characterized by symptoms of anxiety in situations where the person perceives the environment to be unsafe with no easy way to get away. These situations can include open spaces, public transit, shopping malls, or simply being outside the home. Being in these situations may result in a panic attack The symptoms occur nearly every time the situation is encountered and lasts for more than six months. Those affected will go to great lengths to avoid these situations. In severe cases people may become unable to leave their homes.

It effects people in different ways. In my case, I am on the more extreme side of things. I really don't like going outside or leaving my house at all if I can help it. But I've been trying to work on that.

4397304 I appreciate the advice and I actually use my writing, art, and music to help me cope with a lot of my my emotional disorders.

I am in the Anti-Depression Ponies group but I always feel awkward about making a post about things there because it kind of puts me on the spot. But I do like giving other people advice, so that is more or less why I am in the group; to give advice to and cheer other people up. :)

4397409 I appreciate the encouraging words and prayers. Both are very much appreciated. :)

4397411 I've actually been in lot of bands where I played multiple instruments (piano, harp, keyboard, drums, guitar, bass, and others). :) I've been in school bands, orchestras, and rock/ metal/ celtic bands. But I was usually with my friends so I didn't feel as pressured about things. If I joined a band with strangers it would probably be very hard for me to cope with. But it is an interesting thing to consider.

4397421 I will definitely consider joining a club of some kind. If you have any ideas, be sure to let me know. I would love to hear them. :)

4397437 Yay! Good luck, Lyra!:twilightsmile::heart:

4397422

Do you have a backyard?

Maybe write about it? I usually make sure that I have an active story or two where I can pretty much dump my day's worth of emotions and ideas all in one go. :twilightsmile:

All I can recommend you is to do it slowly. First go to the backyard, then walk around the street and then go walking somewhere a bit more further away from your house. Take it slowly and under a state where you feel comfortable (not safe, comfortable) and then try further away, going beyond what you feel is safe until you no longer fear the outside.

It would help if you do this with a friend or a close relative who wants to help you.

4397441 Aww thank you very much. I appreciate the support. :)

4397505 I don't have a backyard per se (I live in an apartment complex) but I live by an area of town that has water canals. So you can take a trail that follows the water canals throughout downtown Phoenix. It's actually very scenic and peaceful. :)

4397568 Oh I write quite a lot to help get my mind off of things. :) In fact, I create things in general to help manage my emotional disorders and personal fears. Creativity helps a lot with escaping the stresses and pressures of daily life.

4397603 OMG That video made me laugh so hard. LOL

4397782 Well I go walking with my mom when she is able to. I don't really have any family besides my mom and I don't have any close friends (who aren't online) so I don't really have anyone to go walking with. But maybe as I get out more I will start meeting more people. :)

4397428
That's good to now that you have a few ways to help with that.

Yeah. I felt the same way when I posted my first one. I now it probably doesn't mean much for me to say this, but in the end, it helped me feel much better.

4397806

Anyway the only advice i can give you is, when you meet new people try to keep your mind distracted from your fears.

Also....

DO IT!

4397995 I will do my best to try to be more comfortable about being around people. :)

4397945 I am glad to hear that it helped. :)

4397806

That's the spirit.

*hugs* Wish you the best.

4398449 Thank you very much, my friend. I appreciate the support. :)

Perhaps find a book about overcoming things like this. Other than that I don't know, all I know is that you will triumph over this Lyra:rainbowdetermined2:

4399133 I could see if there are books on this subject. :) Thank you for the encouraging words. They mean a lot. I will definitely do my best.

4399163
Best of luck finding something like that. Of course Lyra, and I know you'll do great :raritywink:

4399855 I appreciate the encouraging words my friend. :)

4400044

Anything to help you out Lyra :3

4400923 Hurray! I very much appreciate the help. :)

4400928

It's what friends are for ^W^

4401005 I am always here if you need someone to talk to as well. :)

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