I’m very grateful that I was granted the gift of being a strong writer at a young age. In some social situations, it can been a double-edged sword and I’ve struggled to accept that. By nature, part of being a good writer is being forward thinking and not settling for the status-quo. I have an inner hunger to dig deeper to explain the unexplained in my own original way. I’ve said it before that I feel most alive when I’ve locked into an idea that I know nobody else could come up with. The irony of that though is that outside of my own personal satisfaction I get from writing, I attempt to connect with others with my thoughts when I share my writing. Connecting with others is a biological need for all of us. Without human interaction, society as we know it wouldn’t exist or continue to advance. My health experiences have only exasperated my desire to be able to connect with others through writing to hopefully impart some of the valuable lessons I have learned about life on others. My struggle has always been verbally communicating the creative ideas that I have swirling around in my head. Case and point:
Last night during my mindfulness course, I was attempting to explain to others in the group that everything in life can be summed up by the saying, “there’s two sides to every coin.” It was an effort of mine to take the theory of acceptance and define it in a more accessible way. The example I used was when someone you love passes away. When someone you love passes away, one side of the coin is the situation at hand. The end of life. The grief and sadness that goes along with it. The other side of that coin is reframing the situation into what you learned from it to make the situation useful in your life going forward. Perhaps that person passing away taught you that you needed to take your health more seriously and begin to exercise and eat healthier. I didn’t do a good job of explaining it at all, and the point clearly didn’t fully resonate or spur up more conversation. I thought that I had a powerful point in my head but struggled mightily with putting it into words or into a form that others would be able to understand.
There have been so many other instances where I’ve said the wrong things, relative to what I wanted to say in my head. It makes me feel so helpless and not want to have face to face conversations with anybody. I’m scared I’ll say the wrong thing. It makes me want to rush to my computer, give myself a chance to write my thoughts down, perfect them and then hand people a printout of what I wrote. I worry that my creative thoughts sometimes prevent me from having quality conversations with people because I lose their interest with my lack of clarity.
With our mindfulness lesson on acceptance, I learned that I need to lower my expectation that I’m going to connect with everyone and that my thoughts are going to change the world. It’s just not going to happen. When all is said and done, writing is my passion and I needed to realize that setting realistic expectations for myself will help with my social anxiety.
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