Saturday, February 28, 2009

That Space Between a Good Time and Bad Memory

I attended an industry event last night. It was great fun. I got to spend time talking to people who actually DO what I spend my professional time just writing about. I met members of the industry that I hadn't yet and spent time with people whom I truly admire for their craft.

The drive home was very happy as I reflected on the night. I'd had a great time, made new friends, and learned a little more about my industry. I thought about the different articles I could write, the magazines I could sell them to, what I could blog about, etc.

Then this morning I woke up and started to work on a blog post. That's when the social anxiety monster started whispering in my ear. He reminded me of a less than intelligent question that I asked. He pointed out how fat I must have looked next to some of the prettier people at the event. And he plainly stated that I clearly embarrassed myself and should never show my face around any of these people ever again.

If I let my typical pattern continue I'll have myself convinced that the night was a total disaster for me within a few days. By next weekend I should be in full on depression mode.

Even if I'm conscious of the process, can I stop it?


Anonymous said...

I can't tell you how many times I've gone through the same thought process you just described... In fact I might have my husband read your blog so he understands a little better what I go through every time we go out...

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a familiar thought pattern! Over the last year I have been improving my ability to control these thoughts but it is always a battle. I sometimes wonder if it is always going to be this way...


Yours is a wonderful blog! Nice Post!

Anonymous said...

MMMM I can see myself here too. Maybe my husband should read this blog too. I go through this every day. Why do some of us have to deal with this and not others?

Jennifer said...

OMG--I SO do this. Don't feel alone, because you aren't.

Keep up the good work. I'd love to read more.

Anonymous said...

negative thinking patterns spiral and spiral and you think, hey! I've been here before, except I feel a little worse this time. I suffered from analysis paralysis, like bruce, in that book 'I Am Bruce'. Not sure if you guys have heard of it, but its been going around the net. It's here:

malahide said...

I was a sufferer for a long time due to a serious car accident which nearly took my life. In our support group we had four returned soldiers or should I say 'Retrenched Soldiers' as they were serious sufferers and one of them was very suicidal. I was lucky to have been introduced to this terrific workbook. It is called My PTSD Workbook and I purchased it from and I have to say I was feeling ‘different’ from the first ten pages. Today I HAVE MY LIFE BACK thanks to that book - now I tell everyone about it when they come to the support group. Three of the four soldiers in our group are feeling fabulous within themselves and one of the wifes is so thankful she now is councelling newcomers to the centre. She tells everyone to buy the book.
You should contact the writer of the book GK Talbott and put it on your site.
I Love your site and the friendly feeling it has.


Janelle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paul Hunter said...

Interesting line in the article - "if I'm conscious of it....."
The thought patterns you are describing are subconscious in nature - that's why you don't have control over them, even though you are "conscious" of them.
Why not try hypnotherapy? You couald get to the root cause of those negative thought patterns and maybe resolve it. It might just be a great help.
I know that I have helped quite a number of people with depression - I am a registered hypnotherapist myself. I am not making this comment to benefit myself in any way, but just to encourage you to find out more from a hypnotherapy clinic close to you. It might just make a big difference.

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

today is one of those days and for the first time I canceled one social event I was to attend so to stay in. I wouldn't want people to see me in a self-doubting mood. Not when they know me to be otherwise.

I would like to recommend to you a therapy that really had a significant impact on me. It is called behavioral cognitive therapy. the book by david burns "feeling better" describes in text all the aspects of the theory behind this therapy. Worked for me, then I stopped for a year, and I think now I need to go back for some more sessions.

likely they are weekly for 45mins and last no more than 3 - 4 months.

it is not the endless chatting away that other therapies propose.

cheers to all
m. from greece

Mar said...


This is the first time that I read your blog. I have read somewhere else that you are not feeling now recently and I want to send you my sympathy.

I was curious about "social anxiety". I wasn't quite sure what it is used for, so I clicked on that tag in your blog and ended up reading this post where you refer to it as a monster.

I want to say that monster visits my head too and says similar things. But I was very surprised when I read your post, because you managed to actually talk to people and have fun. I don't even manage that. In my case the monster prevents me from socializing. It is hell when I have to go to a place like that where I know nobody. I do not know how to approach people and I wonder why nobody approaches me. And I end up alone and start blushing and end up leaving discretely... In the end, I just don't attend to such things.

Anonymous said...

Yup, that pretty much describes me after a party/show/night out. That's why my nights are spent inside now...just me and Netflix Instant watch (because if I did the DVD's, then I'd have to walk to the mailbox and risk being seen).