How To Be Yourself If You Hate Yourself? - Social Anxiety Forum
 
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-21-2019, 07:54 PM Thread Starter
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How To Be Yourself If You Hate Yourself?


Lol. Title pretty much says it all.

Authenticity and being yourself are important factors in overcoming SA. It's about being direct and open with everyone, and not sidetracking with coping behaviors and hiding yourself.

But what if you just don't like yourself and the way you behave around other people? What if there things about you that are inherent but you just don't like?

Whenever I view myself in retrospect - as to how I behaved around people and the stuff I said.....I cringe immediately. I start to think '' What the F is wrong with me!? Who the hell says stuff like that! ".....but that's who I am. That's just the way I am.

And then there are other physical and personality traits that I don't like about myself - Not being macho enough. I don't know the exact cause, but I've always been slightly less macho than my other male friends. So I compensate by lifting weights and acting macho (which usually only aggravates social anxiety because I'm not really letting myself be myself and I'm coping in a way)

So far one technique I've learnt here is to simply forgive yourself and accept yourself.

I get the forgiveness and acceptance part.......but then how do you be proud of yourself? How do you be proud of who you are if you don't like the traits that you have? Isn't being proud of yourself the ultimate goal of getting over social anxiety?
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-21-2019, 08:25 PM
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I think a large part of it is having a couple of people accept you for how you are. Obviously the more people that have done this the better. But even one or two will help. Then you'll see that you don't need to be "macho" - it's just a waste of energy trying to be like that.

I've always been pretty skinny - I was much worse when I was young, but fortunately I had a few gf's that couldn't care less. I cared though - for a long time. So I know what you mean, it's sort of embarassing and you don't feel as much of a man in some ways. You are though - it's all just complete nonsense.

I used to put on a front all the time when I was out - and especially at work. I'd try to pretend I was more confident than I was. And the crazy thing was that even though I thought I was fooling everyone they weren't fooled at all - they could see right through it the whole time.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 09:10 AM
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Isn't being proud of yourself the ultimate goal of getting over social anxiety?
Probably not I think a lot of insecure people don't have social anxiety. You have to change how much you care about other's opinion of you at least to the point that you're OK in social interactions and that's assuming that's what's causing the social anxiety in the first place.

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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 09:27 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by harrison View Post
I think a large part of it is having a couple of people accept you for how you are. Obviously the more people that have done this the better. But even one or two will help. Then you'll see that you don't need to be "macho" - it's just a waste of energy trying to be like that.

I've always been pretty skinny - I was much worse when I was young, but fortunately I had a few gf's that couldn't care less. I cared though - for a long time. So I know what you mean, it's sort of embarassing and you don't feel as much of a man in some ways. You are though - it's all just complete nonsense.

I used to put on a front all the time when I was out - and especially at work. I'd try to pretend I was more confident than I was. And the crazy thing was that even though I thought I was fooling everyone they weren't fooled at all - they could see right through it the whole time.

What if a person has no friends though? How does a guy like that cope?



I also used to act more confident than I was. I had gotten over my SA and found social interactions much easier that way......but then that vigor went away and the SA came back.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 09:29 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Persephone The Dread View Post
Probably not I think a lot of insecure people don't have social anxiety. You have to change how much you care about other's opinion of you at least to the point that you're OK in social interactions and that's assuming that's what's causing the social anxiety in the first place.

It's not the only goal of overcoming SA.....but its something that can definitely help. You're right, ultimately its about not caring what other people think. But being proud of yourself is like a fiery hot shield that prevents anything from getting to you.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 10:25 AM
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Hi there, I have a slightly different take on this. Presumably what is happening is that you're struggling with a lot of thoughts that criticize you in some way.

What if you didn't resist them? There's quite a bit of research out there that shows when you try and reject/fight a thought, it just comes back 10x stronger. Because ultimately arguing against a thought is still giving it a lot of attention. Instead of resisting these thoughts, try to focus on other things that you value e.g. exercise, sport, video games etc
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 12:03 PM
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I'm not sure where my SA ends and myself begins.

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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 01:00 PM
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I don't think the ability to be 'be open and direct with everyone' is really what cures sa, nor is it necessary. People are different socially, even without SA. It isn't open and overly social - SA.


For the rest:

Change what you don't like and can change. Learn to accept what you can't change.


This includes when you make mistakes and act dumb. People usually forget that very quickly (if they even pick it up in anyway) and ****, even if they don't, then it's not like worrying about it is going to make it any better.


Work on being able to live up to your own values, and if someone disapproves of those values, then that's their problem.
Not everyone has to like you, nor do you have any obligation to approve of their values.

"If you need a safe space, see a therapist" - Jordan Peterson
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 01:06 PM
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some people leverage their judgementalness to go to the gym and change themselves etc. I guess the extreme is the arrogant douche.

some people try to accept themselves, I guess the extreme of that would be a bedroom monk.

I went for the bedroom monk end of the spectrum.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by DukeDuck View Post
.....but that's who I am. That's just the way I am.
Is it really though? Because if you're anything like me, you say things "like that" because you're nervous and/or want to make a certain impression on someone. If not, then yes, the goal is to embrace those things about yourself, and as for the traits you can change, change them.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 06:22 PM
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What if a person has no friends though? How does a guy like that cope?
The honest answer to that is I don't know, sorry. I do know that people value honesty and authenticity. Finding someone that will accept and like you - exactly how you are now - is the problem, obviously.

You were talking before about being proud of yourself. There are plenty of things about myself that I'm not proud of - I'd say I feel inferior in quite a lot of ways. Mostly that has to do with the way my mental health problems have stopped me from having a career and therefore achievements in that area of life - plus the material things that go along with that.

But I'm proud of myself in other ways - I think I'm a decent father and I've been an okay husband. (my wife might disagree) I try my best. So I don't think I'm ashamed of myself - let's put it that way.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 07:06 PM
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-22-2019, 08:55 PM
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First step would be separating not liking how you behave or your social skills, from not liking yourself. Like how some people can't separate making a mistake from being a mistake.
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-23-2019, 04:05 AM
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Originally Posted by DukeDuck View Post
What if a person has no friends though? How does a guy like that cope?



I also used to act more confident than I was. I had gotten over my SA and found social interactions much easier that way......but then that vigor went away and the SA came back.

While I have 2 friends, who would do anything for me if I needed it. they live far away so I don't have anyone to talk to or do things with. The last conversation I had with a friend was almost a year ago. How have I been coping? I look for ways to distract myself. I love TV and Movies. I love the news and listening to podcasts.
I read, I have been going lower and lower since Nov 2015 when My psychiatrist retired. I used to find outdoor activities like geocaching. But the desire for going out receded. I only occasionally go out. Fortunately I live with my Father and I have lots of toys. Big TV's a bunch of cameras. 2 computers. Which I paid for. As no rent is required I have money to buy stuff. Since my Father bought out current house with cash. He only pays the property taxes etc. I am lucky to have a wealthy but not rich Father. That doesn't make it easier to have no one to talk to. but it's better than not living in a nice house. That's how I get alone. I don't cope I just get along. Semantics? All the best
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-23-2019, 09:44 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Kiwifruit View Post
First step would be separating not liking how you behave or your social skills, from not liking yourself. Like how some people can't separate making a mistake from being a mistake.

This makes sense. The two shouldn't be conflated.
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post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-23-2019, 09:49 AM Thread Starter
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But I'm proud of myself in other ways - I think I'm a decent father and I've been an okay husband. (my wife might disagree) I try my best. So I don't think I'm ashamed of myself - let's put it that way.

Good. The real problem is when people are ashamed of themselves. Maybe the pride part is unnecessary and I've been looking at it the wrong way. It's just some extra thing that is not really needed
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post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 09:25 AM Thread Starter
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I don't think the ability to be 'be open and direct with everyone' is really what cures sa, nor is it necessary. People are different socially, even without SA. It isn't open and overly social - SA.


For the rest:

Change what you don't like and can change. Learn to accept what you can't change.


This includes when you make mistakes and act dumb. People usually forget that very quickly (if they even pick it up in anyway) and ****, even if they don't, then it's not like worrying about it is going to make it any better.


Work on being able to live up to your own values, and if someone disapproves of those values, then that's their problem.
Not everyone has to like you, nor do you have any obligation to approve of their values.

I've met a couple of people who told me that they used to be SA but then they went to the complete other end of the spectrum and became overly open. It was their technique on getting over SA.



I agree with all the rest. SA people fixate on their mistakes instead of moving on and it only damages their self esteem.
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post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-24-2019, 10:26 AM
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I've met a couple of people who told me that they used to be SA but then they went to the complete other end of the spectrum and became overly open. It was their technique on getting over SA.

I didn't say it can't be; I said it isn't necessarily so.

Just because some A's can also be x, doesn't mean All A's are x. (And vice versa; even if all A's aren't x, it doesn't mean some A's can't be x)

It just shows there are both x and non x people who are A.

"If you need a safe space, see a therapist" - Jordan Peterson
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post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 07:42 AM Thread Starter
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Is it really though? Because if you're anything like me, you say things "like that" because you're nervous and/or want to make a certain impression on someone. If not, then yes, the goal is to embrace those things about yourself, and as for the traits you can change, change them.

Sometimes I say/do stuff out of peer pressure and because I'm trying to make an impression. I sometimes cringe about stuff like that.



But the times I really cringe are when I completely remove my mask and let my inner self out......usually in a negative way. When the weakness and insecurities come out. There are a few rare times when my positive inner self comes out.....I don't cringe about moments like that.
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