Posting in this section is scary..
Majority of the posts I made on this site are probably of negative nature. So for a change I’ve been wanting to write something positive, but I couldn’t get to it for ages. Turns out it is much easier to whine and complain. For some reason, it makes me kind of anxious posting in this section. I guess it is partly because I feel like positive posts aren’t received too well on this forums. But to the point…
I’ve got my first job now, at age of 25. I was unemployed all my adult life, never had a proper job before (not even part-time). I’ve been working since September, so it has been a while, but I don’t think I have fully realised yet how huge this change is and how its gonna affect my life. I always thought my SA is so severe and unmanageable, that I’ll never be able to hold a stable job – not even get through the interview (hell, not even show up on the interviews – I’ve done it so many times – get invited to an interview and then not showing up, because I’d just freak out last minute).
I guess there are two types of SA sufferers. People who are still somewhat functional, even despite SA (even if its really bad, they’re able to have relationships, hold a job, be social etc.) and then there are people who are totally dysfunctional, crippled by SA, stuck at home for years without any social contact (I know there is probably something in between too, I am just trying to generalize here). Well, I’ve been the latter type for all my adult life and I was starting to think “this is it, it can never get better”. Even though I don’t believe I’ll ever get rid of my SA and the effects it had on me, I can already see that certain things can be improved, slowly.
Looking at my life now – my ‘SA self’ wants to cry and scream. Being stuck in a job for 8 hours a day, being nervous and ‘on the edge’ everyday, dealing with people and pretend I am somewhat normal… it isn’t easy (to put it lightly). Not after years of being socially isolated. But it can be done – I’ll survive. It might be a nightmare at first, but it isn’t going to kill me. If I wasn’t so stubborn and hard on myself, I am sure I could get prescribed some meds, to make me feel less anxious on daily basis… but regardless. My small world just got slightly bigger. Atleast now I feel I am moving into some direction, rather than being stuck in one place. It takes the longest time to get used to working, obviously I am still not completely comfortable with it, but I’ve noticed certain things about me that have changed (to the better) – I feel like I have better sense of responsibility, maybe that is what getting up early and being asked to do stuff everyday does to you. I don’t oversleep anymore.. oversleeping was causing me major headaches, depression and demotivation, to the point I’d just kept procrastinating forever and never get anything done – even the simpliest tasks such as visiting a post office, going to the store etc.
I’d be lying if said everything is perfect now though. I am not one of those people (some other threads in this section) that have overcome the anxiety and become a “new person”. I am still depressed sometimes, still being the same nervous wreck in social scenarios, but I guess what is different now is my mindset. I think we have to change our mindset, before we go and try make changes to our behavior.
I understand it is the hardest thing ever to make the initial step. It requires certain level of motivation, which can be really difficult to obtain. For me I guess it was a combination of things. It could be exercise, music, getting to know people who you connect with emotionally, having some kind of goal.. I am probably making it sound easy.. I’ve been struggling with it for years myself. Anyway, I am not here to convince anyone, I am doing this for myself for the most part. So even if everything turns into **** later, I’ll still be able to remember the phase of my life, when everything wasn’t so hopeless.