How to get over social anxiety?(6 Posts)
So I've been invited to a mum from my children's schools house tomorrow and then we go to the playgroup she goes to together. She's a very nice person but I'm here with this stupid anxiety about going to places with new people. I really really want to try snd get out there and chat with other mums because I'm always stuck in the house and don't really take my baby to play groups and he's 11 months. But how do you get over his social anxiety? I'm scared I will do or say something stupid. I'm scared I won't be able to keep conversation going and have awkward silences ( this is what I struggle with)
I am not very good with people I think partly because I never socialised in my teens ( was bullied at school and my mum never let me go anywhere I was practically a prisoner in the house) please can I have some tips?
Ok, so you have this image in your mind that you will find the conversation drying up, look stupid, go red etc etc. That image makes it really hard. Just remember that from the other person's point of view, you are a person they are choosing to spend time with and want to have a conversation with. You don't look like a bumbling fool to them, just ordinary and nice probably. Don't expect too much of yourself, and don't jump to fill every silence - but remember to have a few simple compliments about her house and a few questions up your sleeve, to show an interest in her (people love to talk about themselves).
You know what she may be feeling the same! She might be thinking gosh I've really got to get out there and make some friends with my baby, and anxious about it but had stepped out of her comfort zone to invite you over, but is worried too about how it will go and how the conversation will go...
I'm sure it will be absolutely fine xx
One thing to remember that during social play dates, you really do not spend much time being social and talking to others. You spend most of the time chasing after your crawling/walking baby/child. When you try to chat, kids usually demand more attention. I find that on these play dates both parents are half paying attention the convo....so do not worry! You will be distracted and so will the other moms. No one will notice any silences etc. The only person who is thinking about these things are you....so do not worry. No one else will notice if there is a silent moment at all. I know its hard to just let go of an anxiety. As I suffer from anxiety over other things. But one thing I find so nice is being able to sit w another mom and chat comfortably when kids are older and playing or simply sitting next to the other mom in silence while watching our kids play together. But this did not come until kids were older, as when they were young i spent most of the time chasing them round.
I am just coming down now after stressing all day about a playdate! Social anxiety is horrible but it does get easier the more you stand up to it. Remind yourself that you're doing it for your baby, as well as yourself.
Think in your head before hand conversation starters - general things like finger food ideas, return to work, plans for weekend, holiday plans. You could always write a few down in your phone to remind you. Like previous poster said you've got the little ones to distract you if needed.
Try not to put it off as it'll only become a bigger deal. Focus on what a great experience it'll be for DS mixing with other little ones. Repeat.. I CAN do this.
Mostvplaygrouos aren't on during kids holidays so try to go next week then you'll have a week off.. don't put it off until after a reprint as it may be.
Good luck.. you'll be great
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