I tend to be inside my own head a lot. Thinking about things, assessing things, playing a song in my head, thinking about lunch, etc. Often I am so far entrenched that I barely notice others around me. I have learned to do this over the years. To constantly ignore the outside world to protect myself. I am hyper-aware of my surroundings, but often put effort into ignoring it to protect myself.
I have a very vivid imagination. Often I will put myself in a situation or place where I am constantly/silently playing. My mind stays occupied so much that sometimes small things can surprise me. When I do not do this, I feel as if every person who passes me by is staring at me, perhaps judging me. I feel the stares of others, it’s hard not to. I tend to hide my face, look the other way, or put my head down so I don’t have to meet their gaze.
Hyper-awareness is a blessing and a curse. I typically have to turn it off or down some so that the anxiety does not invade and make me feel awful.
This is the typical norm that I default to. It’s learned behavior that is hard to break. I know that I don’t have to do this. It’s unnecessary but it is VERY hard to break the cycle. It is not for lack of trying. I use to drink to turn it completely off, but that’s hardly a solution and pretty dangerous at that. Especially since I am diabetic. I shouldn’t be drinking much if at all. I tried using someone else talking for me to open up conversation. That’s not a solution either as it causes other complications and sometimes resentment. I tried just talking myself and I trip over my own words or don’t know what to say. I often don’t know what I could add to a conversation. Especially if it’s about stuff I know nothing about.
I have been blamed for being clingy. I tend to stay close to those I trust with my feelings and words. I am open with those I trust and will talk with them openly, but when around strangers, I clam up. I just can’t get words out. And when I do, it’s one or two things and the conversation moves on as if I said nothing. Or if I do say something more than a few sentences, I lose track of what I’m talking about and get overly anxious.
The place inside my head is safe. It doesn’t challenge me to try to be social. I have done it for too long and have never really learned how to interact with people I feel. At least not in person. I am sure I will be told with practice that I will be better able to communicate. I just don’t know where to start. I am impatient and lazy. I know there is no easy answer to this. The work needs to be done and I can not imagine it away. I need to talk to people. I need to be more social. Or I will continue to be a prisoner inside my head.