I’ve always been shy. Actually I used to call myself “cripplingly shy.” My dream was to become “functionally shy.”
It turns out I was using the label “shy” to describe two different things:
1) actual shyness (a personality trait), and
2) social anxiety (a disorder).
Not everyone who is shy has social anxiety. But for me it’s both, and I spent way too long dismissing an actual mental health disorder because I didn’t know it even existed.
Shyness was the tip of the iceberg for me. Under the surface, there was so much more. When I finally got help, I was diagnosed with:
- Social anxiety
- Generalized anxiety
What this actually meant in practical terms was that I had very low self-esteem and no idea who I was as a person.
I hated myself for being this way, hated the body I lived in, and feared everything and everyone.
It sounds like a lot when it’s all on the page like this (well, it has been a lot to deal with), but I look at it as all being part of the same storm cloud.
But the thing about storm clouds? They can eventually give way to sunshine.
I had a monumental breakthrough this year in therapy, when something finally clicked inside me and I realized that I’m actually okay with who I am.
I’m okay with owning my shyness. I’m kinder toward myself about having anxiety. I’m gentler in how I think about my body.
I don’t have sunny skies all day every day, but I’ve come SO FAR since the time in my life when the skies were completely overcast.
I want to share what I have learned (and am still learning) about how to love yourself and your body in all your imperfect, messy, hopeful, neurotic, shy glory.
If you’re like me, and “shyness” is actually at the surface of deeper issues, I want to help you recognize that and encourage you to seek help.
And I want to show that a person can be shy and/or anxious but still be goofy, cheeky, playful, dorky, potty-mouthed, dirty-minded, and whatever the hell else we want to be. (We just might do it a little more quietly and selectively until we get to know you better, because we need trust before we can own our weirdness in your presence.)
Finally, I want to help you find a little sunshine in your life by encouraging you to go a little easier on yourself.
More about me
Not scared off by pony GIFs, huh? You’re definitely in the right place.
I’m a mom to two little ones. Becoming a mom was a huge trigger for a lot of self-doubt and self-criticism. My babies are extra incentive to keep working on accepting (and perhaps one day loving?) myself, so that I can show them how to love themselves, imperfections and all.
I’m not an expert at treating social anxiety or raising tiny humans, but I know first-hand how crushingly hard it can be to have social anxiety as a parent. And I want to share what I know about what it’s like, and what can make it a little easier.
I’m very lucky to have people in my life who understand that I love and appreciate them even though sometimes I retreat into my hermit-cave and cannot connect with other humans.
I’m a freelance language professional, army wife, and newbie powerlifter.
I love puns, ponies, and painting Warhammer 40k miniatures with my husband. (And apparently words that start with P.)
And basically any lemon-flavoured dessert but especially lemon meringue pie.
Thanks for reading!
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