Maybe you don’t even realize how negative your thinking is. But if you experience moderate to extreme shyness and social anxiety , I guarantee it is whether you know it or not.
I’ve seen it over and over again, not only with myself but with the emails I receive and the clients I work with.
EVERYONE with social anxiety or extreme shyness eventually has to come to terms with the uncomfortable fact that negative thinking is ruling much of their life.
What seems like reality or just how you are, isn’t.
I mean yes you are that way, but you don’t have to be that way forever.
It can be REALLY painful to see this, because then
you start to take more responsibility instead of blaming it on your past, your upbringing, your genetics, and start to leverage the power of your neuroplastic brain.
(All “neuorplastic” means is your brain can be rewired.)
Even when there are times you feel hope, feel progress….
Eventually the negative thought monster comes out from the shadows and attacks you.
I don’t mean to be overly negative here, but isn’t that true that’s what happens?
You might get eye contact from a stranger and they smile at you, but then the negative thought monster says…
“Oh, that was an accident. They must have seen how weird I am.”
Or an attractive girl smiles at you as you walk by.
You get excited, and maybe force a smile back. The thoughts come crashing in like:
“She probably was smiling at someone else.”
“She probably was laughing at me, and just hiding it with a polite smile.”
Or any number of negative and self-sabotaging thoughts the negative thought monster generates.
All make sense right?
It’s like you can’t stop.
You’ve become addicting to your negative thinking.
Like it’s totally out of your control when it’s happening.
And you want to stop so bad!
But here’s the thing…
You cannot always stop negative thinking.
So stop trying to be so perfect and do something that isn’t required to learn how to do in order to overcome negative thinking and eventually get rid of shyness and social anxiety.
Everyone has negative thoughts, EVERYONE.
Even The Pope.
Even the Dalai Lama.
If they told me they didn’t, I’d tell them straight to their face “you’re lying!”
Because I know how this stuff works.
I have negative thoughts all the time, and sometimes even I go on a negative trip.
But I know how to get grounded and recenter, so I’m in charge of my life and not my negative thoughts.
What used to take days or weeks to resolve now only takes minutes or seconds.
The more you push up against negative thinking, the more it sticks around.
Now the same thing goes with believing your negative thinking is reality and you believing your negative thoughts to be true, when they’re just negative thoughts.
You don’t have to fight your thoughts.
If you don’t fight them they don’t have power over you.
The negative thought monster can growl and scream at you but you just stand there calm and relaxed and it doesn’t affect you.
Does it help to focus on the positive more?
Sure you can, it’s an important part of the strategy, but it’s incomplete by itself.
But discounting and repressing the negative is a mistake that will bite you in the butt down the line.
Especially when it comes to negative emotions, not just negative thoughts.
I’ve discovered that the key lies creating a “Double-C” way of living.
These Double-C’s are:
1. Consciousness (moment-to-moment awareness, presence)
2. Creation (visioning, story, positive/towards based thought control)
…upon which implementing both together social anxiety’s control is vanquished from controlling your life.
It will happen if you put in the time and effort to learn how to be mindful, focus on what gives your life meaning and of course, take action towards your recovery.