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Old 11th September 2019, 01:31
Marie8 Marie8 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 74


Default Re: Why can't I think of things to say to people

I don't like starting posts either, I feel like everyone else's posts are so well written compared to mine, I feel like I must sound like a child, I just doubt myself so much. I don't feel confident enough to reply a lot of the time, and again it's partly to do with the can't think of the words to express what I think.. I think in feelings rather than words

I am trying not to worry about what people think but it's so hard and I too am usually silent in groups. Today at work I felt so uncomfortable all day. A girl at work just came back off holiday and everyone was asking how her holiday was, they all seemed so interested and naturally responded to what she said with other questions, their own experiences etc. And then there was me. I just sat there getting all hot and anxious, wanting the ground to open and swallow me up. I felt way too anxious and awkward to speak and even ask her about her holiday, and now worried that the girl and the others will think I'm an awful stuck up person. I just want to be able to interact and ask people questions, but I can'tttttttt I find it so hard as I'm constantly worried about what I will say next.. and whenever I do try it's usually leads to awkward silences very early on.

I don't like mean people either. I worry a lot about my appearance and people thinking or saying bad things about it, so that's on my mind a lot of the time when I'm around people, I don't like people looking at me or being too close. Makes me very nervous.
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Old 11th September 2019, 01:47
tanya97 tanya97 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2019
Posts: 56
Default Re: Why can't I think of things to say to people

Look at it from a different perspective :

It takes two people to have a conversation.... if things were awkward and quiet, why should it be you that has to initiate some topic of conversation? Why couldn't your colleague? It doesn't sound like she really cared.

Not everyone will get on with everyone.... and that isn't anyone's fault. Some people may not be on the same wavelength, have different interests, or are just not in the mood to talk. Some people might just dislike you, for not reason whatsoever.

I also work in an office, and when i started i felt a great deal of pressure to try and fit in.... but now i couldn't care less. Don't worry about not having things to say or talk about, because other people are in the same boat too - and they don't care. If you don't have nothing to talk about, that's fine - everyone has awkward silences, it's perfectly normal
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Old 11th September 2019, 01:51
Galatea Galatea is offline
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 1,961
Default Re: Why can't I think of things to say to people

^^ In a situation as you describe, I think a smile and "sounds like you had a great time" would be perfectly acceptable.
If you wanted to take it further, "had you been there before?" or "what was the highlight?" might lead them into further conversation. And "sounds great" would be a pleasant response again.

I know it's hard when we are in close proximity to people we haven't chosen.
But I think we can be confident that they are living in the moment and dwelling on their own lives rather than ours.

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Old 11th September 2019, 17:00
Consolida Consolida is offline
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,521
Default Re: Why can't I think of things to say to people

Firstly, I think your posts are great Marie. You describe very eloquently your feelings and what it's like to suffer with SA

I've been visiting the forum forever, off and on, but I avoid starting threads at all costs. I'm too afraid that no one will answer then I'll beat myself up about it and will convince myself that it's because I'm a horrible person. I think loads of people here feel the same way. It's silly really, because when I don't answer other people's threads it's certainly not because I'm not interested or think anything negative about them. Usually it's because I don't feel that I can contribute anything helpful or simply don't have the words or the time to compose a post that actually makes sense.

I'm sure I would have felt exactly the same as you in the situation at work with your colleague. I don't know about you, but I particularly struggle in groups because everyone is so much louder than I am. I naturally have a quiet voice so I would literally have to holler at the top of my lungs to make myself heard. Even if I did ask the colleague if she'd had a nice holiday it probably wouldn't be heard above everyone else and then I'm left wondering if I was intentionally being ignored. Oh the joys of living with SA!

I think just showing that you're interested by nodding your head and smiling in the right places is often enough in situations like this. If you do get some quiet time alone with the girl then maybe you could refer to her holiday - as in, it sounds great, has she been there before etc.. but don't beat yourself up if you can't think of anything to say. Overthinking things will only increase you anxiety.

As Tanya says, it's fine if you don't have anything to talk about. I very much doubt that anyone would think that you were stuck up if you try your best to smile and look interested. The right body language can be more important than words a lot of the time. At the very most, your colleagues may think you are a little shy - which is hardly a crime, is it
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Old 11th September 2019, 18:50
biscuits biscuits is offline
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: in the tin.
Posts: 18,196
Default Re: Why can't I think of things to say to people

Originally Posted by Marie8
Hey biscuits, thanks so much for your reply I'm sorry my mind has gone blank again and can't think of a proper way to express what I want to write, but thanks I really appreciate your advice and sharing some of the things that have helped you

I will look up selective mutism as I don't really know too much about it. I feel that my social anxiety as a child has lead to some kind of expressive language disorder. I think because I didn't have many friends as a child, lacked social experiences, had very little interest all throughout school I didn't develop language and vocab properly if that makes sense. I'm trying to go back to the basics and have ordered myself some books, mainly aimed at kids, but hoping they might help me improve on my language skills even if only a little.

I'm going to visit my local library soon as I need to get a new library card and also want to look for some books. So that's a reason to get out more and try to practice speaking to people, even if just asking the librarians where I can find certain books.

I did used to work in a shop years ago and I found it uncomfortable speaking to people, felt like I was always putting on an act and felt highly anxious most of the time. But that's a good idea, as I think exposing myself more and more to social situations and different people will hopefully help me to become less anxious. I do sometimes have to answer the phone in my current job and find that uncomfortable but not as bad as face to face and think I'm getting better at it.

I too am not very open with others and I'm sure people think I'm a weirdo and don't want to know me either. I am so scared to open up to people and tell them about myself as I worry they will think I'm boring and have no personality. I too can't tell if people like me or not, but I feel like no one does to be honest. I know I need to work on this to try and overcome it, it's just so hard. I'm my own worst enemy really, I always think so badly of myself, can't help it.. But I am starting to feel a bit more positive about things. I start cbt next week, so will see how that goes.

Anyway sorry to ramble on, I will definitely try all of these tips, this is so helpful thanks again!
aw no problem, Marie! I was worried that I'd written a load of rubbish and didn't want to sound at all like it's easy to battle with. But also wanted to show that you can overcome a lot of it - with time, practise and kindness to yourself.

I really do think that it's a trust issue/defence mechanism to protect ourselves from rejection and being hurt. I find it fascinating how it's involuntary...How we can't control it at all. (Fascinating...frustrating haha)

That's great that you're feeling a smidge of positivity and that you're seeking help. I kind of went through it all on my own really. Speaking socially is something that other people seem to be able to do so effortlessly and I could do with a lie down after haha.

You come across as a really nice person, btw
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Old 12th September 2019, 22:24
Bluebear Bluebear is offline
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: South East
Posts: 808
Default Re: Why can't I think of things to say to people

I seem to excel at writing posts which nobody can relate to. (that's why I delete my posts ) In real life, few can relate to me and my anxiety is obvious.. it makes people uncomfortable I think Even when I'm not feeling too bad, people comment that I'm anxious. and they aren't kind about it. I guess its just because they don't understand
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