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April 28, 2018


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I am not a particularly socially anxious person, though it did take me years to get over being self-conscious about doing things in front of people. Some of the best advice I ever received was from my dad, when I was seventeen and recounting some long series of phone calls which seemed to indicate that someone was angry at me for no reason. "Honey," he said patiently, "why do you care what they think?" And I thought, "Why DO I care?" I can't say that I was instantly a model of insouciance, but not caring so much about what people thought had the paradoxical effect of helping me not to think so much about myself.

Is it social anxiety or a vulnerability hangover? I like Brene Brown's term of looking back aghast at what you've shared. I also want to melt and drain away when recalling certain historic conversations. Thing is, I am likely the only one who remembers these details. It makes it easier to lower its pain in my life.

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