Recently, I've began to try and disect my commnication skills in an effort to impove this aspect of my life. I often find myself asking myself "Why can't you be like everyone else?" "Why can't you just once not be consumed by your insecurities and fears?" "Why do you feel SO compelled to hide your short comings and give the impression nothing is wrong?" Thing is, my self defense is being funny (or at least trying to be). As some of you may know, casual conversations, or as I think of them "meaningful" conversations, scare me. I find myself trying SO hard to not turn everything into a punch line and actually have a conversation of substance. Because of my fears that I am simply incapable of stimulating conversations, I make a big joke of it and say misleading things simply for comedic effect. I go into a conversation thinking "I am going to sit down and actually talk with this person." But everytime I do, I panic that that awkward silence will find it's way into the conversation. So as the person is speaking to me, I hear what's being said, but I don't LISTEN to what's being said. Funny thing is, whenever people come to me with their problems or simply seek advice (sometimes both), I am relaxed, attentive, sympatheitc, mindful, and completely care free of the direction the conversation goes. But in casual conversations, as the person is talking, I am thinking, "okay, what do I say next to keep the conversation going and maintain the other persons attention?" By the time I have thought that, the person is already done talking and waiting for a response. Which usually causes me to resort to humor and/or make light of the fact that I didn't listen to a word they say. Unfortunetly, a lot of people that interact with me don't always view that as funny. =/ They say your only as free as you feel. If that's true, then I very much feel like I am in prison. Really, always have. Yesterday, I was told about a technique I can try to get me to stop thinking inwards and just go with the flow of things. I was told to start paying attention to what is around me more. Don't think about anything but the detail of your surrondings. The color of the walls, what kind of shirt the person is wearing, pictures, people in the backround, etc. So starting today, I am going to try this little tactic out and see if it works. In case you are wondering, the whole point of this entry is so one day I'll hopefully be able to look back at this entry and be proud that I overcame this problem.
And thanks much to anyone that reads this! =)