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FACING MY FEARS: How I'm Enjoying My Life While Managing My Fear Of Judgement


Why Do I Feel Like Everyone Is Judging Me?

Normally what comes to mind when doing something out of my comfort zone is what other people will think of me "do they think I am ridiculous for doing this? Why does everyone look like they are getting this easier than I am?!"

In the past, this has limited me to trying new things and meeting new people, even if I wanted to do. I feel like the fear of being judged has made me less outgoing with people who I don't know very well which limits the number of people that truly know me. Going about my day and always being worried about what other people think of me is exhausting. I spend my energy in constant worrying thoughts, always making sure I don't have food on my face, or toilet paper on my shoes, all I want to do is just drop that fear. I'd like to think there is a connection between feeling so nervous of what other people think of me and the anxiety I get from doing new things or meeting new people.

The Power of Self-Awareness

Lots of things make me very anxious and I have been working on learning ways to manage my anxiety, ironically the things that make me less anxious are hanging out with my close friends. I believe that it is good to be able to have fun within my comfort zone but then when it gets pushed I have a hard time enjoying it setting boundaries about my comfort zone are important for me and that they are respected.

Through developing my self-awareness I have learned...

  1. I am comfortable being myself around my close friends, but only once I have gotten to know them for a while.

  2. The fear of people judging me is based on nothing, in particular, I have never had a bad experience with someone that has caused this fear, at least that I can think of.

  3. This fear is created by my own assumptions of what people may be thinking. I base it on the way that I think they may be looking at me, the way they look over to their friends (possibly talking about me), I create scenarios that probably only exists in my mind.

  4. There are some things that I am able to do that push my comfort zone, like going up to someone and telling them that I like what they are wearing.

  5. I am aware of my unhelpful thinking and I know it isn't great.

  6. I have learned I am not my thoughts, but the body observing my thoughts; I am the thinker, separate and apart from my thoughts.

It's difficult to challenge these thoughts and I know it would be better for me to do what I want to do, as well as what makes me happy, without being so worried about what other people think of me. It just takes practice to keep challenging these negative thoughts.

Tips To Continue to Enjoy your Life AND Have Feelings Of Being Judged

I think that managing this fear of judgment will take time. Obviously, nothing can happen overnight, but I think that I just need to continue to work on being able to allow myself to be vulnerable and recognize that it's okay to not feel okay all the time. Being vulnerable does not mean that I lack any skills or competence, it just means that I am learning to deal with something new. I also think that learning how to distinguish my thoughts from real facts in order to see if my thought of worrying are valid or not.

Being able to accept that there will be people that don't like me or think that I am annoying is a skill that I would like to learn.

I usually think that I am able to prevent this by not speaking out or doing anything that would lead to that conclusion, but it takes so much energy to constantly check if I'm saying something or doing something that may cause conflict, then I also miss out on being true to my authentic self, and people only know the version of myself that I project, which is a partial version of me.

When You Get A Worried Thought Try Using Mindfulness Skills

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