Do Not Panic
Social Phobia: A persistent fear of finding oneself in situations athat might lead to scrutiny by others and humiliation or embarrassment.
I didn’t realize I had a form of social phobia until a few years ago when I realized how much I’d panic sometimes just to have to use the phone or use a checkout line. My social phobia is quite mild though, I can certainly function just fine, I just tend to find ways around dealing with things that cause me to panic.
Stores: I get nervous sometimes when I have to go through a checkout, I tend to get my money ready ahead of time and repeat what I need to say in my head until I feel fully prepared. I just don’t want to be caught off guard and end up fumbling around. I fear I will piss someone off who is waiting behind me. I’d much rather do my shopping online if I can.
Driving: I try to avoid left turns, completely. I will go out of my way so I don’t get stuck in a left turn where I might not be able to turn and people will honk at me or I could cause a traffic jam. This amuses Manly Man but then he drives like an old lady and will sit in a left turn until the cows come home.
Phone: I hate hate hate the phone, which is ironic since part of my job requires answering the phone and sometimes dealing with angry people (although not nearly as much anymore). If I am in a panic mode I just won’t answer the phone. Once I had to make what I believed would be a very difficult call, I had to have a cosmpolitan and a cigarette to make the call. What am I afraid of? I don’t have the best hearing so I worry I won’t understand someone and annoy them by having them repeat what they said. I worry that there will be that awkward moment where you try to end the call and can’t.