Newly developed anxiety, particularly public

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This topic contains 2 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  Inky 8 months ago.

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    Hello all (thanks for reading),
    Recently, after dealing what seemed like traumatic drama back to back, I feel I have developed anxiety, even to the point of being seen in public. I don’t feel like myself (I just haven’t felt happy, or like my normal self because of certain life circumstance, i.e not having close friends, bad job situation that I am working out, not being able to pursue my passions…not being able to find the motivation on my own when I usually can), or confident in the image I am presenting, or maybe confident in that I am safe in my interactions(?). When I am with a friend, I feel fine. But it is to the point I have trouble leaving the house and doing errands alone. The anxiety shows up as feeling on the spot in the store. I can feel every glance at me. My body gets hot, my face gets red. So now I fear going shopping, even though it would probably help in the long run. How should I deal with this? I am usually alone so I don’t usually have someone to go with, unless I ask. I was not like this before. I feel insecure about small things- not having an outfit on that I 100% like, having to uber (not having a car, waiting around for uber, riding in the back of someone elses car), being alone. But I wonder if there is a bigger issue? Being judged by others? I don’t know. What do you think?

    • This topic was modified 8 months ago by  Bun.


    Hi Bun,

    I have felt the seemingly “irrational” anxiety.

    What I have done is to seek sanctuary in my routines. For the store I ALWAYS go to the same one at the same time when I KNOW I won’t run into people. I have my favorite and least favorite cashiers.

    I also have pat answers and strategies for when people *shudder* TALK to me.

    “How are you?” = “Good”/”Good how are you?”/”OMG, the weather! Am I right!?”

    For the Uber, again, the routine. Get one at predictable times. Sing a certain calming song while waiting.

    Become a pro at online shopping.

    Have a set date to go with friends to shop, and get your hair done.

    Sit in the back or in an aisle seat. If things get too much, go to the bathroom or the “I have to take this” phone call.

    Get a counselor that specializes in anxiety when you can. And/or get strategies from the internet.

    Also, people are NOT looking at you or judging. You know that intellectually, right? People are so freaking self-absorbed it’s crazy.

    All the best,




    P.S. If it makes you feel any better I have to go to a place where I KNOW I will be triggered.

    I put new bumper stickers on my car of my children’s colleges and service academies (so the first car they see pulling in or leaving is MINE and I have done a great job, thank you!)

    I will lay out my perfect outfit the night before

    I will eat a full meal before I get there

    I will hang out in strategic places so I won’t run into certain people

    I will seek sanctuary in politeness when/if confronted by my trigger

    I have “taken that important phone call”/fled when seeing them. And I’d do it again.

    But I will do my job god dam it!


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