What do you care what other people care?

on Herman

A struggle to be more social

I've been struggling with being more active for a long time. I find myself being alone in my apartment a lot and thinking about wanting to hang out with someone and spending time together. I envy people who have people around them all the time. And therefore I am striving towards that. My nature is however to gravitate to be alone and do things on my own terms. I enjoy the feeling of being independent and having control.

So to fix this I have been trying to change this part of myself. I have tried to organise things, bring people together, throw parties etc. But all of this are very, very draining to me. I like to do it, but all the organising is taking a huge toll on me and I start to stress about all of it. And because of the stress I don't enjoy it that much anymore.

This problem has been with me for a long time and I've been trying to approach in multiple different ways without being able to solve it and truly enjoy those moments of organising and being social. And I haven't figured out why this is the case. Lately I've noticed and acknowledged more and more that I am a perfectionist, and because of that I am trying to get everything to be better than what is realistically possible. I think this is one part of the reason, but I don't think that explains it all. There is something missing.

I recently read the book "What do you care what other people think?" by Richard Feynman. The book in itself is OK, but that phrase stuck with me. What do I care? A LOT. WAY TOO MUCH. I care about the image of myself and how I appear in the eyes of other people. And this is the missing part of the solution to being more active.

Because the fact that I think what other people think I want to please them. And when I want to please someone else I won't do things on my own terms. And that again means that I won't do things that I enjoy myself. This all ends up with me trying to organise thing that I don't like to do myself, but what I think that other people enjoy doing. All of this gets warped and in the end nobody is enjoying the event. Not me and not the guests. Because if I am doing something that I don't truly enjoy myself, then I won't have the same energy and enthusiasm about it than what I would have if I would really truly enjoy it myself. And if I'm not enthusiastic about it then my guests won't either catch up on that feeling.

So instead of trying to be more effective in being social, I am planning on learning to do things that I truly have a good time doing and then invite people over to join me. This is the only way to be social AND have a good time simultaneously.