Often, I am described by my family as a social butterfly. I'm outgoing, and I love being around people for the majority of my day, meeting new people, and putting myself out there.
What most people don't know about me is that sometimes, I have days — even weeks — where I can't sleep at night because I am kept awake by the worries in my mind that refuse to be quiet, stressing about every moment of the previous day, regretting a stupid comment I made to someone in class, worrying about the friend who neglected to respond to my text, what I said to that guy after one too many drinks when I was out with friends, that one questionable decision I made. And when I'm done stressing about those things, don't even get me started on the scenarios that I make up in my mind to contemplate, no matter how unlikely they are to become reality.
Take it from someone who's been there.
I know you can't calm the millions of thoughts racing through your mind, the insecurities, the self-doubt, the overanalyzing of every conversation. The self-resentment over the smallest of things, the unrelenting anxious feeling that feels like it will never go away. I know you anticipate the worst possible scenario and explanation for everything, but I've come to realize that allowing myself to think like this just results in an accumulation of negativity, anxiousness, and fear to live a free and unapologetic life.
When I think about it, having anxiety over the things that I do is kind of laughable when I consider that I don't remember what people said to me in class 5 minutes later, and I always forget to respond to texts simply because I'm forgetful, and that person I talked to after one too many drinks, well, maybe they had two too many. It's important to remember that while you are the center of your own world, you are a component to everyone else's, and no matter how hard you try, you cannot control how other people perceive you.
Sure, it's possible that there is a reason they're avoiding your text, or maybe they did think something of what you said, but guess what? Life will go on, and if a person is meant to be in your life, one meaningless interaction or a little mistake you made won't change that. I would be lying if I said I didn't crave validation from people, no matter how significant or insignificant they are to my life. I want people to like me, it's my nature, and as difficult as it may be to accept, some people aren't going to give me that validation, but that doesn't mean that it should keep me up at night.
There are so many serious things in my life that are worthy of stress, but day-to-day interactions shouldn't fall into this category.
No matter how difficult it may be, I have to try to make light of the things that aren't worth worrying about, which I've found to be a better alternative than ending every day with some kind of regret. All you can do is your best.
So, I'm going to continue to embarrass myself sometimes, to stumble over my words, to mess up and make mistakes, and to be imperfect, and I won't apologize to myself for that, because life isn't about achieving perfection. It's about growing as a person and giving yourself the validation you are looking for, and that you are certainly worthy of, even if you have laughed at yourself a little on the way.