When it comes to performing publicly–at work, school, or even in groups of more than one person– nerves can sometimes discourage us and hold us back. Social anxiety isn’t always something that accompanies negative experiences, but more often than not comes up when we are about to embark on something new and exciting. The thing is, it can be uncomfortable. So much so that it’s tempting to let excuses get in the way of giving whatever it is you’re interested in a shot. This even happens with dating! However, nerves are natural. It’s all part of the song and dance. The good news is with practice, you will become more comfortable taking a new step.
My schoolmates who are involved with theater at my school remind me that at the end of the day, grueling practices, and those uncomfortable butterflies, that going after what you want despite the awkward feelings is worth it. I put together a little video with them talking about this after their last performance. Hopefully, you’ll be as encouraged as I was.
It’s been said that music is one of the best outlets for aggression, but in my experience it’s also been great for self-reflection and motivation. In article published online by Psych Central, author Jane Collingwood noted that “Listening to music can have a tremendously relaxing effect on our minds and bodies, especially slow, quiet classical music. This type of music can have a beneficial effect on our physiological functions, slowing the pulse and heart rate, lowering blood pressure, and decreasing the levels of stress hormones.” I know that for me, being overly stressed has thwarted my plans of achieving goals in the past because I become so stressed it’s like i’m paralyzed. So, to keep stress levels at bay I like to counteract it with positive music from the onset. I put together a playlist of songs I’ve heard over the years that has been motivational in some way. Songs that encourage me to try, have hope, or be thankful for what I got right now. The songs I chose have also helped to remind me of the hope I have for myself on days I might be feeling like I want to give up. I lean more towards rock and pop, so a majority of the songs to make my playlist are of that genre, including artists like Jimmy Eat World, Journey, Van Halen, Steel Pulse, Bob Marley and Drake. If that’s your interest, you might dig these songs. If not, consider making a go-to playlist for when you’re feeling down and need to re focus. Try to chose songs that will remind you too of your true attitude towards life rather that will enhance your anger, anxiety, or depression. For example, if you are grieving the end of a romantic relationship, you might try to guard your heart and avoid sappy love songs. In any event I hope you enjoy!
One of the best ways to get out of your head, over depression, or even combat social anxiety is with volunteering. Volunteering allows you to get into action and out of your head. By serving others you are given the opportunity to not only bless others with a positive experience, but it gives you a break from your own problems so when you return you may do so with a fresh perspective. It just feels good too.
Every year my church, Holy Cross Lutheran Church, volunteers at our city’s festival that invites organizations to come together to raise money for their cause. The Pacific Coast Fog Fest has been allowed for my church to make ends meet financially as the garlic fries and sausage booth it runs brings in a lot of money. Its helped my church to remain active and alive, as well as been a joy for the community and the members of my church who Volunteer. The volunteers desire to be a positive addition to the people in the community’s day. Having worked side by side them each year, I’ve seen it really happen, bad days turned around.
And there really are some perks to helping out. Volunteering provides the opportunity to meet new people and establish connections for the future, as well as it provides you with experiences where you can learn more about yourself. A peer of mine from college, Latasha Washington, is an example of this.
Washington she began volunteering within her community while going to school and within a few years of her doing so she got to do what she loves most–travel–and was in South Africa building dozens of homes for an oppressed community. The experience not only help change the lives of many families, but she gained personal and profession connections, as well as clarity around her place within the world, and discovered some of her hearts hidden desires. Volunteering can be a rewarding experience on many levels.
Imagine you’ve died. People have come to your memorial service, and are seated in wait of the eulogy. Take note of how many people are there, and who is there. Are people crying? Who is giving your eulogy? What will this person have to say about your character, what mattered most to you, your attitude and life? Imagine, realistically, your eulogy. How do you feel about what has been said? What would you like this person to say?
This is an exercise I came across several years ago when I asked Google, “Who am I?” I had decided to change my lifestyle at the time because it wasn’t benefiting me, the problem was I had no idea what to do instead. I had trouble defining who I was and what I would now like to do because I use to tie all that this to the lifestyle I was no longer living. One of the websites I came across (which unfortunately I can no longer find) suggested thinking about the above questions could help me figure out what was important to me and what I could strive for. I then had an idea of what new habits to take on.
Which would you rather be known for?
Think about the legacy you would like to leave behind. That is your true you. If you want to be known as someone who was always laughing and smiling, begin doing the things that allow you to do that. Eventually, u will kick it, literally,so live your life doing those things you’ve loved according to your imaginary eulogy. Build habits to encourage your true you to emerge.
This blog is your Plan B, with suggestions and directions to what to do in the city, whether it be in regards to nightlife, theater, where to grab a bite, or what to do on a date. This is the spot to figure out cost , time and location of all the local cultural happenings in San Francisco.