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#1 leongrado

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 08:40 PM

I've recently noticed that the drastic difference between how much I talk online and how much I talk in real life. I'm aware that I probably spend too much time on the computer every day but I've never really been an antisocial person....at least online. In real life social situations, I either have nothing to say, or I just simply don't find the conversation interesting and I'm trying to understand why.

Anyone else share these experiences? I can't tell if I'm socially anxious or just completely uninterested in the topics other people are talking about.

#2 Silinsar

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 09:18 PM

I sometimes feel I'm in the same boat.

One thing that might keep you talking online is the game itself. You share an interest with these people and you know that even before saying a single word because they wouldn't be on a respective TS server if they didn't play the same game.

Seriously, at least in my case, I have no problem speaking about things I am interested in, online or in RL. It's just so that in RL situations where people talk about something you don't care are more likely to occur and you meet people with totally different hobbies/interests.

#3 Lunacy Polish

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 09:40 PM

Silinsar more or less nailed it.  Although gaming is getting more mainstream, PC gaming outside of certain super popular titles is still very niche.  It's nerdy as all get out.  XD

It's also just a question of being able to communicate effectively based on common understanding.  When you do something online you generally are doing it with people who know enough to connect your words to some kind of meaning, hence you tend to speak more.

I learned a long time ago to not talk about my gaming hobby in public beyond very general terms, or trying to help educate the occasional outsider who is curious.  Because if you have any social skills at all, you realize that if you start talking about this stuff IRL, you look utterly insane.

"Yeah I switched to Carrion Gear, but I got rid of the duration runes, there's too much condition removal in the metagame."

Imagine that sentence uttered in public and how little sense it would make.  Say that in Teamspeak on a Guild Wars server and it has utter clarity.

#4 astromarmot

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:00 PM

For me,  IRL, I'm no social butterfly by any stretch, and while I can maintain a polite and informed level of conversation on most topics, the banality of most chat with those I'm not more intimately acquainted, has me keeping it to a minimum.  For the most part, once I get a good feel for how thick/thin-skinned a person is after being around them for some amount of time, I'm pretty outgoing, but my natural humor is a bit bawdy, I'm rather blunt, and my religious and political beliefs are quite outside the mainstream of either side, so I try not to confront or offend when I can, or as mama always said, if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all...online there's less necssity for much of that superficial nicety so it's easier and more efficient to just let it all out there for better or worse...

#5 BuddhaKeks

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:05 PM

View Postleongrado, on 26 January 2013 - 08:40 PM, said:

I've recently noticed that the drastic difference between how much I talk online and how much I talk in real life. I'm aware that I probably spend too much time on the computer every day but I've never really been an antisocial person....at least online. In real life social situations, I either have nothing to say, or I just simply don't find the conversation interesting and I'm trying to understand why.

Anyone else share these experiences? I can't tell if I'm socially anxious or just completely uninterested in the topics other people are talking about.

With the title you had my curiosity, but with the post you have my attention.

I don't talk much with people, except if they are my friends. In a group of good friends I'm usually the loudest and most prone to gesticulate and it's the same if I'm online with friends (and yes, some friends I made online belong to the good friends category).
Now when I'm alone, let's say in GW2 and I run into other players I don't know, I often talk to them (or they to me). I have no trouble with this in text based form. In real life I could never do such a thing. Though it got better over time, I still only talk to strangers/people I don't know very well, if I have a reason to talk to them, like asking for directions.
I had to work in a law firm last year and it was very awkward. The peole there expected me to make small talk, but I don't do that. I have no interest in talking about the weather or how your child does in school. I just had no common ground with the people working there and I was glad when I could quit the job. So I would say, it's a mix really of being socially anxious and being uninterested in the topics.

#6 Craywulf

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:06 PM

The topic subject and person you are conversing definitely effects how social you are. Online you have a safe barrier, so you can pretty much converse about anything and almost anyone without feeling awkward.

If you want to be more social in real life, then you're going need to have a wider array of interest, so that there's a higher probability of striking up a conversation you might actually have interest in. So get out there and expand your interests in life, find other interest than video games. Just be open-minded about finding new interest.

#7 leongrado

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 03:18 AM

View PostSilinsar, on 26 January 2013 - 09:18 PM, said:

Seriously, at least in my case, I have no problem speaking about things I am interested in, online or in RL. It's just so that in RL situations where people talk about something you don't care are more likely to occur and you meet people with totally different hobbies/interests.

Completely agree. I'm going to college currently and the topics that my dormmates talk about(especially girls) just makes me want to leave.

View PostBuddhaKeks, on 26 January 2013 - 10:05 PM, said:

So I would say, it's a mix really of being socially anxious and being uninterested in the topics.

Yep I feel social anxiety is definitely part of it. Oftentimes I try to avoid social interactions and I often feel pretty self conscious and cautious when speaking to people I'm not very close to.

View PostCraywulf, on 26 January 2013 - 10:06 PM, said:

The topic subject and person you are conversing definitely effects how social you are. Online you have a safe barrier, so you can pretty much converse about anything and almost anyone without feeling awkward.

Haha. Yeah. Online you can ask and talk about the most awkward topics easily but in real life you're always worried about offending people and being judged. Looks like this is a problem I have to overcome. I'm thinking of just being really blunt and direct for a while until I gain a little more confidence.

#8 Neo Nugget

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 06:49 AM

You should try going to PAX or some other gaming event! It's interesting to see your different personas clash ^^

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#9 Jaqen Hghar

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 08:04 AM

View PostBuddhaKeks, on 26 January 2013 - 10:05 PM, said:

I had to work in a law firm last year and it was very awkward. The peole there expected me to make small talk, but I don't do that. I have no interest in talking about the weather or how your child does in school. I just had no common ground with the people working there and I was glad when I could quit the job. So I would say, it's a mix really of being socially anxious and being uninterested in the topics.

I totally get what you mean here. Small talk to me is just uninteresting and I hate feigning interest for something that I'm not really into because that would be insincere but at the same time I don't want to look rude or antisocial so I'm in that awkward place in between.

I think part of the appeal of talking online is that, as some people have said already, you don't get the feeling of being judged as much. Might be just me but facial expressions, body gestures, and tone of voice have always seen more hard hitting to me than just words of disapproval on a screen.

#10 leongrado

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 08:46 AM

View PostJaqen Hghar, on 27 January 2013 - 08:04 AM, said:

I totally get what you mean here. Small talk to me is just uninteresting and I hate feigning interest for something that I'm not really into because that would be insincere but at the same time I don't want to look rude or antisocial so I'm in that awkward place in between.

I think part of the appeal of talking online is that, as some people have said already, you don't get the feeling of being judged as much. Might be just me but facial expressions, body gestures, and tone of voice have always seen more hard hitting to me than just words of disapproval on a screen.

I really dislike small talk also but it does help to make it less awkward. I guess if you were really courageous(I'm not) you could ask about something you really care about like what they want out of life or something like that.

#11 Kattar

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 04:06 PM

So here's the thing. Someone told me this years ago and it's stuck with me because it's true: The person you are online is the person you actually are in real life. The only difference in real life is that you're inhibited, you think you can't or shouldn't be yourself at any given time.

The speed of conversation is a little different online than it is in real life, but other than that it's not any different. You have to make yourself realize that. If you're witty and knowledgeable online, then you're witty and knowledgeable in real life too. Don't feel like you have to hide who you are. If people don't like it, that's their problem for not being mature enough to get along with someone else. You don't have to love everyone that you have to be around socially, but a mature adult will find a way to be friendly. If people aren't being friendly then they're not worth your concern, and you certainly shouldn't let them make you feel bad about who you are.

Hopefully that made some kind of sense.

Edited by Kattar, 27 January 2013 - 05:25 PM.
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#12 HederaHelix

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 04:40 PM

View PostKattar, on 27 January 2013 - 04:06 PM, said:

So here's the thing. Someone told me this years ago and it's stuck with me because it's true: The person you are online is the person you actually are in real life. The only difference in real life is that you're inhibited, you think you can't or shouldn't be yourself at any given time.

The speed of conversation is a little different online than it is in real life, but other than that it's not any different. You have to make yourself realize that. If you're witty and knowledgeable online, then you're witty and knowledgeable in real life too. Don't feel like you have to hide who you are. If people don't like it, that's their problem for not being mature enough to get along with someone else. You don't have to love everyone that you have to be around socially, but a mature adult will find a way to be friendly. If people aren't being friendly then they're not worth your concern, and you certainly shouldn't let them feel bad about who you are.

Hopefully that made some kind of sense.

This right here is what has pretty much saved my RL social life.  It took me a long time to realize who I really am, is who I am online.. in real life that was where my "sham" was.  

People often say that you can be anything you want on the internet and no one will ever know.. and the sad truth is.. they are right.. only I was choosing to be my true self online.  When I figured this out, I took steps into bringing it into my real life.  Start slowly with small subjects.  I'm diagnosed with Anxiety disorder, and let me tell you it doesn't have to rule you.  You can win it... just one foot in front of the other. =)  Find people in your real life that share common ground, its a great jumping point.  Maybe join a club in college, it will help you segway into letting your nerd-flag fly in real life as much as it does online and in games.

#13 astromarmot

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 04:55 PM

View PostKattar, on 27 January 2013 - 04:06 PM, said:

So here's the thing. Someone told me this years ago and it's stuck with me because it's true: The person you are online is the person you actually are in real life. The only difference in real life is that you're inhibited, you think you can't or shouldn't be yourself at any given time.

The speed of conversation is a little different online than it is in real life, but other than that it's not any different. You have to make yourself realize that. If you're witty and knowledgeable online, then you're witty and knowledgeable in real life too. Don't feel like you have to hide who you are. If people don't like it, that's their problem for not being mature enough to get along with someone else. You don't have to love everyone that you have to be around socially, but a mature adult will find a way to be friendly. If people aren't being friendly then they're not worth your concern, and you certainly shouldn't let them feel bad about who you are.

Hopefully that made some kind of sense.

The speed of the conversation, at least the text-based ones, do permit a bit more wittiness and accuracy than real-time, RL conversations...oh and online leaves traceable, saveable evidence...much less room for letting a he-said/she-said disagreement die gracefully...

#14 I'm Squirrel

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 04:56 PM

I knew this feeling from grade 5-9. I think the problem was that I was too comfortable talking online, and had absolutely no experience talking in real life. When you start getting comfortable of saying whatever the hell you want to say in real life, the problem goes away.

For starters, just imagine the text you would say online, and say it out loud.

#15 Shadok

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 05:00 PM

View PostKattar, on 27 January 2013 - 04:06 PM, said:

So here's the thing. Someone told me this years ago and it's stuck with me because it's true: The person you are online is the person you actually are in real life. The only difference in real life is that you're inhibited, you think you can't or shouldn't be yourself at any given time.

The speed of conversation is a little different online than it is in real life, but other than that it's not any different. You have to make yourself realize that. If you're witty and knowledgeable online, then you're witty and knowledgeable in real life too. Don't feel like you have to hide who you are. If people don't like it, that's their problem for not being mature enough to get along with someone else. You don't have to love everyone that you have to be around socially, but a mature adult will find a way to be friendly. If people aren't being friendly then they're not worth your concern, and you certainly shouldn't let them feel bad about who you are.

Hopefully that made some kind of sense.

I refuse to believe that I'm a troll IRL.  Admitting such a thing would be upsetting to all the people that think I'm a nice guy, myself included.

But in all honesty, I'm the same online as I am with close friends. When I'm with close friends I'm very outgoing and joke constantly, when I'm not I guess you could say I'm laid back, quiet, and polite. I'll talk to someone if they engage me in conversation, but I rarely put much effort to extend the interaction because I honestly don't care all that much about chatting with random people IRL.

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#16 Corsair

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 04:58 AM

I'm a bit introverted. I don't like feeling crowded and surrounded by people I don't know. Casual physical contact beyond a hand shake or a high five just feels.... wrong to me. Some guy at work gave me a pat on the back for helping him and it made me uncomfortable.

Thing is, online, I never feel crowded. There is no physical contact to perturb me and I can enjoy myself. I'm the same person in both situations, with the small change that I never get that surrounded by a mass of people. And that makes a world of difference. I can be myself full time rather than retreat away

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#17 Ingway

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 05:04 AM

I enjoy the company of friends in real life if we happen to share some hobbies, since i lived basically with the whole, invite friends over to play some video games, or vice versa. But yeah, otherwise i'm a pretty reserved person, usually avoid talking much and don't have much to say, wich is the complete opposit in the game.

It's pretty normal actually since in game on a Team speak or chat, you are all playing the same game probably or share the same hobbies, so going on about a certain item or boss from the game is not such a big deal since everyone can relate to it there. Outside of it, it's a little more annoying, since many people won't probably share that interest in video games with you if you happen to start a topic on it. Personally for me is mostly because i'm rather shy as well... so it's a tad annoying for me to start on a conversation like that, but mostly when i don't usually hang out with said person, if i do happen to hang out with him or be friends with, i can start a conversation easily.

#18 SpellWeaver

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 12:00 PM

I mean definatley, Agree with 100% Of the posts above, I guess one of the reasons I'm inhibited in RL is because I'm just trying to adapt, Becuase I serperate my Ingame from my out of game, I mean I can be social, the amount of experience I have had in talking about something Or feigning interest in something is phenemonal, A very useful skill I've developed. :cool:

But yeah As felicia day once said 'There are less social barriers ingame than there are In Real life' You could put someone in a random chat channel with people they don't really know put a giant boss infront of their avatars, and suddenly everybody can associate themseleves with that  goal they are all working to acheive something, and to me that's what gaming is about. Making friends online as opposed to in Rl is no difference, infact sometimes I'd prefer the only way simply becuase we have that thing in common. And we can all relate to each other and after which you can Become friends based on that one thing.

#19 Silent The Legend

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 01:42 PM

Im kinda strange actually.

While online I talk about everything I can possibly find to keep myself and my friends entertained and Im just a social superhero trying to take part in every contest/party/meeting, reading everything to keep me informed about people, and I love being in the biggest group possible.

IRL, however, I have three "modes":

Stealth mode: At points Im just standing there watching other people talk. I dont like being the center of attention, I dont enjoy big groups, sometimes I dont even enjoy speaking at all, I barely go out to meet people, Im known for my silent attitude(hence my name). I find myself comfortable just with my girlfriend and one single friend.

Berserker mode: sometimes I talk about everyone and everything, but in facts Im talking about nothing. I act like a jester, people like me, Im the center of attention and I like it, etc. Still, I dont like going out.

Wise mode: super serious face to face discussion about problem etc.

All of this randomly chained to make infinite combos of nonsensical situtations where I change attitude every five seconds.

Explaination? I do not know lol

#20 BuddhaKeks

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 02:41 PM

View PostSilent The Legend, on 28 January 2013 - 01:42 PM, said:

Im kinda strange actually.

While online I talk about everything I can possibly find to keep myself and my friends entertained and Im just a social superhero trying to take part in every contest/party/meeting, reading everything to keep me informed about people, and I love being in the biggest group possible.

IRL, however, I have three "modes":

Stealth mode: At points Im just standing there watching other people talk. I dont like being the center of attention, I dont enjoy big groups, sometimes I dont even enjoy speaking at all, I barely go out to meet people, Im known for my silent attitude(hence my name). I find myself comfortable just with my girlfriend and one single friend.

Berserker mode: sometimes I talk about everyone and everything, but in facts Im talking about nothing. I act like a jester, people like me, Im the center of attention and I like it, etc. Still, I dont like going out.

Wise mode: super serious face to face discussion about problem etc.

All of this randomly chained to make infinite combos of nonsensical situtations where I change attitude every five seconds.

Explaination? I do not know lol

You just gave the most accurate description of me*. Do you spy on me? :o  


*except the girlfriend part

#21 astromarmot

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 03:01 PM

Take this thread for example, broach the same topic IRL amongst a group of unaffiliated strangers, outside of  some group therapy sessions, and the best you'd likely hope for would be something like "Yeah, ok, that's too bad" or such...but here you've instantly connected with numerous folks who share your experience and plight...

#22 Heart Collector

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 03:08 PM

I used to be a bit like you Leongrado, I can perfectly relate to what you're saying. I had few but very good friends and always felt very awkward in large social gatherings - and could rarely find common ground or even just something to say with most people. Online I was more talkative, but more in forums than in game - and I was still shy in large groups (hence I never relished raiding). I loved guild chat and stuff though.

Now I'm more of the opposite (not too much though). Since I joined a casual runners group my social circle has expanded a lot, and I've been exposed to larger groups of people much more often. My confidence has also risen (I had huge issues with that before), a lot because I feel good about my fitness now. I still prefer small gatherings but I'm much more talkative and amicable. And I've become much more reclusive online - maybe because I feel like I fulfil my social needs more in my team - though my forum jabbering is still going strong.

Despite that, I remain an introvert and rather shy - though less than before. Which for me is a good thing as being an introvert is difficult trait to live with... It's not at all a bad thing but it's a harder path in life.

We are social animals by nature, we all need contact with others, regardless of what sort of contact it is. And an online gaming world offers a great outlet for that, as it's a gathering of people who share the same hobby. And the anonymity, the veil of your avatar, can make it easier to open up and lessen the fear of being directly hurt and betrayed.

There's nothing to change about yourself Leongrado unless you feel that you're holding yourself back :)

Edited by Heart Collector, 28 January 2013 - 03:09 PM.


#23 Korra

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 03:11 PM

It´s easier to write :D than make a smile irl.

#24 pumpkin pie

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 09:20 AM

View PostCorsair, on 28 January 2013 - 04:58 AM, said:

I'm a bit introverted. I don't like feeling crowded and surrounded by people I don't know. Casual physical contact beyond a hand shake or a high five just feels.... wrong to me. Some guy at work gave me a pat on the back for helping him and it made me uncomfortable.

Thing is, online, I never feel crowded. There is no physical contact to perturb me and I can enjoy myself. I'm the same person in both situations, with the small change that I never get that surrounded by a mass of people. And that makes a world of difference. I can be myself full time rather than retreat away

^^ that* , also sometime ppl expect more from you then you are willing to give, if and when you become friendly with them, often time i can't help myself but to give, time, help, etc (i know, push over), which i don't want to give (don't want to be), so i think not talking to ppl is better IRL. Because nothing good comes from it!

*i am not phobia or anything, just don't like "crowd" or random stranger touching or getting too close, yuck, nor do I like people who talk to you one inch in front of your face ....

there's this guy who came to buy a bicycle ... god, was so annoying, i keep walking away and he kept inching in, other people's lips moving ... and saliva in the mouth, like its about to dart out onto your face is just not a good feeling nor is it a good view!!!

#25 Red_Falcon

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 12:08 AM

I'm the opposite, social in life but quiet in-game.

I think it's mostly because the majority of people is far below my age and have terribly idiotic, gut-feelings-based, naive opinions on things, especially the newer generations.
For instance the last thing I heard before logging off tonight was that Warrior is better than Guardian because it has more health pool.
Sure I could have explained him Guardian has protection which basically lenthens the health pool by 33% along with much better healing and damage mitigation - along with the fact health pool doesn't make a class better than anyone, it's probably one of the least important factors.

But what are the chance a random guy behind a screen would listen, against the chance he would feel offended and said something that would give new meanings to the concept of stupidity? There is no worse retard than a retard with his head up his ass, and sadly most people in MMOs are like that.

In real life I'm the guy everyone asks advice/info to, but you can't really be that person on the internet so I play for fun and that's about it.

Edited by Red_Falcon, 31 January 2013 - 12:10 AM.


#26 leongrado

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 10:50 PM

I think this is a sign that I probably should stop spending my whole summers between working and playing video games by myself ><. The thing is I don't feel "guilty" about being antisocial when I'm at home but when I'm at college, I feel really bad about not being social.

#27 Heart Collector

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 05:42 AM

View Postleongrado, on 31 January 2013 - 10:50 PM, said:

I think this is a sign that I probably should stop spending my whole summers between working and playing video games by myself ><. The thing is I don't feel "guilty" about being antisocial when I'm at home but when I'm at college, I feel really bad about not being social.

By all means try to improve the social aspects of your life if you feel it would really benefit you, but if you don't truly have your heart in it it could turn out to be wasted effort. However if you do want to change your social life what could really work is finding a new hobby to go with your current ones! It could be sports (best go for a social, amateur group if so, less competitiveness, more fun and usually more females to be found), or maybe music classes, learning a new language... Stuff that will bring you in contact with other people who share the same hobby. And unfortunately our beloved games rarely bring people together physically (no, I don't mean that kind of physically you pervs :P).

One thing I've noticed about me that may ring true for you also - I've usually had "life changing" mentality switches from one moment to the next, like turning a switch on. I may have been consciously or subconsciously trying for years to decide to make that change without success but it somehow just happens when the time is right for me... E.g. I'd been saying "I really should start exercising" for years, but never actually got around to doing it until one day when I returned from a holiday and sat on my computer again - it then genuinely dawned on me that I was back to the same old reality, the same rut, and that a change was mandatory, and only at that moment I fully made up my mind to start - and surprised even myself some time down the road.

Another tip: If you want to change something, don't tell yourself "I will change this and that", say "I'm changing this and that"! "I will" automatically implies procrastination if you're a laid back type like me ;)

Good luck with whatever you decide!!!

#28 BuddhaKeks

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:57 PM

View Postleongrado, on 31 January 2013 - 10:50 PM, said:

I think this is a sign that I probably should stop spending my whole summers between working and playing video games by myself ><. The thing is I don't feel "guilty" about being antisocial when I'm at home but when I'm at college, I feel really bad about not being social.

There is no right or wrong with this topic. Staying at home by yourself might seem wrong to other people, but it isn't. At the same time going out is also neither rigth or wrong. It's just what different people prefer to do with their time. Some people have fun if they are fishing, other find that incredibly boring, some like to go to parties and get wasted, others think the only thing that get's wasted due to that is time.
So do what you like to do. If you rather play videogames, read books or anything. then do that. Also I'm sure you will eventually find like minded people (heck, just look at this thread), that share your interests, that you can talk and relate too. By that, you will be social, without having to change your live according to what the majority does.
So in short, be yourself. You are good the way you are, don't try to force other peoples customs onto you. You don't need that.

#29 Ojikes

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 08:12 PM

Im usually quiet alot, but thats because i dont mind and i dont have anything to say about some things. But i can talk alot to if the person is intresting and i have a intresting topic to discuss.. but usually im the guy thats quiet until i either talk about something intresting or just find something more intresting to do.

I have a small problem of being still to.

#30 Lyrabel

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 12:53 AM

View Postastromarmot, on 26 January 2013 - 10:00 PM, said:

For me,  IRL, I'm no social butterfly by any stretch, and while I can maintain a polite and informed level of conversation on most topics, the banality of most chat with those I'm not more intimately acquainted, has me keeping it to a minimum.  For the most part, once I get a good feel for how thick/thin-skinned a person is after being around them for some amount of time, I'm pretty outgoing, but my natural humor is a bit bawdy, I'm rather blunt, and my religious and political beliefs are quite outside the mainstream of either side, so I try not to confront or offend when I can, or as mama always said, if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all...online there's less necssity for much of that superficial nicety so it's easier and more efficient to just let it all out there for better or worse...

You, kind sir, sound like an extremely interesting person. :P

But I feel the same you do. Overall when I'm forced to make conversation with other girls, even if we share the same interests.
It does sound cliche but when a group of girls meet for the first time there's the long process of "compliments" like "Oh, lovely dress, shoes, hair, makeup or whatever". I don't really care for any of that. So girls usually end up thinking I'm weird, and, when time comes, are very glad to get away from me.

But I do believe it's the lack of common interests. Though some people, at times, make their best effort to just make you as uncomfortable as you can be.




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