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Intense Ruminating


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I ruminate an awful lot. I have a lot of social anxiety, and trifling awkward moments that I assume most others would not find significant enough to dwell on just stick in my mind and pester me days, months or years after they happened. They are very little things, like staring off into space and then realizing you're staring at someone; mishearing someone and replying according to what you think they said rather than what they actually said, causing brief awkwardness; being clumsy, etc.

I actually have physical reactions to my intrusive ruminating thoughts. Upon recalling an embarrassing memory, I will actually recoil or cringe. I used to be able to control this (at least when I'm in public), but it's getting harder and harder to do so (but no one seems to have noticed me making these odd facial expressions yet). In privacy, my reactions are even more exaggerated, as sometimes I'll literally "facepalm" or slap my forehead or something. Quite recently, I've developed I habit of talking to myself when I am feeling a lot of anxiety. I'm usually just whispering vague babbles about how socially inept I am or how I dislike my demeanor, and it is usually too quiet for anyone else to notice.

I try to terminate my ruminating thoughts as quickly as possible, and a lot of the time this will work temporarily until I recall the memory again. Ruminating is getting in the way of my activities, as if I am engaging in a hobby of mine (like playing the guitar or drawing) and I recall an embarrassing thought, I usually can't continue on and I have to stop and do something else. I don't know why I can't bring myself to do things I like when I am ruminating.

I suspect I have social anxiety disorder (I've never been diagnosed by a professional, but I fit all the criteria), and I know people who have it have problems with ruminating. Anyone else ruminate very badly?

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Geek I sometimes have this issue. I have repetitive thoughts, sometimes about the here and now but more frequently about the past or future. I usually just follow the thought to the source. There is a reason for each thought we have. If you are thinking about the past then there may be something you perceive as wrong or awkward about what happened but there is also a reason for that. Do you know why you think the moment could have occurred differently? Do you know what you would do different if you had a do-over? Have you ever seen someone else live an awkward moment? We all have them. What has happened as a result of your awkwardness? There may be an underlying thought of preference or merit. You might think that you deserve to be treated better or worse depending on how you guage your own actions. Or you could be thinking in terms of ability to control your actions better. Either way if you find the reasons for your "ruminating" then you may be able to control it better.

I hope this helps :P

Good Luck and Take Care

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