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Every time I walk into a crowded room, I always feel like the odd one out. Everyone seems to have their own group of friends and I just seem like an outsider, which ends with me standing in a corner… Alone… On my phone.

Why am I like this? I’m sure the people there are really friendly and wouldn’t mind me joining in on their conversations… So why don’t I? Is it because I’m afraid that they won’t like or accept me? Am I afraid of being judged? Am I just simply uncomfortable being in large groups…? No… That’s definitely not it. I love being in groups and being able to talk about whatever I want without the feeling of being judged. I don’t get it… I’m incredibly open and outgoing when I’m around my friends but as soon as I’m surrounded by strangers or people I don’t really talk to, I turn into this silent turtle that’s just standing there, waiting for someone to engage in a conversation with me… Why can’t I be the one to walk up to a group, introduce myself, and join their conversations? Why aren’t I the outgoing, extroverted girl that everyone likes being around? I try so hard to climb out of my shell but every time I’m in that situation,  I always hide behind my shell and just wait… I know that I’m missing out on so many opportunities to interact with other incredible individuals, but what can I do about it?

The truth is, I’m scared of all of the things I’ve mentioned previously. I’m scared that they won’t like me. I’m scared that they’re going to judge me. I’m self-conscious… I try reminding myself that I can’t control how others see or think of me. All I can do is be myself and let everything else play out whichever way they do. But it’s hard… When I try to engage in conversations with others, I end up saying something stupid or the conversation just quickly dies off. I hate this part of me so much… I think about what I want to do and what I want to say, but it’s so hard to bring myself to actually doing it… Then I think about what I should have done and how I regret not doing what I initially intended to do… I’m restricting myself from the things that I want to do. Is this just how I am?

Am I just an awkward turtle?