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text 2016-07-30 07:48
My 2nd Official Blog Post!! This one is on Social Anxiety.

Are you uncomfortable in social situations? Don't worry, we have you covered.

 

Do you dread going to social functions? Meeting new people? Worry you’re going to do something embarrassing? Have you got those uncomfortable butterflies squirming in your stomach, just thinking about being in these situations? Sounds like you might be living with social anxiety. Don’t be alarmed, you’re not alone, 1000’s of people around the world are living with the same fears, and everyone feels anxiety at some point in their lives.

 

Social anxiety is all about fear, fear of saying something wrong, fear of doing something wrong, fear about being judge, fear of not being accepted, but it doesn’t have to rule you, even if it never fully goes away.

When you are in a situation that makes you feel uncomfortable or nervous it is important to remember that social anxiety won’t kill you, even if it does feel like the world is closing in on you. You have more than likely been through this many times before, you have probably even been in a worse situation, you made it through and you can make it through again.

But how you ask?

 

.......click here to read the rest. There's even a cute picture :D

 

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review 2014-11-07 02:54
No Matter How I Look At It, It's You Guys' Fault I'm Not Popular! (manga, vol. 1) by Nico Tanigawa, translated by Krista Shipley and Karie Shipley
No Matter How I Look at It, It's You Guys' Fault I'm Not Popular!, Vol. 1 - Nico Tanigawa

[Yes, I know, not a very mini mini-review. I'll never get caught up at this rate. However, I had some strong feelings about this manga and had to write at least some of it down.]

 

Tomoko is 15 years old and has no real friends. She thinks that both friends and a boyfriend will just fall into her lap once she enters high school. Sadly, this does not happen, so she tries to figure out why not and fix it. That is, when she's not mentally grumbling about slutty girls and the stupid guys who gravitate towards them.

In this first volume, she forces her younger brother to speak to her for a certain amount of time each day, because she's out of practice talking to people. She meets with a friend from middle school, who now goes to a different high school, and is at first pleased that they still share an interest in geeky things like anime. However, she, too, has managed to find a boyfriend where Tomoko has failed. When the rain briefly strands Tomoko with a couple good-looking guys, she finds herself unable to talk normally to them. At school, she's horrified when she's assigned to do a make-up assignment with a male student in her art class.

This was the worst thing I read during my recent vacation. Tomoko was the female version of the stereotypical male geek who silently stews over his inability to get a date with one of the popular girls, obsessing over them while scornfully referring to them as sluts. Flipping the gender did not make that stereotype any more appealing.

The depth of Tomoko's lack of popularity was painful (she considered herself to be popular in middle school because, during those years, she interacted with guys a total of six times), as was her complete lack of knowledge about how to fix it. For example, at one point her appearance was better than normal. When she thought about it, she decided she looked better because she'd spent the night playing a really good otome game. She'd heard that sex makes people look more appealing, so she figured that a game that made her feel sexually aroused would work the same way. So she played it nonstop until her hair and skin were oily. I think this was supposed to be funny, but I didn't feel like laughing.

I both loathed and pitied Tomoko. To her, all pretty girls were fluff-brained sluts, and all good-looking guys were probably idiots who'd only be interested in makeup slathered sluts. Even as she thought these things, she tried to make herself look more like those “sluts” in order to become more popular. And failed miserably. She was interested in manga, and yet she viewed the other people browsing manga in the same store as her with disdain, labeling them all probable NEETs. Yu, Tomoko's only friend, confused her by still being a fan of anime like her, and yet also having a boyfriend and looking like one of the pretty “sluts.” Personally, I felt Yu could have done better when it came to friends and was glad that she didn't have the ability to peek into Tomoko's thoughts. At one point, Tomoko thought of her as a “sow.” I'm not kidding.

It's possible that future volumes show Tomoko growing as a person. It's possible, but the series title tells me it's not likely. I opted not to read the other two volumes I had available, and I doubt I'll ever continue with this series or watch the anime adaptation.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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review 2013-11-26 02:38
Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). How to Understand and Cure Social Phobia. - Le Blanc, Raymond

     A good overview of Social Anxiety Disorder, whether your are the one suffering from it or if it is someone you know. This describes what exactly SAD is, and goes over some of the medicines and procedures used to treat it. My major complaint with this book is the editing; there are quite a few grammar and spelling mistakes, and I also noticed a couple incorrect uses of the form of the verb to be. Partially me just being picky, but still, they could have done better with the editing.

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review 2012-11-24 00:00
Draykon by Charlotte E. English
Draykon - Charlotte E. English

What initially attracted me to this book was its absolutely gorgeous cover, reasonably interesting-sounding description, and decent reviews. Unfortunately, it didn't work for me, and I ended up spending maybe two months slogging through it.

I wasn't a huge fan of English's writing. It was a little too flowery for my tastes and featured a massive overuse of adverbs. I became very tired of the words “rather” and “quite.” It felt like one or the other of them was used on every single page.

I also became very tired of all the fantasy names – this, from someone who cut her teeth on fantasy. There were weird, almost Lewis Carroll-like names for everything, and I wasn't always sure they were necessary. I didn't need constant reminders that Draykon was set in a fantasy world. “Nivvens” could easily have been called “horses.” The same goes for many of the other things that had real-world equivalents. In some cases, the fantasy names were a little confusing. I couldn't read “whurthag” without imagining a warthog, although I'm pretty sure whurthags had more in common with big cats or other large predators.

I could have put up with English's writing, however, if either the story or characters had grabbed me. That didn't happen. I liked Eva well enough, but I actively disliked Llandry. Whereas Eva was older (maybe in her forties?), competent, and usually had a good head on her shoulders (except for a few blips involving Tren), Llandry was young (20) and appeared to suffer from To Stupid To Live Syndrome. Yes, I know, she had crippling social anxiety and parents that were maybe  a little too overprotective. Even so, I didn't think that completely excused her behavior. Even after she found out people were being killed for having istore, she kept a little piece of it around. She followed after Devary like a puppy, despite the fact that any idiot could see she'd only slow him down. I couldn't understand why he wasn't more angry with her when he learned she'd been following him. I mean, he was on a secret mission to deliver the last known piece of istore to someone who might be able to find out more about it. Llandry was well-known as the discoverer of istore. Having Llandry around was practically like having a giant neon sign saying “you'll probably find some istore here!”

I couldn't decide whether English was trying to set up a future romantic subplot between Llandry and Devary or not. On the one hand, Llandry seemed to have a crush on Devary, even though I don't think she realized it. On the other hand, Devary's behavior towards Llandry felt more like that of an indulgent family member than a potential love interest – not surprising, since he was an old friend of Llandry's mother. At any rate, there was absolutely zero chemistry between Devary and Llandry, and I do hope that was intentional.

Draykon's story didn't grab me any more than its characters did. I think it could have, if maybe 100 pages had been edited out. The occasional interesting event would happen, and then there'd be pages and pages that didn't seem to accomplish much of anything. It felt like most of the book happened in the last 60 or so pages.

The story became a little more interesting to me near the end, and part of me wants to know what happens next in the series. However, I'm not nearly hooked enough to buy and slog through the next book, if it's as much of a drag to get through as this one was.

Extras:

The book includes a color map of the seven realms and a glossary.

 

(Original review, with read-alikes, posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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review 2012-07-27 00:00
Overcoming Social Anxiety and Shyness: A Self-help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques - Gillian Butler *Bought in the UK Kindle Reading Marathon sale (Jul 2012).
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