I have mentioned before, that I have
social anxiety as well as a fear of failure or people thinking back
of me. Wednesday is a day I usually post, but my anxiety and fear
combined by mid afternoon, so I took the night off.
So what happened? Well, by lunchtime I was struggling, but I was o.k. At my other work, we had a puppy that was very hard to handle. My work mate took over working with her, and had a little bit more success than me. I was happy for her but disappointed in myself. I did my best and I should have realised that, but didn’t.
Then I got approached by someone selling books, outside the supermarket. That’s something that sets off my anxiety, being approached in public. I am very aware of people who are doing things like this. By the time I am approached, I know exactly what they are selling or collecting for. So there is no need to approach me. I understand they are just doing a job, but its not helpful to me.
So, going into my second walk, I was anxious but still coping. That’s when the clincher happened.
The dog i was walking has problems with people, but I am very aware of what to do. But I only walk with her once a week. So I am very limited to what I can do, in regards to training her. Last year she successfully bit a guy as we met on a blind corner. On Wednesday, she tried to bite another man. I could sense she was about to try, so I took appropriate steps to make sure she couldn’t get to him. Then I gave her a telling off, and we went to carry on our walk.
No harm done!
Until the guy decided to lecture me on how I must train my dog. Well, considering training needs to be a consistent thing….yes that’s right, you are lecturing someone who has worked with thousands of dogs over 8 years. She is not my dog for a start, and I do not have the ability to train her to that level. I have trained a similar dog to be able to walk in a busy street without biting anyone. But it took over a year of me walking her, multiple times a week. I have worked with dogs terrified of people and got them to like me. I have looked after a dog who ended up biting me, after I didn’t receive the information I needed to avoid it.
So I am very experienced with aggression in dogs thank you. That guy would have been bitten if I didn’t know what I was doing. The fact that it happened and how I reacted, would have helped in teaching her in the long run!
I am very grateful for that job. Most of the time I can relax. Because the chances of a problem are low, even with a dog like that. That’s because I am confident in my own abilities, to instinctively know what to do to diffuse a situation. And I know my dogs well enough to know danger signs. That peace of mind is huge to me, and helps me get through the day. But not when people interfere, and not when they criticise me for no good reason.
It happens more than it should.
A few weeks ago, some guy also decided to educate me about a dog that I was working with. This dog has issues about walks being scary. He claimed its most likely a genetic thing. Erm…..her mum is my friend, who is extremely experienced with dogs. She is a vet nurse at the S.P.C.A. They rescued the dog as a stray, she had been living in the bush for a few years. She doesn’t want to walk because suburbia is new and frightening to her! And guess what? Since then, my work with her has started to pay off! We are walking great lengths now.
So, or all the people who observe a situation for the first time, remember that you do not know the back story. You may consider yourself an expert, but the other person might know more than you. The other person might have social anxiety, so your little piece of advice could ruin their day. I could have had a panic attack, and that’s when I am likely to mistakes. THEN someone might get bitten! So please butt out.
What triggers do you have, for your social anxiety?