My own solution to my concerns about going out for the evening is a sort of positive thinking in a way, not about the social event itself but my reasons for going to the social event. I was choosing to go because I valued the friendship of the person who had invited me, and wanted to demonstrate that. And the same went for all of the other social events and other things which were “imposing” on my time; they were the result of choices I’d made for good reasons, decisions to support other friends or to give up time to things that I felt worthwhile. Even my job falls into this category: if I had my druthers I’d work shorter hours, but then again, I probably could work shorter hours if I really want to. In fact, if I really want to I could probably give up work tomorrow, but that would mean giving up other things which I want and value. The main point is that my life at that particular point felt stressful and overfull not because of external circumstances over which I have no control, but because of choices I’d made for very good reasons.

More tomorrow.