Role Playing and Social Anxiety | Role Playing Games

I was working with a client recently who told me that he ‘suffered badly from Social Anxiety’ and had done for most of their life. We spent some time exploring his personal history and some of the experiences he had been going through.When I work with a client I always operate from the belief that they actually already have all the resources necessary to solve their problem and it’s really just a question of coaching that out of them and then helping them recognise it without the need for years of continual coaching or therapy.If you experience social anxiety, no matter how severe it appears at first, there will always have been a time when you didn’t do your problem. Chances are there will also be times in your life right now where you demonstrate everything you need to not have your problem. It may be only fleeting but if you think hard and long enough you’ll find it.Well it’s in these times and places where your solution lies.It’s in these times and places that you demonstrate the resources, feelings, thought patterns and belief systems to feel comfortable and confident around people…Of course if you are experiencing lots of social anxiety then clearly you are not recognising and accessing these resources enough and in the times you want to…The good thing is though, you’re starting from a much stronger position than you maybe first realised.

So when I was delving through my clients personal history I asked him three questions that helped him start to recognise these resources that seemed so elusive to him…Three questions that i’d thoroughly recommend you ask yourself…The three questions are:”When is this not a problem for you?”"What age were you when this wasn’t a problem?”"What was it like in those times and places?”By asking yourself these questions you force yourself to examine the ways of being in the world that have always been there only you haven’t been aware of them because you’ve been so wrapped up in the negative stuff…We explored these questions and other variations until my client began to get a sense of what it was like to not have his problem…Amongst others one of the answers he gave me was that he never felt anxious when he was at a fancy dress party. When he stepped into the ‘role’ he was playing by putting on his costume all the anxious feelings he had about being around people completely disappeared. He felt completely relaxed and in the moment and thoroughly enjoyed the night and the company of the other guests.Some people are concerned about playing a role, thinking that they are somehow violating the often cited golden rule that you should just ‘be yourself’.In my opinion this is nonsense…if you are constantly trying to be someone you clearly are not, putting on social face after social social face because you feel you aren’t good enough then that’s a problem…However, if you are playing a role to access resources, feelings and parts of you that are normally stifled by limiting beliefs and negative social programming, then this is a good thing…Try this for example…Imagine you are at a party in a posh bar/restaurant…First of all play through in your mind what it would be like if you were a guest…notice what you see, hear and feel…Now play through it a second time, only this time imagine you own the bar/restaurant…How do you feel different? What new resources, beliefs, thinking are you operating from?Also, how do you communicate with people differently? Are you more comfortable? more skilled?Most people say they are…That’s the power of role playing…you’re not doing it to try to be someone else, you’re doing it start accessing the powerful resources that are already inside of you…that ones that you haven’t been making use of until now…

So here’s my challenge for you, pick a new role for yourself this coming week. One that contains resources, feelings, thought patterns and beliefs systems you don’t normally operate from and play out this role for the week.No-one needs to know you are doing it…see it as a game you are playing and you can go into it as much or as little as you feel is appropriate…Here are some examples of roles you can try out:The Carer: Always interested and genuinely concerned for people’s welfare.The Millionaire: High value, wealthy while at the same time humble about their achievements.The Explorer: Has an insatiable sense of curiosity about everything. Loves to explore.The Playful Child: Sees everything from a playful, fun perspective. Is enthusiastic and excitable.The Stand-Up Comedian: Sees hilarity in everything. Laughs a lot.All, the best and let me know how you get on…

Role Playing For Writers | Role Playing Games

Role playing is the act of assuming a character in order to act out a story. It is often done with other people, all assuming the role of their own characters, and can be carried out across a variety of mediums including real life, over the phone, web cams, voice, chat, forums, profiles, and in picture form. There are also a variety of graphical games, and social networking sites, which facilitate these activities.One of the most important aspects of role playing is that it is an act of storytelling. You are a character, acting out a story. Whether it’s a pre written script, or an ad-libbed event, the bottom line is that you are engaging in this activity as a way of actually interacting with the story that’s being told; you become a part of it, you actively engage in the action, allowing you to understand the character and the tale in an even more intimate way than if you were passively receiving the information.

The act of writing is very similar, in that it is a process of story telling, of creation. However, when writing you’re completely alone, with the only source of action and characters being your own head. By contrast roleplaying provides a variety of people to help come up with what happens next. In fact, role playing is such a congruous act that you really have to give up control of the story, in order to give it the freedom to grow and expand as the various players see fit.This can be a great exercise in group thinking that can teach a writer valuable lessons about the way people see stories developing. It can also expand the way a creative person views stories, giving them access to thoughts outside of their own heads, and ways of thinking about the world.

In the case of something like a role playing chat room, the writer can actually get direct access to writing practice and storytelling, without having to engage in the often solitary and lonely act of writing based entirely on their own engagement. It’s a social situation that can be quite enjoyable, and as such provides a writer with a place to relax and enjoy themselves, while still engaging in practice of their chosen craft.