Is It Holding You Back?

Social Phobia - You want to enjoy social settings but the anxiety you feel inside over-rides any attempt to even think about going and enjoying yourself. Is that how your feel? You are not alone.

Some of my most difficult moments with anxiety were in my teens just after my first anxiety attack. It left me feeling worried, dazed, and scared.

What is worse, it left me afraid to be in unfamiliar social settings for fear it might happen again, but this time in front of everyone.

I too had to work to overcome fear of social settings as well. If your social anxiety is caused by a fear that you will experience another panic attack, please see this section on Anticipatory Anxiety. However the root cause of many social phobias are found in low self-esteem.

Practical Suggestions:
Building your self esteem and overcoming social anxiety.

*1 Change your circle of friends. Many times the wrong friends will pull you down by negative comments. You don't need or want that while trying to make changes.

*2 Choose friends who are understanding, sympathetic, and understanding of social phobia. An online support group for Social Anxiety can be helpful as well.

*3 Build your own self esteem by telling yourself EVERYDAY that you are worth A LOT. Say it out loud at least 10 times a day!!!

*4 Learn to laugh at yourself and not take things so seriously. That is a tell-tale sign of those of us with anxiety, the tendency to over-analyze EVERYTHING.

*5 Don't compare what you can do now to what others can do. Recognize the small accomplishments you make everyday in changing your social behavior and praise yourself for them.

*6 Don't expect perfection. In the growing process we all have setbacks. If you fall off the horse don't wallow in the mud. Get back up and get on that horse and keep riding.

*7 When you find your anxiety heightening before the social event, try this breathing technique to help out.

Applying these suggestions will help you on the road to reach your destination - free from social anxiety!!!

While learning the above techniques you will need to practice, practice, practice! That is the only way to get good at controlling your anxiety.

If you are going to obsess (which is what we do quite well), obsess about positive outcomes to the social situations you fear. Play them out in your mind but with a successful ending...And in time, you will see that successful endings become a reality!

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