What exactly is this and how to deal with social anxiety?
Social anxiety is nothing but anxiety related to an upcoming social situation or anxiety and stress during or after the situation taking place.
People that suffer from social anxiety tend to not like being the center of attention, instead choosing to be inconspicuous and as unnoticeable as possible. This is mostly because of a fear of evaluation from their peers. Or a fear of the consequences of their actions, however insignificant they may be.
Social anxiety that interferes with your personal or professional life is undesirable, and here are some tips on how to deal with social anxiety.
How to Deal with Social Anxiety
- One Step at a Time. Think of all the situations or scenarios that make you anxious, and then write them down in order of how serious or severe they are.
Now face your fears. Begin with the easiest situation from your list, face it, and then mark it off. Move on to the next item on the list.
With this process, you’ll feel your social confidence building steadily until such situations are no longer a major problem for you.
- Practice Meditation and Deep Breathing. Meditation has long been known to counteract stress and anxiety. Concentrate on your breathing while meditating, and make sure you inhale and exhale in deep, long and drawn-out breaths.
Do this exercise EVERY SINGLE DAY. Also, meditate just before an upcoming social situation, and you might just feel relaxed and ready to mingle. You can use an app for meditation or learn everything about it on some meditation website that will teach you the right techniques.
- Create Goals for a Situation. Sometimes, socially anxious people may perform great at social situations. But they tend to come from these situations feeling like their performance was below par.
If you feel like this all the time, set some goals for every social meeting.
For example: If you are part of a group discussion, set yourself a goal to ask 5 questions, or make 5 comments and remarks. That way, you are not thinking about what people think of you, but whether you fulfilled your goals. Once you do, you will be satisfied and happy with yourself, improving social confidence.
- Be Rationally Optimistic. Don’t expect the worst from every situation you face. Acknowledge the rational possibility and approach the situation with that mindset.
Don’t go into an interview thinking, “I’m gonna bomb so hard!” Instead, say, “They might just hire me.”
If social anxiety is seriously restraining you from being the person you want to be, these tips will definitely help you. Seek help from your family and friends, and you’ll gradually start feeling better about yourself.