Samantha and her Social Anxiety Part I
Samantha and her Social Anxiety Part II: Overcoming
Most everyone gets nervous occasionally in certain social situations. For example, starting a new school or job, public speaking or going on a date can cause many of us to feel anxious. But according to the Mayo Clinic, “for those with social anxiety disorder, also called social phobia, everyday interactions cause significant anxiety, fear, self-consciousness and embarrassment because you fear being scrutinized or judged by others.” This anxiety can cause significant disruption to people’s lives and lead to avoidance of activities. Additionally, the severe stress caused by social anxiety disorder can affect all aspects of a person’s life, including, school and work, relationships, friendships, extracurricular activities and one’s daily routine.
Although social anxiety disorder is a chronic mental health condition, medication and psychotherapy can help. A therapist can help those who suffer with social anxiety disorder to learn coping skills which will allow patients to gain confidence in social situations.
Worrying about embarrassing or humiliating yourself
Dread concerning how you will be presented to others
Avoiding situations where you feel you may be the center or focus of attention or may be judged
Concern that you’ll offend someone
Intense fear of interacting or talking with strangers
Fear that others will notice that you look anxious-which can lead to even more anxiety
Excessive fear of embarrassment and humiliation and/or being teased and criticized
Avoiding doing things or speaking to people out of fear of embarrassment
Physical signs that may occur when experiencing social anxiety include; Blushing, heart palpitations, trembling, sweating, abdominal discomfort or nausea, trouble catching your breath, dizziness or lightheadedness or feeling that your mind has gone blank.