Social anxiety is more common than most people believe. According to a recent survey, about 18% of American adults suffer from social anxiety and find it difficult to engage in social situations that involve speaking with other people.
Social anxiety is a fear of being judged by other people in a social interaction. Although no one knows what triggers this problem, a majority of the studies believe it is a combination of environmental factors and a lack of exposure. For example, kids who are not exposed to other children of the same age may find it hard to socialise with others later in life.
There are a number of ways a person can overcome social anxiety. In this article, we will list a few effective methods.
Try a Therapist, not a pill
Therapy has proven to be an effective way to overcome social anxiety. A qualified therapist has many tools such as cognitive behaviour therapy, (CBT) hypnosis or even new age tools like NLP to help you overcome the anxiety you feel when meeting and talking to people. Although there may be medications available to relieve you of this anxiousness, a therapeutic approach is a proven long-term approach to overcome this fear.
Self-help with simple steps.
You can be your own coach or therapist by taking steps to overcome social anxiety using self-help books. There are several excellent books on the subject that discuss many effective techniques. By setting up small social goals, you can slowly expose yourself to a different situation that typically causes anxiety.
Visualisation is one of the most effective ways to mentally rehearse situations, change the responses and watch how it changes your perspective. In one technique, you get to imagine your social anxiety in full play and then you watch it dissipate slowly into nothingness and the same nervousness being replaced by a feeling of joy.
The key is to start and make some progress every day.
This is one of the old school techniques that works wonders. It follows the principle of face your fears until you are no longer afraid of them. In this method, you go out and expose yourself to as many uncomfortable social situations as possible and see what happens. In the beginning, it may be daunting to willingly face this anxiety. But as you keep doing it, the brain circuits get tired of firing the same trigger too many times. At some point in time, you no longer feel anxious. It takes a lot of self-disciple and guts to follow this path. But it is one of the most tested and proven ways to get rid of any kind of fear. Once you overcome a fear this way, it becomes a lot easier to get rid of other such anxieties and fears in your life.
There are many ways you can learn to overcome social anxiety. You can either do it yourself or get professional help. Avoiding situations that cause anxiety is not a good solution.
So, start today and take a step forward.