An anxiety condition characterized by extreme fear in social circumstances is known as social anxiety disorder or social phobia. People with this condition have a hard time interacting with others, socializing, and enjoying social events. So, they are afraid of being inspected or judged by others. Moreover, they may realize that their anxieties are irrational or unjustified, yet they believe they have no control over them.
Shyness vs. Social Anxiety Disorder
Shyness is not the same as social anxiety. Moreover, shyness is usually temporary and has little impact on one’s life. Social anxiety is a complex and chronic condition. It can have an impact on one’s ability to:
- attend school
- build connections to people who are not close to them
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, almost 15 million adults in the United States suffer from social anxiety. Symptoms of this condition may appear as early as the age of thirteen.
Causes and Risk Factors
Many factors can contribute to the development of a social anxiety disorder, including:
· History of the Family
If your biological parents or siblings have a social anxiety disorder, you are more likely to have it as well.
· Negative Interactions
Teased, bullied, rejected, ridiculed, or humiliated children are more likely to develop a social anxiety disorder. Other unpleasant life events, such as family conflict, trauma, or abuse, may also connect to this disorder.
· Temperament | Social Anxiety Disorder
Children who are shy, timid, withdrawn, or restricted may be at high risks can be at risk in unfamiliar situations or people.
· New Social or Occupational Expectations
Symptoms of social anxiety disorder often begin in adolescence. Moreover, meeting new people, giving a public speech, or giving an important professional presentation can all provoke symptoms for the first time.
· Appearance that Attracts Attention
Face deformity, stuttering, or tremors caused by Parkinson’s disease, for example, can enhance feelings of self-consciousness and, in some people, provoke a social anxiety condition.
Tips to Overcome Social Anxiety Disorder
Anxiety about social situations is a highly personal emotion. Tips that work for one individual may not work for another. As a result, experimenting with different ways to see what works best can be beneficial. The following suggestions may assist people in overcoming social anxiety.
Ø Keep increasing social conditions
People with social anxiety disorder frequently avoid social events that may increase their anxiety. Although this temporarily relieves anxiety, avoidance can make anxiety worse in the long run. If possible, and if necessary, with the assistance of a therapist, the person can progressively increase their exposure to the situations that they are afraid of. It allows them to have a positive reaction to the situation. Positive social interactions can enhance a person’s confidence while also reducing anxiety and assuring them that they can overcome it.
Ø Take Time to Relax | Social Anxiety Disorder
Feel-good chemicals release in the brain when people engage in mood-boosting activities. It can relieve stress and make people feel better about their worries. Try doing something calming or pleasurable before stepping into a scary social scenario, such as listening to music, reading, playing a video game, or meditating.
Ø Reframe Your Thoughts
If an individual says they are shy, it will intensify their current fear of talking to people or being in public. Also, thoughts fuel the behavior patterns. The reframing process is a CBT approach that entails coaching people through it. So, it can be beneficial to write down these thoughts. For example, transform “I am a shy person” into “I behaved shy at the gathering.” It will comfort the person to realize that they can change.
Ø Avoid Relying on Alcohol
While alcohol and other substances may temporarily ease anxiety, they can increase anxiety over time and lead to addiction or substance use disorders.
These suggestions will definitely help you. If you know any other tips to overcome social anxiety disorder and steps to a healthy lifestyle, please inform us in the comment section.