If Are you always worried that other people are judging you or what think about you when you’re out and about?
It’s normal to feel slightly anxious or uncomfortable when you’re hanging out with coworkers or people you’ve never met before. However, when your anxiety from being in social settings becomes so overwhelming or even debilitating, that it starts affecting your daily life.
It may be a sign of social anxiety. These symptoms can vary from sweating and trembling to experience nausea and dizziness. Severe social anxiety can even cause avoiding social situations or going out altogether. So, to help you out. Here are six ways to overcome social anxiety.
Before we begin, we would like to mention that this article is created for educational purposes only and is not intended to substitute professional diagnosis. If you suspect you may suffer from social anxiety or any mental health condition, we highly advise you to seek help from a qualified mental health professional.
6 Ways to Overcome Social Anxiety
1. Create Awareness
Do you feel overwhelmed by the thoughts in your head? Sometimes when you’re at a social event, you may feel like everybody is judging you, or how you look or how you behave. But more often these negative thoughts are untrue and may stem from your insecurities and criticism of yourself.
By creating a habit of becoming more mindful and aware of where your thoughts are coming from. You can start to notice the triggers that cause your social anxiety to worsen and challenge and disarm these intrusive thoughts.
2. Engage in Relaxation Techniques
Are there things you do when you find yourself feeling anxious? If not, you can practice them relaxing techniques, since they can be incredibly helpful, especially when your anxiety becomes overwhelming.
One strategy is diaphragmatic breathing, also known as deep breathing. Deep breathing engages the diaphragm and allows you to take in more air, notice how your stomach rises and falls with each breath. Engaging in relaxation techniques can help you better prepare for moments of extreme anxiety.
However, you should note that these techniques are not meant to substitute treatment for an anxiety disorder.
3. Try Yoga
Have you ever tried yoga? Yoga can be quite useful in combating anxiety because social anxiety involves cognitive physical, emotional, and habitual sensations. Yoga can help you relax and refocus your mind and body.
Practising different types of yoga poses can help you reduce your anxiety by engaging your mind and shifting your focus away from the overwhelming and negative thoughts in your head.
4. Set Goals
Are you trying to work on your anxiety on your own? If so it’s important to remember to set some goals. Having goals will help you figure out where you want to go and it also guides you on how to get there. But these goals must be realistic and quantifiable. So you’ll be motivated to continue making progress. Some online quizzes can help you gauge your degree of anxiety.
These can help give you something to work towards. When you meet one of your goals, remember to also celebrate and reward yourself for them.
5. Make Something
Do you enjoy painting or journaling? Art therapy can be a beneficial way of reducing social anxiety? Since social anxiety often stems from the fear of being judged, it can end up creating a need for perfectionism in yourself. Engaging in art therapy can be a way to help you accept your imperfections and even make something beautiful out of them.
Additionally, social anxiety is regulated in the amygdala, an area responsible for emotions, feelings, and sensory input from your environment. In this sense, art therapy can be a way for you to illustrate what you’re feeling, without needing to find the words for it.
Have you ever tried going to therapy? Many types of treatments could work for anxiety. CBT is the most common cognitive-behavioural therapy. It’s a technique often used to address many mental health conditions like depression, PTSD, and anxiety. CBT helps you identify your negative thought patterns, and gives you the tools to change them.
Another technique is systematic guided exposure. This involves slowly exposing yourself to scary or anxiety-inducing things until you’re not so scared anymore. It’s a way of taking baby steps to overcome your anxiety, with the right guidance and support you can slowly overcome your social anxiety.
Have you tried these tips to help combat your anxiety?