Social anxiety disorder is characterized by the intense fear of specific social situations, especially situations where you feel like you are being watched by others. The situations make you anxious to a point that you do everything you can to avoid them.
In this article, we offer some tips to overcome social anxiety disorder.
Challenge Your Negative Thoughts
Challenging the negative thoughts that keep pulling you back is the first step in overcoming social anxiety. You may constantly keep worrying whether you will end up looking like a fool or if you are going to end up humiliating yourself.
Make your best effort to identify and understand the negative thoughts that are behind your fear of social situations. The next step is making a logical analysis of the negative thoughts and trying to replace them with positive thoughts.
Focus On People Around You And Not On Yourself
While being in a social situation that makes us nervous and tense, all of our focus will be on our anxious thoughts and feelings. You will feel as if everyone around you is watching you and making judgments about the way you look and behave. This excessive self-focus is only going to trigger more anxiety.
Focusing on others instead of focusing on your thoughts will help a lot to control anxiety.
Dare To Face Your Fears
Facing a situation that you know will trigger social anxiety is the best way to overcome it. Avoiding the situation is only going to help you temporarily because you might have to face a similar situation in the future. Understand that if you keep on avoiding a feared social situation, it becomes more and more frightening.
Dare to face your fears. You can start with a situation that you can handle and build the confidence to face more challenging situations. Moving too fast is not recommended because starting by facing your biggest fear the first time itself is mostly going to backfire and worsen your anxiety.
Try To Be More Social
Being in supportive social environments will make it easier for you to challenge social anxiety. Try the following:
- Take a social skills class or assertiveness training class: The classes of this kind are usually offered at local adult education centers.
- Work on your communication skills: Try to improve your communication skills to make emotionally intelligent communication with others.
An adequate effort from your part will help you a lot to overcome your fear of social situations at the earliest.