Tips on Overcoming Social Anxiety
Social anxiety. Everyone has experienced this phenomenon at least once in their life. Whether you are meeting the parents of you SO, starting a new job, public speaking or simply meeting people you are unfamiliar with.
For many people, social anxiety is not a big deal. It is common for us to grow out of our anxious tendencies as we grow older, and gain more experience in life. But for many of us, it is also common to suffer from social anxiety our entire lives.
For those who have difficulty in unfamiliar social settings, here are a few tips that may ease the anxiety:
- Sharing your anxieties. There is nothing wrong with feeling anxious, but many people feel uncomfortable or embarrassed talking about how they are feeling. The irony is that hiding or suppressing those feelings can make them worse. If you are feeling socially anxious, tell someone you are close to.
- Try a breathing technique. Breathing exercises have been shown to help soothe anxiety. Focusing on breathing can help take your mind off of what is causing your anxiety. When you control your breathing and focus on slower breathes, your heart rate slows down, as well as your mind.
- Remember that your thoughts are not reality. One of the biggest challenges we face when it comes to controlling our anxiety is remembering that our fears are not reality. Your mind is a powerful tool, and it can trick you into believing things that aren’t true. When experiencing anxiety, try and remember that your fears are imaginary. Of all the things you have feared, 99.99% of those fears came true.
- Shift your attention. Anxiety is good at consuming your thoughts. Focusing on other things can help distract you from what you are worried about.
- Face your fears. Exposure therapy when it comes to social anxiety can be helpful. One of the biggest benefits of facing your fears is seeing how small and irrelevant they have been along.
- Don’t worry about being perfect. Remember, perfection is not real. It is just an abstract concept. By letting go of the need to be perfect, you allow yourself more room to be your self in everyday life.
- Go out of your comfort zone. Trying new things, or doing things that normally would make you uncomfortable is a great way to overcome social anxiety.