With so many people suffering from it, you probably know somebody who has social anxiety. And just in case you are not sure what social anxiety actually is, it is defined as the fear that you will be judged or evaluated negatively by other people, even if you have never met them or have no idea who they are. It will lead you to a feeling of inferiority, embarrassment, self-consciousness, humiliation, depression or a feeling of inadequacy.
You can usually tell if somebody suffers from social anxiety if they seem fine when they are alone but become extremely anxious when social situations arise. If this is the case, the chances are that you suffer from social anxiety.
While it may not sound like that serious of a condition, social anxiety is a very serious problem. While there are different degrees of social anxiety, the feeling of shyness is a symptom, but isn’t severe enough for you to be considered having a social anxiety disorder, even though it can potentially lower the quality of your life. On the other hand, some people get social anxiety so severe that even the thought of being in a social setting will fill them with fear and dread.
No matter what your individual symptoms may be, any degree of social anxiety is capable of making it extremely hard for you to enjoy everyday activities that can help you become happy and content. This is the exact reason that it is extremely important for you to learn exactly how you can cure your social anxiety and finally take back your life.
The Best Ways to Cure Social Anxiety
The most effective way to treat social anxiety is cognitive behavioral therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy is an extremely effective way to combat your social anxiety disorder, also known as SAD. The only downside, however, is that cognitive behavioral therapy is normally very expensive and not something that is practical for most people.
On the other hand, several different techniques can help you to cure your social anxiety and do not require any kind of therapist and do not require any type of unnecessary medication.
Before You Get Started
When it comes to curing your social anxiety disorder, things have the potential to get tricky. This is due mainly in part to one of the disorder’s symptoms, avoidance. If you are suffering from social anxiety disorder, you more than likely will try to leave any social event as soon as you get there, or even avoid the even all together.
It is this behavior that causes negative reinforcement. When you avoid social situations or leave as soon as you feel stressed, you are essentially telling yourself to stay away from anything that frightens you and that when you do stay away, you are now safe. This belief reinforces the behavior of avoiding future social events and has you continue the belief that social events and situations are frightening.
This is why you must cure your social anxiety as quickly as possible if you want any hope of living a quality life. But if you avoid trying to make any necessary behaviors or changes, you can potentially reinforce your fears even more.
Here are some ways that you can start to get a handle on your social anxiety and get over the fear you feel whenever social situations may come up.
While being mindful is not a treatment or cure for social anxiety, it will help to be more aware of yourself. If you can train yourself to be more aware of when you start feeling your anxiety, you can then try to prevent it from continuing much more effectively and not have it affect you as much.
With anxiety comes negative self-talk and negative thinking. This will often contribute to even more negative thinking. Before it gets to that point you need to notice it and teach yourself how to put the blame for how it makes you feel not onto yourself, but onto your anxiety. The better you are able to recognize the symptoms of your anxiety as they start occurring, the more you will be able to realize that it actually is the anxiety that is causing them and not you. Once you are able to do this, continuing with treatment for your social anxiety will continue to become easier and easier.
Challenge Your Thoughts
This is something that therapists will do and something that you can easily do on your own. Whenever you feel like you are having any type of anxious thoughts, simply ask yourself why you might be thinking that, if there are any other alternatives you may be able to do, what do you think the outcome of this is going to be, and why is the outcome really so important for you.
To make it easier, you can even jot down these answers in a journal so you can read them later, or even try doing this process in your head.
Desensitize Your Fears
While many fears come with social anxiety, the most common one is having a fear of embarrassment. There are also other fears such as:
- Losing someone
- Being judged
If you are able to get used to feeling these fears, that is known as desensitization. When you are able to desensitize these fears, you will eventually stop having any fear of them altogether.
Another great way to help cure your social anxiety is to make new friends or even get closer to the friends you already have. Be around people who give you a feeling of support and have positive attitudes all the time, as well as those who you can confide in about how you’re feeling with your anxiety.
When it comes to social anxiety, there is no actual ‘cure.’ You can, however, lessen your anxiety symptoms and over time you will make them disappear forever. Just remember to stay positive and keep moving forward every single day and your social anxiety will be a thing of the past.