Anxiety is the feeling of fear or uneasiness about something with an uncertain outcome. When a person particularly gets anxious in social situations that involve interaction with other people, it is known as social anxiety disorder. Social anxiety constitutes of the fear of being judged or negatively evaluated by people. People with social anxiety face inferiority, embarrassment, humiliation, and inadequacy, which can even lead to depression. In cases like this, people try to minimize social interaction, which often leads to being shy, aloof, quiet, nervous, unfriendly, and disinterested. The truth is that people with social anxiety want to mingle, be friendly, and want to be a part of a social group, but it is the fear that restricts them. It also negatively affects their relationship with people.
Situations that trigger social anxiety
- Making eye contact with other people
- Meeting a famous person or one in authority
- Being the center of a conversation
- Making a public announcement or giving a speech
- Being introduced to new people
- Being noticed, criticized or teased
- Walking into a room full of unknown people
- Eating, writing or even making a phone call in the presence of other people
These are some of the most common situations in which one experiences social anxiety. However, different people have different conditions that can trigger it. People also experience a range of various emotional and behavioral changes like sweating, shivering, blushing, racing of the heart, and breathlessness. If social anxiety disorder persists to the extent that it starts affecting one’s daily functioning to a large extent, it is classified as a disorder. Social anxiety can be treated through Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which involves modifying an individual’s outlook and behavior when they are in public places and social situations. It aims at making people feel less anxious by taking one step at a time with social anxiety counseling.
Overcome Social Anxiety
Social anxiety can go to an extent to which it starts affecting a person’s essential social interaction to a large scale and hampers their daily functioning. It occurs for months together. It is when a person has a social anxiety disorder. The stress in social situations gets too much for the person to handle, and it also causes a vast amount of discomfort. People with social anxiety disorder are often mistaken to be aloof, introverted, and rude. It stops a person from being a part of the interactions that they actually might enjoy. The disorder makes one feel like the fear is out of their control. If the person communicates with a close, trusted person or a counselor, it will help them understand the social conditions better and slowly overcome the fear.
Symptoms of social anxiety
- Rigid body posture
- Minimal eye contact
- Sweaty palms
- Tremble, shiver, and blush
- Racing heartbeat
- Feeling nauseous
- Fear of being embarrassed
- Minimal conversation or speaking in a very soft voice
- Avoiding places & situations with too many people
Social anxiety disorder usually occurs in young adults and becomes a disorder due to a lack of attention given to it and no steps towards treatment. Communication in such situations is a crucial factor. Medication, psychotherapy, and support groups are some of the most effective ways of treatment. Treatment mainly depends upon what a social situation causes anxiety in the person.