What Is Social Anxiety Disorder?
As a Life Coach I often speak to and help people who could be classed as having social anxiety disorder. It’s not that difficult for you to get relief from this if you are willing to be disciplined and apply yourself over 6 to 12 weeks. So lets first have a look at what it means to have this extreme form of anxiety.
You have probably experienced social situations where you feel fear and apprehension. That’s normal, it happens to most people. This commonly occurs if you are talking in front of a large group of people. This may even extend to talking in front of small groups of people and you might even feel shy or uncomfortable in any unfamiliar social situation. My opinion is that this is still normal.
For some of you however these feeling are much more dramatic and simple social scenarios can become debilitating episodes, resulting in extreme anxiety, panic attacks, or you avoiding the event entirely. Anxiety in this case becomes so overwhelming for you that it interferes with the normal function of your life. If you suffer like this when it comes to social situations it’s said that you have a social anxiety disorder.
How Common Is Social Anxiety Disorder
You are not alone. Statistic say that social anxiety disorder is one of the largest mental health issues in the world. I have seen statistics quoted that say 5- 10% of some western populations suffer from this. Male or female social anxiety disorder has no preference and I would guess that the figures are conservative because many people are worried about ridicule and embarrassment, so you may keep this type of issue to yourself.
Triggers For Social Anxiety Disorder
Your social anxiety disorder may be triggered by the following events;
- You are meeting new people
- You are public speaking
- You are being watched performing a task
- You are the center of attention
- You are being teased
- You are being criticized.
Symptoms Of Social Anxiety Disorder
The symptoms of social anxiety disorder include the following;
- You may have heart palpitations
- You may shake
- You might sweat a lot
- You may have diarrhea
- You might feel nausea
- You may be confused
- You might stutter
- You may blush
Do You have Social Anxiety Disorder
This is an interesting question because many of the symptoms listed above are also present if you are nervous and stressed about a situation. If you have social anxiety disorder you often also have low self esteem, you are likely to be sensitive to criticism and rejection and you probably have difficulty asserting yourself.
If you have social anxiety disorder you probably experiences extreme and recurrent episodes of anxiety whenever a social situation arises. You will probably be aware of the intensity and over reaction of your symptoms. You might feel that others will ridicule or judge you because of your reaction. This of course increases your fear of the social occasion you are faced with. You might go to extremes to avoid social situations. If you avoid doing things with other people because you are afraid of embarrassing yourself or people judging you you may suffer from this disorder. If you are terrified of being the center of attention and you avoid or become anxious in social situations where you have to meet or speak to strangers you might have social anxiety disorder.
How Do You Fix Social Anxiety Disorder
It’s not as difficult as you think. You need to understand that anxiety in all its forms is a function of the way you think. If you understand that your thoughts occur to you – and they are not you then you can progress on the path to healing. Once you understand AND practice being present and aware of your thinking process you can change the thoughts you have in regard to any particular event. This is easy with practice. The key here is you can learn the techniques in minutes but you NEED to practice for weeks.
There is a process I can lead you through that will completely change your thinking and eliminate your social anxiety disorder. Here are the steps;
1. You need to learn and practice the ability to be present.
2. You need to learn and practice the ability to stand apart from your though process and see what your thoughts are.
3. Once you have practiced and gained strength in the first two steps – you will be able to pinpoint the thoughts that occur as they lead to the emotion surrounding the social situation that you are anxious about. There may be many emotions present and you need to tackle each one individually.
4. You need to dissolve your emotional blocks around the social anxiety. This is done by identifying the base fear for each individual line of thought and then changing your belief around this.
I know this can be done as I have helped many people with different types of anxiety problems from mild nervousness at major events to social anxiety disorder as discussed in this article. The resources to tackle this are available on my web sites for free.
I can lead you through this process for some amazing results. Have a look at my Life Coaching page and contact me now so that we can get started.
Authors Details: Aymen Fares is an International Life Coach with clients all over the world. He is based in Melbourne Australia for personal appointments or you can benefit from coaching via Skype anywhere in the world.