Thursday, 14 July 2016

Tips for Social Anxiety

Social anxiety is persistent and a overwhelming fear of social situations and is also one of the most common anxiety disorders. In young people research showed that 1 in 6 will experience a anxiety condition at one point in their lives, that could mean 1 in 5 people in your class may be living with anxiety. Another statistic that I personally found interesting was that 20% of students experience mental health difficulties while studying at university.

Some symptoms for social anxiety are:

  • dreading daily activities - like meeting strangers, talking in groups, speaking on the phone, eating or drinking in company or even shopping. 
  • have low self-esteem and feeling insecure in relationships 
  • fear of being criticised
  • avoiding eye contact
  • misuse of drugs and alcohol which aims to reduce anxiety
- Found on the NHS website

Social anxiety is something I always thought I had but it wasn't until I took this test I realised it was worse than I actually thought. You can take the test by click here .

Here were my results from the test:

Now it all makes sense even from a young age, when I was about 4 or 5 years old during my first year at school I was afraid of the lunch hall. Sounds stupid I know but I feared the loud sounds and large amount of people so much I would hide under the tables in the classroom and end my lunch there. 

Even now at university I have to admit it still affects me whether it's on nights out with friends, in lectures and even the complicated topic of boys. I find that if you have the right friends in these situations it makes it a lot easier but sometimes it's still difficult. Having the right support system is really beneficial.

So if you are like me and have social anxiety here are some tips:
  1. Challenge negative thoughts 
  2. Focus on others and not yourself
  3. Learn to control your breath
  4. Face your fears
  5. Build better relationships
  6. Change your lifestyle
  7. Remember anxiety is less visible than you imagine
  8. If people notice you are anxious that doesn't mean you will negatively be thought 

I hope you find this helpful or at least informative. Don't let your anxiety hold you back the most important tip out of the 8 I can honestly say is face your fears, you may just surprise yourself!

Let me know if you took the test or click here  to take it. Let me know your opinions on anxiety either by commenting, email on or on Twitter @girlwithablog16.

Also I found my research for this post on NHS website on social anxiety disorder (social phobia) and anxiety UK