Try out the Social Anxiety Theme on the Thinkladder app here:
Social anxiety spans a wide spectrum in its severity. Some of us might feel a little shy or awkward from time to time. Others of us may experience crippling fear, or extreme physical reactions (like blushing, shaking, or sweating) in social situations.
Whether extreme or mild, social anxiety is fed by our limiting beliefs. Those beliefs could be something like, ‘I can’t handle being the centre of attention’, or ‘I’m going to say or do the wrong thing and embarrass myself’. Gaining self-awareness is the first step toward healthier ways of thinking about ourselves and social situations that result in less anxiety.
If you struggle with social situations and negative emotions, then check out the ‘Social Anxiety’ theme in the Thinkladder App, and get on the journey to greater social confidence.
Insights from the Social Anxiety Theme
Practical tips to boost your confidence:
Start small: If social situations are overwhelming, start small and build up your confidence gradually. For example, make eye contact with the barista at the coffee shop or say ‘good morning’ to someone passing on the street. As each you accomplish each of these small challenges, you are strengthening your social confidence and helping it to blossom over time.
Practice grounding techniques: If you notice yourself struggling to calm your nerves, take a moment to self-regulate and ground your nervous system. Try to find a quiet spot to do this, but if that’s not possible, you can still do this at any time or place. Breathing techniques, progressive muscle relaxation and other mindfulness techniques can help calm your body and mind when you’re feeling anxious. Take the time to learn some techniques in advance. This means you’ll have an arsenal ready to go when the time comes.
Focus on others: Rather than overanalysing yourself, try to focus on others in social situations. Ask them questions, show interest in what they have to say, and try to make a genuine connection.
Attend social events with a trusted friend: Going to a social event with a friend or a trusted companion can help ease anxiety. Having someone there to support you and provide encouragement can make a big difference.
Practice social skills: Intentionally practicse social skills such as active listening, asking open-ended questions, and maintaining eye contact. Having a goal to focus on can help build confidence in social situations.
Don’t forget the basics:
Take care of yourself: Social anxiety can be draining, so make sure to take care of yourself physically and mentally. Get enough sleep, eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and make time for relaxation and self-care.
Seek support: Consider talking to a therapist or counsellor who can help you identify and address underlying issues that may be contributing to your social anxiety. You can also reach out to supportive friends and family members who can offer encouragement and reassurance.
Challenge limiting beliefs: Social anxiety often stems from unhelpful beliefs about oneself and social situations. Taking time to intentionally explore what beliefs are fuelling your social anxiety will help to address the root problem and create positive change. Thinkladder can aid you in this self-awareness process, helping you find insights to uplift, empower and ground yourself in social situations. With consistency over time, you can greatly reduce social anxiety and even start to enjoy socialising.
Related topics: People Pleasing, Self-Worth, Anxiety & Comparing Myself To Others.