Say Goodbye to Social Anxiety with Hypnotherapy
It’s not long until Christmas and for many people that means parties and gatherings are on the horizon.
But no matter what we’re doing, we have to interact with people day to day in one way or another. Imagine if you found it really difficult to talk to people. Imagine if you found everyday interactions terrifying and you were crippled with fear. This is the reality for people who suffer from social anxiety. They fear interacting with other people because they are afraid they’ll be judged negatively, and this can cause unbelievable stress. People with social anxiety are often seen as being shy, quiet, unfriendly, and
stand-offish when the reality is that they are suffering from a debilitating condition. But social anxiety, like other anxiety disorders, can be treated with hypnotherapy. In this blog I’m going to talk about social anxiety and how hypnotherapy can help.
The effects of social anxiety
Social anxiety can effectively stop people from functioning properly from day to day. They can feel extremely self-conscious, embarrassed, and inadequate. These feelings can make them withdraw and avoid interaction with others, which only makes their anxiety worse. It’s a vicious cycle.
What kind of situation make people feel anxious?
Common situations where people feel anxious include when they’re meeting new people, when they’re the centre of attention (or feel like they are), when they feel like people are watching them, when they have to speak in public or even on the phone, or when they dealing with someone in authority.
The symptoms of social anxiety
Social situations are not as simple as someone being ‘quiet,’ it can be overwhelming for a sufferer, and they might experience these symptoms:
- Negative thinking-thinking that people will think they’re stupid or that they’ll feel stupid
- Feeling shaky, dizzy, or distant
- Butterflies in the stomach
- Racing heart, shortness of breath
What causes social anxiety
Social anxiety is programmed into the mind every time a person is judged, embarrassed, teased, or criticised, and the programme just keeps on running. Studies have shown that almost half of all social phobias start before the age of 10 and almost all of them start before the age of 20. So by the time people seek hypnotherapy for help with social anxiety, they’ve probably suffered with it for a number of years.
What happens if social anxiety is not dealt with?
If it’s not dealt with, social anxiety can become a more generalised anxiety that makes even routine daily tasks seem impossible. People who don’t seek treatment or help can end up:
- Worrying about being criticised all the time
- Avoiding other people
- Becoming so insecure that it causes problems with forming and maintaining relationships
- Feeling lonely and depressed
- Being unable to relax
- Depending on alcohol and drugs to cope in situations they find difficult
How to deal with social anxiety
- Avoid generalisations like telling yourself “there’s no way I’m going to cope with this.” Ask yourself what evidence you have for thinking like that.
- Remember you’re not a mind reader. How can you possibly know what other people are thinking about you and is it likely that they would judge you so harshly anyway?
- Use relaxation techniques to help you stay calm and in control when you’re in difficult situations.
- Face your fears. This is one way to stop the vicious cycle. Choose something you find difficult like speaking in front of other people and challenge yourself to do it in small steps. Start with speaking to one or two people, then a small group, and a larger group, and so on.
- Avoid or cut down on caffeine, alcohol, and cigarettes which can make you feel more anxious
- Consider doing some assertiveness training to improve your confidence when communicating with others.
- Join a club or do some volunteering. You’ll meet like-minded people and it won’t seem so hard to talk to people who you have something in common with.
How can hypnotherapy help?
Hypnotherapy can help you with social anxiety by reprogramming how you respond to situations you’ve previously found difficult and identifying any irrational worries and incorrect beliefs you have that have contributed to your anxiety. We can work together to increase your confidence in social situations and help you work through negative experiences you’ve had in the past by changing your thinking, using positivity and re-educating your subconscious to feel like you’re in control.
Is social anxiety holding you back?
If you want to make any change in your life, you have to deal with what’s holding you back. Only then can you move forward and live the happy, fulfilled life that you deserve.
Contact me for help with social anxiety and really start living again!