What is social anxiety?
Anxiety is not your fault or caused by anything you have or haven’t done. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 40 million adults, or 18% of Americans, experience an anxiety disorder.
If you are suffering from social anxiety you may experience the following:
- Constant feelings of dread about social situations;
- A pounding or racing heart when interacting with others;
- Anticipating the worst about interactions with others, regardless of evidence;
- Physical symptoms like headaches, sweating, shakes and jumpiness, trouble concentrating, a frequent need to urinate and stomach uneasiness
- Thoughts like, “It’s safer to stay at home..."
- Fear of being away from a bathroom or medical services
I know that anxiety can come with a stigma, and that may have stopped you from seeking the care you need in the past. Reach out to a counselor today.
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Social anxiety means feeling very uneasy in social situations. Often people are fearful of being judged, rejected, criticized, mocked, any bad feeling you can think of, even before they make any approach to someone in the group.
Social anxiety is a fear someone has about being treated poorly without any sign which justifies feeling this way.
If you walk into a group of people which specifically has a sign of not wanting to accept anyone who hasn't been part of the group for at least a dozen years, then walking into this group would justifiably trigger anxiety.
If you walk into a business or organization meeting which assumes anyone who has an interest in the purpose of the group is welcome, and you do, and you feel anxiety imagining you'll fall short of expectations, is social anxiety.
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Social anxiety is fear of social situations where someone is exposed to the public scrutiny of others. It could include things like having conversations with people you don't know, being observed, or public speaking, etc.
You can find more information here: https://socialanxietyinstitute.org/what-is-social-anxiety
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