In the best of worlds, we would all feel comfortable and relatively at ease during social interactions with other individuals. Unfortunately, however, this is not the case.
As it turns out, social anxiety is sometimes fairly common and can happen to different people in varying degrees. Psychology Today defines social anxiety as severe distress and impairment linked to a fear of unfavorable judgments from other people.
Social anxiety can happen during public speaking engagements, in new settings, etc. However, the very first steps to getting a hold of social anxiety are understanding what it is and whether or not you are experiencing social anxiety in your personal life.
What is Social Anxiety?
A person afflicted by social anxiety may struggle with having challenging conversations or asserting themselves in situations with groups of people. If you suffer from social anxiety, you may also find yourself anticipating negative outcomes in social circumstances and environments.
If you are someone who struggles with social anxiety, taking an online test is a great way to get professional help and care. However, if you are not sure about whether or not you’re experiencing social anxiety, you’ll want to see if any of the following situations sound familiar.
Four Signs You’re Experiencing Social Anxiety
People who go through social anxiety are not always aware that a technical term exists for their experiences. However, there are four top signs that strongly indicate that someone may be experiencing social anxiety; these indicators are important to be aware of, especially for people looking to overcome social anxiety and feel comfortable in settings with other people.
You Steer Clear of Social Events You’d Like to Attend
Are you someone who would love to join a debate team, but also nervous about what people will think about you speaking? Are you interested in taking a martial arts class, but worried about being judged by other students in the group?
If these types of situations resonate with you, then there’s a strong likelihood that you are experiencing social anxiety. Just about everyone feels nervous from time to time; however when these nerves consistently stop us from going out and engaging with others — even when we’d like to — then, that speaks very strongly to social anxiety.
You Refuse to Date
Dating is not always easy and sometimes, a break is necessary after getting out of a relationship, especially if it ended poorly. However, if you are consistently finding reasons not to date, or repeatedly avoiding situations that would involve closeness or intimacy, this strongly points to social anxiety.
People who struggle with social anxiety oftentimes feel lonely, but then tell themselves that these feelings are something they should swallow and deal with. Does this sound familiar?
You Wish You Were More Confident
It is no secret that social anxiety can take an immense toll not just on someone’s social life, but also on their emotional and mental states. Many people who struggle with social anxiety long to feel confident and in control of their lives.
If you are someone experiencing social anxiety, you may look at others around you and wish that you could be more like them. Feeling trapped and viewing other people as carefree and worry-free are also indicators of social anxiety; this can eventually lead to serious mental and emotional health issues, such as feelings of helplessness, depression, and extreme sadness.
To some extent, we all care about what other people think of us. Although, if you find that you are someone who lives in regular and perpetual fear of judgment from others around you, this is yet another strong sign of experiencing social anxiety.
In situations where social anxiety has become your norm, it can feel like there’s no other option. However, if you want to make a change, you can do so. Reaching out to therapists with Mind Diagnostics is one great way to take that first step to overcome social anxiety.
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Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health-related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with MindDiagnostics.org. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.