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A generalized social anxiety disorder can be simply defined as:
“fearing all social situations and feeling highly anxious while being in them.”
And a specific social anxiety disorder can be defined as fearing only specific social situations, such as public speaking or meeting new people.
Now in this article I will write about my personal story as to how my own social anxiety developed into a full blown generalized social phobia. And I will hopefully stimulate you to take the desired action for you to get socially at ease as soon as possible.
Because I believe, and many other people with me, that a generalized social anxiety disorder is born out of a specialized social phobia. And a specialized social phobia is again more likely to occur when a person already has a higher level of social anxiety than the average person has.
So the faster you tackle your social anxiety challenges, the more easy your path to social confidence will be.
I had two highly anxious social episodes when growing up. One around age twelve and one around age fourteen. Both of them I managed to overcome, and sort of keep out of my day to day life.
But it did cause me to have weak points that would trigger social anxiety and I definitely was less confident that I used to be.
Now the development of my generalized social anxiety disorder really started when I was around age sixteen or seventeen.
I had not been in much social situations with women for a few years because I was basically absorbed in the world of drugs. And when I slowly came out of that world and wanted a girlfriend, I ran into trouble.
I couldn’t get the girls in my social groups that I wanted, and when we would go places where we could meet other women I was afraid of approaching them.
I had no idea what to say and had a fear of rejection. I wasn’t so much afraid of getting rejected by the girl, but I was more concerned about my friends seeing the whole embarrassing scene go down.
Or them later finding out that I got rejected…
I wanted to keep up the myth that I was good in everything I did and that I would always get what I wanted. My arrogance and pride messed me up pretty badly here.
Because I had this problem with approaching women I started to avoid more and more situations where I would be confronted with my problem.
If you right now are not suffering from a generalized social anxiety disorder, but only from a specific social phobia, I highly recommend getting some help in dealing with it before it gets worse.
Because for me it did get worse. The longer I avoided the situation, the more doom scenario’s I started to build up in my mind and the more I started to “fear” the situation.
By then, every time I did show up in a situation where I found girls that I was attracted to, I felt very anxious. I felt everyone was judging me and looking at me and were waiting for me to go talk to them.
I felt intense pressure and anxiousness in these situations.
I basically developed a specific social phobia here. This is in my opinion the start of a generalized social anxiety disorder.
I was in a catch 22 circle. I couldn’t get the women that I wanted, and I was feeling extremely anxious when I had the opportunity to meet them.
I’m talking uncontrollable anxiety here.
This caused me to become more and more insecure because I had always been able to get what I wanted and was always a very confident person.
I became really ashamed of myself and by now suffered from low self esteem. Plus I didn’t see a way out which caused me to feel depressed as well.
All my friends around me started to have sex and have relationships. And of course, talk about sex and relationships.
Due to this I started to fear even going to friends’ houses because what if the conversation goes to sex, women or relationships? Then I’ll become embarrassed and they will all talk about me!
So I would go less and less and made up loads of excuses to get out of those situations.
And the anxiety now showed up everywhere in my life.
If I for example was introduced to new people, I thought they instantly noticed that I was insecure. And that they would probably also know that I was bad with women.
I felt everyone was judging me negatively. Which made sense, because I did so as well…
I now was experiencing a full blown generalized social anxiety disorder. And life was hell.
You see, even after I solved my problem with women, I still had a lot of social anxiety to deal with.
And I believe that if I had taken action and had cleared my specialized social anxiety disorder, I would have never developed my generalized social anxiety disorder in the first place. And I would have never struggled with so much social anxiety in my life.
So I want to encourage you to take action as soon as you can. Don’t let your social anxiety do it’s thing. If you won’t take any action it’s almost definitely going to get worse. Be proactive, get help, do something!
The decisions you are making now will impact the rest of your life…