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In this post, I interview Alfred, a client who dramatically shifted his social anxiety with only four coaching sessions.
If you want to know more about the social anxiety to social confidence journey, that is what we will be chatting about. Here is more that we cover:
See if you can relate to Alfred’s social anxiety experience and gain some inspiration to encourage you on the journey towards social confidence.
Sebastiaan: Hey, this Sebastiaan from social-anxiety-solutions.com. I am a personal coach and I help people go from social anxiety to social confidence feeling relaxed and at ease at social situations. And in this interview, you’re gonna hear from a former client of mine who overcame most of this social anxiety after working together for four coaching sessions over a period of four weeks.
Now he’s actually not completely anxiety free yet but he’s made profound life changes and he’s very excited about those and he’s eager to share these with you. So, I think you’re really gonna enjoy that.
Now if this is the first time you hear from me or my kind of coaching I just wanted to briefly tell you a few things before we get to the interview. And that is that you’ll hear us talking about EFT tapping and that is a technique, it’s a funny-looking technique because you’re tapping with the tips your fingers and specific acupressure points on the body while you’re focused on particular problems. And what the tapping does is it disconnects the emotions that are connected to the problem.
So, your social anxiety is actually not just a cognitive problem. In fact, for the most part it’s an emotional problem. That’s why just trying to change your thoughts doesn’t really work all that well. You need to address it in an emotional way. It’s an emotional problem so you need an emotional technique emotional regulation tool to address this properly in order to sever the problem at its roots and actually get rid of it so that you can just function normally and have a good time socially.
Alright. So, EFT is based upon acupuncture which is you know, a discipline of over 5,000 years old comes from Chinese medicine and it’s kind of like acupuncture but instead of using needles you tap with the tips of your fingers on these acupressure points in the body. And studies have shown that doing so sends a little signal to the part of your brain called the amygdala which regulates your hormones and it decreases the production of cortisol and it increases the production of serotonin. And cortisol is your stress hormone serotonin is your happy hormone and these biochemical responses create a sense of calm. So, you’re focusing on a negative emotion stress, fear, anxiety, shame whatever it may be, and you do the tapping and that starts to calm down those excessive negative emotions. It sounds really weird, but it works amazingly well. So, just listen to the interview and you’ll hear my client’s excitement and check out the other interviews. I have as well I have three other interviews which is quite unique I think. There are not many people that have clients that are so excited about their results that they are willing to share on video. Especially if these are people who have suffered from social anxiety. So, check that out and here comes the interview enjoy.
Well, we are live. First of all, thanks for doing this. I appreciate it. It’s actually not so easy to get some people after some coaching to interview them. So, it’s really nice that you want to share your experience so thanks for that.
Alfred: Yeah, I mean like I know how much it’s helped me so if this is gonna help someone else or more than I’m happy to do it.
Sebastiaan: Awesome, awesome. Paying it forward I like it. Alright. Well, can you maybe share a bit about what your social anxiety was like before the coaching? Like what were the main problems?
Alfred: Main problems… I don’t know where to begin. It’s like is easier to say what didn’t work because I don’t know… everything. Like I was scared of everyone I felt beneath everyone and I was constantly like uncomfortable and I avoided like a lot of events and places and people that would have been like beneficial to me to attend. And it was really limiting you know in a big, big way. But I could do better than that.
Sebastiaan: And when you were then avoiding… By the way I’m asking these questions because people can relate very much to the pain of social anxiety and so I’m digging in a bit to see what your experience was like. Okay, so, when you were avoiding like what would you do and how would you then be talking to yourself and you know what was that like for you?
Alfred: Well, like it was it hasn’t been like one type of social anxiety for like the whole life, but it is kind of like changed. For example, like this January when I got back from like an exchange semester abroad it was like the worst has ever been and like I avoided even don’t go to school for like three months because I couldn’t like I couldn’t go but you it was terrible. I like sitting and studying with a constant like inside in the stomach anxieties is it like good for helping to learn stuff and like it was a bad situation to be.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, it’s big. Yeah, anxiety isn’t really known as a performance booster. I remember when I had social anxiety I couldn’t even read a book because I’d be halfway the page and I’d be I had forgotten what I had read, and you know, at the beginning of the page. When you would go to school or you know when you came back in your social anxiety was really bad and you’d be in class like what were concerns that you would have, or you know what were the symptoms that you experienced, and you know how was your experience like when you would go to school
Alfred: Well, the concern so had been it’s like the first thing is I know was gonna be uncomfortable and I know was gonna be a look of really bad experience because it always was. And well, I worried that people would like to see my nervousness and like everyone wants to be liked and everyone wants to like have friends and I felt like that is like if you want to have friends and be like a pleasant person to be around by the state I was in I wasn’t like pleasant to be around. So, that was like one of the things that I was like reading to like spreads to other people. Like my anxiety.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, yeah. So, in other words you were feeling uncomfortable and then on top of the anxiety there is all also they’re like well now I’m like a bad vibe that I bring over to other people and then they won’t like me and like all of that what kind of exacerbates the anxiety that that’s already there.
Alfred: Yeah, top of that I saw Netflix like documentary of like the Golden Rule or something like that. It’s like you attract what you send out. I was like oh, shit. I could not sell these negative stuffs and then like that added to my anxiety. It was really bad.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, the simplified teachings of the law of attraction are not really that good for people with social anxiety. Definitely not. Yeah it would be the discussion for a whole different kind of video. But a real quick if you are watching this and you have these concerns and yes you are attracting things, but a negative thought isn’t as powerful as you might think it is so and if that’s really a concern start digging into it more start understanding it more. Anyway… go ahead.
Alfred: When I got out of the hole so to say and I noticed like other people around me that were not like have any social… yeah, maybe it was socially excited, but I could like tell people who were like uncomfortable just being around people and like me being happy and myself and like in denial. I did like jobs down like feel bad because I saw someone like that negativity didn’t like transferred to me or that anxiety. So, like when I saw some around me that it was like having anxiety I was like no this was too bad but this… you know, I didn’t think about it.
Sebastiaan: Right. Yeah, exactly. And you know I’m not experiencing any anxiety, but it does happen that there are people with social anxiety around me every now and then okay well does that then mean that you know my negative thoughts are attracting these socially anxious people and it’s a reflection you know, whatever. Let’s let leave that one alone is that’s we could go on and on about that.
Alright. So, we we’ve talked a bit about your experience. What were things that you maybe have tried prior to the coaching to get rid of your social anxiety and what were your results with that?
Alfred: Well, it was kind of interesting because I didn’t know that I had it. It’s like asking a fish like what’s that watery thing around you? It’s like well, this is I don’t know. You know, I didn’t know that I had it until like a year before this January. So, now it’s was like a year and five months ago that I realized that I had like social anxiety. Because like that that situation that got me to think that I had it, it was like me realizing just like I’ve been having super bad anxiety going to school for last week’s like is this really normal? And then I googled it and it’s like social anxiety. I was like all right yeah. So, then I kind of realized that I had it and that was like super nice to realize.
Before that I just thought that like people was better than me and I just thought all these things that is not true at all. But anyways so when I realized that I tried like high hypnosis, self-hypnosis with like a tape because that was like the first thing that popped up in my google search. I was like yeah okay, I’m going to try that and that kind of worked for like a few days, a few weeks. And in the beginning it went really well I was like it was gone and then when I walked round in school was like oh shit is this like how I supposed to feel? This is amazing. So, yeah, and that required like listening to it every day for like a half an hour or something but then like the effects were off. Like weak or something. But I kept listening to it for like a half year because that was like literally like the only tool that I had but it didn’t work well at all. Yeah, so, that was like the only thing before that it was like specifically social anxiety related like old stuff before that was like okay how can I be better than everyone else? How can I prove myself in the world? How can I do that than this? That didn’t work at all.
Sebastiaan: Right, right, right. Okay, I can relate to my experience with hypnosis pretty much the same but listen to hypnosis tape in the first couple of times it will work but then afterwards I would kind of know what they were gonna say and I knew oh I better go under hypnosis otherwise you know, I won’t get the effect anymore and it started it started to wear off. And I even worked with the hypnotist like a timeline therapist and that kind of stuff and also didn’t really bring me any lasting results. Yeah, cool.
Well, I have a bunch of questions here in front of me and I pulled them off the of the internet like how to get a good testimonial. So, it’s a bit of a weird question however there there’s there some reasoning behind it. So, what was the obstacle that would have prevented you from investing in coaching?
Alfred: In coaching or the program?
Sebastiaan: You mean the social confidence system?
Sebastiaan: Well, both.
Alfred: Then well the first thing that prevented me from getting to take the system online was that… it’s hard to say. Like it’s a mixture of things and like one thing is that I didn’t believe that I could… that this could be a reality. Like being kind of like anxiety free from people. I didn’t think that it was possible for me. So, I was like it’s too big of a mountain to climb. And like another thing is well I don’t know like I saw your program on the YouTube search. It was like the first result that popped up. I was like yeah okay fine and I tried it and I did like the old video you have like spiky here.
Alfred: So, I tried that and yeah like you told me to like rate my anxiety and I was scared from zero to ten and I could see that it dropped. I was like yeah but maybe it worked I don’t know maybe it was just a placebo but then like during that time I was living with a person like in the same room in a dorm abroad. So, I was like literally 3 meters away 24 hours a day for Xavier and like I google some stuff about like about that and basically like my subconscious mind thought that I was sleeping next to a tiger 24/7 basically and I have the worst like stomach pains ever. It was so severe, and it was crazy how the anxiety like affected my body internally. And I don’t remember it kind of like went up and up and up and then it peaked for like two weeks or something like that. It was so painful like every waking second of the day was pain. Like real pain. And then I was like okay do maybe I should fix this. So, then I enrolled to the program and I was like yeah, okay I will give it a shot and I did, and it worked.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, they say a pain is a very good motivator. Both emotional and physical pain. Yeah, okay. And all right so then eventually you we had a little intro chat at and we decided to start working together. And then can you remember how you felt before the first time we met? Before the first session?
Alfred: Well, I was kind of in the same region. I moved from the dorm abroad come to Sweden to what is it called like a collective living? Shared living. And I moved in with like two other people that I met at school and I was kind of like excited for that, but I was the same thing there, living with tigers that whole thing. And by then I had been working to the program quite a bit and like I had good results but just the thing of like living with two other people and never be alone again like after been living with a person for like a half a year it was too much. I was like I kind of want to fix this a bit faster or work make faster progress.
And from there enormous like the best money I ever spent in my life on anything. And I would think alike now what I know what the coaching and what the program gave me, like if I would put a price on it like as a student I don’t have a lot of money, maybe like I don’t know if I can if I know that I will get through this results and I can like borrow money from my dad or something like maybe like six thousand euros or something 7,000-8,000. Like a big amount at least. And the money for the coaching that’s like nothing. I’m happy to spend this. Like I borrowed money to pay for the coaching and there were worth every penny.
Sebastiaan: Great, great. Good to hear that. When we met for the first time prior to the call starting did you have any worries or concern? Like what if this is not gonna work or you know like maybe I’ll do it wrong?
Alfred: No, I read the theory from the course and I knew it, I knew that it was gonna work because I knew how it worked and you were the only person that I was excited to see from the whole like circle of my people around me. So, I was super excited for it because I knew that it will give like relief and repair.
Sebastiaan: Awesome. How did you feel after the first session? Do you remember?
Alfred: First I don’t know which one it was, but I think I felt really excited. Yeah, I felt really excited and it feels good to have someone holding your hand and like showing the ropes. So, just really good.
Sebastiaan: Okay and then yeah, the big question. So, what are your results after coaching? What has changed and how’s your social anxiety now? What’s different?
Alfred: Yeah like from the straight from the coaching it was like I did like I don’t know maybe 50 or 60 percent of the work already in the program system and then there are things that like I didn’t know that I was gonna work on. That is why like reached out for the coaching started. And the coaching gave me like a push in the right direction and in the direction that I didn’t know. And I don’t know like we did the thing I don’t know what it was called but it was some kind of thing where you helped me with like to disappears it to people. Remember that?
Sebastiaan: Like Psych-K where we installed a particular belief? Is that it? I don’t know.
Alfred: I had my feet I had my like arms crossed and legs.
Sebastiaan: Yes, okay. That’s called Psych-K Psychological Kinesiology. It’s a way to install positive beliefs into your subconscious mind and overwrite other programming that goes counter to it.
Alfred: Yeah, so, like I did that and from that day and all like my problem why we did that for the listener was that I felt superior people. Like in every room I went in I felt inferior is the word. Because that’s when you are having a problem. I felt inferior to people when I walked in through. I’d like who the person was or how long I had known that person or anything. It was like a deep believe that I had, and you helped me with that and from that day on I have never ever one time felt like someone was above me. I just felt like everyone is on the same level.
Like now on the company that I work on like me and the CEO I don’t see him above me one bit, but I see him as a friend and really good friend. So, that is super nice.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, brilliant. Well, the playing field is actually leveled. In other words we actually all are equal and everyone you know knows that and knows that that is the right answer but if your subconscious programming says otherwise because you’ve learned in your past X Y Z and you have evidence to support that you’re actually inferior and people are above you or certain people are above you then you can tell yourself and I’m saying it’s for the people listening to this.
You can tell yourself with all the logic now we’re equal and I’m ok and look at how good I actually am, but your brain is saying yeah whatever you’re feeling inferior. And so, that won’t shift around until you actually go in to where the program is lodged where it is formed in the subconscious mind and shift and change things around there. And when you do shift and change things around there that’s when you get results like you’re like the ones that you’re speaking off. And you actually it’s normal to just feel alright with your CEO or with you know, anyone on the street. That like it’s in your mind that there’s a difference between the two of them but if you have it build up in your mind Wow like authority is a big thing for people typically with social anxiety but there are tons of people that don’t have a problem with authority.
If you work in an in a particular office there are the people that freeze up when the boss comes in and it’s quite a few of them and there are the people that are buddy-buddy with them. And if you freeze up when they come in well then, you’ve learned to freeze up around authority. You know maybe you had a dad that was overbearing or an uncle that you know slapped you or whatever the case may be. There’s something that happened that caused you to fear authority and to see yourself as less than.
And yeah Psych-K is one of the ways. I use a variety of techniques. Psych-K is one of the ways to shift the belief around and yeah then you have the experience that you’re that you’re talking about. Great. Yeah, how else are things now? Are you going to school again or what?
Alfred: So, right now I am from Sweden and right now I’m in Stockholm during the summer and do it like a summer internship I guess you can call it. So, I’m like a product developer in a company. Software company. So, that’s what I’m doing on the days and then we’re like again here from my class so we’re a few people there or now they were from northern Sweden. So, yeah, I’m just doing that and like experiencing Stockholm like meeting people and having fun.
Sebastiaan: And so, how’s your social experience now?
Alfred: It’s much better than it has been. Like it’s going like up and down and like just maybe a month or two months ago I was like really like I had a lot of like energy and like a lot of like I also was super excited for a lot of stuff. And when I met people and I was super social and like felt like I know what I felt really, really not good like normally. And now it’s really good but I have like some stress from like the coding because I have like bugs and stuff so that get gave me kind of like an anxiety and that like is a bit of a problem like when I’m around people. Sometimes not all the time.
So, that’s like the next thing to work on. And I haven’t got the time for like the last two months maybe because I’ve been having like for exams and three other things unlike being studying every week and night and day. So, I haven’t had like the time to like and what was it called? Like developed myself. Yeah, so, like now when I been landed in in Stockholm I’m gonna like or I am keeping like, to improve myself.
Sebastiaan: Awesome. That’s the thing as well. When you have your social anxiety problem and it is this big, if you take a chunk off of it then your experience is gonna be a lot better. And there might still be things to address. You know personally it’s taking me a long time to overcome my social anxiety to overcome it completely. It was a lot of acceptance work a lot of self-acceptance work but there are many times that I made significant progress. Like the time in the beginning I went from my generalized anxiety. My general anxiety was really high then I did some work and then my general anxiety dropped to low levels.
That in and of itself was already life transforming you know. And you know, I’m glad you’re doing the interview while things are not perfect yet because we’re not looking for perfection you know
Alfred: Yeah, because that’s like the thing. I felt like I really like to have overcome to my social anxiety but to completely get rid of everything that’s like the next ten percent or something. Like I’ve listed like a big fat elephant for my shoulders and now there’s a little bit of a monkey on my other shoulder. That’s fine you know.
Sebastiaan: Right, exactly. And it’s that attitude well that’s fine that makes it not that big of a deal because when is this big fat elephant that you’re dealing with now you are so limited to the degree that you’re really afraid of feeling some anxiety symptoms and you’re just you’re in over your head and you can’t function properly.
When you take away the big elephant so to speak and you have the monkey it’s still uncomfortable at times but you’re no longer judging yourself for it and you’re alright anyway and you can live your life. And you can actually deal with the monkey as well, it’s just a matter of another aspect of the problem that hasn’t been addressed yet.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, great. Awesome. Yeah, alright. So, let me see… The coaching. Was it a painful process?
Alfred: No, not at all. Like it was the opposite. It was the thing that removed something.
Sebastiaan: Good because you know some people are afraid of it. It’s like well I’m gonna have to relive all this massively traumatic pain.
Alfred: But that’s like everything with the EFT that like you take it stepwise.
Yeah, I like by the way EFT like I read the… was it called? The power of the… I don’t know what it was called.
Sebastiaan: The tapping solution or?
Alfred: Yeah, yeah, the tapping solution. And like I use it for everything. If he’s like a superpower it’s like the best thing I’ve come across ever.
Sebastiaan: So, it’s amazing to be able to shift and change your emotional state around just by doing some weird tapping on your face and body.
Alfred: Yeah, like with a new living situation. Like a new job new people new friends new everything and ordinarily I would be like a mess and like super nervous around everyone and like oh my god I cannot find my way around the subway station. You know, like that. Like really, really uncomfortable. That’s fine I guess that’s life, but you know, with this technique like after just two days in Stockholm I was like comfortable. It’s like yeah, it’s nice here, change is good.
Sebastiaan: Nice. Very good, very good. Well, these are the following questions. There are a couple of questions to what seems to say good things about the coaching pretty much. That’s what specifically… I love these questions… did you like most about the coaching?
Alfred: About the coaching? It’s like it’s nice to talk to someone not to always be in your head and think about stuff and read about stuff. It is actually nice to talk to someone who has been in the same situation and that completely gets you more than you even get yourself. That’s super-nice. So, yeah, like that.
Sebastiaan: Awesome. Can you think of three other benefits of the coaching? I don’t know if you can think of three. These are just questions.
While you think of it, I asked this to this other guy who I interviewed tough on former client and he’s like yeah, you know, I’ve been smoking weed with my uncle. I’m like okay, that is a good benefit.
Alfred: That is nice too.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, good times.
Alfred: Yeah, just like this coaching specifically.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, just like yeah like other results that you might one of the other…
Alfred: Okay. So, like the coaching isn’t on like social anxieties. It’s like I guess you well I guess you as a person you the coach have like done a lot of like personal development outside of just only like the social aspects of yourself. And I feel like you have a lot of like knowledge about you know, life I guess you can call it, broader spectrum.
Like one of the things that I remember is like what else in 2013 or 14 or something and I was like yeah, I don’t like living at all, it sucks. So, I’m just gonna like to make my life and experiments of how successful I can get like how hard I can work how innovative can I be in how many right choices can I take. That’s I mean the planets come kind of good to want to evolve but the problem was like the whole like I pushed it too far and it’s not like a perfectionist thing. And I was like I want to like honor my commitments that I made a few years ago and you told me like you really do you think that you yourself three years ago are smarter and have more knowledge and experience that than you today? And when you listen to yourself today compared to like the old you because you today are smarter and have more knowledge? I was like yeah, it kind of makes sense. So, like little the golden nuggets like that I don’t know if I can count to three…
Sebastiaan: Yeah, that’s a good example. I actually meant results of the coaching but that’s nice I’ll take it. Well, thank you for saying that. I appreciate that. And that’s because I’ve been so fucked up myself and I’ve had so much therapy and coaching myself. Like I’ve been working, and I still work with my coach have for seven years and I have a mentor. So, a lot of what I’m saying is you know a lot of what they’ve been saying to me and a lot of the crap that I had to go through myself in order to kind of actually have a good time in life and emotionally feel good and be okay with myself. So, yeah, great.
Alright let’s see if I can pop out a final question. Would you recommend coaching? If so, why? Or let’s say would you recommend tapping and or coaching? If so, why? Make it a bit broader.
Alfred: Yeah, I think I’ve been pretty clear on that point what I think, and I would definitely like recommend it.
Sebastiaan: Let me say it again. If someone hasn’t tried any tapping what would you say to them? That’s a better question.
Alfred: Someone who hasn’t tried tapping? Yeah, that’s a tough question because it’s so hard to talk about this with people because it sounds too good to be true and everything almost everything else in life is. And this is like one of 50 things maybe but not that isn’t too good to be true. So, like why should you believe me if I tell you like why this is good and how this can help you? That is like the biggest problem with that thing. Like trying to make people. What was the question again?
Sebastiaan: What would you say if someone hasn’t tried it yet?
Alfred: Yeah, okay. So, the basic technique of the social anxiety solution system is EFT. And if you google EFT like science report results there is the page I don’t know, I don’t really exactly remember the page you can google it I guess.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, just typing EFT research, exactly.
Alfred: Yeah but I saw like if 40 50 reports just like stacked on top of each other and they all said that it works. So, like if you don’t believe like that it works like you cannot question science and because like that is one of the things that I didn’t look at actually when I heard of it. Because I didn’t want to… I like I wanted it to work I didn’t want to find evidence that said that it was not gonna work because I was like okay but what if I find like results that tell me that that doesn’t work? If he’s like this is kind of like my last and biggest like chance to escape this anxiety. I don’t want to lose the chance. I encourage you like google EFT science report or something like that you’ll find that all studies that all show within our p-value of point .0%. If you read statistics that means, it’s solid science. So, yeah, it works.
Sebastiaan: Yeah, they’re there over 100 scientific studies done on EFT and there are over 20 peer-reviewed published studies in psychological journals done and studies of the highest quality. So, it’s scientifically proven to be effective. They don’t know exactly why yet. Like there are different theories but you know who cares.
And exactly what you said is like well I don’t want to find any information that it doesn’t work. Well, two things about that. One, EFT is not a placebo, so you don’t have to believe in it for it to work. In fact, most people initially don’t believe that it works, and they do it and then they notice like holy shit, I actually feel different after a minute of tapping on these points on my body. Wow, this does work. And then they’re sold. That’s how I you know, initially was sold eventually. I had to convince myself by seeing a lot of videos.
But there is information that says while EFT is pseudoscience. Like if you look on Wikipedia that fucking dumbass of a person on there you know, he claims it it’s pseudoscience. You know, that’s a whole different conversation but you know, listen to my podcast. I’ve got you know sixty psychologist, coaches, psychotherapists, PhD, researchers, best-selling authors who are all raving about its efficacy of effectiveness. So, you know, it is the real deal, but you need to give it a try, committed to try. Go ahead.
Alfred: Yeah, that is one of the things that I want to ask you about later. Like why this is called pseudoscience. And even like in the Swedish Wikipedia page is like I think that was like about acupressure or puncher and it said like there are no scientific results of this working. And then I googled it and I found a lot of papers claiming that it works.
Sebastiaan: Right. Well, you can edit Wikipedia pages yourself. So, it’s not a scientific. You know, this is not the end all be all, but I use Wikipedia for a lot of things as well. So, anyway, any final last words? Anything you’d like to add before we close things off?
Alfred: If anyone is thinking about like this program or like coaching, do it right. That’s it.
Sebastiaan: Great awesome. Well, then I want to thank you once again. I’m not just saying that for the video, I really, really appreciate it. You know, it’s great that you’re sharing this and now you’re putting yourself out there. And I much appreciate it. So, thank you and it’s gonna help a bunch of people so that’s awesome. Thanks.
Sebastiaan: Cool. Alright.