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Do you feel horrible whenever in social situations? Heart beating fast, couldn’t breathe right, or feels like everybody else is judging you?
Tried several things to overcome your social anxiety, yet nothing seems to work and make the anxiety go away?
You’re not alone.
Just like you, James was in the exact same horrible, debilitating situation before.
James is a member of the Social Confidence Club.
In today’s video, he shares his social anxiety story, how life has been before going through the #JourneyToSocialConfidence, and all the good stuff that is happening now as he continuously goes through on his journey.
Watch, be inspired, and know that you too can overcome your social anxiety completely.
Note: The Social Confidence Club is currently closed for registration.
If you’re interested to join, pre-register using the link below and you will be notified as soon as enrollment starts.
Hello! This is Sebastiaan from www.social-anxiety-solutions.com.
When you’re watching this, you probably are not new to my work.
This is all about the Social Confidence Club that is about to open, or maybe, that is open when you’re watching this.
I thought it would be helpful to interview some of the members that joined last May, I think, to hear what their experience was, or has been because they’re still part of it.
Today, I’m talking to James from no other place than Australia.
I’ve prepared a bunch of questions and just going to fire them up, or we have a little bit of a conversation. The questions are scripted but the answers are unscripted.
Seb: James, we want to first understand what it was like before. Can you maybe explain what your social anxiety was like before the Social Confidence Club, even before the 30 Day Challenge?
James: Okay, it was so confusing. I don’t know the cliche or whatever you call it. I don’t know the right word for it.
You can’t see the forest for the trees. It was a bit like that for me. I was wandering around aimlessly not knowing exactly what to do.
I’d seen other professionals in different avenues and really walked away more confused than when I went in.
When I got into the 30 Day Challenge, basically it gave me clarity. It gave me understanding and pretty quickly, I felt I had like almost a protection blanket around me. This is the path that’s going to help and it really showed me a way through.
Seb: Nice. And when you were in social situations, what was it like beforehand?
James: Depending on certain ones. I couldn’t breathe, always looking for an exit, extremely heavy heartbeat knocking my chest so much that I thought I was having a heart attack, shaky, all of the above. Everything is just horrible, just debilitating feeling. There’s the feeling everybody was, or is watching me, or see me. It was horrible.
Seb: How did that affect your life quality and your lifestyle?
James: Well, especially with my work it, I had to take a demotion. So I wasn’t forced, I asked. It was because I couldn’t go into meetings.
Seb: You asked to be demoted?
James: Yep, I asked to be demoted. I was the manager.
I know that I had the ability to go as far as I wanted to go in my work, but it debilitated me so much that I ended up taking a demotion.
Other people have taken on roles above me that are probably less knowledgeable. Maybe not as much now because people have got gotten up to speed.
It affected that I’m married with kids. I couldn’t go to my children’s school teacher interviews and things like that. I just couldn’t bring myself to those sorts of things. Even to point, I was having trouble go to the supermarket, or anywhere socially with my friends and groups. If I didn’t have alcohol to get me through it, I was not going to be able to go. Yeah, that was what was about.
Seb: Yeah, pretty bad. Pretty bad, indeed.
Yep. It’s a very relatable experience. It’s not a new story. Yeah, but thanks for sharing.
Well, you mentioned that you tried a bunch of things.
Seb: What were some of the things that you tried before the Social Confidence Club?
James: Well, I had three different therapists. I didn’t know what to do.
You go to the doctor, they give you the form to fill out, and you get to go and see a therapist.
All three of them are terrible. I think one told me that, “When I was at school, I was a big fish in a small pond. Now that I’m out of school and in the real world, I’m a small fish in a big pond. You got to toughen up, basically.”
The other guy told me after six sessions, “Just don’t worry about what people think. There’s not much we can do to help you in that sort of situation. It’s just something you got to learn to deal with.” That was sort of what he said.
With the third one, I could tell I was headed down the path of the same story. I just opted out within two sessions. I wasn’t getting anything out of it. I was going in there and coming out feeling no better.
Then I gave about 10 sessions of EMDR, which is rapid eye movement. It’s got a similar basis to what EFT I guess, where you got to take your mind off the thought and break the pattern. But personally, I didn’t get much result from it.
After 10 sessions, I didn’t find anything changing. I’m not saying that it doesn’t work for others, but personally, I just had nothing. That was another way of trying something else yet.
Seb: Yeah. Okay. Got it.
Seb: Prior to the Social Confidence Club, did you have any doubts about joining? If so, what were they?
James: No, no, no, I didn’t have any doubts about joining. It was like, I just needed to. I needed to give anything a go because I felt that I wasn’t getting any better doing nothing. There’s absolutely no doubt that I was going to join.
Obviously for me, it was maybe slightly different because I already studied a little bit of the EFT through your podcast. I searched the web for all the different people you spoke to. I got onto their websites. I read testimonials, and Gary Craig, and I just started to see this world opening up, seeing amazing results from years. I was actually blown away that I hadn’t even been told about it. I had no idea it even exists. I couldn’t believe that there’s so much information out there. It was so hidden and confined when it’s so brilliant.
I had no doubts when the challenge was about to begin. This is my gateway into getting into it.
Seb: Yeah. Great, perfect.
Seb: How did you feel once you had joined? At that time, the Club was kind of new, right? There was a forum. We were going to do the webinars. Nobody actually knew each other at the start. They’re totally brand-new. What was that Like
James: It was comforting to know that there were others out there that were there for these exact same reason as me like social anxiety.
It wasn’t generalized anxiety. It was relatable anxiety. I felt comfort in that.
It was a bit daunting at the start, I guess. I was a little doubtful about was with those comments underneath. I wanted to put my comment there but as soon as you do at the start, you’re like, “Oh, did I spell it, right? Is this right? That sentence doesn’t seem right. I’ve had it.” There’s back and forth, back and forth. So, it’s a little bit daunting.
But overall, everybody was just so super supportive, like you and me and just everybody. So, it was easy. It felt like a little family. Straightaway, I felt connected to everybody. It was great. Yeah. So that was a good start and good finish
Seb: Nice. I like that you’re using that word. I was just interviewing Graham and he said the same thing. It feels like our own little family, which is very cool. I’m proud to hear that.
James: Yeah, it really does.
Seb: Because in order for change to happen, you need to have a safe cocoon, a safe environment for that to occur. Just like a child for its proper development needs to have a safe environment with the mom.
Or if you’re in Australia, the baby kangaroo is in, what do you call that? Do you call that ‘the bag’ or not? Is that okay?
James: You can call it ‘the bag’. We’ll just go with that.
James: The patch?
Seb: Yeah, right the patch.
James: Yes, in the patch.
Seb: Yeah, it needs to develop a bit before it can, you know. It needs the safety, a safe container. So I think that’s what the club provides.
Seb: So what are your results now? What has changed? How’s your social anxiety now? How’s your social ease now?
James: Well, I’ve still got social anxiety. There’s still certain situations that I do avoid still, which is fine to me. The thing is, it shifted my anxiety.
I’ve got a lot of good results where I don’t have anxiety in different areas. But the difference is that, when I do have the anxiety, it’s my thought towards it [that shifted].
It’s not so much that I don’t [anxiety]. I still have the anxiety in certain areas. But whereas I would have been shit scared, I’m familiar of what was going on and how to approach it.
Now, I’ve got all the tools to understand and be okay with myself. I know what this is. I know how to approach it.
The 30 Day Challenge and beyond has shown me a way of being okay with me in that situation.
Sometimes it’s still a horrible, horrible feeling, and a horrible, horrible thinking comes out of you. You’re like “oh, my goodness”, but I know what it is. I’m safe with it and I know that it’s okay.
More so, I’m not so much where I’m not socially anxious in certain areas, even though there are parts of me that are like that now. The whole spectrum of it is accepted which is more important for me than anything. I feel far more comfortable with it.
Seb: Yeah, yeah. That’s a fantastic accomplishment.
If you’re watching this, you probably think, what do you mean accepted? How can I accept the unacceptable?
James: Exactly right.
Seb: Well, you’re exactly right. It’s not easy, but it’s doable.
There’s tremendous freedom that comes when you’re on the other side, when you’re actually accepting it, where you’re no longer fighting with yourself, where you no longer fighting with the anxiety. It’s essential and a big part of the community is focused on that.
That does not mean that we do not get rid of the things that trigger the anxiety. We do that too. That’s another big part of the community.
As you heard James says, in certain situations he now no longer has anxiety. So what does that then do to your life?
Seb: You mentioned, “Okay, there’s a situation or situations where I no longer have anxiety.” What was that like to experience that?
James: You look for it. So, when I say situations, let’s just say…
Seb: You look for what?
James: You look for the anxiety. You look for the worry.
So, I go in and bump into somebody and my mind will instantly go “Oh my God, that’s a person” or “I didn’t want to see that person” while you might be in a supermarket.
Naturally, I’ll just say “hey” and normally I’ll go and [makes sounds as if he can’t breathe properly], and something’s coming, but it wouldn’t happen.
Then, he’ll talk and I’d talk, and he’ll talk and I’d talk. And then I’ll be like, “oh we’re having a conversation instead of worrying about how it was”. I would still be thinking of that myself a bit and I’d be like, “I feel fine. What’s going on here?”
You’ll really enjoy that feeling. And then you might go looking for it a little bit, to see if you can have experienced it. It’s a good feeling.
James: And I guess the other situation is with my work and everything else. I had a bit of trouble with meetings. When there’s a lot of people and you put me on the spot, sometimes it can be difficult. Whereas before, I used to be a bit nervous, or a lot nervous throughout the entire thing. Now, what’s shifted is I might be nervous at the start, and then I’m okay for the for the rest of it. I don’t have it. It goes away fairly quickly because I have that understanding of where I’m at, and what it is that I’ve got, and what we know. So, it goes a lot quicker. It disappears.
Seb: Yeah, that’s the power of acceptance. That’s part of the power of acceptance. When it comes up, you’re not refueling it by hating it, trying to push it away, trying to control it, and beating yourself up. It just makes it worse. It’s like adding fuel to fire. The power of acceptance just soothes it. It’s like dripping water on the fire.
James: What you just said brings back memories before the 30 Day Challenge, like beating yourself up and the lack of acceptance. You absolutely go against the grain of everything that you should do.
It’s hard to believe that but once you do the challenge, you realize how much you have causing it, making it worse, and just fueling it. It’s just unbelievable to follow that path. It’s a natural instinct to hide it, and say “what’s wrong with me” and “oh, my God, I’m just stupid” or “I’m just this, I’m just that, or whatever you might tell yourself”. It’s all part of the fuel that drives it.
Seb: Yeah, it’s counterintuitive.
Seb: Have you noticed anything in your general mood, or attitude, or anything like that?
James: Part of my anxiety is anger. Generally, I’m frustrated and angry that I had it. I’m frustrated and angry through the day. You would get sleep then you’d wake up and go. So it’s still a bit of that but it’s a lot better now.
I’m quicker to apologize if I feel like I’ve said or done something that just presented at a character where’s the anxiety acting out, so to speak.
And I’m just a lot more calm in that aspect in different situations where, once upon a time, I might have would have bashed the hammer in the table just in complete frustration. But now, I’m just [James breathing peacefully].
I know I just have to be calm and I’m just calmer, because I know it doesn’t help. Getting frustrated doesn’t help when you’re in these moments. I’m not as quick to things like that anymore. So that’s what I’ve noticed myself.
Seb: You got more emotional control, but not the bad kind of control. You’ve got the good kind of control, the healthy kind of control.
James: Yeah. Absolutely.
Seb: Has it been worth the money you invested in it?
James: Yep. Absolutely. 100%.
I don’t know what everybody else is like, but I don’t drink anymore. I got no worries.
I go and spend 40 bucks on a case of beer. Now when you do that every weekend, or every second day, or whatever you do, you buy this crap and whatever. You waste money all the time on things. It gives you nothing.
This is everything. This is what you can use in your whole life. You can control and get an understanding of your own mind.
The way I looked at it is – what’s more important to invest your money in than anything else? It does help with the mind as well.
Everybody’s always on about diet, but the diet for your mind – its’ that important. The healthier mind is more important, in my opinion. And so, to invest in that first and foremost [is important]. I’m not a scientist, I’m just being honest.
It’s not even that expensive. It’s very cheap considering what you get out of it, and what it’s worth to you for any day of the week. You could spend your money and invest your money to get yourself better rather than other crap.
Seb: Yeah, right.
James: I’m not sure if I articulated that very well.
Seb: No, you did. I think you did.
Seb: So we’ve now been going through Social Confidence Club roughly six months, seven months, something like that. Was it a painful process? If so, what would you say to someone about how you dealt with any pain that you’ve experienced?
James: Well, on the top of my head, I can’t tell you that it was any painful process. Only that it was overwhelming a little bit.
You can get yourself a little bit like “I’m not doing it right” or “I’m forgetting. There’s a lot of different codes, techniques, and things like that.
If I don’t know which one they’re talking about, and say “I don’t know this”, and you can get yourself wound up in that regard.
Seb: That’s resolved now.
Seb: That’s resolved now with the glossary on the forum.
James: Yes, you’ve got the glossary for me because I asked for it, which is funny. That’s right.
But even still with the glossary, you don’t really need it because, I would just say to somebody that, it’s all part of the learning.
It is all part of the process of giving yourself a hard time. When you’re there, worrying that you haven’t done it right, or you’ve missed something, or you’re not understanding, that’s all part of you giving yourself a hard time. You don’t realize it, but that’s all part of the problem. It’s giving yourself a break. You’re doing the best you can do and that’s all that matters.
So, I would say to the person that, even if you’re not picking up 10% of it, it’s better than nothing and give yourself a break.
Give it time. You’ll get it more and more and more. I mean, it’s not that hard to pick out, honestly. You’re going to pick up more than 10% of it regardless. That’s just being in the worst-case scenario, which is not going to be. You know what I’m saying?
Seb: Yeah, I do. It is indeed like that.
Also, there’s certain things and certain concepts that when it is your first time hearing them, like if you’re watching this and you’re not familiar with ‘acceptance’, the first time you hear it, it’s like, “Ah, okay, fascinating, interesting.” but that doesn’t mean it’s instantly automated inside your subconscious and operating to show.
No, it takes repetition. It takes hearing different explanations, different metaphors, have seeing it demonstrated on live webinars, experiencing the relief yourself in yourself, in your body. It’s a process over time before it really sinks in.
So, when you want to become a psychologist, then you go to university, you’re not going to know all that you need to know in order to be a great counselor at the end of the first trimester. It is a little bit like this.
I was even considering at one point, calling it ‘Social Confidence University’ because there’s a lot of things that I’m also educating you about. It’s about your psychology, the process of change, how to tap, different kinds of techniques, and so on.
But because it’s not just about studying, and a university is mostly about studying, I didn’t want to call it that. So, a club sounded better. And this is all about transformation.
And to the overwhelm, some people in the beginning reported overwhelmed.
I said, “Okay, you can make it really super simple. Only show up for the live webinars and just tap along.” So, you can decrease the amount of effort that you put in by simply doing that and just that alone. It will help you to start to change things around.
It will also motivate you and inspire you to do more because you notice changes. When you notice that things are improving, you’re naturally going to be drawn to wanting to do more.
I don’t want to make it sound all too perfect. There are definitely going to be ups and downs in your level of motivation. But generally, you’ll be going into the direction of where you want to go. Social ease and social anxiety will become a smaller, and smaller, and smaller problem.
James: And motivation which is something you talked about Sebastian.
That’s another thing that you learned is that, motivation often is part of that resistance. That’s variably a part of your body trying to trick you into falling off the perch, so you don’t get in there and work on it. It doesn’t want you.
Seb: Exactly. You want to have social ease, and you want to go in that direction, but there’s a part of your brain that’s saying, “Well, when you are at ease with yourself socially, you’re going to get rejected, you’re going to get criticized, or you know. It’s going to be more difficult. There’s going to be more pressure on you. You’re going to have these expectations.”
And so, there’s resistance. Your subconscious is trying to protect you by resisting you going in that direction. That’s resistance.
So when resistance is up, then motivation is down. Your motivation level will wax and wane.
That’s why we do work on clearing the resistance and helping you in this process by setting up things in such a way that they’re as easy as possible.
Literally, press a button, watch a live webinar, or watch the replay, and simply tap along. That’s as simple as it gets.
And there’s lots of tap alongs as well. Making it as simple and easy as possible.
But sometimes it’s going to be challenging. But, are you up for the challenge? That’s the question.
All right, next question. Here we go.
Seb: James, what specifically did you like the most about the Social Confidence Club?
James: Specifically? The camaraderie. What’s the word? The family feel. The group feel. Like we all know each other.
I enjoy everybody, and just the comfort that it gives you as a group. That’s probably number one for me. I really like that.
I don’t know how much we’re talking about here but we have a WhatsApp group. Is that something?
James: So, we have a WhatsApp group. If I’ve ever got a question, I can just quickly go into that, go bang, and within a minute someone’s answering.
It could be anything. It could be going into a meeting, it could be coming into supermarket, or you might have just woken up anxious, it doesn’t matter.
You throw a question. We’re from all around the world, boys or girls all around the world. You’ll get somebody who will relate, and they’ll say ‘Hey this’, or ‘Hey that’, and they can jog your memory on something that Seb just spoken about, or something like ‘Go to this here’, and I’ll direct you to something that you’ve got in the club that you can just go to for reference, and you might have forgotten.
It’s just everybody’s got back, everybody. It’s a really comforting and safe thing to have. It’s like having a little guardian angel, but 30 of them on your shoulder at any given time. That’s probably the thing I like the most.
Seb: Yeah, that’s quite beautiful, isn’t it?
Seb: Okay. What are three other benefits of the Social Confidence Club? Let me ask that in a different way.
Seb: What are three other benefits that you’ve gotten out of the Social Confidence Club?
James: Probably to be more social, for one. I would have kept pretty quiet and wouldn’t have spoken out like I do a bit more now and join a meeting.
Also, being a part of routine. It gives me routine which is important for me. I like that you have set days and set times for things.
Seb: Yup, the Wednesday email, Friday Hangout, and Sunday Live webinar every week. Free opportunities.
James: Yeah, that’s really good to have.
Also, you get the replays if you do miss it, but I like that routine.
I don’t know what to pinpoint, honestly. I said it before. It’s just the fact that I’ve just got a wealth of information at my fingertips. It’s the biggest benefit.
I can go to any part of what’s going on in my day if I’m not sure and I can reference it off to the Club and you’ve got it there somewhere. Whether it’s resistance, or it’s whatever, it might be you know…
There’s just such a humongous wealth of information. Plus, you have your weekly emails which is even more information and it’s not overwhelming. Sometimes it can be the same similar things but it’s great to have that repeated.
Seb: A replay of the same shit all the time. Isn’t it a stupid way?
James: No, you don’t. But when you do, you do emphasize things that are important and they’re easily forgotten really quickly.
I just like to surf through it, and I find something. I can re-watch what we have, or the mini challenges, and things like that.
If you’ve got an issue, and it doesn’t matter what it is, you can put it down and just type it out. It doesn’t matter, the spelling etc, anything else doesn’t matter. Just put it out there and bang it [on the WhatsApp]. People are there to give you support and they’ll talk to you about it.
It’s an overall thing. I can’t tell you what the three things are. It’s just the whole thing. There’s no negatives to it.
The other thing is that I really like is that you are asking everybody all the time about “How can I improve it? What would you like me to do?”
You include us all the time. We can give you our insight and improve things [whatever] we want to.
We can chat about it if we want, or if you’re too nervous to get into chat about it, you can type it. It doesn’t matter how. There’s no expectation from anybody. I like that too.
There’s people that we’ve got who haven’t been on video at all. And then, there’s others that you barely know that they’re a part of the club, but that’s okay because they’re just as important. Just as important to us, you know.
There’s no judgement. It’s fine. That’s what I really liked. The support that everybody gives. Everybody is always there for everyone.
Seb: Yeah, I mean, I know the numbers. The majority is actually invisible and has been invisible from the start. They’re anonymously participating throughout all of this. They’re observing, and benefiting from it, and participating, and so on.
That’s what I like as well where people can choose their level of participation. For example, “Hey, am I going to go through this anonymously? Am I going to go challenge myself to start to participate? Am I going to go participate from the start? Am I going to go move up?”
You can challenge yourself within the community.
Seb: Yeah, that’s how it’s built.
James: Absolutely. And it’s that, I would hope to speak, which I’m fairly confident, that there’s that feeling of whenever you’re ready, you’re always welcome to become anonymous, and then tune in, and don’t feel like that’s too late now. There’s that feeling that I’ve been muted too long and I haven’t been part of it. It’s not something that I think people suffer from too much, I wouldn’t think, because we are very welcoming and warming to everywhere else.
Seb: Yup, right!
James: There has been a time where people have just turned up, and all of a sudden, everybody were like “How are you going? It’s great to see you. It’s great to chat.”
You just want people to feel comfortable and warm. There’s no judgement.
We all know what social anxiety does and we all understand it. You’re in safe hands with all of us because we’re all one.
Seb: Yeah. Before starting this, I was a little bit like, “Man, I might have some real assholes in there.”
James: I remember you putting the disclosure out and worried about that people were going to give someone a hard time or something. You were worried about it?
Seb: Yeah, but I found the opposite.
I said if there ever is someone like that, they will be kicked out of the Club without warning because we want to create a particular environment.
I mean, I do the best I can to provide a particular environment but everyone just naturally seems to be very nice, and is very welcoming, and warm, and unkind.
James: It’s a special thing that all socially anxious people have got.
Seb: Yeah, exactly. Okay, cool.
Seb: What do you like most about the live webinars that we do.
James: Well, straight away, that’s an hour and a half of tapping that you’re definitely getting in. So that’s great, straightaway.
At the beginning, there were times I was thinking, “well, this doesn’t relate to me as much” but as you’ve explained, it doesn’t have to relate to you for it to work.
And I think it’s just the fact that you can, at different times, you can relate it to yourself. That’s really powerful. It can trigger memories and thoughts and things.
Someone will mention some things and your mind might split into something and you go, “Oh, I hate that” especially for me. So, I’ve got a pad in front of me and I’ll just write it. And then I can go back to it. It could just be part of a memory, or whatever it is.
Also, I like to see everybody. Sometimes, people could be a little bit sad, and things like that, which is absolutely fine. But you always end up having people have a laugh and a bit of a turnaround and I like that too. That just nice.
We have a relaxed sort of atmosphere, and it’s consistent. You get that consistency going on. So, yeah, that’s a really, really good thing.
Seb: Nice. Okay. Well, I pick these questions from the internet, right? So, these are some marketing guy suggests that I ask.
James: Yeah, I have no idea what you’re going to ask.
Seb: Yeah, right.
James: You said something about that this might be pre-scripted, but not for me.
Seb: Would you recommend the Social Confidence Club? If so, why?
James: Yes, 100%.
I said it before at the start – Doing nothing hasn’t helped so far. So for starters, I’d recommend it because you got nothing to lose by having a crack at it.
It gives you a feeling of hope, a feeling of support. I just feel comforted by it.
It’s just that, [at some point in my life] I felt lost and not sure about things. Now, I’ve got that [hope and support] always.
It’s a really important part of my life like you probably saw my wife and kids, and they’re the most important part of my life.
I think even if I was socially at ease now, I’d probably stay in the Club anyway. Well, it’s just how it is. I really think I would because I like it that much. It’s just perfect. It’s a beautiful community.
Seb: Yeah, so awesome.
Well, I’m very happy to hear it. The feeling is mutual. I’m really enjoying it as well. Awesome.
I’ll right. Well, let’s leave this on a high note. No more questions.
So, I’d like thank you for your time and especially for wanting to contribute.
Here you are talking on camera, encouraging other people to give this a go. So that’s really cool. Much appreciated.
James: I wouldn’t have done this before.
Seb: It’s part of your transformation.
James: Yeah. That’s right.
Seb: Well, good stuff. We’ll be in touch. Thank you very much. All right.