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Do you suffer from severe social anxiety?
I did for a long time. I have gone from no social anxiety whatsoever to very severe social anxiety. And after that all the way back again. Currently I basically have no social anxiety whatsoever.
This is possible for you as well, as long as you persistently take the right action until you have the result you want.
This article gives a look into my life when I was still suffering from my most intense period of social anxiety. After my personal story I’ll get into some general advice and will provide you with links to helpful information.
In the period that I was experiencing my most severe social anxiety my life was pretty much hell.
I can clearly remember how it was for me.
Here’s a random day out of my life from when I was still suffering from severe social anxiety. See if you can relate…
“I wake up and dread starting the day. I wish I could just stay in bed. Nice and safe, no confrontations.
Since I’ve called in sick for work too many times already, and barely have any money, I know I need to really get up and go to work. Because not going would mean that I’ll get fired. And that would lead to having to go through the hell of getting a new job.
Which means calling people, going on the dreaded interview, and getting into a completely new environment with people I don’t know.
I’ll then have to introduce myself to a ton of people and have to go through the frustrating process of having people experience that I’m weird because I can’t normally talk to them because of my severe social anxiety.
So I get out of bed feeling like crap. Anxiously thinking about tonight, because the weekend is staring me in the face…
Going to work sucks. I have to wait at the bus station with other people and I don’t know what to do with myself.
I walk to a place where not many people can see me and try to just stare ahead of me. But I’m sure people are noticing that I’m anxious. And they probably know that me staring in the distance is just a way of acting cool… So I move my head to some different directions to not look like a complete weirdo.
Damn, why am I so concerned with what people think of me?
In the bus I walk to the back of it, trying to avoid any eye contact.
I hope there’s a spot available because I don’t want to go sit next to someone I don’t know.
Or worse, there might be just one spot available next to someone I vaguely know. I’ll then have to go sit next to that person because if I stand up I’ll be really weird.
And when I go sit down the “acquaintance” might try to strike up a conversation with me. Which will obviously turn very awkward with long uncomfortable silences and me not knowing whether to fill it up or not.
If I know what to say that is…
While I’m already feeling anxious sitting in the bus, my mind starts to worry about the weekend. There’s a party coming up and I’m running out of excuses. I can’t be sick and absent all the time…
If I go I’m sure I’ll make an fool out of myself and everyone will laugh at me. And they will of course talk about it for weeks and will remember it for forever.
I hate being so weak, why am I such a loser?
When I arrive at work I try to get as little attention as possible.
But then Hans shows up, who always teases me with my anxiety. He gets a thrill out of getting me to blush.
Sebastiaan, what are you up to this weekend? Finally getting rid of your virginity?
I get tomato-faced… Damn, what a messed up day!
Rest of the day I feel extremely anxious, wishing the end of the day was there. Fearing someone will bring up the subject again. Worrying about whether I should say goodbye at the end of the day or not.
I have a question and can’t go on with my work. But I’m too anxious to ask for help…
I’m sure they all hate me and are all out to get me or make me feel bad.
I’m constantly thinking of an excuse to get out of the party…
At the end of the day I walk to get my coat. I don’t know how to walk. I feel self-conscious about how I walk. Hope they won’t say anything about it.
I say goodbye. But it comes out in a weird way. At least I believe so.
I’m sure they’re talking about me now…
When I take the bus back home it’s crowded. I have to stand and have no idea where to look. Highly anxious bus ride. Luckily no people that try to talk to me.
When I get home I am very grumpy. Messed up day again.
The phone rings. My mom picks up. It’s my old friend. What time are we going to the party?
I tell him I don’t feel well and that I’m probably not going. My friend act annoyed and convinces me to go. I have been canceling too many times now and I can’t miss this party. Take an aspirin or something.
I can’t get pout of this. I have to go now.
I start drinking beer until my friend arrives so I at least feel a bit more comfortable.
On the way to the party I imagine all sorts of doom scenario’s about what might happen. A girl might approach me and I will surely make a fool out of myself. I might stutter or don’t know what to say…
Or a guy will start talking to me about the girls at the party and how we should go talk to them. That would be painful…
Even though I’ve had a few beers already and feel a light buzz, my severe social anxiety is really blocking me from having any positive thought about the party.
Then we arrive. My heart races like crazy and I feel a bit shaky. I try to force a smile, but then stop it because I know it looks ridiculous.
I get introduced and I forget to say my name. I just say “Nice to meet you”. After that I worry excessively about that. He will for sure think I’m weird.
I start drinking. Fast. I get drunk. I get obnoxious and start to act arrogant. I feel I’m better than people. Then the light goes out, I drank too much.
Next day I wake up worrying about what happened yesterday. I hope I didn’t misbehave too much… I pray they won’t talk about me or confront me when they see me.
Then my severe social anxiety causes me to have another awful day once again… I’m starting to get more and more depressed about it.
I wish I’d wake up one day and the severe social anxiety would all have been a big nightmare. I would give everything to just be confident in social situations and have a normal, satisfying social life.”
My day of severe social anxiety that I’m describing above was one of many. Most days looked like this. It was very painful and I couldn’t really see a way out.
Until I by accident found out that I can change my brain to solve my severe social anxiety.
From this point forward I got hope and took the long journey to becoming socially confident.
You now also know that it is possible, and you will get more convinced once you start getting more information on overcoming it and once you get some real results for yourself.
My recommendation for you would be to get some help. Get some form of social anxiety treatment.
Because this will get you results way faster and you will also have someone to listen to you. Someone to guide you, motivate you and support you.
There is much advice that I can give you for overcoming your severe social anxiety, but it can’t be done on just this page.
Overcoming this is a long-term process. But by following this website and reading the related articles, you can speed up the process to becoming socially confident manifold.
Take small steps, work on it every single day, be persistent and never, never, never give up!
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