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Why does my social anxiety keep coming back?
Why are my results just temporary?
Will I ever be able to overcome my social anxiety completely?
Will I ever be totally at ease socially?
Will I ever get rid of my Social Anxiety?
If you also asked yourself these questions, then this video is for you.
In this episode, I will be sharing with you TWO reasons why your Social Anxiety keeps on coming back.
If you want to start your #JourneyToSocialEase, then join me on my FREE 30 Day Social Confidence Challenge.
Why does my social anxiety keep coming back?
Why are my results just temporary?
And will I ever be able to overcome my social anxiety completely?
Will I ever be totally at ease socially?
I’m going to answer these questions in this video because I hear them all the time. And this insecurity that comes about when social anxiety “returns” (I did that within quotation marks for a reason, which I’ll go into in just a moment), the insecurity that comes in, and the worry that you’ll never overcome it, can really be debilitating – it can actually stop you from taking any action because it’s very demotivating.
It’s a misperception that Social Anxiety keeps coming back. And I’m going to talk about that in just a moment.
If you’re new with my work, my name is Sebastiaan van der Schrier. I’m a former Social Anxiety Disorder Sufferer, I’ve been creating these videos since 2009. I have been coaching people with Social Anxiety since 2009. I specialize in combining Traditional Psychology with Energy Psychology to make progress a lot faster. Because we addressed the emotional side of the problem, which is the major side of the Social Anxiety problem.
Anyway, I started trying to overcome my social anxiety in 2001. So that’s almost two decades. And in 2006, roughly, I found EFT, and now I started making more progress quickly. And actually, as I started coaching in 2009. Thinking that I was anxiety-free and socially at ease already.
Well, in hindsight, that wasn’t the case. But I was so much further than where I was when I actually found the whole tapping thing. I’ve made so much progress.
But actually, to get to the place where I’m just really at ease with myself, and I effortlessly connect with people, that’s been a long journey.
That’s been a lot of work.
And that demotivates people, sometimes when they hear it, they’re like, “I don’t want to go on a long journey, I just want to do a bit of tapping, and get rid of my problem”.
I get it. I understand. Had that too. But there’s a lot of value in going on this journey, which is way beyond getting rid of the Social Anxiety.
There’s a lot more depth. And there’s a lot more self-discovery and self-awareness and self-acceptance, and inner freedom and liberation that comes about as you go on this journey to social confidence.
I call it “Journey to Social Confidence”, actually “Journey to Effortless Social Ease.”
Because as you do this work, you’re getting to know your true self, and you feel safe expressing who you authentically are – UNFILTERED.
It’s not rehearsed, it’s not trying to please people, it’s not trying to get approval from people desperately all the time. It’s like just you being you showing up. And that’s enjoyable for yourself and for others.
On that journey to overcoming my Social Anxiety, I often had, where it seemed like the anxiety was coming back, especially like sticky issues, or not even anxiety. Let’s take the example of blushing. It took such a long time for me to get over. And then I thought I cleared it; it’s gone. But then it would come back again.
Or just being the center of attention, and being challenged while I was the center of attention. That in particular made me super anxious. And then I thought I cleared it. And I would come back as like, “What is this? Will I ever get rid of this? Is this just part of me? Is it impossible?”
And even with all that I learned and all that I studied about psychology, how tapping works, and so on. Still, when it will get triggered again, that worrying that dread that concerns like, “Oh my god, what if I’m never going to get rid of this? I’ll probably never get rid of…” Like that kind of thinking? That’s very common.
I did a live coaching session with Graham inside my Social Confidence Club, a week or two ago. And we worked on his fear of being criticized, and he tuned into that fear. He tuned into the last time that it happened and when he imagined that, he felt stiff and rigid in his body and constriction in his throat and I think, it was a 5 or 6 out of 10, just imagining it. And we did some work.
In other words, we did some tapping and some other energy psychology techniques and some other techniques, and 45 minutes or an hour later, I’m like, “Okay, how do you feel about it now? Imagine what you imagined before being criticized.”
He’s like, “okay, I don’t really feel it right now.”
I’m like, “Okay, try harder, get into it.”
He’s like, “Hmm. Maybe a 1, maybe 1 out of 10 intensity?
I’m like, “Okay, interesting. What’s that 1 about? Do you still really feel it? Do you still really feel those uncomfortable feelings in your body? That insecurity? That nervousness? That embarrassment or shame when do you imagine being criticized? Is it that or is it something else?”
He said “No, it’s actually that 1 is that I’m afraid that it’s going to come back? Because it’s come back before.”
I’m like, “Uh-huh. That’s such a common story. Let me talk about it.”
And what I said to him is what I’m going to say to you right now, which is what I discovered, going on this journey myself, and seeing it in clients over and over and over and over again, and understanding the psychology of how this works.
So, why does my social anxiety come back? For two reasons.
Reason #1: Your subconscious mind doesn’t believe that it’s safe for you to NOT be anxious.
Anxiety, when you look at what it is, it’s a warning from your mind to alert you about potential danger. It’s telling you, “Hey, there’s a threat in this situation. So I need to alarm you about it.”
Fight the threat, or flee from it. And if you can’t do either, you will just freeze, and play dead.
That’s a survival mechanism.
That’s what the experience of anxiety really is.
Now, if you’re doing work towards getting to a place of social ease, but social ease – that outcome isn’t safe? Because you have some belief that if you’re socially at ease, you’ll be judged even more, and therefore it’s not safe?
Then your subconscious won’t allow you to go there or won’t allow you to stay there. Because it’s not safe.
So, there’s a downside to being socially at ease. I know that that sounds really strange. But that really can be the case.
So, that’s reason number one.
You might ask yourself, “what’s the downside of no longer having anxiety?”
If anxiety is no longer there to “protect me, to warn me, to alarm me” What’s risky? What’s so dangerous about just being myself?
You might ask yourself, “when I was young; when I was a little kid, why was it not safe to be myself? If I was just myself? What happened? Did your dad criticize you? Did your mom compared you to your brother or your sister and you didn’t live up? Would you be loud and rowdy, and you get smacked across the head, or whatever? Did you not perform well enough, etc.”
So there’s something there that that makes it not safe for you to be socially at ease, just yourself.
That’s, that’s reason number 1, you need to uncover that. And then work through it, how to work through it way beyond this video, and this is just information to get you to understand what’s going on.
Let’s go through reason number 2. Reason number two, for why your social anxiety “comes back” is that drumroll,
Reason #2 – There is simply more work to do.
So you can imagine that your social anxiety is like a pizza slice, you slice it up into pieces. And when you eat a slice of that pizza, there are still other slices left.
Now, your social anxiety is a problem that can be divided up into smaller parts, smaller aspects.
Some of these smaller parts are:
And so, your Social Anxiety problem consists of a certain amount of aspects, a certain amount of smaller parts, that might be 78 parts that make up your Social Anxiety or 17 parts that make up your Social Anxiety.
And I’m being very logical and descriptive about it more as a metaphor, rather than something absolute. But that’s what it is.
And you need to work through each and every one of these aspects.
So, if you have like Graham had, and as I had in the past, as well, fear about being criticized, then that part is actually just a part of your Social Anxiety. Because there are other parts too, maybe you also have a fear of embarrassing yourself, maybe you also have a fear of being judged negatively, maybe you also believe that you’re inferior to others. So that are already four different parts that cause or contribute to your anxiety experienced in social situations because those 4 parts make it not safe to show up as you unfiltered (show up as the true you).
And so, each of these pieces needs to be addressed. So, when you have that fear of being criticized, and you work on it, like Graham did, what you then work on might be, “well, that feeling of being when I imagined myself being criticized, I feel ashamed. And I feel insecure, I feel that shame has heat in my face, I feel that insecurity, upset stomach, I feel this tightness in my chest. And I feel constricted. And if I rated on a scale of 0 to 10, all of those feelings combined, it’s like a 7 out of 10.”
All right, then you do your tapping. And as you’re tapping on these feelings, you might find that there’s a memory that pops up of when you were criticized by your mom when you were 7- okay, that’s an aspect of that problem.
That’s a particular smaller part that causes or contributes to you being afraid to get criticized, and you’re getting all awkward when you get criticized because you’re reliving the feelings from that memory.
So, you’ve got that memory from age 7, where you get criticized by your mother, and you work through the feelings from that time, and you process them, and you neutralize the learning or the conclusion that you draw at that time, which formed a belief such as “I’m no good. And I have to do everything right”, for example, and you neutralize all of that, and you let go of all of that. And then that memory is no longer used by your brain as a resource for how to feel in here and now.
And you now have your adult resources available in situations where you are criticized and therefore you do not respond rather react. You do not react like a little kid that a seven-year-old anymore because you’ve processed that.
That memory is no longer active. And in procedural memory, that memory has been dumped into your long-term memory, you can still remember it, but it’s no longer relevant, it’s no longer active, it doesn’t get triggered anymore, you’re no longer reliving those emotions.
So you’ve worked through that memory. And now you feel good because you’ve released something.
You feel better.
And now you go into a situation. And you know, a week later you get into a similar situation where you got criticized. And two weeks ago, you got criticized in a similar way. And it got you to feel like a 7 out of 10 uncomfortable, and now it still gets you uncomfortable.
You’re like, “Oh, my God, I thought I worked on this, what’s going on?”
Well, there might simply be another memory from when you were 16 years old. And you were criticized by this girl in this cafe in front of all your friends (happened to me). And it massively embarrassed you and it made you feel ashamed. And that’s what’s getting triggered.
So there’s another part of it that’s not been addressed.
That doesn’t mean that you didn’t make progress by releasing that memory of age 7 with your mom. It simply means there’s more to do.
And so you work on that memory from when you were 16 when you were criticized by a girl in front of your friends and you process it, you let go of the emotions of it and so on. And now you go about your life. And you find that you get into a particular situation, you get criticized just like you were before, and you’re like, “Where’s the anxiety? Where’s the discomfort? Where’s the shame? Where’s insecurity?”
It’s gone. It’s processed.
And instead, you find yourself reacting, like, “Okay, well, this criticism, you know, that person is having a bad day or Okay, yeah, that’s a good point, maybe I should improve that, or whatever. “
In other words, you’re having a mature reaction to whatever is happening because it doesn’t grab you by the balls emotionally. Right? And so, you’re just whatever.
It slides off your back, you know, water off a duck’s back.
Whereas before, for years, you’ve reacted very strongly to criticism and now doesn’t bother you anymore.
So that’s what happens.
It just requires persistence and working through all of the little pieces, all of the pizza slices that make up your Social Anxiety problem. And that’s the journey over time. That’s not going to happen overnight.
Now, when you hear this, you might go like, “Oh, my God, I want some quick fix. And where’s my quick fix? “
You know what? your quick fix is actually doing the tapping.
When you start applying the tapping, you’re already starting to make relief, you are already starting to make progress and get relief.
Stop thinking black and white. It’s either social anxiety or no social anxiety.
No, that’s not true.
There are so many steps in between:
There’s 10 out of 10 social anxiety, which is like frozen, can’t do anything.
7 out of 10 social anxiety still really uncomfortable, but I can at least speak.
There is 7 out of 10 social anxiety and
there’s 5 out of 10 social anxiety just like “I can kind of manage, you know, I’m, it’s, it’s, it’s still really difficult can’t be myself. But it’s a lot better.”
There’s 5 out of 10, there’s three out of 10, which is like, “okay, I can almost be myself, I’m hyper and I’m uncomfortable, and I’m worried but I know it’s a lot better already.” There’s that.
Then, there’s like beating yourself up mercilessly after having gotten anxious, and beating yourself up mercilessly for days, and beating yourself up mercilessly for hours, massive difference.
Beating yourself up mercilessly, beating yourself up a little bit.
Beating yourself up, not beating yourself up, etc,
Getting anxious, and the anxiety staying for a long time and not really reducing because you’re panicking about it, you’re upset about and you’re ashamed about it, or anxiety showing up and okay. It’s what happens, didn’t judge myself for it, it’s happening. And it goes quite quickly.
Massive differences, many, many, many steps in between. This journey from social anxiety to social confidence is simply a journey of a lot of little steps.
I heard that said in a supervision training that I did the other day by a Psychotherapist and Specialists in logo synthesis, which is energy psychology. I also use and I’m training in and have been trained in a bit. And it was profound, like “Yeah, that’s a good statement to use because that’s so true. That’s how it is. It is a journey of a lot of little steps.”
There you go.
What I will end this by is to summarize what I’ve said.
It’s not that social anxiety comes back. Social Anxiety “returns” because:
A. You haven’t made social ease safe in your brain is still perceiving that it’s dangerous to be yourself.
B. There are smaller parts that make up your anxiety issue.
And you simply need to work through these smaller parts bit by bit, step by step, over time continuously working at it, until there’s no anxiety anymore.
And as you do it, it gets better and better, you get less and less anxious, it becomes less and less strong, it stays around for less and less long. You begin to get situations where you feel there is no anxiety, you’re surprised like “Hey, where is it? I used to be anxious here.”
You get situations where you start feeling comfortable, you get situations where you’re connecting with people, but this is a journey over time. And it’s such beautiful work because you really get to like you and be okay with all of you. And no, there’s no better thing I can wish for you than that.
But it’s not all butterflies, greenlights, rainbows, and sunshine. This can be really tough and challenging. Because it’s an up and down journey. It’s an up and down journey. And it’s not always easy. And you work through things. And sometimes you don’t fully process something, and you’re working through emotions. And it can be tough sometimes, but honor that. It’s worth it.
Not going on the journey, nothing is changing. You’re continuously in the same restricted, anxious place.
Start tapping, start addressing it.
And by the way, I also want to say tapping is a technique. And it’s a very effective one.
Some people it might be, I don’t know, simply need more than just this technique, they might need the help of a therapist. Nothing wrong with that at all. The stupid cliche about therapy has to go out of the window. You can use the tapping with your therapy, put your therapy on steroids, there is something that can help you if you can do it yourself, get some outside help, use the tapping, learn about energy psychology, and you can really get to where you want to be eventually. If you honor the fact that you need to get on a journey in order to get there.
Keep in mind doesn’t come back. There’s more work to do. Make the outcome stay, and get yourself to commit to that outcome of social ease. You’re going to do whatever it takes to get there. And your success is inevitable.
It might take a long time, but you’ll get there and you can start making progress right away.