Living with Social Anxiety (or any other anxiety condition) – Part 2
All About social Anxiety
Hello everyone! This is Part 2 of our special feature on a psychological disorder called Social Anxiety Disorder. It is often referred to as Social Phobia or Social Anxiety Phobia Disorder or simply SA. Whatever you call it..it is still the same thing. The symptoms and experience of social anxiety can be quite varied in nature from one sufferer to another. There is also quite a variation in the severity of symptoms. This type of anxiety can also occur comorbily (alongside) with psychological ailments. One of the most common is depresion. Often when someone suffers from social anxiety, he or she begins to feel isolated, unaccepted and that he or she may feel that he or she does not belong. This can lead to feelings of inadequasy and delusions of inferiority. This is not good for anyone. Without treatment, he or she may be heading down a long dark lonely path. Stop. There is a light at the end of that path. The light comes on when a sufferer of social anxiety faces his or her problem head on. This may take the form of; confiding in a friend or loved one, talking to ones doctor or simply taking up the practice of better self care and mindfulness. There is a lot of help out there. A list of resources will be posted by the end of the week.
With any psychological disorder, it will varry from person to person. Below, we have posted a list of diagnostic criteria as seen in the DSM-5. This list should not be seen as a substitute for an actual diagnosis. It is for inforational purposes.
The Current DSM-5 Definition:
- A persistent fear of one or more social or performance situations in which the person is exposed to unfamiliar people or to possible scrutiny by others. The individual fears that he or she will act in a way (or show anxiety symptoms) that will be embarrassing and humiliating.
- Exposure to the feared situation almost invariably provokes anxiety, which may take the form of a situationally bound or situationally pre-disposed Panic Attack.
- The person recognizes that this fear is unreasonable or excessive.
- The feared situations are avoided or else are endured with intense anxiety and distress.
- The avoidance, anxious anticipation, or distress in the feared social or performance situation(s) interferes significantly with the person’s normal routine, occupational (academic) functioning, or social activities or relationships, or there is marked distress about having the phobia.
- The fear, anxiety, or avoidance is persistent, typically lasting 6 or more months.
- The fear or avoidance is not due to direct physiological effects of a substance (e.g., drugs, medications) or a general medical condition not better accounted for by another mental disorder…
These symptoms are typically lasting longer than 6 months.
Copyright 2013, The American Psychiatric Association
Are you suffering from Social Anxiety? Is there someone you care about that is suffering from social anxiety?
Here is a quick video link to some great advice by a personal coach who used to suffer from social anxiety. He no longer has to deal with the symptoms associated with social anxeity. He took control over this thougts and his entire life.
Click here for an awesome video by Rafael Eliassen.
Leave a comment about what you thought of this video.
Finally, here are 9 tips that you can use in order to avoid a panic attack. The next blog is going to focus on dealing with the anxiety that rears its ugly face when you are invited to a series of holiday parties and get togethers. For introverts, one party can seem very overwhelming. It can have a socially anxious person ruminating over what to wear, who will he or she talk to? Will he or she make a fool on him or herself by tripping or spilling food on oneself? That is one party. Thinking about and worrying about attending 8 parties (2 family parties, child’s hockey team party, work party, party with friends etc) can seem downright debilitating.
Here are 9 quick tricks to use in order to avoid a panic attack.
- Breath slowly in and out of the nose. Use a practice called square breathing. This practice helps to regulate the breathing and prevent hyperventilation.
2) Visualize. Imagine being at your happy place. Close your eyes and picture a calm and happy place.
3) Sing along to the music. This can also help to regulate the breathing and avoid over intake of oxygen.
4) Drink some water. Being deydrated can have very detrimental effects on the body and the mind.
5) Repeat your mantra or affirmation. I will be fine. I am perfect. I feel great. I am calm. Repeat 10 times when you feel panicked.
6) Call someone you trust or a help-line. Talkign to someone can help you tremendously. They can also talk you through a breathing exercise.
7) Practice mindfulness and meditation. This can go a long way in being able to contol your thoguths and body processes. Awareness of your heartrate and bloodpressure can help you have some control over these when you require it.
8) Talk to yourself. Tell yourself that you are not going to have a panic attack. Our experience is often a result of the story that we tell ourselves.
9) Be ready. Have a plan in place. If you have a medication to take, have it with you at all times. Keep a friend’s number stored in your phone. Keep a sugary candy with you.
I also thought this was interesting:
Click here for Movies with characters suffering from social anxiety.
Have a great Social Anxiety Free Day!! And remember Eh! Be Positive…