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How to get rid of my social anxiety?

I've had it for pretty much my whole life and have no clue how to get rid of it.

Get anxious to even pay things at the till sometimes. Making friends usually takes years every time I've gone to a new school. The idea of having to talk to a hair stylist terrifies me. If I'm around new people, I end up being a nervous wreck and often feel like an outsider.

I tend to fixate on every time I've messed up on a social whatever for months.

I just want to be normal and not just freeze up and die on the inside constantly.

Any advice? I found my GP useless. They just threw some meds for decreasing heart rates and were like "go to this talking therapy thing". None of that stuff helped me.
I'm in a similar boat. Exposure and facing up to anxiety-inducing situations usually helps, I feel more comfortable going shopping every few days than every few weeks. Maybe watch a few videos of other people's experiences, it gives a bit of reassurance. Don't expect an overnight cure.
Original post by Anonymous
I've had it for pretty much my whole life and have no clue how to get rid of it.

Get anxious to even pay things at the till sometimes. Making friends usually takes years every time I've gone to a new school. The idea of having to talk to a hair stylist terrifies me. If I'm around new people, I end up being a nervous wreck and often feel like an outsider.

I tend to fixate on every time I've messed up on a social whatever for months.

I just want to be normal and not just freeze up and die on the inside constantly.

Any advice? I found my GP useless. They just threw some meds for decreasing heart rates and were like "go to this talking therapy thing". None of that stuff helped me.

how often are you meeting new people?
Everytime you fixate on times you've "messed up", you're just reinforcing the condition. If you're serious about tackling your social anxiety, then you need to start learning how to make peace with and accept yourself (and that starts by being kinder towards yourself).

Nothing will get any better if you keep on beating yourself over on fixating on the smallest things.
I think avoidance is the worst thing for anxiety in the long run. I feel like maybe start off very small and after a while you will become desensitised to the situation, and then you can work your way up. Also, I think what can help is thinking about other people. For example, have you ever had a social interaction where the OTHER PERSON messed up? Most likely you wouldn't even notice because you were too focused on yourself, saying the right thing etc. Even if you did notice, did you think about it for long afterwards? Most likely not. Now apply that situation to yourself, most likely it feels worse to you than it actually is. Not sure if this was good advice but I hope it can help a little.
i did the talking therapy, the tldr; focus your attention on the things around you rather than being completely in your head, drop safety behaviours (like doing stuff to avoid things) and consistent exposure
Can you think of any past/childhood experiences where you first felt this anxiety?

Childhood experiences can often be the cause of social anxiety that we do not understand.
Original post by Anonymous
I've had it for pretty much my whole life and have no clue how to get rid of it.

Get anxious to even pay things at the till sometimes. Making friends usually takes years every time I've gone to a new school. The idea of having to talk to a hair stylist terrifies me. If I'm around new people, I end up being a nervous wreck and often feel like an outsider.

I tend to fixate on every time I've messed up on a social whatever for months.

I just want to be normal and not just freeze up and die on the inside constantly.

Any advice? I found my GP useless. They just threw some meds for decreasing heart rates and were like "go to this talking therapy thing". None of that stuff helped me.


Hello there,

Firstly well done for sharing how you are feeling - it can be hard being anxious and worrying about things all the time.

You mention making new friends and socialising, on Student Space we have a whole resource on overcoming social anxiety which you might find helpful including 8 tips:

1.

Get to know your social anxiety

2.

Are your usual responses helping you?

3.

Take small steps

4.

Look after your body

5.

Talk to those around you

6.

Be kind to yourself and note your successes

7.

Keep trying

8.

Use support


Hope this helps.

- Grace (Student Minds)
Original post by Anonymous
I've had it for pretty much my whole life and have no clue how to get rid of it.

Get anxious to even pay things at the till sometimes. Making friends usually takes years every time I've gone to a new school. The idea of having to talk to a hair stylist terrifies me. If I'm around new people, I end up being a nervous wreck and often feel like an outsider.

I tend to fixate on every time I've messed up on a social whatever for months.

I just want to be normal and not just freeze up and die on the inside constantly.

Any advice? I found my GP useless. They just threw some meds for decreasing heart rates and were like "go to this talking therapy thing". None of that stuff helped me.

It’s simple: Don’t care, I myself have a lot of anxiety. I just recently started my driving lessons, finished my A Level year 1 exams, started a new job and attempted to widen my friend group. All of the above listed make me feel fearful - actually no, let me correct that, they DID make me feel fearful, until I realised the only thing causing the anxiety is my self, negativity is the stem of all anxiety related issues (I feel).

So I advise you absolve yourself of all negative thoughts and focus on the progress you have made so far, pledge to yourself that you will make an effort to lessen the anxiety.

The gym helps, I don’t know if you go but if you don’t try it. Works wonders.

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