You were invited to a social gathering by a friend from work. You’re pretty close with them, and you’re roommate is always on you about getting out of your room and meeting new friends, so you decide to give it a try. It can’t be too bad, right?
You pull up and instantly your hands start to sweat. You feel shaky and like you want to bolt, but you grit your teeth and force a smile. It’s not too bad, just get over it. They’re just people, after all, people like you. So even though you wish more than anything you’ll slip on the ice on your way up to the door and be forced to back out on the account of a broken ankle, you step up and ring the doorbell.
A cheerful man greets you with a hug and your heart starts to pound incessantly. You survey the room, and the walls start to close in. There’s food, drinks, and lots of loud music. In a haste, you rush to the bathroom, lock yourself in, and text your friend: help.
In the US, 3.3 million people are diagnosed with social anxiety every year. It stretches far beyond the nervous giggles and awkwardness shown in media. It is a debilitating mental health concern that can trap you in a life of boundaries. While these boundaries make you feel safe, they also are limiting. You deserve a life free from social anxiety, a life where you can be yourself, explore who you are, and find new passions. No one deserves to live with social anxiety, and with a Thriveworks The Woodlands social anxiety counselor, you don’t have to!
For more information, or to schedule a session today, give Thriveworks in The Woodlands a call at 281-667-9790.
What Is Social Anxiety?
Social anxiety is a type of anxiety triggered by social situations. These social situations can be specific (like big crowds or eating in front of someone) or it could be broad (like interacting with people outside your close friend/family group). One thing Thriveworks The Woodlands wants to make super clear is that social anxiety is never a personal flaw. It’s not the result of being weak or cowardly. Social anxiety is a very real mental health concern that is the product of many internal and external factors, never your fault, but always your choice to fight against. Thriveworks The Woodlands is here to give you the support and tools you need to win that fight.
One of the last things you want to do when you are struggling with social anxiety is talk to someone about your anxiety. We understand that this alone might be a trigger, and we want to support you through this. While it is easier in the moment to turn away, tell yourself that you’re okay, and go back inside your boundaries, this is a limiting way to live in the long term. We see the courage it takes to reach out and ask for help. We admire and respect you for doing so!
It can feel like social anxiety makes every day a fight. With a Thriveworks The Woodlands counselor we will make sure that you don’t have to fight alone. Together, we can take back your life day-by-day.
If you recognize any of the below symptoms in yourself or a loved one, social anxiety counselors might be for you:
- Avoiding situations in which you know you’ll have to interact with other people
- “re-watching” an interaction in your head and picking apart what you did wrong
- Expecting the worse to happen in a relationship or social situation
- Upset stomach or nausea, especially as a social situation nears or during one
- Trembling and sweating
- Feeling like your mind has gone blank
In addition, it might be especially difficult for you to endure some of these common situations:
- Entering a room in which everyone is already seated
- Eating in front of people
- Starting a conversation
- Eye contact
- Using a public restroom
- Returning items to a store.
Social anxiety can be debilitating, but it is also beatable. You deserve to experience all the wonderful thing life has to offer without the fear of anxiety around every corner. Thriveworks The Woodlands is excited to begin that journey with you.
What Does Counseling for Social Anxiety Look Like?
Every person’s anxiety is going to look different. Triggers, coping mechanisms, and external factors are individualized to you. This is why Thriveworks The Woodlands utilizes a client-centered and individualized treatment plan. Everyone’s social anxiety looks different, so everyone’s’ counseling looks a little different too. This is your life, and we want to best adapt our expertise to fit it.
Managing social anxiety is a multi-step process. A few of the techniques we might use include:
- Uncovering negative thoughts and replacing them with positive, true thoughts
- Exposure therapy- facing that worst-case scenario in a controlled environment and working with a counselor to step yourself down from anxiety
- Discovering the root cause for anxiety and working to undo its mental effects
- Building up your confidence in your social skills
Who you are is not determined on your social anxiety? You have worth, power, and a future all on your own. Overcoming social anxiety is meant to increase the joy and freedom you feel in your day-to-day life, and to help you accomplish any dreams you’ve set for yourself.
For more information, or to schedule an appointment with Thriveworks in The Woodlands social anxiety counseling today, give us a call at 281-667-9790.