Although social phobia may be a “new” name, it is a problem that has been around for many hundreds of years.
Social Phobia is the Fear (or worry) of being judged by other people and for many people it can have a very debilitating effect on their lives.
People suffering from social phobia will be very familiar with the phrase “you worry too much about what people think” and in essence, this is true.
Social Phobia may be experienced in many different ways, and to help you identify if this IS your problem, I have listed below some typical symptoms associated with this anxiety:-
▪ Often feeling like your being “put on the spot”
▪ Go cold at the idea of standing up and talking to a large group of people
▪ Have a very limited social life with very few friends
▪ Being “shy” in common social settings
▪ Dislike being at parties
▪ Worry about Exam results
▪ Always sticking to the rules
▪ Difficulty talking on the telephone
▪ Stuttering and Stammering
▪ Find it difficult to look people in the eye
▪ Unable to use public toilets (Known as “shy bladder”)
▪ Feeling like a “fraud” and that people may be able to “see through you”
▪ Always asking for feedback about “how well you are doing”
Social Phobia should not be underestimated as it can cause people to withdraw from life and, if not addressed, “migrate” into a Depressive Disorders. Social Phobia can influence almost every aspect of your life and is almost certainly the most common form of anxiety experienced by people.
One recent revelation about Social Phobia is that most of the people who “feel judged” can be quite judgemental themselves.
In other words, one of the reasons that social phobia sufferers believe that everybody is essentially “coming to some negative conclusion” about them as a person, is because this is exactly what they are doing to other people!
If you find yourself judging other people (even if you keep it to yourself) is it any wonder that you might believe this is a trait shared by everybody else too?
What causes Social Phobia?
Most people who suffer from social phobia are likely to have had the problem from an early age.
It is unusual to develop this type of problem later in life, although it may not become “expressed” as a problem until after some significant event triggers these buried feelings.
Social Phobia is almost always “created” when some experience in our developmental years leaves us feeling emotionally overwhelmed and unable to deal with the feelings we felt at the time of the incident.
We might, perhaps, have had an experience where we felt like we “made a fool of ourselves” and have perceived that all the people who witnessed this incident were somehow “laughing at me”.
Something may have happened that made us feel terribly embarrassed causing us to “blush”, only then to find that any situation that in some way reminds us of this experience, causes this “blush response” to occur again.
Perhaps there were very high expectations to succeed in your family environment, in which case you may have felt that “failing” in some way would lead to “ridicule” or perhaps even some form of punishment, in which case you would learn to “dread” failure and constantly worry about it.
Almost any experience of this nature can create social phobia in life.
Contact JTR Hypnotherapy
If you’d like to arrange for an initial consultation at my clinic, or if you have any queries that you’d like me to answer, then you can e-mail me, or if you’d prefer, you can fill out my online-enquiry form.