I used to think I was shy. Then I thought I had social anxiety. Then I didn’t know what to think.
I remember being rejected from 3 different companies because I appeared shy in my interviews. Me? Shy? Never! I was flabbergasted.
Yes, i’m soft-spoken. Yes, I don’t talk a lot around people. Yes, i’m not the most sociable person. And?
For years I really struggled to accept whether I was shy or whether I had social anxiety disorder. I know there are many people out there who are wondering the same.
If you have social anxiety disorder, the stress of being in a roomful of strangers can be too much to handle. Avoiding eye contact, feeling uncomfortable at the thought of small talk, wanting to be anywhere else but in that situation, are signs of social anxiety.
But don’t worry. There’s hope.
People have different situations in which their social anxiety may emerge. You may be a very confident public speaker, yet hate being approached by a large group of people. Though feeling uncomfortable when starting conversations and making eye contact with others, these common situations should not be applied to everyone.
Being worried about, or avoiding social activities is quite common. However, some may find it difficult to do things when others are watching. Others may dread everyday activities and fear criticism.
Symptoms of social anxiety include but are not limited to:
- Often bouts of dizziness and lightheadedness
- crying more than usual
- avoiding interaction with others
- Funny feeling in your stomach
- Rapid heartbeat
- Inability to catch breath
- fear of going out
These symptoms can emerge before, during or after events and various other situations. Overthinking plays a huge factor in social anxiety, and general anxiety.
If you have found yourself in one of these situations and have experienced more than one of these symptoms, please contact someone. Visit your GP, or seek for help online.
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