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  • Writer's pictureSasha Raskin, MA

How to Overcome Shyness and Social Anxiety

Reality dictates that our modern world promotes challenges, struggle, and personal success. People who succeed are usually those who have demonstrated a considerable amount of eloquence and self-confidence. Those who are not in this category are often the ones who are suffering from shyness and social anxiety. They are usually those who feel disadvantaged and excluded.

How to Overcome Shyness and Social Anxiety

The Factors Involved

A lot of people ask for ways on how to not be shy. In order to deal with this issue, it is recommended to look even deeper into the factors involved. In their most common manifestation, shyness and social anxiety are usually defined with the fear of interaction and contact with others, or even speaking in public. At the same time, there is usually a fear of potentially making a bad impression, and a fear of being judged by other people. Socially anxious people are afraid of feeling humiliated or uninteresting.

While some of these feelings are just normal, serious issues of shyness are deeply rooted. There are symptoms of these problems. They include insomnia, cold sweats, restlessness, uncontrollable tremors, intestinal rumbling, nausea, or even the incapacity to swallow anything. In more serious cases, some may even have to deal with medical consequences if left untreated.

How to Overcome Shyness

In order to know how to stop being shy, or at least reduce problems of social anxiety, it is extremely convenient to take some time to relax. At the same time, it seems logical that these problems may be cured through continuous exposure to the actual fear in order to overcome it. Psychologists have recommended certain techniques in order to deal with these problems. Among the options include Cognitive Therapy and Behavioral Therapy.

Cognitive Therapy requires an individual to become completely aware of their personal thoughts when faced with their fears. They usually take down notes of what they were thinking at a special point, challenging whether or not these thoughts are real by questioning them. Through time, a shy person may be able to dispel thoughts which cause them to be afraid, replacing them with helpful and rational thoughts which do not result to destructive feelings.

Behavioral Therapy involves positive reinforcement of the individual’s change in behavior. This results to dealing effectively with shyness and social anxiety in order to overcome difficulties and coping better with different social situations. It is very important that both of these therapy options be consistently practiced over an extended time period. Changes does not just happen overnight. Immediate improvements may be encountered, but it usually takes a while before real, and long-term improvements can be felt. These therapies are usually done with the assistance of a professional in this field.

Sasha Raskin, a therapist in Boulder, provides individual and family therapy / counseling in Boulder, Colorado, and worldwide via video and phone calls, drawing from over ten years of clinical experience. Schedule your free 20-minute phone consultation with Sasha Raskin

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