Social anxiety is something I suffered with for years before hypnotherapy helped me overcome my anxiety and enjoy being comfortable being myself.

I would constantly worry what others were thinking about me and worry about making an idiot of myself or doing something wrong. I would waste time and energy playing negative scenarios in my mind and criticising myself for not being good enough. I felt like there were two versions of me - the real me I could be when on my own and with others I knew well, and the anxious me who felt uncomfortable and would worry, stress and be unable to function around others.

Interviews, presentations and social occasions were an inner ordeal and sometimes my anxiety was so great I just wouldn’t do them.

I remember one time in an old job calling in sick just to avoid giving a 5 minute presentation. And of course whilst that removed the anxiety around the presentation itself, I spent many hours worrying about what they would think about me not being there and imagining them thinking negatively of me. 

If you suffer with social anxiety some of this may feel familiar.

Overcoming Social Anxiety

I know that you can smash through your social anxiety, however bad you think it is right now.

Here are three things that you can start to do that will immediately kick start you feeling happier, more confident and more comfortable being yourself:

1) Make time to relax and focus on what you want to happen. STOP worrying about all the things that could go wrong and what others may think – FLIP IT and start thinking how you do want things to go and looking forward to feeling more confident and in control.

2) Do at least one thing a day that takes you outside your comfort zone. However big or small: make it happen. It may be starting a conversation with someone you don’t know that well, picking up the phone instead of e-mailing or saying one thing in a meeting. Sure, you may feel a small rush of adrenaline but the positive payback will be ten times the payback.

3) Take action on the things you want to do BEFORE you feel 100% ready. There comes a time when all the analysis needs to end. If the thought of doing it excites you then commit to it and tell that doubting little voice in your head to get onside or shut up!

And most importantly, know that whatever happens – YOU’LL BE OKAY.

Dan Regan

www.danreganhypnotherapy.co.uk