Suffering with social anxiety can be a daily nightmare with meetings, parties and other events around others taking place all the time.

You probably worry about what others think about you and do all you can to avoid looking or sounding stupid or making an idiot of yourself in front of them. When around others you may feel on edge, anxious and worried. You may feel inferior in some way or not as good as others.

In extreme cases, you may structure your life to avoid any potentially anxious situations and so you avoid meetings, meeting new people, going out, presentations, dating or any other similar situations.

To combat the anxiety, here are 5 things you need to do:

1) Relax quickly around others by learning to make your out breath longer than your in breath – you’ll feel more relaxed and more comfortable and so will those around you.

2) Mentally rehearse being confident before you go – imagine watching yourself looking calm, confident and relaxed in those social situations. While doing so pump up your confident self-talk inside.

3) Ask questions – most people are only too happy to talk about things if you ask them – and remember, you don’t carry sole responsibility for every conversation.

switch from nervous to confident

4) Before you go in the room, remember a time you felt totally confident and imagine being back there now, or imagine being with someone you feel totally comfortable around – you already know how to do this stuff so tap into your own resources.

5) Remember to smile – it will help you relax and others will be more relaxed talking to you.The key to overcoming social anxiety is to become comfortable being the real you – who you really are.

When you can trust yourself to be yourself, to handle uncertainty and to relax knowing you’ll never know for sure what others are thinking – then you can start enjoying life and doing the things YOU want to do.

Dan Regan

Hypnotherapy Ely & Newmarket