Reading the article below, it reminded me of how bad my social anxiety use to be. It was terrifying thinking of having to go to family functions or parties. It didn’t matter if I knew everyone in the room, or if they were strangers. I felt claustrophobic and judged. I never knew what to say. I never wanted to put myself into a conversation for fear of sounding stupid or seeming nosy. My heart would race, my body would shake and there were times I’d have to excuse myself so I could go cry. It took MANY years for me to slowly better myself. I can say, the only way I got over my social anxiety was by praying daily about it and forcing myself to go out and be social. The more something made me uncomfortable, the more I forced myself to do it.
Now I can walk into a crowded room and not want to cry and run the opposite way. I introduce myself to people, I make jokes and I just really try to have a nice time. It’s great to see how far I’ve come. Just the other day, on my birthday, my girlfriends took me to a cafe where they play live music and I got up with them and just danced and sang along to every song! I was even pulled up on stage to dance because it was my birthday. I had a moment of OMG now what?! But I just diverted my eyes and got down. I danced a little while the crowd cheered, then I went back to my friends, laughing and thinking omg I just did that! It was a great feeling. Had this been a few years back, I would have simply sat down all night, listening to the music and feeling that everyone around me was judging me for some reason.
Social anxiety disorder doesn’t have to take over your whole life. You can make the change. If u find you can’t do it alone, seek help. Go to therapy, learn the tools you need to become more comfortable with yourself. Speak to friends and family, ask them to be patient and encouraging. You don’t have to live in fear or paranoia forever. Sure, I still have those moments where my heart pounds fast and I’m nervous just thinking of having to go outside to do something, but I go anyway and the fear goes away. It takes time, but it can be done. You can over come this. Just have faith, be strong and be patient.