Understanding Social Anxiety and how it affects our daily living especially in the Digital World
As technology continues to rapidly grow and the world becomes increasingly connected, it’s easy and normal to feel overwhelmed or anxious in the face of all that can go on in our digital lives. But what is social anxiety, exactly, and how does it affect people today? This blog will explore the impact of social anxiety in a highly connected world and how to better cope with feelings of anxiety and tension when engaging online.
Defining Social Anxiety
While the exact causes of Social Anxiety are unknown, it is thought to be a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Social Anxiety is more than just shyness or stage fright. It is a chronic condition that can interfere with all aspects of a person’s life, from school and work to relationships and social activities.
People with Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) can feel extremely anxious and uncomfortable in many kinds of social situations. They may worry about being judged by others or making mistakes, and as a result, they may avoid situations where they might be the center of attention. SAD can cause significant emotional and physical distress, and it can interfere with work, school, and other activities.
Most people experience some degree of Social Anxiety at some point in their lives. For some people, however, Social Anxiety is so severe that it interferes with their ability to lead normal lives. If you have SAD, you may find yourself avoiding work or school functions, parties, dates, public speaking engagements, or any other situation where you might be expected to perform or interact with others.
Symptoms of Social Anxiety
- Extreme sweating
- Racing heart
- Trembling or shaking
- Gastrointestinal issues
- Trouble catching breath
- Fear of situations in which you may be judged negatively
- Expectation of the worst possible outcome from a negative experience during a social situation
- Avoiding social situations
- Spending inconsiderable amount of time to prepare for the upcoming event ● Difficulty making and maintaining eye contact with others
Causes of Social Anxiety in the Digital Age
It’s no secret that social anxiety can be triggered by any number of things, from public speaking to meeting new people. But in the digital age, there are a whole host of new reasons why someone might start to feel anxious about social interactions.
Here are just a few:
Social media comparison: Constantly scrolling through social media and comparing our lives to others’ can trigger feelings of anxiety and insecurity. We see everyone else’s highlight reel and assume that’s what their life is like all the time, leading us to believe that we don’t measure up.
- FOMO: The fear of missing out is real, and it can be exacerbated by social media. We see our friends and acquaintances living their best lives and feel like we’re not doing enough with our own lives. This can lead to feelings of inadequacy and anxiety about what we’re doing with our time.
- Perfectionism: The pressure to appear perfect online can be overwhelming. We edit our photos, curate our posts, and make sure everything looks just right before hitting publish. But the reality is that nobody’s life is perfect, and this perfectionism can lead to anxiety about how we’re perceived by others online.
- Cyberbullying: Unfortunately, the anonymity of the internet can lead to people feeling emboldened to say or do hurtful things to others online. This cyberbullying can take a toll on someone’s mental health, leading
Effects of Social Anxiety on Relationships and Daily Life
There are a number of ways that social anxiety can impact relationships and daily life. One of the most significant ways is by causing people to avoid or limit their social interactions. This can lead to problems in personal relationships, as well as difficulty maintaining work and other daily responsibilities.
People with social anxiety may also find it hard to express themselves or be assertive in social situations. This may make it difficult to form and maintain close relationships. Additionally, people with social anxiety may turn to alcohol or drugs as a way of self-medicating and this can further damage personal relationships.
The good news is that there are treatments available that can help people learn to manage their social anxiety and live happier, more fulfilling lives. If you’re struggling with social anxiety, reach out for help from a mental health professional.
Coping Strategies to Manage Social Anxiety
When it comes to social anxiety, there are many different coping strategies that can help manage the condition. Below are some common coping strategies that people with social anxiety often use:
- Avoidance – This is when someone with social anxiety tries to avoid any and all situations that might trigger their anxiety. While this may offer short-term relief, avoidance can actually make social anxiety worse in the long run.
- Safety Behaviors – These are actions or behaviors that people with social anxiety use in order to feel safer or more comfortable in Social situations. safety behaviors can include things like avoiding eye contact, staying silent, or trying to blend in with the crowd. Unfortunately, safety behaviors often have the opposite effect and can actually increase one’s anxiety.
- Cognitive Restructuring – This is when someone with social anxiety challenges the negative thoughts and beliefs that contribute to their fear and anxiety. This can be done through techniques like journaling, visualization, and self-talk.
- Exposure Therapy – This is a type of treatment for social anxiety that involves gradually exposing oneself to the situations they fear and avoiding in a safe and controlled environment. Exposure therapy can be an effective way of reducing social anxiety over time.
- Relaxation Techniques – Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, and yoga can help people with social anxiety learn to control their body’s physical response to anxiousness (i.e., heart rate)
Seeking Professional Help for Severe Cases of Social Anxiety
The incidence of SAD in India is 2.79% and the prevalence of 1.47 %  That’s nearly one in every six people. But, despite its high prevalence, social anxiety is often misunderstood. Many people with social anxiety do not seek professional help because they think their symptoms are not severe enough or they are embarrassed to talk about them. However, social anxiety can have a profound impact on your life, making it difficult to work, socialize, and even go out in public. If you are struggling to manage your social anxiety, it is important to seek professional help.
A therapist can help you understand your social anxiety and work with you to develop coping mechanisms. medication may also be recommended for severe cases of social anxiety. If you are suffering from social anxiety, do not hesitate to seek professional help—it could be the best decision you ever make.
If you are someone going through above mentioned symptoms or other mental health related issues, help is around the corner. For your A-Z mental health needs feel free to reach out to us and book a counseling session with TEE experts at Miind my Miind, visit https://www.miindmymiind.com/ or call us at 9888130005
Social Phobia(Social AnxietyDisorder) inMedical andParamedical FirstYear Undergraduates