Social Anxiety

I am social anxiety

It seems like every conversation is going to end terribly

Because they’re going to laugh at you

They’re going to judge the way you look and what you’re saying

Why is it so hard to just be confident?

You hide from everyone to avoid interaction

You’ll do it yourself, you don’t need anyone to help you

But that’s not true

You wish you could work up the courage to ask for just a little bit of help with everything

Help with school, work, your friends, your family

The worst is when they tell you “speak up” or “you’re so quiet”

They know nothing about the volume of the thoughts in your head 


Social anxiety is a fear of being judged or viewed negatively by everyone around you. About 15 million Americans (7% of the population) are diagnosed with social anxiety. [23] Those with social anxiety try to avoid situations in which they would come in contact with a lot of people. These situations can include: social gatherings, asking for help at a store, initiating conversations, and even using a bathroom in public. If they cannot avoid these situations, they might stutter while speaking, have an increased heart rate, and feel nauseous. It is common to have anxiety attacks when in these situations if you do not know how to approach the situation. People with social anxiety tend to assume the worst-case scenarios will take place in everyday encounters. Social anxiety can hurt a person’s ability to maintain a social life or succeed in school and work. 

Social anxiety is more likely to develop in those who have family members with anxiety. Scientists have not been proven that genetics are responsible for the development of social anxiety, but being exposed to family members or close friends with social anxiety may influence the way you think and cause you to also develop this disorder. Those with an active amygdala (the fear center in your brain) are more likely to develop social anxiety because that part of the brain is constantly making up scenarios of how your everyday encounters can go wrong. Additionally, those who have had an embarrassing public moment are more likely to develop social anxiety out of fear that it might happen again. Those with overprotective parents are more likely to develop social anxiety as well since they are not exposed to social situations by themselves often, so they may struggle to know how to handle themselves. Finally, having an unusual physical attribute may draw attention to yourself, which may make you feel uncomfortable. 

This disorder can be treated by receiving professional help such as cognitive behavioral therapy or taking medication. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is meant to draw attention to distortions from reality and break them down to figure out how to handle stressful situations in real life. Finally, finding a way to express yourself, such as through writing, art, etc, makes it easier to process your feelings and calm your anxiety. [24]