Is the fear of social interactions causing you to avoid social situations? Do you feel overwhelming embarrassment when you do the tiniest thing wrong? If you’re dealing with social anxiety, you may be spending much of your time alone. But this fear of social situations only gets worse until you face it.
Fortunately, anyone can learn some easy-to-use life tools to manage the fear, shame, and stress associated with this condition. If you need these tools, reach out to Bayview Recovery today by calling 855.478.3650.
Get Some Exercise
Physical activity activates the parasympathetic nervous system. That’s the part of your brain that makes you feel relaxed and content. So after you complete a quick jog or even a short walk, you’ll feel better.
Exercise also helps clear the stress hormone, cortisol, from your body. This hormone can build up and make you feel more stressed and anxious.
Getting more regular exercise, in general, can decrease anxiety levels over a more extended period. Even some stretching or yoga can help. However, if you have an event coming up that you know will trigger social anxiety, you can prepare for it by doing some quick exercise.
Pay Attention to What You’re Eating
Dealing with social anxiety can be as taxing physically as it is mentally.
Stimulants like caffeine and sugar can instantly increase anxiety levels. Refined grains and processed foods can have the same impact. So avoiding them in advance of a time that you need to be around people may help when dealing with social anxiety.
Additionally, your immune system helps manage your stress response. Those with social anxiety generally have a less adaptable stress response. So things that might not stress other people seem intense to you.
Eating a diet that boosts your immune system means eating leafy greens, vegetables, nuts, and seeds may improve your anxiety levels over time.
Try Positive Affirmations
Negative self-talk is a source of a lot of anxiety in social situations. So dealing with social anxiety may come down to identifying the negative things you’re thinking about yourself and those things you think other people are thinking about you.
Replace those with positive affirmations that you think in response to negative thoughts. It might seem untrue at first, like: “I love spending time with my in-laws,” or “I have a great sense of humor.” But the more you think it, the more you’ll notice a shift, and it eventually becomes true.
Manage Your Breath
The way you breathe can significantly impact your anxiety levels. When you’re anxious, you may notice you breathe quickly and shallowly.
The anxiety causes this breathing pattern. But breathing this way also causes more anxiousness.
So intentionally breathing through your nose slowly and deeply can help you feel more relaxed.
Give it a try. After 3-4 breaths like this, you’ll feel a cooling sensation in your chest, your racing heart will slow, and you’ll generally feel less fearful of interacting with people.
Talk with Someone About Dealing with Social Anxiety
Social anxiety should never go untreated. This condition not only causes physical and emotional pain, but it can impact your overall health and happiness. Anxiety treatment allows you to work through your fears in a safe setting. You can practice skills with others dealing with similar concerns before taking those skills out into the real world.
You can learn to cope with social anxiety without turning to drugs and alcohol. Furthermore, if you’re already in active addiction, you can learn more effective ways to manage these feelings.
Social anxiety is a mental health condition. So mental health treatment can help you experience a more fulfilling life free of overwhelming anxiety.
Bayview Recovery offers mental health treatments for many mental health conditions through programs like:
- Depression treatment program
- Schizophrenia treatment program
- ADHD treatment program
- Bipolar disorder treatment program
If you’re currently suffering from debilitating anxiety, treatment can help. To learn more, call us at 855.478.3650.