Social anxiety tends to curb your personal freedom, not by external factors but by self-inflicted worries and stress. It affects everyday life in many aspects like relationships, profession and other personal interests. This disorder can dampen the spirit and reduce the potential and performance of the patient in a huge way.
Social anxiety is quite challenging to face, but the individual can come out of this problem by sheer acceptance and working towards being more dynamic and outgoing.
Try to analyze what activities or events generally make you very fearful. Rate each of them in a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 talks about your comfort level and 10 talks about your panic level. Write it down on a sheet of paper so that you can sit back and consciously read it at a later date.
In many cases, just a bit of self talk helps. The first step to attacking this problem is self acceptance. Instead of fearing anxiety, embrace it like your friend! Though it seems to be weird, sheer acceptance can lighten your burden.
Do not try to be too perfect in how you are and what you do. At the same time, do not expect perfection from others in every way. This would only end up frustrating you further.
If your heart starts racing and you realize it soon enough, start breathing slowly and avoid shallow breaths from the chest. Inhale air through the nose and start breathing from your diaphragm rather than your chest. This means that your belly should come in and out while breathing with very limited movement from the chest.
Let go of your tension. Start imagining something pleasant like a whiff of cool air hitting your face. This could relax you instantly.
Start on a relaxing exercise routine like meditation or yoga. This would calm your mind and make you face the day better. Start relaxing slowly from head to toe by following meditation instructions through a recorded cassette. Ensure that you are in a relaxing background. You can even play soft background music like gurgling water or chirping of birds.
Every time you get worked up, try to simplify the situation that you think is complicated. Think what the reality is and how you can solve the problem. Consciously bring to your mind that you are just anxious and you need to work on getting rid of this feeling. Focus on the task you need to do rather than evaluating your body experiences.
When you start interacting with others, stop reading too much between the gestures and conversations. Look for something positive wherever you go. Do not reflect too much on negative comments. This would make you feel more confident.
Overcoming social anxiety is challenging but not impossible. It just takes a little initiative and a change in your mindset and attitude to be successful. Remember that you may have good and bad days while dealing with it. But, the most important thing is not to lose hope while you try to overcome the same.