Most individuals who experience social anxiety have a particularly strong fear of rejection, and carry a tendency to attribute perceived rejection as an indication of their own inadequacy. This fear of rejection is even more significant when it comes to revealing one’s romantic interest to the other person, amplifying tendencies to avoid, and increasing risk of depression and hopelessness in response to rejection or the loneliness of not having a life partner.

This presentation provides guidelines and examples for conceptualization and intervention with those who identify a goal of dating or finding a life partner yet are avoiding due to fear of rejection. Specific treatment steps are discussed, such as use of rational-emotional role plays to practice and refine adaptive responses before or after approaching someone to express interest in a date, followed by simulated exposures where adaptive thinking and responses can be integrated when relevant emotion and cognition are primed. Case examples are provided to illustrate some interventions that have proven useful in working with dating anxiety.

This webinar was presented on February 7, 2020 as part of the clinical education program offered to regional clinics of the National Social Anxiety Center (NSAC). For more information on affiliating with NSAC as a regional clinic, please click here.

NOTE ON LEVEL OF PARTICIPANT EXPERIENCE: This webinar is designed for those who have already been trained in at least the basics of cognitive-behavioral therapies in any of its variants, such as cognitive therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy and exposure therapy. It is ideal to first have training in CBT for social anxiety, which you can do by watching this workshop video.

James L. Shenk, Ph.D: NSAC San Diego; Director of the Cognitive Therapy Institute of San Diego. Dr. Shenk is one of the Founding Fellows, and continues as a Certified Diplomate and Trainer, for the Academy of Cognitive and Behavioral Therapies (A-CBT). He has provided training and supervision in CBT to mental health professionals for over 20 years.



Our workshops and webinars are offered as an educational resource for
mental health professionals who are already familiar with cognitive and behavioral therapies.
These resources alone do not suffice as adequate training
to conduct cognitive and behavioral therapies
for those with social anxiety and related problems.