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SOCIAL ANXIETY: OUR OWN REALITY SHOW

Smile for the camera Most of us can remember when reality TV was still in its incubation period before it exploded into every family room across the globe. Debates have been had on when the exact advent was of what can be referred to as “reality TV”, otherwise known as unscripted entertainment in the style […]

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SOCIAL ANXIETY: STOP FOCUSING ON WHAT YOU THINK IS TRUE

The National Social Anxiety Center predicts that approximately 12% of Americans will experience some form of life-interfering social anxiety in their lifetime. Forming new friendships or relationships, introducing oneself to strangers, or speaking during a meeting are all examples of situations that can trigger social anxiety. While social anxiety can feel debilitating, there are effective […]

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“BUT WHAT ARE THEY REALLY THINKING?” SOCIAL ANXIETY AND THE STRUGGLE WITH UNCERTAINTY

Many outcome studies have shown cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT, to be the most effective approach to overcoming social anxiety. While core interventions of CBT such as cognitive restructuring and behavioral experiments (learn more about these strategies here) can help people to make great improvements to their social anxiety symptoms, one trait that can have […]

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IS CANNABIS THE NEW SOLUTION TO SOCIAL ANXIETY?

As of 2019, 33 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws legalizing marijuana in some form. 11 of those have laws legalizing marijuana for recreational use, in addition to the country of Canada. A Turn of the Tide for Cannabis in the USA Social norms and the stigma of cannabis use are beginning […]

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SOCIAL ANXIETY: A SMALL SHIFT, A BIG IMPACT

Me, my thoughts, and my emotions Most individuals experience successes and failures during social interactions. Although it is helpful to be mindful of internal experiences and one’s own behaviors, too much focus on these things often exacerbates cognitive and behavioral symptoms of social anxiety. A negative filter When compared to individuals who are not socially […]

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FOSTERING PRIDE TO HELP OVERSOME SOCIAL ANXIETY

The perils of beating ourselves up “I can’t believe I said that! I’m such an idiot!” “I made the conversation so awkward and boring!” “I came across as so anxious and weird! How can I ever face these people again?!” “I made such a terrible impression! I’m humiliated!” These are just a few examples of […]

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BENEFITS OF GROUP THERAPY FOR SOCIAL ANXIETY

Social anxiety can often contribute to people feeling like they are alone. Automatic thoughts such as, “I’m too awkward”, “I can’t make friends”, and “Everyone thinks I’m weird”, are hallmarks of social anxiety. These thoughts can make it difficult to reach out for help. Core Benefits of Group Work Group therapy for social anxiety has […]

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SOCIAL ANXIETY AND SMALL TALK: THE NUTS AND BOLTS OF MAKING CONVERSATION

“I’m bad at meeting people.” “I’m socially inept.” “People dislike chatting with me.” “I’m a boring conversationalist.” “Others can see that I’m anxious which they’ll think is weird, or will make them uncomfortable.” “I’m an introvert. I shouldn’t be expected to mingle. Chit chat is for extroverts!” “I hate small talk!” These are common hot […]

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SUPPORTING A FRIEND WITH SOCIAL ANXIETY

Have you ever suspected that someone you’re close to is avoiding a social situation because of anxiety? Feeling anxious in social situations is common for many of us, but for some people, it can be debilitating. Your friend or loved-one may be suffering from social anxiety. People often hide their symptoms, so if you notice that a friend […]

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SEX, MEN, & SOCIAL ANXIETY: MALE SEXUAL PERFORMANCE ANXIETY

“Performance” anxiety, indeed! That’s precisely the problem: thinking of sex as a performance, as something we are doing that is being scrutinized and evaluated by an audience. This performance mindset leads many men to be self-conscious, self-critical, worried, tense and anxious while being sexual. This in turns often results in bringing about the very problem […]

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LOST IN THOUGHT (part 2): COGNITIVE RESTRUCTURING FOR SOCIAL ANXIETY

Thoughts and Feelings in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for Social Anxiety Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) has repeatedly been shown to be the most effective treatment for social anxiety disorder for the large majority of people. A central principle in CBT is that what we feel—such as social anxiety—is created not directly by a situation we experience, but […]

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LOST IN THOUGHT (part 1): MINDFULNESS FOR SOCIAL ANXIETY

Upsetting Social Anxiety Thoughts –I don’t know what to say. What do I say next? –I might say something stupid / offensive. –S/he’ll think I’m boring / stupid / unattractive / socially inept, and will dislike me. –What I have to say isn’t good enough. No one will be interested. –They can tell I’m anxious […]