Anxiety in Social Situations

Anxiety in Social Situations

Feeling anxious in social circumstances is quite normal. For instance, giving a speech, going out on a date, interviewing for a new job or performing on stage in front of the crowd may cause that feeling of butterflies in your stomach. Be that as it may, if regular interactions can cause you huge nervousness, intense fear, self-consciousness and embarrassment and you dread being scrutinized or judged by others, you could be suffering from social-phobia, additionally called social anxiety disorder.
You learn to be comfortable in social situations and reclaim your life with equine therapy.

What is social anxiety disorder or social phobia?

Social anxiety disorder is a persistent psychological health condition, however learning adapting abilities in psychotherapy and medication can help you acquire certainty and improve your capacity to communicate with others easily. 

Unfamiliar situation that makes you feel like you’re being watched or judged by others may be so frightening that you get anxious just thinking about them and end up avoiding them altogether, which in turn disrupts your life. 

More often than not, anxiety, nervousness and fear can lead to social-phobia which can upset your life. Extreme pressure can also influence your every day schedule, work, school or different activities. 

What causes social anxiety?

Although, you may feel like you’re the only one dreading to socialize, social anxiety is actually quite common. Most people struggle with these issues. However, the situations which trigger the social anxiety disorder symptoms may vary.

For some people anxiety issues may depend on a certain social situation, whilst others may face it in every social situation like interacting with strangers, mingling at parties, or performing in front of an audience.

What are the common signs and symptoms of social anxiety?

Feeling shy or being uncomfortable in social situations are not necessarily the signs of social anxiety disorder. Comfort levels in social situation may vary depending on the personality. Some people are naturally reserved, whilst others are more outgoing.

Although social anxiety disorder sometimes starts in younger children or in adults, it typically is seen in early to mid-teens. 

It is not abnormal if your child is being shy, but if children with social anxiety disorder experience extreme distress over day-to-day situations that include playing with other kids, reading in class or speaking to adults or avoiding going to school, it is time you help them overcome it.

Some common signs and symptoms are listed below:

Behavioral signs of anxiety:

  • Avoiding social situations to the length that limits your activities or disrupts your life
  • Hiding or staying quiet to avoid getting noticed 
  • Always clinging on to a buddy wherever you go
  • Stuttering while talking in a crowd or with strangers

Emotional signs of anxiety:

  • Excessive self-consciousness in everyday social situations
  • Intensely worrying for days or weeks before an upcoming social event
  • Fear of embarrassment or humiliation 
  • Intense fear of being judged by others

Physical signs of anxiety:

  • Flushed face or blushing
  • Shortness of breath or racing heart
  • Nausea or stomach upset
  • Trembling or shaky voice
  • Sweating or hot flashes
  • Feeling dizzy or faint

How can equine-assisted therapy help you overcome social anxiety?

When you know you are intensely uncomfortable in social situations or experience other symptoms, it is when to consider seeking help.
Although avoiding social situations may make you feel better in the short term, but that is only a temporary solution. In your young age, it might seem okay to avoid social situations and be on your own, however as you age and start your career, it will interfere with your normal routine and cause tremendous distress both in your personal and professional life. 

For someone who already has anxiety issues, seeking help from a mental health professional might not work so much as it involves interaction with a stranger and hence starts the circle of fear of being judged. 

Understanding equine-assisted therapy:

Equine-assisted therapy is a holistic approach to healing mental health issues using horses as therapeutic healers. Horses help people on the road to recovery by encouraging the development of useful skills like handling emotional baggage, improving self-confidence, responsibility and vulnerability. 

Horses are very instinctive and known to be powerful partners in healing. You can hide your emotions from family and friends, but you cannot delude a horse. They sense human emotions and act as a mirror that reflects internal emotions back to you. 

The equine-assisted therapy allows client to engage in activities like feeding, grooming and leading a horse while being monitored by a mental health professional and an expert horse handler.

At healing hearts and minds, sessions are undertaken in the farm surrounded with greenery, fresh air and ever-loving horses that will encourage you to relax and help you recover.
The way horses respond, helps a person to generate natural reaction and people tend to be more patient or calm in their presence.
The therapy session involves activities like feeding, grooming and leading the horse. The sessions are usually carried out in small groups, where you may be given specific tasks to do. After which, you get to discuss your experiences and emotions with your therapist.

Overcoming social anxiety with equine-therapy

Social anxiety disorder can be seriously debilitating. It can occur in people of any age, and people with social anxiety disorder may often worry about appearing visibly anxious, or being called dumb, or boring.
People with social phobia often feel powerless against their anxiety. They have trouble making friends or maintaining friendships, building a career, finding life partners or even getting through the mundane aspects of day-to-day life may be hard to endure. 

The equine-therapy creates a foundation for being confident, overcoming emotional instabilities, staying calm and patient. 

Benefits of equine-therapy

Group activities will teach you how to cope with social anxieties which is generally caused due to the audience and strangers.
Horses are not judgmental and this will help you being yourself without any pretence. Building a relationship with the horse will also teach you how to improve relationships with others.

At Healing Hearts and Minds, you will feel welcomed by the horses without anyone to judge you. The equine-assisted therapy will strengthen your ability to adapt to the outer world more smoothly and open a new dimension in life. 

Come experience a holistic approach to enhance your life.

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