Although there are a large variety of Social Anxiety treatments to choose from, ranging from Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to EMDR, Hypnotherapy, Energy Psychology and medication, Energy Psychology (EFT Tapping, specifically), is my first choice of approaches.
Social anxiety is one of the most common types of anxiety "disorders."
I really dislike the word "disorder."
I am of the opinion that the primary reason for any of the dozens of psychiatric "illnesses" now listed in the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), is for the drug companies to justify their aggressive multi-billion dollar marketing campaign.
Anyone who watches TV is likely to think of Paxil (the cute little sad pill cartoon) when they hear the words "Social Anxiety Treatment." Millions of Americans, including children, are subconsciously imprinted daily with these messages, softening us to the idea of medication as if it were as benign as a package of M&M's (never mind the black-box suicide risk for children and adolescents). If it were only that simple.
Anxiety disorders occupy a growing chapter of the DSM in which they are differentiated into many different types - ranging from Generalized Anxiety, to Agorophobia, to Panic Disorder, and Social Anxiety (otherwise known as "Social Phobia"). They used to call people with social anxiety, "shy." I don't like the word "shy" either. People used to call me shy when I was a kid and I hated it. It felt like a judgement. Anyone who is introverted by nature knows the pain of feeling like they don't fit in, and the anguish of not having the quick comebacks and confidence to converse freely at a party or with a group of friends.
People that are by nature, more introverted, quiet, "shy," or "highly sensitive" are much more likely to experience traumatic events with respect childhood bullying, anxiety attacks in class or in social situations, or during a performance or speech where they are the focus of attention. These emotionally traumatic events then may result in a lasting phobia or fear response to future situations that are triggered by similar cues (such as parties, being the center of attention, and so on).
Symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder:
As currently defined, the symptoms of social anxiety disorder may include:
There are many types of social anxiety treatments that work, but I find EFT Tapping, combined with a daily meditation practice and psychotherapy (someone to confide in and practice your social skills with), to be the best combination for most people. EFT Tapping, like meditation, is a tool that can be learned and used for your own self-help, as a daily self maintenance as well as in an acute situation or crisis. (In a social situation, it's far better to go into the bathroom and do some EFT for a few minutes to lower your anxiety, than to go to the bathroom to throw up)!
The most widely accepted mainstream therapy approach to social anxiety treatments is CBT (Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy). I find that EFT Tapping , when done with an experienced therapist, contains the same elements as CBT (identifying thoughts, emotions, beliefs), as well as body-awareness and the direct application of a technique that calms the emotions and nervous system. I've found this to be a much more direct way of neutralizing anxiety triggers and past traumas that are at the root of the problem.
Stay tuned for my upcoming video on Tapping for Social Anxiety.
For Social Anxiety Treatment in the Santa Rosa area (or coaching by Skype or Phone for clients outside Sonoma County), please complete the form below, or book a session online now.