I’m Anthony. In my experience, there are three steps that you have to go through to overcome shyness and social anxiety. The first step is to eliminate limiting beliefs and negative thinking, the second step is to confront the problem itself, and the third is to succeed socially. When the three areas are met, this is the beginning of the end of shyness and social anxiety.
The first step, which is eliminating limiting beliefs and negative thinking, can be the biggest obstacle. Limiting beliefs and negative thinking can cause you not to take action. They can keep you stuck in a never ending loop where you may think that change is impossible. A lot of times this can also be what causes people not to be motivated enough to take any action.
Limiting beliefs and negative thinking can lead to depression. Depression can lead to a lack of motivation and cause people to accept their present reality. If you are able to silence the voices from these two culprits, you can move onto step two which is confronting shyness and social anxiety.
When you are able to identify where and when shyness and social anxiety rears their ugly little heads, you can start to have power over it, but you have to have step one down to proceed. When you are able to identify what situations cause you to be anxious, you can make slight adjustments to counter-act the problem. Focusing outward helps, but does take a little practice. Shyness and social anxiety cannot exist if you are able to focus your thoughts on the situation instead of the thoughts that are racing through your mind. You are not your thoughts so don’t get caught up in your thoughts and emotions. Sounds easy right? It does take a little practice and self awareness, but it’s not difficult.
Step three is where the rubber meets the road. When you are able to get through the first two step (or get somewhat of a handle on them). You need to start having social successes. What I mean is having social interactions that are worthy of your approval. If you can walk away from a social interaction and say “That went well”, that is a social success. Don’t be too critical when you begin. Don’t expect to hit one out of the park your first time, but little successes will build on one another.
When you start having successes socially, this will help you build up confidence and motivation and give you the momentum to want to do it again and again. When you have enough successes, you can start to close the door on shyness and social anxiety. In my humble opinion, these are necessary steps that need to be taken to overcome shyness and social anxiety.
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