Social Anxiety

Social Anxiety

Many people suffer from what's known as "social phobia," an irrational fear of social situations. Some degree of social phobia is normal. Small degrees of shyness in public places, or discomfort while public speaking, are natural in most people and do not imply an anxiety problem.

But when that fear disrupts your life, _you may be suffering from social phobia_


Social phobia is when the shyness is intense, and the idea of socializing or speaking with the public, strangers, authority figures, or possibly even your friends causes you noticeable anxiety and fear.

People with social phobia view public situations as being potentially painful and distressing, living with a constant fear of being judged, observed, remarked upon, or avoided. Those with social phobia also often have an irrational fear of doing something stupid or embarrassing.

What makes this more than just shyness is when those fears cause you to avoid healthy socializing situations altogether. Those with social phobia often live with two or more of the following issues:

  • Feeling hopeless or fearful of unfamiliar people or in unfamiliar situations.
  • Obsession over being watched, observed, or judged by strangers.
  • Experiencing overwhelming anxiety in any social situation with difficulty coping.
  • Severe fear of public speaking – beyond what one would consider "normal"
  • Anxiousness about the idea of social situations, even when not in one.
  • Intense issues meeting new people or voicing up when you need to speak.

Many people with social phobia display avoidance behaviors. They avoid any social situations as best they can to avoid further fear.

Social Anxiety counseling anxiety, LOVE Institute Families Counseling, Stuart FL. Jessica Gaffney

Social Anxiety counseling anxiety, LOVE Institute Families Counseling, Stuart FL. Jessica Gaffney