Social anxiety: check out 3 signs that may indicate the disorder

Have you ever missed an opportunity for fear of exposing yourself, being judged or evaluated? Many people attribute this to shyness, but the behavior could be rooted in something called social anxiety or social phobia. While shyness is a personality trait, social anxiety is a disorder, which can cause limitations in personal and professional life.

THE World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that about 13% of Brazilians suffer from social anxiety, which is equivalent to 26 million people. The condition is characterized by intense psychic suffering, as it includes self-sabotage, low self-esteem and social isolation. Perceiving the symptoms related to the problem is essential to receive the appropriate treatment, reduce and alleviate the symptoms and improve the quality of life.

Here are three of the main signs of social anxiety:

1. Fear of expressing yourself

A person with social anxiety has a hard time expressing themselves. One of the reasons for this is insecurity. The individual does not recognize his own qualities and focuses only on defects. Such a situation leads him to think ten times before speaking and, when he does, it is common for failures to occur regarding the clarity of ideas and even the continuity of the conversation.

Social anxiety also causes the individual to restrict socializing with others. Isolation is one of the tricks to avoid anxiety situations.

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2. Difficulties with the boss

If dealing with co-workers is physically difficult for people with social anxiety, relating to bosses and leaders is even more challenging. A simple meeting makes the heart beat faster and sweat take over the body.

One of the explanations for this, according to the psychologist from the University of São Paulo (USP), Monica Machado, is that the individual with social phobia feels inferior in the face of leadership. “He sees in the director, for example, an inaccessible being, much bigger and better. He believes that if he says anything, he will be evaluated negatively”, explains the doctor.

3. Crisis in the love relationship

According to Monica, the socially anxious individual encounters many obstacles when it comes to talking to someone they are attracted to. The person with social phobia can create situations of self-sabotage to push the partner away. It is also normal to be self-deprecating, for the same reason.

All of the situations mentioned can be alleviated and treated through the follow-up of a psychologist or psychiatrist. Among the treatments used are psychotherapy, meditation, yoga and, in more severe cases, antidepressant or anxiolytic medication.

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