Social Anxiety


Anxiety can have many forms and types; some can act as a motivator to overcome challenges while others can constrain social and cognitive development. Social anxiety, in this regard, can be deemed as the type of fear and phobia that can have lasting effects on the social development of people and how they function in their daily lives. Social anxiety is the panic or anxious state in interacting with peers, relatives, or others, fearing to be judged, ridiculed, criticized, or negatively evaluated by other people. A number of studies have portrayed social anxiety as a psychological disorder as it often limits the abilities of public speaking, expressing one’s feelings, and making social and emotional relationships with others. Onset of social anxiety can be diagnosed in the early and middle childhood, but there have been cases when pertinent behavioral turbulences are observed in the teenage or in early adulthood.

It has been found that untreated anxiety problems in the childhood can become life-long syndromes and post hindrances in the social progress and functioning of an individual. For this reason, it is imperative to address social anxiety in its earlier stages and resolve it using appropriate measures and fit therapies. The majority of the children take some time to get familiar with others around them, be it their relatives, their friends, or their teachers. Thus, it is apparent that most of the children will not open up or will not be comfortable around strangers at the beginning. However, if the reluctance of a child in interacting and making social relationships continue with the passage of time, there is a probability that the child is suffering from social anxiety disorder. This disorder becomes more discernible as children grow and become part of a social integral system, where they tend to avoid situations that demands speaking in front of others and expressing their feelings.

Talking of appropriate measures and fit therapies, “Solution-Focused Therapy”, has been advocated as an effective approach in helping children to get away with their social phobia. George claims that social anxiety is the result of negative thoughts in children about themselves, like they will be criticized and look down upon by others when they will express their knowledge or feelings. The Solution-Focused Therapy put stress on replacing the negative thoughts with positive ones by emphasizing on the strengths and qualities of individuals, which they can share with others to get admiration or recognition. Though, the method is not applicable to 100% of the cases, it has been proved to be effective with a number of middle age children in making them believe that they are not inferior to anyone, resulting in an enhanced ability of making social relationships and emotional bonds with others.

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