Jeff Dunbar BBA CH

Copyright 2013 Jeff Dunbar  All Rights Reserved

Social Phobia

Although social phobia may be a “new” name, it is a problem that has been around for many hundreds of years and can have a seriously detrimental effect of how well we “perform” in both our professional and personal lives.

Social Phobia is the Fear (or worry) of being judged by other people and for many people it can have a very debilitating effect on their lives.

People suffering from social phobia will be very familiar with the phrase “you worry too much about what people think” and in essence, this is true.

Social Phobia may be experienced in many different ways, and to help you identify if this is your problem, below are some typical symptoms.

Often feeling like your being “put on the spot”

Go cold at the idea of standing up and talking to a large group of people

Have a very limited social life with very few friends

Being “shy” in common social settings

Dislike being at parties

Worrying about Exam results

Always sticking to the rules

Difficulty talking on the telephone

Stuttering and Stammering

Find it difficult to look people in the eye

Feeling like a “fraud” and that people may be able to “see through you”

Always asking for feedback about “how well you are doing”

Social Phobia should not be underestimated as it can cause people to withdraw from life and, if not addressed, “migrate” into more severe issues. Social Phobia can influence almost every aspect of your life and is almost certainly the most common form of worry experienced by people.

One recent revelation about Social Phobia is that most of the people who “feel judged” almost invariably ARE judgemental themselves. In other words, one of the reasons that social phobia sufferers believe that everybody is essentially “coming to some negative conclusion” about them as a person, is because this is exactly what they are doing to other people!

If you find yourself judging other people (even if you keep it to yourself) is it any wonder that you might believe this is a trait shared by everybody else too?

What causes Social Phobia?

Most people who suffer from social phobia are likely to have had the problem from an early age. It is unusual to develop this type of problem later in life, although it may not become “expressed” as a problem until after some significant event triggers these buried feelings.

Social Phobia is almost always “created” when some experience in our developmental years leaves us feeling emotionally overwhelmed and unable to deal with the feelings we felt at the time of the incident.

We might, perhaps, have had an experience where we felt like we “made a fool of ourselves” and have perceived that all the people who witnessed this incident were somehow “laughing at me”.

Something may have happened that made us feel terribly embarrassed causing us to “blush”, only then to find that any situation that in some way reminds us of this experience, causes this “blush response” to occur again.

Perhaps there were very high expectations to succeed in your family environment, in which case you may have felt that “failing” in some way would lead to “ridicule” or perhaps even some form of punishment, in which case you would learn to “dread” failure and constantly worry about it.

Almost any experience of this nature can create social phobia in life.

How can Hypnosis help to improve personal performance & reduce social phobia?

The answer to this question depends very much on the degree of social phobia that you are experiencing, and perhaps what upcoming events you might like some help with.

If you have a driving test coming up and you are a bit worried about getting too nervous to be able to drive, then you would almost certainly find that a few sessions of Clinical Hypnosis will be of benefit in helping you to remain calm, in control and able to visualize a successful outcome. (We would regard this as MILD social phobia)

If, on the other hand, your social phobia has become so severe that you are beginning to withdraw from social interaction, then it is more likely that you will benefit from a course of Analytical Hypnosis which can help you to uncover and resolve any “bottled-up” or “buried” experiences that may be leading to behave in this way.