24 May 2013
What is Social Phobia?
Social phobia, also known as social anxiety disorder, involves intense fear of certain social situations—especially situations that are unfamiliar or in which you feel you’ll be watched or evaluated by others.
These social situations may be so frightening that you get anxious just thinking about them or go to great lengths to avoid them.
Underlying social anxiety disorder or social phobia is the fear of being scrutinized, judged, or embarrassed in public. You may be afraid that people will think badly of you or that you won’t measure up in comparison to others. And even though you probably realize that your fears of being judged are at least somewhat irrational and overblown, you still can’t help feeling anxious.
The anxiousness that's makes u feel hard to breath, getting dizzy and sometime u feel like fainting.
Social anxiety sufferers have negative thoughts and beliefs that contribute to their anxiety. If you have social anxiety disorder, or social phobia, you may find yourself overwhelmed by thoughts like:
§ “I know I’ll end up looking like a fool.”
§ “My voice will start shaking and I’ll humiliate myself.”
§ “People will think I’m stupid.”
§ “I won’t have anything to say. I'll seem boring.”
Challenging these negative thoughts, either through therapy or on your own, is one effective way to reduce the symptoms of social anxiety disorder.
The first step is to identify the automatic negative thoughts that underlie your fear of social situations. For example, if you‘re worried about an upcoming work presentation, the underlying negative thought might be: “I’m going to blow it. Everyone will think I’m completely incompetent.”
The next step is to analyze and challenge them. It helps to ask yourself questions about the negative thoughts: “Do I know for sure that I’m going to blow the presentation?” or “Even if I’m nervous, will people necessarily think I’m incompetent?” Through this logical evaluation of your negative thoughts, you can gradually replace them with more realistic and positive ways of looking at social situations that trigger your anxiety.
Unhelpful thinking styles involved in social phobia
In particular, ask yourself if you’re engaging in any of the following unhelpful thinking styles:
§ Mind reading – Assuming you know what other people are thinking, and that they see you in the same negative way that you see yourself.
§ Fortune telling – Predicting the future, usually while assuming the worst will happen. You just “know” that things will go horribly, so you’re already anxious before you’re even in the situation.
§ Catastrophizing – Blowing things out of proportion. If people notice that you’re nervous, it will be “awful,” “terrible,” or “disastrous.”
§ Personalizing – Assuming that people are focusing on you in a negative way or that what’s going on with other people has to do with you.
Many changes happen in your body when you become anxious. One of the first changes is that you begin to breathe quickly. Overbreathing throws off the balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide in your body—leading to more physical symptoms of anxiety, such as dizziness, a feeling of suffocation, increased heart rate, and muscle tension.
Learning to slow your breathing down can help you bring your physical symptoms of anxiety back under control. Practicing the following breathing exercise will help you stay calm when you’re the center of attention.
A breathing exercise to help you keep your calm in social situations
§ Sit comfortably with your back straight and your shoulders relaxed. Put one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach.
§ Inhale slowly and deeply through your nose for four seconds. The hand on your stomach should rise, while the hand on your chest should move very little.
§ Hold the breath for two seconds.
§ Exhale slowly through your mouth for six seconds, pushing out as much air as you can. The hand on your stomach should move in as you exhale, but your other hand should move very little.
§ Continue to breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Focus on keeping a slow and steady breathing pattern of 4-in, 2-hold, and 6-out.
Social anxiety disorder treatment #3: Face your fears
One of the most helpful things you can do to overcome social anxiety disorder, or social phobia, is to face the social situations you fear rather than avoid them. Avoidance keeps social anxiety disorder going.
Avoidance leads to more problems
While avoiding nerve-wracking situations may help you feel better in the short term, it prevents you from becoming more comfortable in social situations and learning how to cope. In fact, the more you avoid a feared social situation, the more frightening it becomes.
Avoidance may also prevent you from doing things you’d like to do or reaching certain goals. For example, a fear of speaking up may prevent you from sharing your ideas at work, standing out in the classroom, or making new friends.
Challenging social anxiety one step at a time
While it may seem impossible to overcome a feared social situation, you can do it by taking it one small step at a time. The key is to start with a situation that you can handle and gradually work your way up to more challenging situations, building your confidence and coping skills as you move up the “anxiety ladder.”
For example, if socializing with strangers makes you anxious, you might start by accompanying an outgoing friend to a party. Once you’re comfortable with that step, you might try introducing yourself to one new person, and so on.
§ Don’t try to face your biggest fear right away. It’s never a good idea to move too fast, take on too much, or force things. This will backfire and reinforce your anxiety.
§ Be patient. Overcoming social anxiety takes time and practice. It’s a gradual step-by-step progress.
§ Use the skills you’ve learned to stay calm, such as focusing on your breathing and challenging negative assumptions.
Actively seeking out and joining supportive social environments is another effective way of tackling and overcoming social anxiety disorder or social phobia. The following suggestions are good ways to start interacting with others in positive ways:
§ Take a social skills class or an assertiveness training class. These classes are often offered at local adult education centers or community colleges.
§ Volunteer doing something you enjoy, such as walking dogs in a shelter, or stuffing envelopes for a campaign — anything that will give you an activity to focus on while you are also engaging with a small number of like-minded people.
§ Work on your communication skills. Good relationships depend on clear, emotionally-intelligent communication. If you find that you have trouble connecting to others, learning the basic skills of emotional intelligence can help.
While lifestyle changes alone aren’t enough to overcome social phobia or social anxiety disorder, they can support your overall treatment progress. The following lifestyle tips will help you reduce your overall anxiety levels and set the stage for successful treatment:
§ Avoid or limit caffeine. Coffee, tea, caffeinated soda, energy drinks, and chocolate act as stimulants that increase anxiety symptoms.
§ Drink only in moderation. You may be tempted to drink before a party or other social situation in order to calm your nerves, but alcohol increases your risk of having an anxiety attack.
§ Quit smoking. Nicotine is a powerful stimulant. Smoking leads to higher, not lower, levels of anxiety.
§ Get adequate sleep. When you’re sleep deprived, you’re more vulnerable to anxiety. Being well rested will help you stay calm in social situations.
I'm getting better. I started to talk more with some people in class. Suria, Cestero, kak Fiqa, QinQin, Hani... Though this is my final semester...
19 May 2013
"Q, jom jalan dulu. Ada benda nak cakap ni." Ajak Wafdan.
"Tunggu Farha dan Zaid sekali."
"No, we go first."
Erk, what's wrong with him today? Apa yang penting sangat dia nak cakap dengan aku ni?
"Go, Q. Aku nak kemas sikit ni. We will catch up with u guys later." Celah Farha.
"Ya, jalanla dulu." Zaid yang sedari tadi membisu bersuara.
Qaisara merenung tajam ke arah Farha, sambil menunjukkan isyarat 'what are u doing now??'.
"Wafdan, jangan jalan rapat sangat." Sambil tersengih memandang Qaisara.
"Apa yang ko nak cakap kat aku.?" Q yang berjalan lebih kurang semeter di belakang Wafdan memecah sepi.
"Camne nak cakap ek.."
"Apa yang susah sangat nak cakap ni? Gaya macam nak bincang masalah negara. Cakap je la, aku open pa?" Sambil tersengih selamba untuk mengurangkan rasa kekok.
"Mm."Q sekadar tunduk melihat jalan sambil menyepak batu.
"Sebenarnya aku suka kat ko."
Terkejut. Sedikit berdebar. This is a bit too much for an unexpected situation. Batu disepak kuat sehingga masuk ke longkang. "Aaaahhh..." Cuba beriak biasa. Budak ni putus fius ke apa. Camne nak react ni. Buntu.
"Qaisara..." Wafdan memecah sepi.
"Emm...tak salah sukakan seseorang." Tapi sukakan aku, salah, sambungnya dalam hati. Argh, apa jenis respon kah itu?
Apesal asrama jauh semacam ni??
*Just a story...after quite a while i didn't read and write.
Allah tidak akan menguji hambaNya melainkan yang sesuai dengan kesanggupan (daya) nya...
A.P.P.R.E.C.I.A.T.I.O.N & G.R.A.T.I.T.U.D.E
'Thank You' is very good words...being thankful and being appreciated is both great..
Alhamdulillah...thank you Allah..
Thank you mak, ayah, bros, and sis...
Thank you besties...
Thank you everyone..
That's All.. ^^