Social Anxiety can be general or Specific. It is a serious complaint

In the last blog I looked at how to assess the seriousness of you social anxiety. Martin Antony and Richard Swinson in their book, The Shyness & Social Anxiety Workbook, suggest a simple technique for self-assessing the seriousness of your social anxiety, where you can measure on a scale from 0 to 100 the level of your fear and the extent of your avoidance for various situations that cause you anxiety. This will enable you to deal with the fear using situations which are easy to deal with and those which require the greatest effort. So if you rate yourself as 80 on the fear scale you are extremely fearful and if you put yourself at 90 on the avoidance scale for the same issue you often avoid. In this way you can produce a hierarchy of situations based on this way of measuring fear and avoidance, and you can then take appropriate measures to counteract this.
Jason, for example, had severe social fear registering at least 90, and would have a similar score on the avoidance scale. It remained with him for the entirety of his college years, and it gradually resulted in his isolation from his friends and the loss of their previous respect for him.
For 3rd year, we all moved in together. As I didn’t know the new guys well, I was feeling very uncomfortable about the move. In the first week there, all the old feelings came back from my first year in college. People called to the house every day and were always in in my sitting room when I came home. There was a party one night and I didn’t know anyone there. I couldn’t hide in my room as before, because I knew Simon and Darren too well. They would see this as weird and I didn’t want to be judged like that. I panicked and decided to move out. I slept on the couch of a friend from back home. The lads were ringing me wondering what the story was, and after a few days I told them that I was moving out. They couldn’t understand it, so friendships were lost. I ended up avoiding them altogether and became a loner again. It was a very difficult time and I felt very isolated and avoided college as a result. As there was still group projects to be done, I was in a group with Simon and Darren. The day before the project was due, we were to meet. Another friend asked me to go to the races down the country. I went, met some friends from home and did not return to help with the project. They handed it in and reported me to the lecturer for not contributing. This was well and truly the end of the friendship. I felt very aggrieved that they would hang me out especially as the project wasn’t far from completion and in a previous project, I had done most of the work. I told the lecturer what happened and she was understanding and docked me only a few small marks. As we were on work experience for second semester, there was no contact between us again for months. I felt really bad that I lost Darren as a friend, because we got on great and we had met the first day of college.
Extract from my book – Understanding and Healing the Hurts of Childhood.
THERAPISTS IN TIPPERARY
PSYCHOTHERAPISTS IN TIPPERARY
COUNSELLING TIPPERARY
DEATH OF A CHILD
ABUSE AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
FEAR
ANGER
JEALOUSY
SHAME
I am the author of six books
When a Child Dies. Footsteps of a Grieving Family
Abuse. Domestic Violence, Workplace and School Bullying
Understanding and Healing the Hurts of Childhood.
I’ll Meet You at the Roundy O
Priest, Politics and Society in Post Famine Ireland 1850-1891
Prince of Swindlers. John Sadleir MP 1813-1856
I am currently writing a book on DID (Multiple Personality Disorder) which will run to three volumes. Volume 1 should be ready by Summer 2022

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