Maintaining Friendships and Social Anxiety

Day 5 and class is in session. I don’t know much but one thing I know about is anxiety. It has caused me to lose opportunities and friends. But growth is important and I am here to teach you guys how to navigate the wild world of having friends while battling Social Anxiety

Everyone has been part of a squad at some point or another be it two people or twelve. The squad is squad, but how do you navigate the world, while maintaining friendships AND social anxiety?

What is Social Anxiety?

First things first, What is social anxiety?

“The defining feature of social anxiety disorder, also called social phobia, is intense anxiety or fear of being judged, negatively evaluated, or rejected in a social or performance situation.

People with social anxiety disorder may worry about acting or appearing visibly anxious (e.g., blushing, stumbling over words), or being viewed as stupid, awkward, or boring. As a result, they often avoid social or performance situations, and when a situation cannot be avoided, they experience significant anxiety and distress”

If you are reading this that means you know exactly what they are talking about and are probably wondering, how do I maintain friendships and social anxiety?

Navigating the world is hard enough with great social skills, imagine when you feel like you have the social skills of a doormat. How traumatic. (The story of my life)

So, I thought why not share my tips, on how to maintain friendships and deal with social anxiety.

1. Know What Your Social Interaction Limit is.

Knowing what your social interaction bar is crucial. The more comfortable you get with every interaction, you should see it increase.

However, knowing when to say you know what, it is time for me to go home and recharge is very crucial in increasing this bar too.

There are many occasions, where I have forced myself to interact for far longer, than I was comfortable with. By the time I got home I was exhausted, and already dreading the next outing. Which is not what we want.

So know your limits and stick it.

Black girls hanging out
Photo Credit : rawpixel.com

2. Don’t do too much

What does “Don’t do too much mean” ?

Simply… take it easy when choosing social engagements. Some environments are more overwhelming than others,(e.g going out to a club vs going to dinner).

Don’t feel pressured to engage in activities unless, you feel you can handle them (FYI. Tell your friends (or at least give them a viable excuse) don’t just ghost them. I know it’s easier said than done…take it from a serial ghoster) , but it is much easier to let them know.

So if you know you have a group of friends that are big on the drink, and you aren’t either stick a coke all night, or save yourself the stress of it and stay home and plan something a little more to your “vibe”.

Black Women Walking Together
Photo Credit : @Elevate on pearls.com

3. Be aware of the people around you & get a buddy

Some people have very big personalities. If you are someone who doesn’t like to be the centre of attention, these personalities can accidentally set you up for a tough situation. Make sure there is someone in the group who knows you a little more, and can be your life jacket if things get to “much”

Don’t Worry..

Being a spectator isn’t so bad either. I do enjoy being a wallflower as people watching is one of my favorite things to do when i am out, so to my fellow people watchers I stand with you. 

Finally

I am still learning how to navigate too, so please I’m by no means a professional, but I know what it is like to not feel like anyone gets it.

Google is your friend. (Especially Quora and Reddit

Share Your Tips below and Links Below

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Published by Nessa

Opinionated. Loud. Part-time comic. Usually somewhere blogging.

3 comments on “Maintaining Friendships and Social Anxiety”

  1. Don t expect instant results. Building friendships takes time, effort and sacrifice. Make creating new friendships a priority, but realize that the race to the finish line is a marathon, not a sprint.

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