For a lot of us college is the time for us to break out of our shells and step out of our comfort zone! It’s the time to make new friends and participate in new activities. For a lot of us- this is not as easy as it sounds. For a good portion of college students meeting new people and being vulnerable to new experiences is one of the most horrifying things that could happen to someone. Social Phobia is when a person has a persistent fear of social situations and will avoid them at all cost. Social Phobia is a type of anxiety disorder that affects a good chunk of the college population and is carried with these students from childhood.
Social Phobia may not sound like that worrisome of a disorder in the grand scheme of things. Some people may hear of it and say to themselves “well these kids are just shy, they will get over it.” The issue is many students do not get over it and instead let their anxiety of social situations lead them into much darker situations. Social Phobia could lead a student into a depressive episode due to their lack of communication with others and overall loneliness. There are both physical and mental side effects that come with having social anxiety and feeling worthless is one of the main ones. Students who have extreme Social Phobia when it comes to presenting or speaking in front of others may even throw away their future by dropping out of school to avoid these situations. This is not a disorder to take lightly and awareness of it may be what a student needs to have the courage to take a leap of faith and put themselves out there. Make sure to smile at everyone you see and always treat others with love and respect. That little smile to someone in the hallway may turn someone’s day around and give them the boost they need to keep moving on.
Have you known anyone who has serious anxiety in social situations? What was your experience like with them?
Below I have a video that gets into social anxiety with a little more detail. Let me know what you think!