As we grow older, there can sometimes be problems within the extended family. In my family, the problems started when my brother got married. The moment his wife came into the picture, our family began falling apart. As time went by, we never saw my brother and his wife. Then, our grandfather passed away and everyone came home to say our final goodbyes. The day after the funeral, there was a big blowout between some of the family and it was devastating. It took some convincing, but I managed to talk everyone into attending a few family counseling sessions. I wouldn't say that everything is as it once was, but things are civil again. To find out what we are doing to heal our broken family, visit my website.
Have you ever been called "shy" or "introverted" or "socially awkward"? Are you left wondering if something is wrong with you because others notice your hesitation to participate in social situations?
Introversion, shyness, and social anxiety disorders can all impact your willingness and ability to participate in social situations. These three terms refer to three unrelated things. Here are the basics of each so that you can better determine if you need psychological help.
Psychologists generally classify people as either "introverted" or "extroverted." These classifications have nothing to do with whether or not a person enjoys the company of others or enjoys social events. Instead, these classifications are based on the way a person's brain processes information.
Unlike extroverts, who are energized by people, introverts need regular alone time to recharge their batteries. Excessive social outings, parties, and interactions drain the introvert's energy levels and interfere with abilities to think, process information, and stay happy. If you are an introvert, you probably prefer working alone, interacting with a few close friends, and spending down time with activities like reading, writing, and drawing.
Being an introvert is different than being shy or having a social anxiety disorder. If you are an introvert, you need not worry that your social orientation means that there is something "wrong" with you. Your penchant for skipping out on social activities and aversion for over-communicating can possibly interfere with your personal and business relationships, however, because you are not exposed to potential friendships and networking opportunities. A psychologist can help you find a balance if you feel you are missing out, but if you are happy and healthy in your personal and professional life, you need not "fix" your introversion.
Psychologists recognize a condition known as "shyness." It sounds straightforward, but there is actually more to shyness than just having a coy nature. Shy people feel awkward and tense around others, especially those that they do not know. These feelings are so intense that, in social situations, shyness is manifested by physical symptoms, like a racing heart, sweating, and blushing.
Most people feel varying levels of discomfort when meeting new people or making a speech. Yet, if you identify with the symptoms of shyness and your symptoms are so extreme that you purposefully avoid certain situations, then you might suffer from painful--and treatable--shyness.
Unlike introversion, shyness legitimately interferes with your personal and professional life. A psychologist can help you determine the source of your shyness, which can stem from past negative social experiences, and help you overcome your past and your social fears. A psychologist can also help you manage your symptoms and learn to view social situations in a more positive light.
Social Anxiety Disorder
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorders affecting Canadian adults. People diagnosed with these disorders experience worry and anxiety that is excessive for the circumstances, and this anxiety interferes with day-to-day life. Psychologists recognize six primary types of anxiety disorders, one of which is known as social anxiety disorder.
People who suffer from social anxiety disorder have a myriad of symptoms, not all of which are the same from person to person. Some people feel distressed about being the center of attention, some feel paranoid when working or eating in front of others, and some are squeamish about dating.
If you feel unreasonably anxious in social situations, you might wonder if there is a real difference between shyness and social anxiety disorder. After all, the symptoms are very similar. Psychologists recognize shyness and social anxiety as two different conditions; shyness is a personality trait, while social anxiety disorder is a mental disease. If you suffer from shyness, a psychologist can help you identify the causes and use this knowledge to help you overcome your symptoms. If you are diagnosed with a social anxiety disorder, however, you suffer from a mental disease that requires a psychologist's attention and maybe even medication. If you need more information, visit a psychologist in your area like Sojourn Wellness Group Counselling.Share