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Manage social anxiety at a party

Social anxiety is a common experience and having it does not preclude you from leading a fulfilling life. It could be best to face your worries and quit freaking out throughout the festive and party season.

Israa Nasir, popular therapist and mental health expert suggested five tips to manage social anxiety at a party in her Instagram post.

There are treatments available to assist you in managing it:

1. Prepare ahead of time. If you’re going with someone, let them know a signal that indicates you’d like to leave. If you are going alone, have an exit plan (even if you don’t use it, having it feels safer). Think of topics you can talk about (if talking to others makes you feel anxious).

2. Offer help to the host. Acts of kindness decrease stress hormones (cortisol) and can help relax you. Also, it gives you something to do.

3. Focus on the present moment. Anxiety takes you into the future, you’re worried about something bad happening. So, if you start sensing your thoughts going into a “what if” future scenario and your body starts to activate – pay attention to the room you’re in. Notice the colour of the clothes the person in front of you is wearing.

4. Avoid unhealthy coping mechanisms such as drinking too much or using drugs to ease anxiousness. This can backfire sometimes and can end up in awkward or potentially dangerous situations.

5. Keep going to (safe) social gatherings. Find ways to tolerate the discomfort, instead of avoiding it. Avoiding the thing that gives you anxiety is only going to increase your anxiety.
Source: Hindustan Times