Do I have shyness, social anxiety, or social phobia?

How do I really know if i have social anxiety disorder? can you name all the signs and symptoms that makes you have social anxiety disorder. I want to be sure if i really do have it. Well, I believe I do have it and that I’m painfully shy.

1 Comment

  1. Be careful about labeling yourself and others unless doing so provides a benefit such as specific help.

    You can find the symptoms of social anxiety at http://www.anxietynetwork.com/

    A definition from “The Hidden Face of Shyness: Understanding & Overcoming Social Anxiety” by Franklin Schneier M.D. and Lawrence Welkowitz PH. D. “The terms “shyness” and “social anxiety” mean different things to different people; we will use them interchangeably in this book to refer to a variety of social and performance fears. The term “social phobia,” however, is more strictly defined. In social phobia, fear of embarrassment or humiliation is excessive and persistent, and it causes a sufferer to feel great distress or to avoid social or public situations. The fears in social phobia may be limited to one important situation, such as running meetings at work, or may even interfere with everyday activities, such as going to the market or making a phone call.”

    Well for me, I seems hard to know where draw the line. Do I have shyness, social anxiety, or social phobia?

    Maybe one way to look at it is how it is affecting your life. The following is just my opinion, it is not based on any research:

    Perhaps one is shy if they work (but maybe are not paid well or afraid to leave for a better opportunity) and have at least one friend.

    Perhaps one has social anxiety if they work (but have a great deal of issues and fear surrounding work) and greatly fear social events but can once in a while force themselves to go.

    Perhaps one has social phobia if they can not work due to fear of other people (or works at something requiring no contact with others), have no friends, and never attend social activities.

    The reason it may be important to know the difference between shyness, social anxiety, or social phobia is in the type of help to seek.If one has social phobia, then seek help from someone who knows social phobia.

    If one has social anxiety or shyness, many experts (such as Bernardo Carducci PH.D.) feel that self-help may work effectively. One can always start with self-help, then seek out professional help (such as CBT cognitive behavioral therapy) after learning more about their own social anxiety and/or shyness.

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