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Social Phobia advice

Have recently found out the name of an illness that i may have which is called Social Phobia, have generally lived a life of isolation away from people because of my sexuality but since living alone for 2 years am increasingly finding it difficult to just have a normal conversation with a person and i think loneliness is starting to play a role. If anyone knows of any affective treatments please reply. Thankyou

Re: Social Phobia advice

Hey @Tonez,

I think it's great you've posted on here and are looking to help yourself Smiley Happy I know all about having social anxiety, having struggled with it for many years. There's different treatments that work for different people (for me I've found a combination of treatments has worked best), and something to remember is that if something doesn't work for you, don't give up trying to get help. You'll eventually find what works best.


One common type of treatment is what's called Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, or CBT.  If you're interested, this gives a pretty good overview of some of the "cognitive" strategies (alternatively, do a Google search and you'll get a heap of helpful information on it) CBT is what's worked for me, along with an antidepressant medication, but again, everybody is different.


Have you seen a GP yet? While I know it can be really scary, they can refer you onto a psychologist or another health professional, and help you figure out what the best type of treatment(s) are for you.


Anyways, do stay strong and feel free to stick around on the forums; I find that talking to people online is often easier than doing so in real life.

Loki Smiley Happy

No human being, however great or powerful, was ever so free as a fish

Re: Social Phobia advice

Hey @Tonez 


Welcome to the ReachOut forums! 


You said that you may have social phobia, so I am wondering if you have already visited a GP or psychologist and if they have offered you any insight into your situation? If not, I really encourage you, like @lokifish said, to go and talk to a GP because they can refer you on to a psychologist to get you some professional help and support. 


In the mean time, here is another factsheet on help with anxiety, such as social anxiety. It also has some more info on the CBT lokifish mentioned. 


Another online resource you might like to take a look at is which has a great interactive self-help program for social anxiety, which draws on CBT as well. 


It's so great you are looking for help with what you are going through! Although I don't suffer from social anxiety myself, I hope my advice can help even a little bit. And I'm sure that other users of the forums that have experienced social phobia will see your post and be able to offer you some great first-hand advice based off their experiences. 


Keep fighting!



Re: Social Phobia advice

Thanks Loki, saw doctor yesterday and have been prescribed a medication. I have been researching Social Phobia and science says that its a lack of Seratonin in the brain, anti-depressant are supposed to even the brain chemicals in the brain. Will find out in about 2 weeks if the drug actually works to stop my brain from having irrational and over-thinking any normal situation. Thanks Gabi and Loki for the advice, means heaps. Smiley Happy

Re: Social Phobia advice

Hey @Tonez 


So glad you got the support you needed from your doctor.

I just had to edit out the specific name of the medication. You can read the guidelines here.

Hope you understand. Smiley Happy

Re: Social Phobia advice

Hi Tonez

An alternative to CBT is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) rather than changing the thought process, it's more about mindfulness. I have tried both with different psychologists for social anxiety and though I get CBT works for some people, ACT was much more effective for me.

I guess the main strategies I used are having little statements I say to myself when I'm starting to panic (I deserve to feel okay right now... These feelings will pass)

Making sure that even when I do panic, I stay a little longer in the situation just to prove to myself that I control me not anxiety.

Grounding techniques- 5 smells, sights, sounds, tastes. And then when looking for feelings examine the anxiety feeling and try to isolate it and describe how it feels/would look.

I hope things get better for you Smiley Happy

Re: Social Phobia advice

Hi Tonez, 


It's a good start to acknowledge that this is affecting your life so that you can now take steps into seeking treatment. 

Talking with a GP, a psychologist or a counsellor is a great way to go. But sometimes, even simple activities like volunteering in your community, joining a local sports or music club or engaging in social activities with like-minded people can help you re-engage in conversational and social skills.


Best of luck!

Stay excellent