Updated: Jan 21
When a friend is experiencing social anxiety, you can find it tough to create your own social life. You may need to spend some time with your buddy in public; however, he may feel hesitant to stay around others. If you cannot follow the ways to help deal with anxiety, you may lose patience with the friend.
Social anxiety may appear to be an extreme case of shyness. However, it is untrue and social anxiety is a real condition. With slight understanding and sincerity, you can assist your loved one and help him lead a happier life. Let’s read some useful tips to follow to cope with a friend who is suffering from social anxiety disorder!
1. Never Criticise
People with social anxiety are generally excessively critical of themselves. This is why they have a feeling that others also judge them. They feel that they are socially incompetent and believe that others also see them similarly. So, if you be critical of your friend in front of others, it could increase their anxiety.
2. Keep Patience
The therapy and recovery procedure for social anxiety disorder can be lengthy. It can take several months for changing your friend’s behaviour patterns as he has been accustomed to that. Don’t be excessively frustrated with him or lose your temperament. To support him, you need to respond fast to his anxiety attack with proper mental health treatment.
3. Apply Distraction Methods
Distractions help people lower their anxiety for the time. You may suggest your friend playing a game, taking a walk, or visiting a bookstore. Moreover, book reading can better distract if your friend loves to read. This helps him create his own customised anxiety crisis kit. And these activities are enough distractive to reduce his anxiety from his brain and help him naturally calm down.
4. Concentrate on His Feelings
You should ask the reason for your friend’s anxiety. Rather, ask him how he is feeling. This is enough encouragement for creating a list of his symptoms. Moreover, never ask a lot of questions also. Make them feel the way he does with no guilt or interruption. In case he is crying, let him do. Give him a suitable space for expressing his feelings.
5. Suggest a Treatment
Help your friend by informing him that you want to assist him in finding the right social anxiety disorder treatment. In case he resists to get treated, listen to his worries and concerns with patience. You must be a big supporter when he needs you. However, your friend needs a professional counsellor to heal his mental issues.
If you feel that your friend is experiencing a social anxiety disorder, but he has not been diagnosed yet or looking for any treatment, help him find the right treatment. You can book a doctor’s appointment for him, find a support group, or find a self-help program for attending. Try to do according to your comfort level to make it as simple as possible for him.