The Definitive Guide to Thriving at a Party With Social Anxiety.
For most, parties are fun and exciting events used as a way of escaping the daily responsibilities for a night. For those of us with social anxiety, parties are a terrifying and confusing labyrinth where the walls are constantly caving in. Introverted and socially anxious people are seldom seen at parties, but when they are, they can be found sticking to the corner of the room petting the host’s dog and avoiding people at all costs. However, what you may not know is that there are a select few courageous people out there who suffer from social anxiety but still attend parties and try their best to have fun and participate. These people often blend right in and nobody at the party would even guess that beneath the surface they are extremely anxious. This guide will give you 6 “do’s” and “don’ts” of attending a party with social anxiety, so that you can turn your worries into enjoyment!
First, lets start with the “don’ts”. These are the things you should avoid doing at a party if you want to conquer your anxiety.
- Don’t spend the entire party with the host’s dog in the corner.
While a dog (or cat) can be a great source of comfort and ease during an anxiety inducing event such as a party, you should only refer to your furry friends as a means of recharging your social battery and easing your anxiety, not as an alternative to engaging with other people.
- Don’t follow your only friend around all night.
I know what you’re thinking, this is a tough pill to swallow. Every bone in your body will want to ignore this suggestion. But if you really want to get the best out of a party, and work on improving your social anxiety, you must venture into the unknown social circles. Despite the fear and worry, you must force yourself to talk to people who you don’t know.
- Don’t mask your anxiety with alcohol.
By drinking enough alcohol to get buzzed, thus inhibiting your anxiety, you are only running away from your problems instead of treating them. If you want to grow and improve your anxiety, you need to practice exposing yourself to anxious situations over and over. Unfortunately, there is no way around it.
The “do’s” of attending a party with social anxiety will ensure that you do everything right so that you will grow as a person, treat your anxiety, and improve your social skills all at the same time!
- Do put yourself out there and try to talk to people despite your social anxiety.
Chose your least anxious method of interaction, whether that be a one on one conversation with another party goer, or blending in to a big group. Try your best to expose yourself to as much social interaction that you can safely manage without being completely overwhelmed.
- Do take baby steps and only expose yourself to as much socializing as you can safely manage.
Remember, you are in control. You aren’t trapped and held hostage by the overwhelming force of the party. With that said, take baby steps and expose yourself to more and more social interaction only to the extent that you aren’t unbearably anxious. Exposure to your fear is healthy in moderation.
- Do recharge from socializing occasionally by heading to the bathroom or outside
Taking a few minutes to escape to the bathroom, outside, or another private area will give you the much needed time to recharge your social battery and collect yourself. Take a few deep breaths, gather yourself, then get back out there and show the world what you’re made of!
If you take the time to utilize the 6 Do’s and Don’ts at your next party, you will walk away better equipped to handle any social situation life throws at you! Conquering a party with social anxiety is no small feat. If you follow this guide, you’ll improve your anxiety, boost your social skills, and become unstoppable!