Depression and social anxiety are both regrettably common disorders and are often comorbid with each other. Your symptoms of social anxiety and depression are closely related. Unfortunately, both can make you a large number of people to manage and control.
It can be challenging to find ways to manage the results of these disorders, but learning some management techniques will give you an excellent fighting chance to overcome the worst of these symptoms. Here are five ways to reduce the effects of social anxiety and depression.
1. Be kind to yourself
People often overlook the power of self pity. When you are kind to yourself, you give yourself positive thinking that can help you better cope and cope with the effects of depression and social anxiety. You will learn to trust yourself and feel confident, even when your disorders make you feel depressed. Here are some specific ways you can start to be kind to yourself:
You are the person in charge of your life and destiny, and it is your responsibility to gather knowledge and information about any disorders or that you may have. While you should have professional help, it’s also worth noting that few things are as empowering as becoming your advocate. Read about depression and social anxiety, learn how to manage it, talk to people you trust about it, and ask for accommodations at school, work, or other places where you need them.
Congratulate yourself for continuing
Life is hard when you have depression, social anxiety, and any mental illness or disorder. Yet life goes on and you do your best to keep up with others and do your best, even when it’s difficult. You continue to survive and even learn to do well for yourself, and that is something worth congratulating. Stop being so hard on yourself and start showing yourself the understanding and compassion you need!
Reward yourself for progress
All progress is good progress. Sometimes the progress is small, barely noticeable, or non-linear. But all progress deserves to be celebrated, no matter how small or inconsequential it may seem. Reward yourself for the positive changes you see at regular intervals to motivate you to keep going. When you see the fruits of its effects, you will be more inspired to better manage your disorders.
2. Test yourself
One of the expected effects of depression and social anxiety it is that you may find yourself choosing the “safe” routes of life. But the more “safe” you stay, the less likely you are to come out of your bubble and learn to manage the effects of the difficulties you face.
Challenging yourself regularly is a great way to continually improve. Leaving your bubble safe and your comfort zone, little by little and in small, manageable ways, will often pay off. The positive effects of such challenges will encourage you to take more risks in the future. Here are some ways to do it:
Develop a hierarchy of exposure
Rushing headlong into difficult situations works for some people, but for most people with depression and social anxiety, that’s not the most positive way of doing things. So develop a hierarchy of what scares you the least, rate them on a scale of 0 to 10. Write down a comprehensive list of things that affect you in multiple situations and organize them in a hierarchy. Once you understand what concerns you most, you can prepare yourself for the emotions and impulses involved in each situation, and you will know how to challenge yourself and watch yourself climb the ladder of fear.
Set good goals for yourself
Reducing the effects of depression or social anxiety generally involves learning to manage them or overcome certain obstacles and setbacks that neurotypical people may not face. Rather than keeping vague goals above your head, write down and set clear, measurable, and specific goals for yourself with reasonable expectations and achievable deadlines. Then take a step toward those goals every day, even if they’re small. Track your progress and watch yourself grow!
Make a small change
Even when you’re feeling overwhelmed and can’t imagine challenging yourself, all it takes is a small change to see some positive changes and effects. For example, you can participate in a group text once a day, buy bread to make sandwiches instead of eating nothing, or read the news after lunch to stay informed about the outside world.
3. Express yourself out there
Anyone with social anxiety knows that the concept of “exposure” is a momentous and often terrifying task. But that doesn’t mean you can’t do it! The trick is to keep up, prepare yourself with positive thoughts, and be aware of your absolute limits. Here are some ideas on ways to expose yourself:
Take a class or join a club
Undoubtedly, there is something that interests you, whether it is something you already do today or something you have always wanted to try. Depression can hinder the desire to do fun things, and social anxiety turns all of those fun things into solo activities. But it does not have to be like that! Join a small club related to an interest or take a class about something you would like to learn. There is no pressure to openly socialize with others, so use them as opportunities to broaden your horizons while getting a little human interaction.
The routine is comfortable for those with social anxiety, and easier to adopt for those with depression. But the constant monotony of the same thing over and over again isn’t right for you, keeping you even more trapped in useless habits. You don’t have to go into an extreme and exciting routine to change this; all you have to do is go somewhere new from time to time. Eat at a restaurant you’ve never tried. Take a different route home. Try a new mall. Watch a show outside of your favorite genre. Get comfortable with the unknown!
Do your solo activities outdoors
You can stay home all day, curled up and reading a book or watching shows excessively. Or you could do all of those same things, but outside! Exposing yourself in this way allows you to be comfortable and within a safe personal bubble, but in such a way that you can train yourself to become more used to the world beyond your four walls. Go to a library to work, watch your shows in a coffee shop, or read in a park!
Your thinking determines how much your depression and social anxiety can control you. Altering your way of thinking and behaving challenges what your mental illnesses tell you, allowing you to take power over them and better manage their effects.
Here are some tips to do so:
Pay attention and be aware
Mental disorders can be very difficult to deal with because the negativity they generate feels normal and natural. You get so used to the horrible things that your social anxiety and depression tell you that you allow them to run, untethered, in the background. Start paying more attention to the thoughts running through your brain, slow down to focus and address them. You may be surprised how little positive Thinking you have, but your new awareness will allow you to act to circumvent this trend.
Stop assuming nothing will work
Depression often involves feelings of hopelessness, and social anxiety will tell you that you will just fail or make a fool of yourself. These thoughts are not real and they are not rooted in reality. Though positive thinking It can be difficult to put together, you should stop ruling out all possible solutions because you assume nothing will work for you. You will never know until you try it.
People with depression and social anxiety tend to get stuck just looking at life through the lens of hazy negativity. Replace negative thinking with positive thinking it is very difficult for people with neurodivergent features, but it is doable! When you start a negative thought, counter with something positive, and when you are in a bad situation, stretch your neck to look for a positive side.
5. Practice your social skills
It is not necessary to have perfect social skills. After all, the symptoms of social anxiety can make it very difficult for you to read others and function in groups of people, and depression can make you feel too depressed to be welcoming to others.
However, no one is saying that you have to become a charismatic silver-tongued casanova! All you need to do is have a decent level of social ability to enjoy positive results. When you handle social situations better, you will feel less anxious in similar situations in the future. Here are some ways to practice your social skills:
Greet your neighbors
People with social anxiety often go out of their way to hide or run when they see an acquaintance. But what better way to start developing social skills than simply offering a “hello” to your neighbor, whom you see regularly and are expected to say hello from time to time? A little politeness will get you used to small talk and interacting easily without thinking too much about things.
Give good handshakes
Social anxiety can make speaking difficult, so show your strengths through physical action. Practice firm, friendly handshakes, with eye contact if possible. You’ll make a good impression early on and give your social anxiety less reason to talk.
Look for supportive social situations
Go out with friends who you feel comfortable with and participate in social interaction with them. Take a social skills class where you will have to interact with others in a position similar to yours. This puts into practice what you have learned in the real world, thus developing your social skills even in the face of social anxiety.
Living with symptoms of social anxiety and depression at the same time can make everyday function very difficult. But you can learn to reduce the severity of your symptoms over time. If you need further help minimizing the effects of social anxiety and depression, contact a mental health professional for advice and other treatment.