Challenging social anxiety is a scary process, but do not be afraid. Challenging your fears, while terrifying, can be done to ensure that the road to your positive emotional wellbeing is a smooth one. This how to guide will outline some key areas in which you can improve your emotional wellbeing: Challenge Negative Thoughts: Challenging negative thoughts is not as complicated, or scary, as one may think. Negative thoughts will ultimately have a negative impact on how you live your life. Don’t let negative thoughts consume you. Effectively challenging ones own negative thought processes will reduce and alleviate stressful social situations. The key is to recognise what a negative thought is. Analyse and challenge your own perceptions and apply logical thought processes. While you may think that you are not capable of completing a task, ask yourself why. Challenge the negative thought and logically analyse why you think you will fail. Take the appropriate steps into turning a negative thought into a positive thought. Control Your Breathing: Should you find yourself in a social situation that makes you feel nervous and panicked, stop, take a deep breath and count and control your breathing. If you find yourself breathing quickly, learn to control your breathing by slowing it down. This may take time and practice, but ultimately, you will feel better. If you feel that you need a time out to control your breathing, then do so. In time and with practice, you will not feel the need to remove yourself from a social situation by applying a slow, controlled breathing technique. Seek Support: Always remember, you are not alone. Try searching for local groups who may be able to help. Like minded people in a support group will not judge you and the support you will receive from trained professionals as well as your peers will ultimately help you overcome your social anxiety. Interact with people on a similar situation and help each other in a positive manner to overcome the issues that you face. Communication is a great way to show you how to cure social anxiety. Professional Help: Although self-help is the first step in relieving your anxiety issues, it may be worthwhile seeking professional help if this fails to combat the issues that you are experiencing. Under the guidance of a therapist, cognitive behavioural therapy may help you with your social anxiety issues. They may offer relaxation techniques and help you face social situations in a gradual, organic way. Do not be frightened, under the guidance of a trained professional, they will not force you to undertaken anything that would be potentially harmful to your emotional wellbeing, but they may put you out of your comfort zone. Medication: While medicating the problem may not be ideal, for some individuals, antidepressants prove to be very effective for helping to cure social anxiety. Once you have had an initial assessment with your GP, they will prescribe the appropriate course of medication. Do not be scared to ask for help and always remember that you are not alone. Should self help not be appropriate for you, do seek the advice of a trained professional.