Exercises for Social Anxiety

With the following exercises you will have the tools to change your mindset over time. If you have social anxiety, you probably have one or more of the following mindsets/thought patterns:

  • You perceive the value of the people around you higer than your own
  • You think people have nothing better to do than think and talk about you
  • You´re afraid of embarassment
  • You have a problem with making mistakes

All of these mindsets will lead, over time, to negative emotions that will amplify those negative views about you and about your surroundings. What we will be doing with the following exercises is  twofold: Clearing up your perception of the world (without turning it into some kind of disney phantasy, life still is tough) and building self confidence. So, lets get to it

Practice Honesty

Honesty to yourself and others is the prerequisite for making progress. In the past I was a person who liked to look away and not telling others how I really felt because it might be trouble. The problem with that is, that neither you nor the people around you really get to know you.

So, practicing honesty in your daily life is the first step to take. If you feel like you can´t talk to people honestly, start with journaling. Take a Notebook and a pen and ask yourself questions like:

  • How do I want to be treated?
  • What kind of things do I want to do in my life?

Come up with more specific questions depending on your life situation. It will give you more insight into yourself and with the next exercise also enough confidence, over time, to stand up for yourself.

Dealing with negativity

There are two types of negativity:

  • Outside Negativity: Things you can´t necessarily control, sickness, death, etc.
  • Internal Negativity: The way you handle things that happen on the outside internally

Even though I´m sure your ability to handle things on the outside will increase through the following methods, we won´t bother with exact descriptions of outside phenomenons, and purely look on how we can handle things better.

Daily Mindset Habits

These are habits you created over your lifespan that influenced you in a negative way. Lets say you made a mistake in front of other people, which thoughts are running through your head? Are you looking for an excuse? A way to run away from the situation? Or are you able to stay with it, maybe even laugh about it?


I started with the following habit about 2 years ago, and it helped me alot in overcoming fears of judgement and my inability to stay with things and go through hard times. I took this method from Jocko Willink, a former Navy Seal.

Everytime you make a mistake orhave the feeling of anxiousness, think or say the word „Good“ and just watch what happens to your emotions and your body. Are you getting more relaxed, or maybe your getting into a mindset of pushing through the situation your in? Both is better than becoming anxious or trying to run away, even though the second example can come with a burst of anger


A habit that I still have to work on, but I´m pretty sure can help just like Jockos Method. It works more with the anticipation of a situation then with it´s outcome, whichis the main difference to Jockos Method.

I got this method from Simon Sinek. In the following Video, he describes how exchanging the word nervous with the word excited can help to push through situations and why it works on a physical level.


A Exercise I like to do through Journaling is Thankfulness. Write down what your thankful in your life. It could be just the fact that you´re still alive, but also people who helped you, situations you had fun in, etc.

Exercise: Choose one day a week when you practice this exercise. You also could do it daily, but that was a bit too much in the beginning for me personally. But, at least do it once a week. You can do it through Journaling, or, if you´re religious, in a form of prayer.

Also, if you feel like it, you can practice being thankful for the hardships in your life. The mistakes you made, people who treated you badly, etc. This turns your view on this events around and actually gives you the opportunity to learn from them.


Another important point is how you´re using language. Meaning: How do you judge yourself and others? Are you able to look at a situation and judge it accordingly to the actions that were taken? Or are you judging in a hurtful manner?

Example: „I`m stupid!“ or „I did something stupid!“

In the first sentence I´m judging my whole being, I´m stupid, and I can´t really change that fact. In the second I´m judging the action I did, so there´s room for improvement.

Get used to judge in the way the second example does. This way you´re much more likely to keepa cool head. Also, try to judge other people the same way, this will keep your emotions in check, at least to a certain degree.


The last thing I want to mention are Afformations, an Invention from Noah St. John. These are questions you ask yourself to build positive thought patterns in yourself. Here are some examples:

  • Why do I believe in myself?
  • Why do I easily see my own worth and value?
  • Why do I enjoy the presence of other people?

This is something I´m currently looking at. If you´re into Affirmations and stuff like it, give those questions a try.


Sources: Jocko Willink YouTube Channel

Simon Sinek

12 Rules for Life – Jordan Peterson

The Book of  Afformations – Noah St. John

Pictures:  pixabay.com

9 thoughts on “Mind”

  1. Hey,

    Really enjoyed this article. I talk about mindset a lot when I discuss leadership with my team. To achieve what we want out of life then we most certainly do need to be in the right frame of mind. If I want to be able to influence my people and lead them to the best of my ability, then I know that my mindset must be one of putting others first, and being honest (as you have discussed). Otherwise I will lose trust, and trust is the foundation of leadership.

    Thank you for sharing and for making us think about our mindsets and if we are in the right mindset. I will practice your exercises and let you know how I get on.

    Keep up the great work.

    All the best,


  2. I so need to work on my internal negativity. During this lockdown, my other businesses are suffering and no matter what I do, I get negative thoughts in my mind.
    Getting rid of anxiety during this lockdown should be the priority one task for everyone. Thank you for this wonderful article. Much needed.

    • Hey Prav,
      yes, it´s a pretty rough time for businesses right now. But I think Anxiety can make it even worse than it has to be! Hopefully we willget out of it stronger than we were!
      Take care!

  3. I really enjoyed the article and learned a new word. I have never heard the term “afformation.” In life sometimes its easy to see the negative but overcoming that and focusing on the positive is a choice- a great choice! In the words of the famous Mr Lincoln we “can complain because a rose bush has thorns or rejoice because a thorn bush has roses.” The antidote to grumpiness is gratitude and a thankfulness journal is a great tool for accomplishing that! Blessings to you!

    • Thanks Christy,
      Afformations are an Invention from Noah St. John. A nice thing to try if Affirmations do not work with you.

      Take Care!

  4. I really enjoyed your article. I suffer with anxiety quite a bit and I really think the using words like good etc is a very interesting point. I will definitely try this. Thank you

    • Thanks Russ!
      Those methods helped me a lot the last two years, and I´m sure they can help you too! Give it a try and come back if you have any questions!
      Take Care!

    • Thanks Russell!
      Those methods helped me a lot the last two years, and I´m sure they can help you too! Give it a try and come back if you have any questions!
      Take Care!


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