Many confuse social anxiety with shyness, but while everyone gets shy from time to time, social phobia is a disabling anxiety that impacts everyday social situations. Social anxiety is characterized by excessive self-consciousness and overwhelming anxiety. It can impair your ability to succeed in work, school, or personal relationships.
When common and persistent, the following are some of the most common signs of social anxiety.
1. You only feel comfortable with select people
Rather than seeking out new friendships and maintaining a varied base of friends, those with social anxiety tend to have only one to two close relationships. These people are important because they have the ability to make the person feel comfortable, understood, and safe. While it may be easy to spend time with these select people one-on-one or in small groups, it may be nearly impossible to go to a party with those same people when others are in attendance.