Group Therapy for Social Anxiety

Eileen Bailey Health Guide
  • Social anxiety is one of the most common forms of anxiety. People with social anxiety disorder are afraid of being judged by others. When in a public place, people with social anxiety feel as if everyone is watching them. They cannot relax or enjoy themselves, constantly worrying about what other people may think. Social anxiety can be debilitating.


    Although it would seem counterproductive, group therapy can be an essential part of the treatment for social anxiety. Group therapy can provide the opportunity to role-play different social situations among people that understand before "going out into the world."

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    Group sessions can work specifically to target a person's problem areas. For example, if one person in the group is having difficulty talking with a boss at work, the group can try to simulate that situation and work with the person to help them overcome fears and better function at work.


    Additionally, some group sessions may create "assignments" for group members. This may be to go out and practice a specific skill they have been working on and report back during the next session. Each participant can discuss what he or she did, how he or she handled their anxiety and what happened during the social interaction.


    Group therapy sessions offer more than a support group. Group therapy sessions are led by a therapist and can target specific areas of problems as well as provide a place for participants to be understood and accepted.


    If you are currently receiving therapy for social anxiety, talk with your therapist about setting up a group therapy session.

Published On: July 27, 2008