Tis’ the season! It’s the 2019 holiday season.

Like so many of us with serious social anxiety, we’d rather hide in the closet.

At least I would!

Did you know 70% of us in the United States struggle with social anxiety? Holy cow!

To help us get through this season’s marathon of office parties, secret Santa exchanges, and cocktail parties, here are three tips:

Head into the party with a goal.

It’s probably not the party that’s making your palms sweat, but rather the assumptions that you’re making about the small things that feel awkward.

Here’s the fix.

Set a small, achievable goal, such as staying one hour, meeting one new person, or dancing to one song. That way, the party won’t feel so overwhelming.

There is no such thing as perfect.

Cocktail conversation can definitely be intimidating. If you’re worried about talking yourself or worse yet, you don’t have anything to say, remind yourself of a time when you successfully shared about yourself in the past.

Remember this.

Conversations are not always perfect. Conversations aren’t a sign of doom. Conversations are totally normal. The most difficult part of a conversation is simply saying hello. When you’re into an actual conversation, it’ll flow more easily that you expect.

Turn off the mental spotlight.

As much as you’re worrying about what other people think about the color of your lipstick or the style of your dress, the same thoughts are probably going through their head.

And..thinking more about themselves than you. Other people who are at the get-together are there to have a good time and not to judge others. Stumbling over your words may seem like a big deal to you, other people probably won’t even notice.

Remember this: Small talk is temporary. Go and have a wonderful holiday season!

Loretta Holmes, MA CMHWC is an ADHD and Anxiety Coach at Bella ADHD Coaching and Bella Anxiety Coaching. Before pursuing a career in coaching, she worked as a special education teacher. Today, she combines her skills in teaching, psychology, and coaching to help humans feel like superheroes. Connect with Loretta at loretta@bellaeducationalservices.com

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