At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic more than two years ago, staying at home and physically distancing from others became necessary precautions to slow virus transmission and keep ourselves and our loved ones safe.
Now, as people are returning to the office, mask mandates are lifting, and we begin to reemerge into society, connecting physically with others is becoming more and more part of our daily lives again.
While some people may find this in-person socializing exuberant after being cooped up for so long, others may face anxiety and distress in these now new again social situations.
How to cope with social anxiety as you reenter society.
1. Accept the anxiety and face what the fear is.
Think through your fears and figure out what exactly it is that’s causing concern. Once you can name that, you can then think through ways to deal with it.
2. Think of social outings as experiments.
As with many things in life, practice makes perfect.
After the social interaction, you can also revisit those initial worries and check the facts: Did that feared outcome happen, and if it did, was it as bad as expected?
3. Be mindful of your alcohol consumption
For many people, alcohol can act as a social lubricant. In moderation, a glass or two of alcohol during a social event is fine, but it can become a problem for people who drink excessively.