Hypnotherapy for Social Anxiety

Overcome Social Anxiety with Hypnotherapy in Edinburgh

Hating going to social gatherings, such as parties; getting the shivers at the idea of standing up in front of a hall full of people and giving a speech; squirming when your friends all sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to you, these are all situations so many of us have experienced.

Social phobia, however, is more than just feeling a little shy or unconfident sometimes, it affects all our interactions with other humans. Feelings of inferiority, of superiority; feeling yourself always apart from the rest, on the fringes of groups and never in the thick of them.

Holding yourself always aloof from others to protect yourself from their inevitable rejections, and endless thoughts about what others might think of you, your friends, family, colleagues, down to the cashier at the checkout, it all seems to matter so much to you, yet at the same time it causes you to feel resentful of them too.

Hypnotherapy to Overcome Social Anxiety in Edinburgh

Types of of Social Anxiety

Shy Bladder (Paruresis)

According to recent research this a symptom of social anxiety which is experienced by over 4 million people in the UK. Sufferers feel unable to urinate in any place where they believe other people may be watching or listening.

Public toilets cause the most problems, particularly for men who find that nothing will come out whilst standing at a urinal with other men, but going in any toilet in a strange house or even their own home will become difficult if they think other people might hear them. Sufferers end up feeling frustration, pain, anxiety and embarrassment at their condition.

Shy Bowel (Parcopresis)

This distressing symptom is linked to the one above but instead of having a problem urinating the sufferer cannot use the toilet when they feel they may be overheard.

They might have to hold on all day to use their own toilet at home, rather than the one at work or at school for instance, and is equally embarrassing and debilitating to cope with as shy bladder.


Blood rushes to the neck and throat then upwards to the face, making the person feel hot and bothered. Worse for them still is knowing that their discomfort is signalling itself to everyone around them.

The fear of this vicious circle taking place again may cause the sufferer to get anxious at the thought of any situation that could make them blush, such as performing in front of others or meeting new people, where they feel they have less control.

Here is a list of other symptoms of social anxiety which become worse in times of life stress:

  • Fear of authority
  • Anxiety about making phone calls
  • Shy bladder (paruresis) / Shy bowel (parcopresis)
  • Fear of eating around other people
  • Performance anxiety e.g. presentations/exams
  • Blushing or fear of blushing
    Stuttering or stammering
  • Fear of being humiliated or being ‘shown up’
  • Sexual performance anxiety

How Hypnotherapy Can Help with Social Anxiety

You know logically that people aren’t staring at you; that your conversation is at least as interesting as anyone else’s; that you have as much right to be in this social situation as anyone else; it’s time to let your subconscious know all of this too so you can start really believing it.

Whatever your social phobia, hypnotherapy can help you to overcome it. By gently directing your attention away from yourself you can become more comfortable in any social situation and build up your confidence allowing you to begin enjoying being social and all that being social could mean for you.

The truth is most of these fears are irrational and by talking through our fears and realizing that actually ‘dying’ on stage is not going to happen and we can actually manage the speech or presentation we need to make. Once we appreciate these factors and begin to believe and be confident and human in our approach, we can begin to resolve and ease the associated tension down to manageable levels.

Hypnotherapy helps you to regain control of your anxiety in social situations by working directly with your subconscious to ensure it believes what you consciously know to be true. A programme of re-directing your attention and making positive suggestions directly to your subconscious helps you to regain control and gently allow you to ‘let go’ of negative thoughts while building up your positive thought patterns enabling you to live life in a more pleasant, productive way.