Is It Normal That I Have No Social Life?
By Sarah Fader
Updated September 13, 2018
Reviewer Rashonda Douthit , LCSW
You notice that everyone else is going out with their friends on the weekends except you. In fact, you never seem to go anywhere and do not really have any close friends. You have acquaintances and people you talk to at work but nobody that you actually go places with. The truth is, you have no social life at all and you do not even know why. You may have social anxiety disorder.
Social Anxiety Disorder
Occasionally feeling comfortable in social situations is not uncommon. For those who struggle with social anxiety disorder, however, the stress of such situations is more pervasive. People who have social anxiety disorder may be afraid of interacting, or of being negatively judged or evaluated by others. They may feel so self-conscious and uncomfortable that they avoid interactions whenever possible.
Approximately 15 million people in the United States have social anxiety disorder. Although people may have different experiences, some common signs of social anxiety disorder include:
- Avoiding places where there are people
- Extremely scared that people will judge you
- Self-conscious around other people
- Scared to be with anyone
- Still posture, avoiding eye contact
- Feeling sick or nauseous if others come around you
- Blushing, sweating, shaking
- Rapid heart rate
- Mind going blank when you are asked a question
- Dizziness or feeling lightheaded
hat Causes Social Anxiety Disorder
Social anxiety disorder may result from a number of factors. Previous negative experiences such as being in an embarrassing situation or experiencing bullying or teasing may place one at greater risk. Shy children or adolescents may be more likely to experience social anxiety as adults. There is also research that suggests it may be most influenced by biological factors.
You Can Get Help
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) has been shown to be effective in treating social anxiety disorder. Focusing on the relationship between thoughts, feelings and actions is an important aspect of CBT. One of the primary goals of therapy is changing the underlying beliefs associated with the social anxiety. CBT therapists often assign "homework" to help facilitate positive change.
If you do not have a therapist, an online therapist who has experience with CBT may be a good option. Social anxiety disorder can be tough, but help is available. There is hope, you just have to take that first step.