Does Alcohol Help Reduce Social Anxiety? A Psychotherapist’s Findings

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTAnxiety, Social Anxiety

A 1989 study found that around 53% of people experiencing social anxiety “often or always” used drinking as an attempt to reduce their anxiety.1 Another study found that 100% of people seeking treatment for their alcohol use said they’ve used alcohol at least once to help cope with anticipatory anxiety regarding an upcoming social interaction.2 Needless to say, alcohol is … Read More

How Long Does Homesickness Last (and How to Shorten its Duration)

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTSocial Anxiety

The experience of homesickness has common features for all of us. At the same time, each of us can experience homesickness in a number of different ways, including its duration. For some, homesickness can pass fairly quickly, while for others it can take much longer. How long does homesickness last, in general? Studies have shown homesickness to last between 3 … Read More

How to Not Worry or Overthink About Being Cheated On?

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTSocial Anxiety

One of the most common and worst fears we have in relationships is infidelity. Just the thought of it can make our anxiety spike and cause us to do thing we normally wouldn’t do. In this article, I’ll explore the uncertainty we all face while being in relationship with other, how fear, worry, and overthinking impacts our relationships, and what … Read More

Why Am I So Quiet? A Psychotherapist’s Perspective

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTSocial Anxiety

It can be a challenge to figure out why we do something or why we don’t do something. And a tendency to be quiet is not exception. It’s an important question though. We thrive off connection and the only way for us to connect is to talk and put ourselves out there. Why am I so quiet? Paying attention to … Read More

Feel Like Everyone Is Judging You? Psychology Tools To Help.

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTSocial Anxiety

Being judged hurts. It’s the opposite of connection and acceptance, which all of us strive and hope for. Sometimes the judgement is real. It’s either overtly expressed to us or it’s more subtle and more of something that we sense. And sometimes the judgement isn’t real. It’s a product of our fear, only existing in our minds. This article is … Read More

Why Do I Constantly Avoid Conversations?

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTSocial Anxiety

Light, easy, and honest conversations drive connection. And when we feel connected, we generally feel more at ease with ourselves. Conversations don’t always go this way though. And when conversations get uncomfortable, for any reason, it’s only natural to have an urge to avoid them. Why do we avoid conversations? Often times we avoid conversations because we’re anxious about being … Read More

Why Am I So Quiet in Groups? And Should I Speak Up More?

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTSocial Anxiety

Why am I so quiet in groups? A pattern of not speaking up in groups is often due to a fear of being judged, a core belief that we’re somehow flawed, and an underestimate of our social skills. Often, it’s not that we are lacking social skills, it’s that we need to address underlying thoughts and behaviors that maintain our … Read More

How Do I Stop Worrying and Overthinking What I Say?

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTSocial Anxiety

We worry before we say something. Planning and anticipating what we will say and how the other person will respond. And we rehearse all the possible scenarios. We worry while we are saying something. Concentrating more on how we are coming across than the conversation itself. We imagine what the other person is thinking about us. And we worry after … Read More

Why Do I Avoid People?

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTSocial Anxiety

Why do we avoid people? We often avoid people out of a combination of a fear of being rejected and negatively judged, a core belief that we are in some way flawed, and a belief that we can’t handle uncomfortable emotions or situations. These thoughts and beliefs often happen covertly, underneath our awareness. As a result, they drive us to … Read More

Feeling Out of Place at Work and What to do About It

Brian O'Sullivan, M.S., LMFTWork and Social Anxiety

Feeling socially inhibited at work, that others are watching and judging you, and that everyone else is connected except for you is exhausting. And we get stuck in a cycle: Go home after a long, awkward day feeling tired We overthink interactions and start getting worked up about the next day We then go to work the next day feeling … Read More