I feel very nervous in everything that I do

My problem is that I feel very nervous in everything I do. When guests come to my house I hide as I am not able to talk face to face; nor can I speak in public. Although my classmates like to talk with me, I have no courage to speak to them, especially with girls. I am very confused and upset. How can I overcome this situation?
Aditya (16)

Dear Aditya,

Sounds like you are very nervous and anxious, especially in social situations. It must be quite distressing for you to feel this way each time you have to interact with others.

Your beliefs influence your thoughts, then your feelings, and then your behaviour. So, tackle the beliefs that bring you down. Do you believe you are not good enough? You’re boring? Challenge this belief. Ask, ‘Am I really boring? Is there any proof for this?’

A smile is a good way to connect with people. Try it first with people who won’t make fun of you. When you feel a bit confident, start greeting them with a ‘Hello, how are you?’ Then start sitting with friends or family in a group and be a part of it by simply listening to what others have to say and by nodding to acknowledge. Participating in a conversation is not always about speaking. When you feel courageous, add a small point.

Support yourself by practising breathing and relaxation exercises, and make sure you exercise everyday.

If these don’t work and you still feel anxious, please do approach your school counsellor for real-time help.

Nasreen Hashambhoy
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Nasreen Hashambhoy

Nasreen Hashambhoy is a Counsellor, Life Coach and a Facilitator of training programmes for schools and corporates. Through a combination of coaching, counselling and facilitation techniques based on cognitive science and positive psychology, she helps clients achieve their true potential. She is the author of the series Values In Action published by Better Yourself Books.