1. Being weirdly attached to your phone.
A behavior that could be perceived as rude (focusing on your cell phone instead of the people around you) is actually your version of a security blanket. It’s easier to redirect your attention to something you have control of, like a cell phone, when you’re feeling nervous or uncomfortable, or like you just don’t belong in the conversation.
2. Constantly expecting worst case scenarios to happen.
You are the opposite of go-with-the-flow. Your anxiety takes a serious hold over you and convinces you bad stuff is just around the corner. When people ask, “C’mon, what could possibly go wrong?” You’re like, well, um, here’s a list of at least 72 things.
3. Always asking, “Who is going to be there?” before agreeing to any social gathering.
It might sound silly, but this EVERYTHING to something with social anxiety. It provides just the tiniest bit of comfort — the ability to know exactly WHO you’d be socializing with.
4. Turning down an invitation despite actually wanting to go.
It can be a source of serious internal conflict: part of you wanting to agree to a night out and the other part of you adamantly against it. Sometimes you’ll say no to something you were actually kind of interested in.
You disappear from situations, be them romantic or platonic. No, it’s not because you’re heartless. It’s because social confrontation makes you so nervous that a flight or fight instinct kicks in. Aaaand guess which one you gravitate towards?
6. Texting back instead of calling.
Sure, this could be a generational thing. At this point, kids aren’t even going to know what a voicemail is soon enough. But for people with social anxiety, it’s not just an annoyance. It’s a full fledged fear. Texting allows you time to process what’s said and exactly how you’d like to respond. It feels far safer.
7. Having a small circle of friends.
You do better one-on-one, so it’s not surprising that you don’t roll with a large entourage. The more the merrier? Uh, nope! Not to you.
8. Noticing incessant thoughts interfering with your sleep.
If you’ve got a big project or first date the next day, a little sleeplessness is to be expected. But if you frequently struggle to fall asleep due to worries about what people think of you, social anxiety could be rearing its ugly head.