In the social anxiety self-help book "Dying of Embarrassment", one of the techniques for overcoming social anxiety disorder (SAD) is to expose yourself to "intentional" social mistakes, first in your imagination and then in real life. The idea is that by committing these social "faux pas" you will come to realize 1) that the outcome is never as bad as you thought it would be, and 2) that your fear of the situation diminishes over time.
To get you started thinking about intentional mistakes that could be made, here are a few snippets from the book:
- trip in front of someone
- order something that isn't on the menu
- greet someone by the wrong name
- approach and almost enter the door of the restroom for the wrong sex
- buy something you would normally be embarassed to purchase
You get the idea. Now I'd like to throw it out to the readers. Can you come up with "intentional mistakes" that you could make to challenge your social anxiety? If so, post them in the comments section, and you may see your idea as part of a "best-mistakes-to-make list" in the future.
Photo © Microsoft