When I was reading some articles and blog posts in preparation for my Radio Live bit this week (click here to listen to the interview) I came across a survey figure stating 50% of people in the USA describe themselves as”shy.” Apparently that figure is rising, as is the number of people being diagnosed with social phobia or anxiety, now the third most common psychiatric diagnosis in the States after depression and alcohol dependence.
Shyness seems to be more related to upbringing than genetics and the key difference with social anxiety is the degree of impact on one’s life. For more details see this excellent blog (click here). You can also click here to read more about the differences between shyness and social phobia.
Mindfulness is a really effective treatment for social anxiety and social phobia, as I said in the interview, and this article outlines some of the research (click here).
Lastly if you’re interested in the body language research and techniques I mentioned check out this video clip from www.ted.com. And thanks for listening.