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Anxiety in college

Lately I’ve been stressing about college because of my social anxiety. I can barely talk in front of people. But I’m great at interviewing and I do have good friends. Is college a good place for me? #college #collegeanxiety #collegesocialanxiety #socialanxiety #college-advice #student

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Veronica’s Answer

Hi Akira,

I totally relate to the social anxiety.  I am an introvert so I need alone time to recharge.  It is draining to me to be "out there" all the time interacting with others.  I suggest you take time and meditate for at least 5 minutes a day to calm the mind  with the goal of building on that time.  It also helps me to keep in mind that everyone feels anxiety from time to time I'm not unique and it will pass.  College for me was an experience I'm glad I had - it gave me time to discover myself and start to find my 'voice.'   I encourage you to 'go for it' and "fake it till you make it" - much of success is merely showing up and ready for the experience.  Your confidence in your ability to socialize will increase as you walk through the fear and do it repeatedly.  You can set a goal to talk to one new person a day - even if its merely to say "Hi" and ask them how their day is going.  Much peace and luck to you.  

Veronica recommends the following next steps:

Look into Meditation - guided and music
Set small goals to improve your social confidence - joining new groups, going to new places, talking to new people.
Deep Breathe during the day - 3 good long breaths.

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Kim’s Answer


Veronica is right. The more you do it, the easier it gets. I started actually teaching classes at the age of 47 - something I would never have seen coming! I would encourage you to join a group so you get involved in some activities. You can do voter registration drives, sell sodas at the school carnival, etc. Sometimes it's easier talking to people if you are acting out a role, rather than being yourself. Eventually, with some of these people, you might have some conversations of a personal nature, but, at first it is all "business."

Although I had this same type of shyness, I became a police officer. The uniform gave me instant "credibility" (it was a long time ago!) and people would listen. When I retired, and found another job that had no uniform, I was terrified! Why are people going to listen to me? And the reason they did, after a while, was because I was knowledgeable about the topic I was speaking on, and, I spoke from the heart. I knew what it was like to be unemployed and looking for work, and was able to "connect" with people.

I encourage you to learn to confront weaknesses head on. It will help you to get ahead. Inability to do public speaking holds many people back. There is an organization called Toastmasters/Toastmistresses, where people practice public speaking. I encourage you to look into it.

Finally, if your anxiety is severe, you may seek medical help. If you are one to shun pills (which I totally understand), then you may want to research holistic treatment options, such as vitamins and the meditation previously mentioned.


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Ken’s Answer

Here are some thoughts about what to do after high school:

Should You Go To College


<span style="color: black;">Value of College</span>


<span style="color: black;">My Biggest Regret: Going to College</span>


Ken recommends the following next steps:

The most important thing for you to do is to get to know yourself better to determine which direction to take. Getting to know yourself and how your personality traits relate to people involved in various career opportunities is very important in your decision making process. During my many years in Human Resources and College Recruiting, I ran across too many students who had skipped this very important step and ended up in a job situation which for which they were not well suited. Selecting a career area is like buying a pair of shoes. First you have to be properly fitted for the correct size, and then you need to try on and walk in the various shoe options to determine which is fits the best and is most comfortable for you to wear. Following are some important steps which I developed during my career which have been helpful to many .
The first step is to take an interest and aptitude test and have it interpreted by your school counselor to see if you share the personality traits necessary to enter the field. You might want to do this again upon entry into college, as the interpretation might differ slightly due to the course offering of the school. However, do not wait until entering college, as the information from the test will help to determine the courses that you take in high school. Too many students, due to poor planning, end up paying for courses in college which they could have taken for free in high school.
Next, when you have the results of the testing, talk to the person at your high school and college who tracks and works with graduates to arrange to talk to, visit, and possibly shadow people doing what you think that you might want to do, so that you can get know what they are doing and how they got there. Here are some tips: ## http://www.wikihow.com/Network ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/nonawkward-ways-to-start-and-end-networking-conversations ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/4-questions-to-ask-your-network-besides-can-you-get-me-a-job?ref=carousel-slide-1 ##
Locate and attend meetings of professional associations to which people who are doing what you think that you want to do belong, so that you can get their advice. These associations may offer or know of intern, coop, shadowing, and scholarship opportunities. These associations are the means whereby the professionals keep abreast of their career area following college and advance in their career. You can locate them by asking your school academic advisor, favorite teachers, and the reference librarian at your local library. Here are some tips: ## https://www.careeronestop.org/BusinessCenter/Toolkit/find-professional-associations.aspx?&frd=true ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/9-tips-for-navigating-your-first-networking-event ##
• It is very important to express your appreciation to those who help you along the way to be able to continue to receive helpful information and to create important networking contacts along the way. Here are some good tips: ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/the-informational-interview-thank-you-note-smart-people-know-to-send?ref=recently-published-2 ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/3-tips-for-writing-a-thank-you-note-thatll-make-you-look-like-the-best-candidate-alive?bsft_eid=7e230cba-a92f-4ec7-8ca3-2f50c8fc9c3c&bsft_pid=d08b95c2-bc8f-4eae-8618-d0826841a284&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=daily_20171020&utm_source=blueshift&utm_content=daily_20171020&bsft_clkid=edfe52ae-9e40-4d90-8e6a-e0bb76116570&bsft_uid=54658fa1-0090-41fd-b88c-20a86c513a6c&bsft_mid=214115cb-cca2-4aec-aa86-92a31d371185&bsft_pp=2 ##

• It really does not matter what school you attend, as the most important factors are how well you do with the school work, which is an indication to an employer about what kind of employee you will be, and the effort that you put forth in your networking to set up networking connections that will help you throughout your education/career journey. Here is an important video for you to watch: ## http://www.ted.com/talks/julie_lythcott_haims_how_to_raise_successful_kids_without_over_parenting?utm_campaign=social&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_content=talk&utm_term=education ## Ken Simmons

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Rachel’s Answer

Absolutely college is a good place for you. People attend college for reasons beyond intellectual growth. Personal and interpersonal growth are also very important. You will make friends by putting yourself out there, participating in student organizations, and living in the on-campus community.

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Richard’s Answer

You can join clubs based on your hobbies or interests. Intramural sports are good for making friends without the constant pressure of carrying on a conversation.

You might also consider a small school. Big campuses, big dorms, and big classes can be intimidating.