Everyone is anxious sometimes. But each year over 20 million people find themselves persistently and intensely anxious—and this number is increasing. This anxiety frequently occurs in social situations that may be specific or general and interferes with many aspects of life, from personal relationships to work to finance to education. It often represents a fear of failure or a fear of success. People who are socially anxious lack confidence and tend to be less effective in interpersonal circumstances and achieving their goals.
How socially anxious are you? And how effectively do you handle achieving your goals in social situations?
Find out now.

Instructions: Please answer EVERY question and answer it as honestly as possible.

T     F      1. I am troubled by nervousness in social situations in which people might judge me.

T     F      2. I’m afraid I may be embarrassed or humiliated by my actions.

T     F      3. I worry about people noticing me blush, sweat, tremble, or show signs of anxiety.

T     F      4. My anxiety seems excessive or unreasonable for these social situations.

When I’m nervous, I’m overcome with intense fear or discomfort, such as

T     F      5. Pounding heart

T     F      6. Dry mouth

T     F      7. Butterflies in the stomach

T     F      8. Trembling or shaking

T     F      9. Shortness of breath

T     F      10. Choking

T     F      11. Chest pain

T     F      12. Nausea or abdominal discomfort

T     F      13. Wobbly legs

T     F      14. Dizziness

T     F      15. Feelings of unreality, detachment, or disorientation

T     F      16. Fear of losing control of self or going crazy

T     F      17. Fear of dying

T     F      18. Numbness or tingling sensation

T     F      19. Chills or hot flashes

T     F      20. I go to great lengths to avoid participating in feared situations.

T     F      21. Anxiety and avoidance of it are a problem for me and interfere with my daily life.

T     F      22. I sleep fitfully and often feel tired.

More days than not, I feel

T     F      23. As if I’m spinning my wheels, going nowhere

T     F      24. Sad, depressed, hopeless, or discouraged

T     F      25. Worthless or guilty

T     F      26. When I feel anxious, I find alcohol or non-prescription drugs help me feel better

T     F      27. Because of my anxiety people may think me to be aloof, unfriendly, or too serious.

T     F      28. I have many dreams filled with tension, dread, or uncertainty.

T     F      29. I feel tense with strangers.

T     F      30. I feel tense participating in groups.

T     F      31. I’m more comfortable communicating online or in letters than I am face-to-face.

T     F      32. I’d like to reduce my anxiety and be more effective in social situations.

T     F      33. People think I’m a good listener.

T     F      34. I try to avoid social gatherings, even if invited or expected to attend.

T     F      35. My friendships and/or family relationships suffer from my nervousness.

T     F      36. I take prescription medication for anxiety or depression.

T     F      37. I feel frustrated that few people seem to understand my nervousness or shyness.

T     F      38. Pets are often more understanding and better company than people.

T     F      39. I’ve talked with a health care professional about my anxiety symptoms.

T     F      40. I miss opportunities to make a point or show my knowledge because I’m afraid to speak up.

T     F      41. I feel uncomfortable expressing disagreement or disapproval to people.

T     F      42. If I don’t meet other people’s expectations (or my own), I feel like a failure.

T     F      43. I feel ill-at-ease eating or drinking in public because I may embarrass myself.

T     F      44. I prefer working alone to working with others.

T     F      45. I avoid public places out of fear of having a panic attack.

T     F      46. I try to please people and want them to like me.

T     F      47. I feel embarrassed by my body or the way I look.

T     F      48. There’s a right way and a wrong way to do things.

T     F      49. I blank out taking tests or speaking to others even when I’m fully prepared and know the material.

T     F      50. I have difficulty signing my name in front of other people.

T     F      51. I feel tense about urinating in a public bathroom.

T     F      52. I feel anxious before a performance, presentation, or event I dread.

T     F      53. I think I’m more sensitive to others’ moods and feelings than are most people.

T     F      54. I don’t know how I’m supposed to act in new situations.

T     F      55. I’m generally tense when I must speak to my boss, customers, teachers, or others in authority.

T     F      56. I feel nervous using the phone, either calling or answering.

T     F      57. I feel nervous leaving a message on a telephone answering machine.

T     F      58. I feel tense being observed while I’m working.

T     F      59. Because of my anxiety I have missed days at work or school.

I feel that my anxiety in social situations has negatively affected

T     F      60. Doing my best on the job or at school

T     F      61. My experiencing new things and meeting new people

T     F      62. My personal, educational or work plans for the future

T     F      63. I often feel that life is unfair and things will never get better.

T     F      64. When someone disagrees with me, I tend to take it as a criticism, feel offended and anxious.

T     F      65. I worry about making a poor first impression.

T     F      66. I feel tense or inadequate in any situation requiring me to stand up for  myself.

T     F      67. I feel guilty for not doing what I think I should.

T     F      68. I get angry and scold myself when I make a mistake: about what I “should have said” or “should have done” or how stupid I was.

T     F      69. I replay over and over what I did in situations where I was nervous.

T     F      70. I put off doings things or making decisions that are anxiety provoking for as long as possible.

T     F      71. I’m on the alert for anxiety-creating situations to avoid.

T     F      72. I’ve thought of suicide when my anxiety has been overwhelming.

T     F      73. I have a problem with concentrating and distract easily.

T     F      74. I want to interact with others but feel I lack social skills to do so.

T     F      75. I have low self-confidence or low self-esteem.

T     F      76. I have fewer friends than I would like.

T     F      77. In general, I’m nervous about being intimate with others.

T     F      78. I don’t date very often (if married, before marriage).

T     F      79. I feel lonely but don’t actively seek out or talk to others in person.

T     F      80. I have a medical problem that I find embarrassing.

In anxiety-provoking situations, I

T     F      81. Speak in low-tones

T     F      82. Keep silent

T     F      83. Make no eye contact

T     F      84. Stutter

T     F      85. Ramble, talking incoherently, or talk very fast

T     F      86. Show closed, withdrawn body positions

T     F       87. I regard my anxiety as a personal inadequacy or disability.

* * *


The greater the number of “Ts,” (1) the greater the likelihood of your suffering from Social Anxiety Disorder and (2) the greater the likelihood of your lacking Social Effectiveness. As you can see, social competence, confidence, and effectiveness are intimately related to Social Anxiety.

1-30 Ts: Your anxiety in social situations is somewhat circumscribed. If it occurs in only one or two situations, it may be Discrete Social Anxiety (a specific phobia like stage fright). While you may be uncomfortable, your anxiety is not necessarily interfering significantly with your life as a whole. Even if your anxiety is relatively mild, you may want to have this assessed by a mental health professional to see what assistance may be helpful to make you more comfortable and unencumbered…

31-60 Ts: Your social anxiety occurs in three or more social situations and keeps you from enjoying your life and readily reaching your goals. This is Generalized Social Anxiety. Because of the negative cognitive and behavioral nature of social anxiety, the longer social anxiety continues, the more it will tend to feed upon itself and increase the chances of greater interference in your life. You need to find professional help to address this.

61-87 Ts: Generalized Social Anxiety has insinuated itself into all important aspects of your life, likely leaving you feeling helpless, hopeless, lonely, stuck, and at its mercy. Even though you may be skeptical or pessimistic about how working with a mental health professional can help you at this stage, you can and need to act as soon as possible to start work on your recovery. This is because effective treatment is available – through therapy, drugs, tapes, books, and coaching, for example. It is never too late!

(For your information, the Social Effectiveness items are: #27, #31, #40-41, #53-57, #64, #67, #81-86. However, if you put a T on #53, you should also give yourself a pat on the back. While those of us with Social Anxiety may be overly sensitive to other’s emotions, “being sensitive to the moods and feelings of others” is a big component of Emotional Intelligence, development of which is very important to being socially effective. Remember. Social Anxiety is merely a dysfunctional over-expression of your sensitivity, empathy, and imagination.)

This assessment is for information purposes only and is not to be used for diagnosis. For diagnosis you need to have a mental health professional who is experienced and knowledgeable in social anxiety assess you personally with psychological instruments validated for that purpose.

EffectivenessPlus Publications LLC
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Placitas, NM 87043