Notes on our Programme

Our Social Anxiety Programme

The Next Step Social Anxiety Programme is a cognitive-behavioural treatment programme for people with social phobia / social anxiety disorder (SAxD).


What is Social Anxiety Disorder?

Almost everyone gets a little anxious or embarrassed in front of other people now and then, though some of us are more anxious than others. People with SAxD may experience the following:

  • A feeling of embarrassment or nervousness beginning conversations.
  • Not enjoying social events or being in a group due to nervousness.
  • Getting anxious when presenting to others / talking to authority figures.
  • Blushing, perspiring, racing heart or palpitations in social situations.
  • ‘Severe shyness’.
  • Feeling nervous when the ‘spotlight is on’
  • Avoiding social situations or ‘suffering’ through them due to significant anxiety.

Treatment of Social Anxiety

Our treatment uses cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). This is based on the concept that our emotions and actions are largely influenced by our thoughts. CBT involves:

  1. Education about social anxiety
  2. Cognitive therapy (identifying, challenging and replacing unhelpful thoughts)
  3. Exposure therapy (devising a plan for confronting feared social &/or performance situations)
  4. Attention training (being more able to take in what is happening around us)
  5. Understanding and being assertiveness