1. Enjoy a heaping bowl of… sauerkraut?
Fermented foods—like yogurt, kefir, kimchi, and sauerkraut—are rich in good bacteria for your gut. Your gut is responsible for making over 80 percent of your body’s serotonin, a neurochemical that helps us feel at ease.
2. Kickbox your way out
Exercise is potent medicine for people with social anxiety. Consistent exercise has the power to rewire your brain, making you literally see things in a different way.
3. Call your mother
If you’re feeling anxious about something, ring up mom or a calming pep talk. She can remind you how loved you are.
4. Count your blessings (and friends)
Instead of worrying about whether or not someone really likes you, try making note of all the friends you have and the ways friends bless your life.
5. Pet a cuddly pooch
Having an animal companion, like a dog, kitten, or even a lizard greatly helps reduce social anxiety.
6. Namaste your worries away
Yoga combines the best parts of exercise and relaxation techniques, which makes it particularly helpful for socially anxious people.
7. Pull out your best acting skills
Even if you don’t feel confident and outgoing, simply acting like you are can trick your brain into believing it.
8. Offer to help out in the kitchen
Doing little acts of kindness or service greatly reduce social anxiety. Service helps you focus on how other people are feeling, rather than yourself.
9. Learn to accept a compliment
The trick is to learn to take a compliment and believe people when they tell you something good about yourself and try not to obsess over the things you see as negative.
10. Don’t fat-shame people—including yourself
We all can and should work on not judging others or ourselves based on body shape. And unsurprisingly, learning to focus on the good in others can help you learn to be as gentle with yourself.