Ways to Overcome Phone Anxiety
The paranoia about receiving or making phone calls could impede social and professional life
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), which includes exposure training, addresses the common phobia of phones. This fear originally stems from the apprehension of being criticised or judged and falls under the general category of social anxiety. Among other common causes of phone anxiety, performance anxiety, depression and PTSD top the list.
Here are a few common symptoms of teleanxiety:
Preferring written communication over verbal
Avoiding communication with family, acquaintances, employers etc. over phone calls
Opting out of social interactions in general
If you are keen on overcoming this irrational fear and yet stumbling at it, you might as well try out these practices for a concrete result.
Participate in Exposure Therapy, as Part of CBT
Few proven benefits of CBT are improved self-esteem, development of a rational thought process and reconstructing how you respond to triggers since the therapy has the goal of helping clients distinguish between healthy and unhealthy feelings. CBT is effective in treating particular cognitive distortions which contribute to disorders, anxiety, depression and schizophrenia.
Start with Scripts for the Particular Calls
If you believe thoughts go haywire on a call and you tend to freeze, a well-written script might be instrumental in overcoming the awkward pauses. Rehearsing the script before speaking on the phone or consulting the script and simultaneously making the conversation could be a brilliant strategy to counter the paranoia. The script should include questions, additional points and alternative topics for conversations to make the call a success. This would eventually weaken pre-conversation hesitations and nurture confidence within you.
Collate Info about the Person on the Other End
Once you get to know the person you would be calling, you would acquire an idea of how to frame the conversation and conclude without derailing it. The person may belong to a professional or personal sphere, but prior research and knowledge would definitely make you at ease.
Focus on your Personal Goals of Overcoming this Anxiety
Once you are motivated by the end results of challenging this anxiety and gaining full confidence in speaking on phone, you would fight tooth and nail to be better at learning the nuances of verbal communication. With a meticulously chalked-out strategy, you might actively work harder and put better efforts into defeating the obstacle.
Deep breathing, meditation, practising mindfulness, visualising success and consciously averting the urge to overthink would go a long way in making the phone calls seem less oppressive.