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Are you more looking forward to a relaxing day at home than a wild night out with friends these days? You’re not alone, after all.

The past few years we have seen significant changes in appetite to be more social, from attitudes towards work to simply being around people. Even though lockdowns and safety rules have been lifted since the pandemic, almost half of Americans still spend less time with friends and family than they did before the pandemic.

Redfield & Wilton Strategies surveyed 2,000 eligible voters in the U.S. for Newsweek in January. Of those surveyed, 42% said they are “less social” than they were in 2019, and 37% said their friends are also less social now.

So, what is causing this reduction in social interactions, and is it making us happier or less happy? Is socialization in America, as we know it, on its last legs?

According to a September 2020 study published in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS One, social anxiety is a “fast-growing phenomenon.” It is a fear of social situations in which people anticipate negative evaluations of others or believe that their presence will make others feel uncomfortable.
Researchers found that “up to 12 percent of the U.S. population has been reported to have SAD [social anxiety disorder]” in their study. However, the actual number may be higher than the current estimates show, with a “significant” proportion of people suffering from undiagnosed SAD.
Social anxiety levels may also be on the rise due to the presence of social media. As of 2022, the average daily amount of time spent on social media in the United States was estimated to be two hours and three minutes, according to market and consumer research website Statista.

While the mental health condition is more popular post pandemic, there are ways to combat the feeling.

According to Insider Anxiety is defined as an involuntary physical sensation of danger in one’s body. When someone is anxious and avoids a situation, their brain learns that it feels good and wants to repeat the experience.
people with social anxiety “avoid social settings because their bodies send signals of danger.”
yes, actual danger!

Here are 7 ways to overcome the feeling of anxiety:

  1. Control Your Breathing. Anxiety can cause changes in your body that make you uncomfortable. …
  2. Try Exercise or Progressive Muscle Relaxation. …
  3. Prepare. …
  4. Start Small. …
  5. Take the Focus Off Yourself. …
  6. Talk Back to Negative Thoughts. …
  7. Use Your Senses.

Click Here For More Tips courtesy of

That’s why people who suffer from social anxiety often cancel plans at the last minute or don’t show up at all.

They may have thought they could handle it and that everything would be fine when they first made plans with you. They want to believe they are capable. However, as reality sets in, that fleeting sense of security fades.

If you suspect that a friend suffers from social anxiety, you should question them in a kind manner why they never appear to want to go out, and you should refrain from judging their response.

Always check in with a flaky friend before assuming they suffer from social anxiety; they could have a solid reason for avoiding company (or just be incredibly disorganized). But if they always seem downcast and worried, perhaps that’s why they never show up.

Black Health 365: Check On Your Flaky Friends  was originally published on