Do you find yourself feeling anxious when you are talking on the phone? Chances are you have phone anxiety.
Although communicating has become a lot quicker and easier than it was for our ancestors, with that brings a whole new bunch of problems.
30 years ago, people used telephones or wrote letters if they wanted to speak to somebody and they didn’t have many other ways of communicating. Nowadays, we have technology that allows us to speak to anybody around the world in a matter of moments – but that can also mean we’re becoming disconnected from one another as we’re replacing real life interactions with technological ones.
Having so many ways to speak to other people without actually having to speak to other people means when we do have to speak to them in real life, it can be difficult. Enter phone anxiety: a fear of talking on the phone.
It may sound a silly idea, but plenty of people have it and you may even be one of them. Do you let your phone go straight to voicemail then later sending a text message claiming you missed their call? Do you avoid making phone calls and prefer to send emails or texts instead, convincing yourself it’s quicker and easier for yourself to do so? If that sounds like you, you may well have phone anxiety.
What exactly can you do to get rid of your phone anxiety? Well, over recent years, psychologists have been looking into this phenomenon and have concluded that there are a few tips that may help you overcome your phone anxiety:
Remember that it is actually pretty common
A lot more people have phone anxiety than you may think, so the next time you have to speak to somebody directly, remember that they may be in the same situation as you are and it may make you forget about your worries.
Rewire your brain
Changing the way you think can change just about any part of your behaviour. Programme your brain into thinking that speaking on the phone is a normal, non-scary part of your daily life and you will gradually stop feeling phone anxiety. The main way to do this is just to put it into practice.
Identifying your problem with talking on the phone could be a good starting point, but not everybody has any one specific issue they can put their finger on. Whether you are able to identify yours or not, start by making small changes to your daily routine. If you would usually send an email to that client about a change in their order – give them a quick ring instead. Start by pushing yourself to make one new phone call a day if you are in an environment where this is possible. If not, try to call a friend once a week just to have a chat. Starting small and building up will gradually build up your confidence and will have you chatting away on the phone in no time.
Are you scared of talking on the phone? If so, let us know your thoughts on our tips or if you have any of your own that you would like to share. Similarly, if you used to have phone anxiety but have overcome it – let us know how you did it. I personally just bit the bullet and forced myself to make phone calls and it became a natural habit to me in no time, and it can for you too!
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