A personality disorder is a mental disorder that makes a person have an unhealthy mindset and behavior. These patterns make a person have boundaries and have problems in social interaction. One of them is a shy personality. Learn more about this condition in How to Deal With Avoidant Personality: Best 5 Proven Techniques.
Living with a shy personality is not easy. This can happen for many reasons. But, of course, they or maybe even you who experience it, do not want this condition to continue. Learn how to solve it.
What is an avoidant personality disorder?
An avoidant personality disorder is a personality disorder in which the sufferer avoids social interactions because it feels inferior to others. He also has a great fear of the rejection of others. This personality disorder is not just temporary in one phase of your life, but it tends to settle down.
Avoidant personality disorder sufferers tend to worry about disappointing others and are afraid of criticism directed at them, so he often avoids various activities. In social relationships, they prefer to be alone or feel lonely rather than trying to connect with others.
What is the main cause of a person’s avoidant personality disorder?
The main causes of avoidant personality disorder are embarrassment or minder of himself, as well as an excessive fear of critics and rejection of others towards him.
Negative interactions from childhood friends, such as rejections, are also potential risk factors for avoiding personality disorders. Individuals with this personality disorder also tend to be very shy and difficult to overcome the shyness even as they grow older.
How can a person experience avoidant personality disorder?
Although it is one of the psychiatric diseases, experts believe that avoidant personality disorder does not appear by itself, nor is it influenced by one dominant factor alone. This disorder is formed due to a combination of biological factors (inherited traits), social (the way individuals interact in developmental times), psychological (emotions, personality, and temperament) formed in an environment.
It can also be caused by childhood trauma, such as being rejected or shunned from family members and friends. Most avoidant personality disorder develops in its infancy. Adolescents and adults with avoidant personality disorder tend to remain shy or even get worse and cause them to isolate themselves, avoid people and avoid traveling to new places.
Characteristics and signs of avoidant personality disorder
A person with avoidant personality disorder might exhibit the following traits:
- Avoid activities that involve interacting with others for fear of criticism, reproach, or rejection.
- Don’t want to interact with others, unless they’re sure they’ll be liked.
- Fear of being embarrassed or humiliated in relationships with people.
- Never be afraid to be criticized or rejected in social situations.
- Reluctant to engage in new interpersonal situations such as getting acquainted, because he feels minder about himself.
- Tend to feel incompetent, unattractive, and inferior to others.
- Very hesitant to take risks or too afraid to start a new activity for fear of feeling ashamed.
If the above symptoms are found in children or adolescents, then it is possible that it is not an avoidant personality disorder. Generally, this is due to their changing personalities. If these symptoms are found in adolescents, then the personality pattern should be able to stay for at least one year before being declared as an avoidant personality disorder.
In addition to Avoidant Personality Disorder, as for other disorders that cause a person’s personality can change. Learn more about Borderline Personality Disorder: Causes, Symptoms and Psychology Today.
How to Deal With Avoidant Personality Disorder?
One of the psychotherapy to overcome avoidable personality disorder is psychodynamic psychotherapy.This therapy can be described as storytelling therapy. This technique helps the patient to become more aware of his or her mind and helps the patient understand the influence of past experiences on current behavior.
Psychodynamic psychotherapy helps patients to identify and resolve conflicts and emotional traumas. Even after several meetings with doctors, this therapy can still provide long-term benefits to patients.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy becomes another form of storytelling therapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy encourages patients to not only acknowledge their beliefs but also to let go of them.
Counselors and cognitive behavioral therapy guides will accompany the patient to come up with healthier thoughts, rather than negative thoughts such as fear and anxiety.
Schematic therapy uses an integrative approach built on the foundation of cognitive-behavioral therapy and other therapeutic techniques. Scheme therapy aims to improve the function of AVPD sufferers in their daily life based on early maladaptive re-design (early life experience).
Patients with therapists will try to uncover emotional needs in childhood that are not met, as well as unhelpful patterns of behavior that then develop because of them. The therapy scheme will help find solutions to meet emotional needs without involving destructive habits.
FDA-approved drugs do not cover personality disorders that are not avoidable. If the patient experiences symptoms like sadness or excessive anxiety, the doctor might prescribe antidepressants.
Adopting a healthy lifestyle, such as exercising diligently and always being active in a variety of activities can help manage emotions and keep away from depression, stress, and anxiety.
The mindset that needs to be changed by sufferers avoidant personality disorder to still be able to live an ideal life
Fear of criticism and rejection
A sufferer of avoidant has the characteristic of excessive fear of rejection of others in any form. Because of this, he will easily be hurt by the criticisms that have been thrown at him.
Although the criticism is constructive, the person will be traumatized to no longer face the people who have the potential to attack him with input, advice, and criticism.
Of course, this is not good if it lasts long. We need criticism throughout life for self-esteem and quality to improve. There are times when, too, we can err and think less clearly. That’s where the criticism helps us.
Loss of confidence
Avoidant people also tend to have a very low level of confidence. It is characterized by feelings of incompetents, inferiority, and fear of looking stupid. If we think too much about it that simply, our lives won’t improve.
The first suggestion that must be pondered by the person is that one must have a side of flaws and advantages. Supposedly, he is busy developing himself through his advantages and does not focus on blaming himself through his shortcomings.
Exaggeration in interpreting each event
The avoidant mindset also lies in his interpretation of excessive events. Some people hold back laughter when he presents is already considered a form of rejection of others against him. Suddenly, he felt worthless, committing unforgivable silliness, and unforgivable mistakes.
Another thing that must be changed slowly by this disorder sufferer is that everyone has been wrong and always has a chance to fix it at a later time. Moments of error can be a very valuable lesson. So, there’s no need to deal with everything exaggeratedly.
Have shame to an unnatural level
Shame to an unnatural level is also prone to be experienced by avoidant people. This is due to their very low self-confidence and feels that they have no superiority whatsoever. The shame attracted them from the crowd and had difficulty communicating smoothly. Of course, the situation brings its difficulties for sufferers.
Sufferers should be accompanied by someone from family, spouse, or close friends to erode such a mindset. Because shame doesn’t need to be shown in conditions that require us to learn a lot.
Avoid interaction with others
Although the avoidant sufferer is eager to blend in with his nearest social circle, the fear of rejection and traumatic criticism from others hold him back from socializing.
The worst impact of this personality disorder is to make the sufferer avoid social interactions with others. Sure, he’ll have a hard time making friends, mates, being honest with family, and not caring about the environment. This condition can thicken the selfishness in him.