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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone :),
I am a clinical psychologist and researcher at Macquarie University. I think it's great that so many of you are posting on this forum and supporting each other.

Within the Centre for Emotional Health at Macquarie University (Sydney) we have a research clinic where we are trying to learn more about social anxiety, and how best to help people who experience it. Many of you have spoken openly (and bravely!) about the loneliness you experience, and the sense that life is passing you by. One of the goals of our clinic is to develop treatment programs to help people develop practical skills and strategies to cope with their anxiety, so they are able to get out and do the things they want to do with their life. We offer both individual and group treatments, which our clients find really beneficial as they have the opportunity to meet other people with similar concerns, and practice the skills with each other while they are learning them.

Our treatments are based on cognitive behavioural therapy, and so far our results have been very promising! Our research shows us that after treatment, people experience less symptoms of social anxiety (e.g. panicky feelings, shaking, blushing, sweating, mind blanks, dwelling on negative thoughts), and have been able to make significant improvements to their quality of life (things like finding a new job, getting back to study, or joining a sporting or social group). Our clients often report feeling more self confident and happier in their own skin.

I think it is really important that people are aware that there are steps you can take to get help for social anxiety. As some people on this forum have commented, being proactive is important! It takes a lot of courage to take that first step, but from what I have seen from my clients, it is worth it. Most of our treatment programs are supported by research funding, so we are able to offer them at very low cost to you (and some programs are free).

If you want to find out more about our programs, you can visit our websites:
www.psy.mq.edu.au/casp/
www.psy.mq.edu.au/muaru/
Phone us on 9850 8670 or email me at [email protected]

Wishing you all the best!
-Lexine
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Free treatment for social anxiety and excessive drinking

Hi all :D

I just wanted to add that we are currently offering free individual treatment sessions with a qualified psychologist for social anxiety sufferers who also drink alcohol at harmful levels (more than 14 standard drinks per week for women, or more than 19 standard drinks per week for men).

This program provides the opportunity to make important life changes for yourself, while at the same time being involved in cutting edge research that aims to improve the quality of treatment that is available for social anxiety sufferers like yourself.

To find out more, email us: [email protected], call us (02) 9850 8670, or visit our website: www.psy.mq.edu.au/casp

all the best
Lexine
 

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Hi everyone :),
I am a clinical psychologist and researcher at Macquarie University. I think it's great that so many of you are posting on this forum and supporting each other.

Within the Centre for Emotional Health at Macquarie University (Sydney) we have a research clinic where we are trying to learn more about social anxiety, and how best to help people who experience it. Many of you have spoken openly (and bravely!) about the loneliness you experience, and the sense that life is passing you by. One of the goals of our clinic is to develop treatment programs to help people develop practical skills and strategies to cope with their anxiety, so they are able to get out and do the things they want to do with their life. We offer both individual and group treatments, which our clients find really beneficial as they have the opportunity to meet other people with similar concerns, and practice the skills with each other while they are learning them.

Our treatments are based on cognitive behavioural therapy, and so far our results have been very promising! Our research shows us that after treatment, people experience less symptoms of social anxiety (e.g. panicky feelings, shaking, blushing, sweating, mind blanks, dwelling on negative thoughts), and have been able to make significant improvements to their quality of life (things like finding a new job, getting back to study, or joining a sporting or social group). Our clients often report feeling more self confident and happier in their own skin.

I think it is really important that people are aware that there are steps you can take to get help for social anxiety. As some people on this forum have commented, being proactive is important! It takes a lot of courage to take that first step, but from what I have seen from my clients, it is worth it. Most of our treatment programs are supported by research funding, so we are able to offer them at very low cost to you (and some programs are free).

If you want to find out more about our programs, you can visit our websites:
www.psy.mq.edu.au/casp/
www.psy.mq.edu.au/muaru/
Phone us on 9850 8670 or email me at [email protected]

Wishing you all the best!
-Lexine
I did this program in 2005. I had started a new role in banking, I was going to the gym fairly regularly and had an attractive long term girlfriend. Whilst I didn't attend the last 2 sessions I found this program did absolutely nothing for my SA and 2 blokes I stayed in touch with me after the course agreed.

4 years later I am not working, haven't had a gf in 2 yrs (although by choice) and my SA is still ****house. Whilst I do not doubt that your programs are generally beneficial, I found that for me personally they weren't effective.

I deal with a lot of "inner demons" in regards to SA and much of that is feelings of inferiority to others, negative thoughts etc. The way it's portrayed to others at worst is just a bit of awkwardness and that's it. I think this program helps those with straight out mild SA but not for people who have severe SA and other issues such as depression, OCPD, general anxiety etc.

Although that's just my opinion :)
 

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I’m interested in this. One question though; in the FAQ it said something about using Camperdown facilities. Is it possible not to take part in the program at Macquarie uni (because I go to that uni)?
 

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I'm interested in this. One question though; in the FAQ it said something about using Camperdown facilities. Is it possible not to take part in the program at Macquarie uni (because I go to that uni)?
As far as I know you can do it @ Macq Uni. Alot of ppl I did the sessions with went to Mac. It's at the MUARU (macq uni anxiety research unit) in the psych dept.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Reply: Sessions at Camperdown

I'm interested in this. One question though; in the FAQ it said something about using Camperdown facilities. Is it possible not to take part in the program at Macquarie uni (because I go to that uni)?
Hi Aksa,

In reply to your question, yes we do have treatment available at Camperdown for people who are interested in the treatment program for both social phobia and problem drinking.

With regards to your concerns about attending Macquarie University, the psychologists who provide treatment are not involved in teaching or tutoring at the university, and your participation in the program would be completely confidential. Call us on 9850 8670 if you would like to talk more about the concerns you might have about doing the program while studying at MU.

All the best

Lexine
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hi Makaveli

Thanks for your comments. I'm sorry to hear that the program was not as beneficial for you as you had hoped. As you mentioned, it certainly is the case that different people respond differently, and it may be that another style of treatment (for example Acceptance & Commitment Therapy or Schema Therapy) or another treatment format (e.g individual rather than group) may be better suited to you. Or, sometimes it's just not the right time.. maybe because of low motivation or other stressors going on in your life. Some people find that they need to give treatment a few attempts before they find the right therapist or approach to help them. Which is why I believe it is really important to not give up.

Thanks for your honest comments and I wish you all the best with overcoming your SA.

Lexine :)

PS You suggested that our program might only be helpful to people with mild SA and no other issues. I just wanted to clarify that most of the participants in our programs have other issues such as general anxiety or depression. Our results suggest that on average, people with severe social phobia combined with other conditions also benefit from our treatment in terms of a reduction in social phobia symptoms. But keep in mind that these are group results, so obviously individuals vary in terms of how well the treatment suits their needs.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
UPDATE:

We are coming to the end of this trial - 2011 will be the last year this opportunity is available.

So now is the time to find out whether you could benefit from this free cognitive behavioural treatment program for social anxiety and problem drinking. The program involves 10 individual sessions with an experienced and understanding clinical psychologist.

To find out more about participation at either our North Ryde or Camperdown site, call us (02 9850 8670), email us ([email protected]) or visit our website:
Home - Combined Alcohol & Social Phobia Treatment Program

All the best

Lexine
 
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