Social Anxiety – 6 Tips from a Navy SEAL
100 Comments


Hey guys Sean Ryan with Vigilance Elite
I did aq a a while back on the old IG and I got a question asking me if I deal
with social anxiety and for anxiety and crowds and I thought that was a really
good question and so I answered it and gave me an idea I thought I would do a
video on it so I put a couple of feelers out on YouTube and Instagram and I was
gonna cater this whole thing towards kind of combat that’s transitioning and
the social anxiety that we deal with coming back into regular society but I
want to put the feelers out I realize totally shit a lot of people deal with
this shit me included I deal with it probably on a
daily basis if I leave my house so which is why I bought a place out of the
middle of fucking nowhere because I don’t like talking to people and I get
anxious when I have to go to social functions so so I’m just gonna talk
about these six things that I’ve used to kind of help me power through that shit
and overcome social anxiety so here we go social anxiety really hit me hard
when I left CIA that’s when it really kicked in for me I got out I left CIA I
had no clue what the fuck I was gonna do where I was gonna go I had no hobbies
other than drinking and which made me feel
pretty fucking insecure especially when you go to these social functions and
it’s all you know doctors and lawyers and fucking stockbrokers and this person
has fucking truckload of money and this person you know and you just constantly
feel like you’re being judged because you don’t really have anything going on
at that time and for me the two questions that I fucking was terrified
of is what do you do and what are your hobbies what do I do
well I wasn’t doing anything I could talk about actually I couldn’t I
couldn’t even talk about what I did most of the shit for I never be able to talk
about and that’s fucking embarrassing to me it’s well I’m you know for the past
14 years I’ve been doing this shit but I can’t tell you anything about it and you
know I’m it bothered me and then the other one was you know what are your
hobbies well I don’t have any fucking hobbies other than getting shit-faced
from the time I get up until the time I go to sleep and I don’t sleep so those
are two questions that I would avoid and I amongst the whole slew other emotions
but and things that I was dealing with but I found a couple of things that
helped me out and I’ve kind of broken them up a little bit here two things
that get me through social events still to this day I still use this shit
everywhere I go is one I don’t ever put myself in a situation
that I cannot get myself out of to I need to find things that boost my
confidence doesn’t mean when I mean confidence I don’t mean you don’t have
to be the loudest motherfucker in the room and the one that talks the most you
just have to find things that make you confident which make you a little more
comfortable in that particular setting so let’s go through these six things so
the first thing that I do is that kind of helps me and it relates to
I don’t ever put myself in a situation that I can’t get out of is I don’t do
fucking ubers I don’t do taxis I don’t do burrs I don’t let friends
drive I don’t ride with people I want my car with my car keys in my pocket that
way if I feel the anxiety is starting to come on and I don’t want to be there
anymore I know I can get the fuck out of there at a moment’s notice doesn’t mean
you can’t take a taxi out of there but at least you have that sense of comfort
and which gives you a little confidence knowing all right if I am in a situation
that I just don’t want to fucking be in socially I’ll just leave and that gives
you a little bit of comfort you don’t have to wait on a taxi or call an uber
or make a big scene you just fucking leave so that would be my first piece of
my first tip take your own car if you get drunk leave it there go get it
tomorrow but at least you have it hotel rooms as I kind of mentioned before and
if you want to get more in depth you can click the link above and listen to the
tnq podcast I was on but I had ruined every relationship all of them and it
got real fucking awkward even with family I’m still rebuilding that and I
still get a little anxious sometimes friends family everyone if I’m gonna go
on an overnighter somewhere I always run a hotel it gives me my little buddy
we’ll just call it a safe space but if I start getting angry or anxious a lot of
times my anxiety switches to anger immediately I know I need to leave
before shit gets bad and knowing that I have a hotel somewhere I can go to it
comforts me and gives me that confidence knowing like alright if things get out
of control or if I just don’t want to fucking be here I don’t have to make a
scene and go out you know I’m fucking leaving alright it’s just
no I just I have my hotel I go there I fucking cool off nobody even has to know
why you’re going maybe you just say oh yeah I’m gonna go
turn some emails and or I’m gonna go I gotta make a phone call real quick go
over there go back to your hotel or wherever it is and you know do the whole
blue shopping code words and or little phrases that you can say to a friend or
your significant other or whoever alright but it has to be somebody that
you can really fucking count on okay I use my fiance Katie my special lady
friend and she knows when I say this is my favorite song it’s time to fucking
roll I’m feeling uneasy and it’s time to get the fuck out of there and she makes
it happen I don’t have to do shit she comes up with the excuse on why we’re
leaving or she just says hey Sean I want to go and then it’s not even me it’s her
I just nobody now I’ve got to change it cuz everybody’s gonna know when I say
this is my favorite song it’s time to fucking roll but come up with anything
and it’s got to be somebody that you trust you can’t have can’t be your buddy
who’s trying to pick up fucking chicks at the bar who is not gonna listen it
can’t be you know the football game nut that’s gonna sit there and go just wait
till the end of the fucking quarter when you say it it needs to be somebody you
trust that when you do say it they’re gonna wrap it up then you’re out the
fucking door and just knowing that you have that
phrase and knowing that you have somebody that has your back no matter
what is gonna help give you that confidence
and it’s gonna put you it it’s gonna put you you know at ease a little more it’s
gonna make it a little more comfortable and boom there’s back to I don’t put
myself in situations that I can’t get myself out of so find somebody a trust
maybe it’s just significant other maybe it’s your best friend I don’t know who
the hell it is but find somebody come up with something and stick with it don’t
feel like you have to talk all the time alright I get
intimidated all the fucking time when I’m out in social settings especially in
the very beginning when I got out about four years ago it was real bad you know
you constantly feel like people are putting you down they might not even
mean it but you don’t always have to talk quick story I used to go out to
dinner all the time when I first got out my neighbor’s mom
her name was burned and she was probably mid seventies early eighties eighties
she’s passed away now but I really liked going out to dinner with her because I
felt comfortable with her and I would tell her you know she would ask why I
don’t go out more why don’t you know go to these social functions more and I
would tell her like I’m fucking intimidated I live in Boca Raton Florida
and every motherfucker I meet is a fucking plastic surgeon for a doctor or
a stockbroker or a money manager or some badass attorney and Here I am NOT doing
shit don’t have a clue what the fuck I’m gonna do I’m a social mess and so I
wouldn’t go anywhere and when I did I wouldn’t say anything I’m not a talker
and I remember fern told me Shawn you don’t have to say shit she’s like she
said to me just by you sitting there and listening with your background makes the
entire room intimidated she’s like you’re and she’s like I can’t even
believe they’re telling me that you’re intimidated by these people
she said just do what you do just take it in listen to them you know people
love to talk about themselves let them talk about themselves alright
so and I thought about that and I tried it and I’ll be damned
I think she’s fucking right so don’t feel the need that you have to fucking
talk don’t be the person that’s you know live live live a blob that doesn’t shut
the fuck up okay just take a wrap off you know
did you feel in anxious then just take a wrap off stop and just listen you know
you don’t have to have some badass explanation every question that’s asked
and you know I mean if you don’t understand something that somebody’s
saying tell him yeah I don’t have a quote what the fuck you’re talking about
I do that shit all the time and you know it kind of is uncomfortable at first but
then when they realize oh yeah I’m talking over this guy’s head and he’s
got the confidence to say yeah you’re not fucking impressing me why don’t you
just dial it down a little bit to fucking layman’s terms I don’t know what
the fuck surgery you’re talking about here so anyways that ship really helped
me a lot drinking this is the one nobody wants to
hear but when you’re in a social setting at least how I was is I would pound
fucking vodka non-stop straight vodka on the rocks well if this kind of goes back
to getting yourself into something that you can’t get yourself out of once
you’re fucking hammered you’re hammered which means you can’t reverse it you
can’t get yourself out of it you’re just there and I don’t know you guys are but
when I’m hammered nothing really good ever happens
my anxiety gets worse eventually the anger gets worse a lot worse and I wind
up doing shit that I regret in the long-term so take a wrap off you know
how I did it is I don’t drink hard shit anymore don’t do shots of the fucking
whiskey I don’t do shots of anything I drink wine I have a
couple glasses and I call it quits there’s another thing I get made fun of
sometimes cuz I drink bubbly out of the can but here’s the deal its water with
bubbles in it now look I have an adult drink it gives my hands something to do my hands are doing something part of
anxiety for me was what the fuck do I do with my hands now that I’m not drinking
anymore well now I have a drink it looks like you know it’s got bubbles in it
looks like it’s a fucking vodka tonic or something and it gives me something to
do and I found these like they’re nobody’s business but lay off the booze
it’s gonna nothing bad it’s gonna happen by you laying off those I
guaran-fucking-tee you that and the last thing get some therapy all right I went
to therapy for I believe three years twice a week every fucking week that is
a lot of therapy so and you know what it helped me tremendously and I know you
know there’s like the the stigma behind it where oh yeah I don’t need any
fucking help and you know if you’re like that and you’re worried about what
everybody else is thinking of it you’re fucking weak
alright so just try it nobody maybe it doesn’t work for you I don’t know but I
tell you the one thing that helped me more than anything was going to therapy
getting some help and it’s not all like what you think we’re like oh you know
talking about your fucking problems it also helps you understand what’s going
through other people’s heads and when you can understand what’s going through
other people’s minds that gives you confidence because you don’t take shit
so personally you realize not everything this
asshole is talking about is directed at me in fact I have nothing to do with it
you know and that puts you at ease and then you start you start building that
confidence you know you understand you start to understand how the human mind
thinks and and look I you’re not gonna regret going to therapy and if
somebody’s gonna give you shit for it they’re not your fucking friend anyway
so tell them to fuck off but anyways those are six things that
have really helped me a lot I still struggle with it but I’m leaps and
bounds where I was and anyways remember those things find ways to build your
confidence and don’t put yourself into a situation that you can’t get out of and
those two things combined I think will really help you up if you think about it
so anyways not my typical video and I’m a not an expert by any fucking means but
uh hopefully that shit helps alright see you guys soon go grab a bubbly social anxiety I think it he’ll have a
lot more of us have it than I thought we did so I’m just gonna try to cater it
towards everyone so I’m not a fucking expert on this shit by any means but I
do deal with it probably damn near on a bait on a mother fuck fuck fuck
hey guys Sean Ryan vigilance elite hey guys Sean Ryan vigilance elite and
there’s a fucking airplane going over right now so I’m just gonna stop and
wait till this fucking piece of shit flies over my property a lot of it boils
down to confidence and when I mean confidence I don’t being in the loudest
fucking asshole in the room yeah of course it’s another fucking plane
hey guys Sean Ryan vigilance elite I put a little feeler out on

100 thoughts on “Social Anxiety – 6 Tips from a Navy SEAL

  1. I have bad anxiety and panic attacks. I Only leave the house like once a month if that and that's only to go somewhere close. It's torture. Im mad at the world and almost embrace it nowadays. I'm scared I'm accepting it and it's my life now. Also a alcoholic. I wouldn't wish anxiety on anybody

  2. Thanks brother! Great video! I thought maybe the whole world was different than I, until I seen this video. Suicide can’t be an option because I can’t quit. Doesn’t mean I haven’t thought of or attempted to in a bad state of mind. You are helping us! Keep posting and thanks for your insight!

  3. I may never be as bad ass as this guy, but I am a combat vet and I related to this so much. Almost every point. Thank you, this helped me realize that I'm not alone and gave me some tips on being a somewhat functional person in society. So again thank you

  4. For a Navy Seal to admit this, it made me realize that this is more common than I thought, and that it doesn't make you less of a person. This was the most unexpected video of my life. Thank you, Shawn.

  5. I can relate so much to the anger thing. Most people forget that the fundamental physiology associated with anxiety is “FIGHT or flight”. Trying to learn to walk away (or flight) from a situation where someone is making you feel uncomfortable when your nature and DNA is programmed to want to challenge them and potentially fight them is a soul destroying feeling especially as a man with high levels of testosterone.Most of the time you are deemed to be an aggressive horrible person when you do react to the untrained onlooker even tho your intention was to avoid any kind of altercation in the first place prior to being provoked. You can’t win.

  6. Total Respect I Love and Admire What You Do as a Youtuber And How You Don’t Sugar Coat Shit And Tell it How It is From The Heart ❤️….I just started Following You about a month or So And You Helped Me Out a lot With All The Knowledge You Drop For The Gaining Brain 🧠

  7. Big thanks to you Shawn for this video. I'm a pretty shy guy, and I have trouble in many social situations, my wife is the opposite, she's very outgoing but she understands me to a fault. I'm going to use your tips from this video, and just watching it even put my mind a bit at ease about dealing with social situations in the future. Much respect and thanks for your service also.

  8. Thanks Shawn for this advice. Im going through all that shit since i retired from the Navy back in 2011 plus a few other things. Everything you said i am going through so i will give this advice a try

  9. As insecure as you must have felt in those ridiculous social environments, every doctor, lawyer and stockbroker would wish in their wildest dreams that they were you for one day. I am not you, I am not a Warrior, and I regret every day that I did not join the military. I was a professional fighter for 14 years in a world champion in 2003, Which in comparison to you and what you've accomplished is insignificant in every way possible. I felt the same way that you did. Then you realize that everyone around you is doing everything possible to exaggerate the experiences that they've had, to make themselves sound more interesting, while you are doing everything possible to not talk about your past. You are the real man.

  10. DO YOU…..JUST DO YOU…you're just perfect…especial compared to the special people in their own mind. FUNNY STORY… so i think i'm cured one day & i going on a RV trip with family to Montana….5 people..with my extra large Shepard ….i wasn't cured i find out after i call my son in law an asshole….live and learn and apologize occasionally.

  11. "Don't get yourself into a situation you can't get yourself out of" is, to me, the best advice. Not only here, but life itself. But in terms of social anxiety, there is absolutely no worse feeling than feeling trapped. You'll start to pick out people to avoid, like the ones who ask you those damn questions, and the ones who nudge you in front of everyone about being quiet. You'll find something to do, you'll eat and drink to busy yourself and ease off some of the pressure, but ultimately you're playing a dangerous game if you go to a party or somewhere and have no way to leave on your own. You'll start out feeling trapped and desperate and before you know it you're bothering the dog or cat at the house party because human contact is your mine field.

  12. I’m 35 right now and I’ve suffered from depression anxiety my whole life but this past five years also extreme tiredness 24/7. I found out I have celiac‘s disease. It’s where if you eat gluten it destroys your intestines and that causes a host of problems including low production of brain neurotransmitters. Going on a ketogenic diet completely reversed all of my problems. Everyone needs to try going gluten free I think it’s causing a lot of mental health issues in our country and around the world. All I eat now is fatty meats, fatty fish, cheese and veggies

  13. A friendly bit of advice which I wish I knew years ago – 'safety behaviors' (like planning how to leave a social situation) can prolong or even worsen anxiety disorders. It cements the notion there's a real issue to be anxious about.

  14. Mr. Shawn Ryan, Thank you sir for video may I email you? I have a story about a certain person you might be interested in.

  15. When your at a social event Shawn, I hope the Doctor's, Lawyers, and Stock Brokers you talk about are educated enough to understand that they are in the presence of Greatness!!!! Great Video!

  16. I used to have a bad problem…..but now I am too disappointed in people in general and specifically to have much anxiety about it…People are fucking turds for the most part. And they are selfish…and boring.

  17. i didn't realize i had as much of this issue as i do until i recognized all the same defense mechanisms that i use. Guess i'm more F'd up than i thought

  18. I respected you before for your service as a Navy seal, but now even more as a true man. You are a strong and rare breed, my friend. You are fortunate to have Katie as your helper. May God continue to bless you both on your journey.

  19. After spending years on submarines I hate dealing with people as well. I only leave my house when I have to for work and groceries.

  20. Some of this is more introvert oriented. Which is ok. An introvert who needs space for whatever reason can get anxious.

  21. this has got to be the best advice for the card carrying introverted / socially anxious I've ever heard… takes real heart to talk about this and I'm glad I came across this video, well done sir

  22. A man that could dispatch you without you even knowing saying he gets intimidated is quite a powerful statement. Thank you brother for everything you've done. I love you and hope you live a long, happy life.

  23. I figured out that drive your own car thing along time ago. Simply because people are not dependable and they are literally (and figuratively) in the "driver's seat" of your own personal well being. You can't leave if they don't judge your issue as important and severe as you do. They don't want to be inconvenienced if they are not convinced your issue is "real" enough to be addressed RIGHT NOW.

  24. oh man, this dude is fuckig awesome…and youtube famous now lol. Hope his social anxiey is good with his new found youtube popularity. Than you for the video and ending bloopers lol

  25. This whole Iran situation is making me anxious. I’m aware that I shouldn’t worry about things I can’t control. In a weird spot…

  26. What? There's a Social Anxiety component in the Seal pipeline?
    Lol j/k
    God Bless and good for you Shawn. Fight the good fight brother.

  27. Massive respect for Shawn's vulnerability in this video. Truly inspiring how a man like Shawn who is as tough and badass as they come even says he struggles with this. Amazing video.

  28. Honestly this was amazing to watch! To know that someone of your stature an intimidating but sharp and precise person goes through the same stuff as us regular joes is humbling but the fact that you can openly speak about your deep feelings to millions of people is beyond inspiring dude!! I know this sounds very corny and soft but I think your level of confidence and sheer "fuck it I'm gonna share what I feel and take it as you want" is fuckimg motivating man!!

  29. The number six on the list about understanding what's going on in people's minds hit home for me. Cannot count how many times I have met some friends of friends or some of my girlfriends guy friends and wanted to continue to practise my armbar, all because I felt like the bullshit someone was saying was directed towards me when it was not. Just a shitty ego from someone I don't even know and will probably never see again. Our minds can be our biggest enemy or our best friend. Mental health and mental conditioning, there is so much more going on here than we realize.
    Cheers to you Shawn, ya fucking beauty! 🤙

  30. It took me 12 years to realize it is not them it is me that is making me feel the way I feel. I whole heartily understand the way you feel. I did not want to be that guy. I am that guy who has Combat PSTD, but I still have my arms and legs, and it makes me feel so bad that I admit to this.

  31. "My anxiety switches to anger immediately", This is so true. Big gatherings is fucking bad news to me. Train stations, concerts, clubs, markets. I'm in stress mode 100% of the time. Fuck looking at my phone like everyone else does. I'm constantly scanning for threats, behaviour. Army vet as well.

  32. What help me was a relationship with our savior Yeshua, prayer 🙏 and plenty of bible reading. 😎👊🏻❤️God bless you my brother

  33. thanks, I needed this, I have such a huge problem with social anxiety trust and being comfortable around civilians im a desert storm combat veteran

  34. thank you for your video i am not a vet of any kind but the shit ive been through i have developed a form of ptsd and social anxiety and this has helped alot sir thank you for your service that of which you can speak of and those that you can not i thank you

  35. The VA’s got me on meds for this, not sure I like it. Most don’t understand being amped and then try to shutdown,doesn’t work.

  36. You are a badass shepherd walking among bleating sheep. Your thoughts won't matter later, their opinions won't matter, mine won't. But the 1st line here above is the reality.

  37. Seal training requires total reprogramming, to become a normal human being requires continuous programming, welcome back to the norm and thank you for your service.

  38. SIR I am the same way. I have severe anxiety and OCD I can't even ride in the same car as my wife most of the time. My hats off to you brother.

  39. Our men and women in the armed forces need exit training when they leave service and go back home. They get trained to be killing machines, but get thrown away like trash when they're done. It's not right.

  40. It's true when she said folks feel intimidated. We all feel it in someway when comparing what we do or know but total respect for you guys. Not sure about others and I know it's not all it's cracked up to be but I wish I had the direction or lack of when I was younger to have joined the military. Love the videos brother!

  41. When he talked about his anxiety switching to anger immediately, that's my anxiety most of the time. Also the code words are life saving. Thanks for making this video.

  42. Most doctors are definately brave, (the non-narcisist ones who actually don't want to hurt people), because they don't want to hurt someone yet they are cutting open hearts and shit and then people recover from surgery. That being said they aren't at the level of a SEAL as far as acomplishing stuff.

  43. If you apreciate the Constitution and Bill of Rights, I don't care if you are atheist agnostic or anything else that you have a right to be, if you seek a therepist, find a Christian conservative therepist, most importantly a conservative, more than likely the Christian one will be the conservative, because most other therepists are fucking commies all to happy to check a box or right a note that might be shared with NICS check and shit to undermine your 2A rights! Yes conservatives are all kinds of faiths or no faith at all, great, reality of things! However therepists more and more are trained in communist psych programs! I don't care if this makes you angry but a Christian conservative is the one most likely to toss bullshit education principles out the window but hold on to the objective science proffesionally. They will go into an education knowing they will need to protect their conservative principles and filter out bullshit commies. They will also have a goal to be a conservative and actually respect the Bill of rights for all their patients!

  44. I wouldn't sweat the people from Boca, (or any place) they're so full of crap and themselves. I know the area, I live just a few minutes south of there. Just because they look like they have it all together doesn't mean they do… They don't.

  45. It's nice to know I'm not alone; however, I can only control so much as an individual who does not have the people to rely on if "This is my favorite song."

  46. Bout to walk in to a job interview and feeling all sorts of anxious. Trying to rebuild my life again. This helped a lot! If a SEAL deals with this stuff than I guess anyone can and I’m not alone in the fight. Thanks man!

  47. Thanks for sharing. Hard to imagine bad asses like SEALs getting intimidated. Really humanizes you and your SOF brothers

  48. Really like the advice, get comfortable and confidence and don’t put yourself in a situation you can’t get out of

  49. I’m a combat vet, took part in the invasion of Iraq in 2003 and have 4 combat tours. I hate leaving my house I only leave when I must for food and things like that. Everything you said about how to put up with it, is what I do also…..

  50. 13:30

    I have alot in common with this guy (minus drinking, I RARELY do).

    For the keeping your hands busy thing. Pipes and cigars are my shit. I have something involved to focus on besides looking around awkwardly (or at my phone) and thus I am far more calm and relaxed.

    I can now finally at 34 actually enjoy myself at a bar provided it has an area on premises that I can puff while I'm chillin. Rather than sitting paranoid with a beer on the oranger side of condition yellow, as though I'm in the cantina in Mos Eisley. Because im surrounded by half belligerent and unpredictable strangers. It also serves as a conversation starter.
    😎🚬

  51. I have a lot of anxiety too.I tend to make people laugh with my messed up sense of humor.It helps but it isnt a cure

  52. Someone’s got PTSD.
    Guess what? When you’re a state sponsored murderer. Guess who’s Gotta stinking soul, bought and paid for…
    Get over yourself. Ya gonna burn.
    You made your decisions, deal with it, killer.

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