What we're about

A friendly, welcoming, non-judgmental social group for people who struggle with any form of anxiety or depression which affects your social life; hosting a mixture of relaxed social get-togethers and personal development events, all with the aim of helping you overcome your illness and getting back to enjoying life again.

Whatever you're currently struggling with, be it shyness, depression, anxiety, panic disorder, agoraphobia, OCD, PTSD, Bi-polar, you name it, please consider yourself more than welcome to join us.

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Our group is sponsored by the My Own Worst Enemy Podcast (http://soundcloud.com/myownworstenemyorg).

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Got any questions? Click here to read the FAQ (http://www.meetup.com/sociallyawkward/about/).

Upcoming events (5+)

Tea, Biscuits and Boardgames @ Ziferblat Cafe

Ziferblat

For those of you who prefer an alcohol-free environment, then why not come along to our weekly get-together at Ziferblat Cafe. Ziferblat is a pay-as-you-go cafe where all the food, drink and WiFi is FREE, and instead, you pay for the time you spend there: 6p per minute, or £3.60 per hour. PLEASE NOTE, this is a discounted price for our group. The usual price is 8p per minute, or £4.80 per hour. Please let reception know you are with the group when you sign-in or the discount won't be applied! Check out the following video for a quick tour: https://youtu.be/9W0xkdNvmw4

Social Anxiety Practise Group - The Castle Hotel

M4 1LE

£1.00

This is a user led practice session which aims to provide people with social anxiety a supportive environment in which can face their fears about social situations and learn to overcome them. Note, although the event is in a pub we discourage drinking alcohol during the session, but please feel free stick around afterwards and grab a drink if you like. Also, we ask for £1 to help with running the group please! Ok what to expect: You can watch me explain how the group works on the Youtube link below https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2ffghxvfpM&t=127s There's also a video about the Social Anxiety Cycle which you might find helpful. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aIE3J7qX1c0&t=16s To begin with it should be pointed out that all activities in the group are entirely optional and people are encouraged to join in as much or as little as they feel they can manage. We understand that for anyone with social anxiety just attending their first session will be challenging enough, so please don't let the thought of the activities put you off coming along as you can sit and watch until you feel comfortable enough to get involved. ​The meetings usually begin with each person introducing themselves by saying as little or as much as they want, which can be a challenge in itself. The next step is a warm up exercise; this involves the entire group participating in a short activity which is intended to be a little silly and possibly embarrassing but aims to warm people up for the main activities of the group. New warm up exercises are welcomed at the group but most of the more frequent ones generally include some form of a short performance: e.g. dancing, singing, acting or a mime. ​ The next step is for people to form an audience, usually based on a semicircle of chairs facing the front of the room. The various types of activities are then explained to anyone new, with an idea of how difficult people usually find them. But with the understanding that difficulty is very subjective, experience shows that what one person finds easy another may find difficult. ​ We then go around to each person and ask what activity they want to do and see who may want to participate in a group activity. There are a number of regular activities described below, but anyone is free to try, or suggest, something different that they feel could be beneficial. The main activities include: ​Table Topics: In an envelope on a table in front of the audience are a large number of folded pieces of paper on which are written phrases such as “what to do on a rainy day” or things such as “flower arranging”. The person does not know what the topic will be so can’t prepare what to say. Having to stand in front of the audience and talk spontaneously, usually for two minutes, about a topic they may know nothing about can be very challenging. ​Reading: A selection of reading material from poetry books to books on public speaking to more challenging books written in a Lancashire dialect can be chosen by the person who then reads aloud to the audience, usually for two minutes. ​ Questions: The person stands in front of the audience and answers questions given by audience members. The questions could be anything from “what’s your favourite film?” to “If you could be any animal what would it be?" as they are made up on the spot . However, the person can pass if they don’t want to answer a question. ​ Multi-person Activities Group story telling: Two or more people stand in front of the group and are given a location and a theme for a story, for example “the London Olympic stadium and terrorism” or maybe “a space ship on a mission to Mars and romance”. One person is chosen (or volunteers) to start the story for 30 seconds then the next person then has to try and continue the story for their 30 second slot before it is passed onto the next person, each person usually has two slots during the story. The sequence may be randomly chosen by another person, which gives less time to try and prepare what to say so can be more anxiety provoking. Group improv acting: Similar to group story telling but more of a performance, a scene and different roles are given, for example, the scene may be a supermarket and the roles an angry customer and the other an arrogant store manager. ​Conversation: Two people stand in front of the audience and try to have a conversation; many people with SA can find it difficult to converse with others when other people are nearby, on a bus for example. ​ After a person has done one of the activities they sit down and are given the chance to discuss how they felt it went. From experience the person is usually very critical of their performance. For example comments like “I felt I talked too fast” or “I felt I was shaking like a leaf” or “I think what I said was boring” are quite common for new people. However other members are always positive with their feedback and try and point out that the whole point is to challenge yourself and to stand up there in the first place regardless of performance. In fact some of the most useful times are when your performance is ‘bad’, for example standing in front of the audience for a table topic and not being able to think of a single thing to say for the whole two minutes! (which can feel like an eternity when you’re up there) once you experience the worst that can happen and realise you’re still alive at the end the situation becomes less fearful. ​ We are a non-profit group and we only charge money to cover the cost of hiring the room out. This usually comes to one or two pounds, depending on how many people turn up on a given week. It has never cost more than two pounds per person. We hope you can muster up the courage to come along, you wont regret it!

Drinks at The Moon Under Water

The Moon Under Water

Our regular bi-weekly get-together for drinks at The Moon Under Water on Deansgate. We arrive at 4PM and some of us stay until about 8PM, but feel free to arrive and leave as you wish. Due to the size of the venue, one of the biggest pubs in Europe, we can always find a quiet part upstairs to meet. The drink prices are very reasonable and snacks and meals are available for those who would like to eat. For those of you feeling particularly nervous, please remember to arrive early, as there are always much fewer people at the start of our events. Anyone who is worried about arriving for the first time on their own, please feel free to message me and I can arrange to meet you outside and bring you in and introduce you.

Tea, Biscuits and Boardgames @ Ziferblat Cafe

For those of you who prefer an alcohol-free environment, then why not come along to our weekly get-together at Ziferblat Cafe. Ziferblat is a pay-as-you-go cafe where all the food, drink and WiFi is FREE, and instead, you pay for the time you spend there: 6p per minute, or £3.60 per hour. PLEASE NOTE, this is a discounted price for our group. The usual price is 8p per minute, or £4.80 per hour. Please let reception know you are with the group when you sign-in or the discount won't be applied! Check out the following video for a quick tour: https://youtu.be/9W0xkdNvmw4

Past events (348)

Drinks at The Moon Under Water

The Moon Under Water

Photos (90)