It’s common for people to experience nervousness when making or receiving a phone call, even when the call is planned, such as a work call, post-breakup call, or a call from your doctor about test results.
However, these seemingly normal phone calls can cause a lot of anxiety for many people. In fact, at least 72.5% of the population suffers from phone call-related anxiety in such situations.
For a small percentage of people, they experience anxiety with any type of call they make or receive, leading to physical symptoms like stomach aches, headaches, distraction, and inability to focus.
This type of anxiety is often linked to social anxiety. In this article, we will help you identify if you have phone call anxiety and provide tips on how to potentially overcome these anxious feelings.
Reasons You Experience Phone Call Anxiety.
Many people experience light phone call anxiety when they have to make or receive a call related to health, relationships, or work. If you’re feeling anxious about such calls, these tips may help.
It’s important to remember that your anxiety is usually related to a specific thing and not a constant state of phone call anxiety.
- Sleep well at night. Getting enough sleep is crucial for your overall well-being and can significantly impact your mood and anxiety levels throughout the day. When you’re well-rested, you’re less likely to feel anxious about phone calls.
- Try doing yoga and breathing exercises. Practicing yoga and breathing exercises can be an effective way to manage phone call anxiety. Yoga provides a relaxing way to get your body moving, while the breathing techniques you learn in most yoga classes can be very helpful in calming you down during the call. These techniques can be used whenever you feel overwhelmed by phone call anxiety.
- Exercise. Exercising is really good not just for your body, but for your mental well-being. It will make a huge difference to exercise.
- Don’t forget to drink coffee or green tea. Drinking a hot beverage like coffee or green tea can provide a sense of comfort and relaxation. However, it’s important to keep in mind that caffeine can make you feel jittery and increase anxiety, especially if you’re prone to phone call anxiety. So, choose your favorite beverage, but try to opt for decaf coffee or caffeine-free tea to prevent any potential anxiety later on.
- Write down questions or responses to help you when you start to feel anxious. If you feel anxious during the call, you can refer to your notes to ease your anxiety. In fact, you can use your cheat sheet as soon as you start the conversation, so you don’t have to worry about feeling anxious as the call continues.
6 Signs of Phone Call Anxiety
Phone call anxiety can cause various symptoms, including headaches, stress, depression, and difficulty concentrating on tasks other than phone calls. If you’re experiencing phone call anxiety, here are 6 common symptoms to watch out for that may indicate that you have it.
1. Avoiding phone calls.
Avoiding phone calls, especially from people close to you, can be a significant indicator of phone call anxiety. While it’s normal to feel some level of stress when receiving calls from certain individuals, it’s essential to reflect on why you may feel hesitant to talk to someone you typically enjoy speaking with in person.
2. Delaying making or responding phone calls.
Delays in making or responding to phone calls can be a sign of phone call anxiety. People who don’t experience phone call anxiety typically make phone calls efficiently and answer promptly to connect with the caller before the phone stops ringing.
However, those with phone call anxiety may find themselves putting off making certain phone calls or delaying answering the phone, often hoping that they won’t answer in time to avoid talking on the phone.
3. Thinking about phone call resolutions.
If you find yourself thinking about ways to improve your phone call experience after ending a call, it may be a sign of phone call anxiety. Since phone calls are not inherently different from in-person conversations, if you usually communicate well in person, trying to fix aspects of phone calls suggests underlying anxiety.
4. Script planning for phone calls.
Script planning, or preparing what you want to say in advance, is a technique commonly used by people with phone call anxiety. If you find yourself frequently preparing for phone calls in advance, it may be a sign of underlying phone call anxiety.
5. Ending phone calls quickly.
If you find yourself frequently trying to end or cut short phone calls, it may be a sign of phone call anxiety. While it’s okay to be mindful of time, constantly ending phone calls prematurely can be a sign of underlying anxiety. In most cases, phone calls shouldn’t be an issue, even if they last longer than anticipated. Extended conversations can lead to more topics being covered, and if it’s a friendly chat, you should feel happy that it lasts longer.
6. Avoiding returning phone calls.
When you experience phone call anxiety, you may find yourself avoiding returning missed phone calls. Typically, when you miss a call, you want to call the person back as soon as possible. However, when phone call anxiety is present, you may feel hesitant or reluctant to return calls.
How to Get Rid of Phone Call Anxiety
If you’re struggling with phone call anxiety, the following steps may help guide you towards overcoming it. First and foremost, it’s essential to recognize that you have a problem and have a desire to work towards resolving it.
1. Answer incoming calls.
The first step in overcoming phone call anxiety is to answer incoming calls. If you notice a call coming in, simply pick up and answer the call. Don’t worry about anything else besides jumping into the conversation. Try not to stress yourself out and do your best to keep calm during the phone call. If it’s a spam call, have fun with it and joke around with the caller to help alleviate anxious feelings.
2. Talk to more people in person.
People who have difficulty socializing often experience phone call anxiety. To overcome this, it’s important to interact and talk with more people in person. As you practice, you’ll realize that moments of silence and not having something to talk about are normal occurrences in most conversations. Simply speaking to more people can help you get used to the fact that most conversations will not be perfect, and that’s completely normal.
3. Ask friends to call you.
If you find that you have no problem talking to friends in person but struggle with phone calls, ask your friends to call you from different phone numbers. This will allow you to practice answering the phone and become more comfortable with the experience, especially when it’s from an unknown number.
While you may feel relieved when you recognize your friend’s voice, over time, you’ll get more confident and less anxious when answering the phone, even when the voice is unfamiliar.
4. Call a chat line.
Consider using chat line services to practice talking on the phone with people you don’t know. These services have been used for years to connect and communicate with others, and can help you build confidence in your phone communication skills.
Talking to strangers on a chat line may be easier than talking to people you know, as there is less pressure to perform and fear of judgment. Remember, if you become overwhelmed, you can simply hang up without worrying about how the other person will react. Give it a try and see how it works for you!
Wrapping up. Many people experience phone call anxiety, perhaps more than you may realize. However, it’s important not to let this anxious feeling prevent you from communicating with others over the phone. With practice and effort, you can overcome phone call anxiety.
Consider practicing with friends and using a script as a guide if needed. By following the tips mentioned above, you’ll soon find yourself talking on the phone with ease and confidence.