The New Social Anxiety: Managing the Impact of Social Media, Gaming and 24/7 Internet Access

The event is expried

Led by Margaret Wehrenberg, PsyD

Friday, November 8, 2019

9:00 am to 4:40 pm

The verdict is in: The internet is changing our brains and our social skills. The verdict is still out on absolutes about the damage or the benefits, but there is enough data in to begin altering our relationship to the devices we use every day.

Socializing in the online world, 24/7 Internet access, and gaming are exciting but also introduce startling risks for neurobiological changes that affect learning, nervous system reactivity and anxiety levels, not just in youth but at every age.

Increasingly, therapists are called upon to respond to conditions like FOMO (the fear of missing out) and NoMophobia (no-mobile-phone phobia). Clients are struggling to manage the challenges of living IRL (In Real Life) when overwhelmed by the Fantasy of Perfection and “Close Enough to Reality” images of life that impair emotional and skill development. And perhaps most pressingly, therapists need to be able to recognize, assess and correct maladaptive neurobiological changes resulting from clients’ excessive gaming and media exposure.

In this seminar you will explore the impact of screen time and gaming on learning and the nervous system; you will examine how social media affects social and emotional development; you will learn to identify the causes of and corrections for the addictive nature of new technology; and you will learn strategies to manage the anxiety outcomes of the new online social world.

You Will Learn:

  • How to reduce the neurobiological impact of rapid screen shifting, prolonged gaming and screen time
  • Strategies for youth to develop emotional management skills that combat anxiety and depression
  • How older adults can more easily navigate the stresses technology places on them as relationships with family are altered and the demand for fast change increases
  • Methods to diminish the power of anonymity and the Comparison Fallacy in social anxiety
  • To apply Grodzki’s “coaching style” therapy to combat the fear of “adulting” that interferes with romantic relationships, normal socializing, driving or working
  • To engage the default mode network to promote emotional awareness and creative problem solving—the antithesis of anxiety
  • How to develop “demand delays” that diminish the addictive nature of communication notifications, gaming and social media “likes”
  • How to help young adults to recognize and alter the Fantasy of Perfection and the demand to live an “amazing life” that interferes with actual skill development and damages genuine, appropriate self-esteem

Introducing Margaret Wehrenberg

What is the new social anxiety?

Why teach about anxiety?

Margaret Wehrenberg, Psy. D.  
The neurological impact of social media and gaming:

the effects on habit, addiction, stress response and appropriate management of consequent anxiety

Margaret Wehrenberg, Psy. D.  

compensating for the impact on learning and attention (including attention restoration theory and activation of the default mode network). Addressing identity, FOMO, and techniques to utilize our connections positively

Lunch on your own
Addressing the Comparison Fallacy and perfectionism and creating new outlets to develop self-esteem and resilience
Developing self-awareness, self-confidence, compassion and social skills at all ages

Using positive aspects of technology and psychotherapy interventions that promote healthy relationships with self and others

Event Detail

November 8, 2019 9:00 am
November 8, 2019 4:40 pm
Knox Church