I have social anxiety. I've had it in one incarnation or another since my early twenties and I'm not sure what triggered it. The anxiety attacks usually pop up when I'm doing something new alone or when there is a lot of pressure for me to preform.
You can understand why freelance writing became the perfect choice of career for me. If a anxiety attack pops up it is in the privacy of my own home. There's also the comfort of being in a controlled environment.
Sounds like I've got it all figured out, huh? Not so much. See, sometimes I need to interview experts for articles and the expert insists on a phone interview. This doesn't work for me. Phone calls of any type send me into a meltdown. In fact, my husband does most of our phone calls. I think this stems from the fact that ever since my eardrums burst a few years ago I can't really understand phone conversations.
Usually talk the person into doing email or IM interviews instead. Not only does this save my mental health, but I also feel like it gives the expert more time to give me thoughtful answers. Plus, there's no worry about accusations of misquoting. You have proof of what they said in black and white with a neat little time stamp.
Are you a writer that has social anxiety? How do you handle it?