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Lessons We Learnt From Netflix’s Singles Inferno: How To Deal With Social Anxiety

Updated: Jan 15, 2022

Lessons We Learnt From Netflix’s Singles Inferno: How To Deal With Social Anxiety

Stranded on a remote island with complete strangers while also vying for attention from the opposite sex. Sounds fun? Not so much. This situation would be the ultimate recipe for disaster if you are someone who suffers from social anxiety.

After the success of the wildly popular shows such as Too Hot to Handle and Love Island, Netflix released their new Korean dating show “Singles Inferno”.

TD;LR: Singles Inferno

The episodes follow nine young flirtatious Korean singles looking for love on a barren island, where they can only leave as pairs for dates and getaways to Paradise.

You might think to yourself, “How do they do it?”

Here is our guide on how to deal with social anxiety, inspired by the contestants on the show.

What is Social Anxiety?

Social anxiety disorder (also known as social phobia) is characterised by an acute and persistent dread of being seen and judged by others. This dread might interfere with your employment, school, and other daily activities. It can even make making and keeping friends difficult. [1]

Symptoms of Social Anxiety are:

  • Afraid of situations that require public speaking [2]

  • Feeling self conscious around people

  • Worry about everyday situations that require interaction with strangers

  • Fear of being criticised

3 Ways to Deal with Social Anxiety

1. Challenge Your Thoughts

In one of the episodes, Soyeon is shown to be having a conversation with fellow contestant, Sehoon about her concern for him and fearing that he would misunderstand her. He is then shown to be mirroring the same feelings towards her.

We tend to spend a lot of time worrying about the possible bad outcomes of social situations, such as seeming unpleasant or saying something inappropriate. [3]

A scenario like this might be uncomfortable in the near term. It's scary to see yourself in a similar embarrassing scenario, but try to put things in perspective.

Even if you make a minor misstep, it does not indicate that others will look down on you. In fact, they may recall a moment when they were in a similar situation and show you understanding and compassion instead. [4]

2. Change Your Perspective

The show follows the format of a reality show, where contestants are being filmed 24/7 and under constant pressure to put their best foot forward. They might be worried about their certain actions being misinterpreted on screen, which may not be a big deal for us viewers.

A spotlight effect is a type of cognitive bias in which you believe people notice your blunders more than they actually do. [5]

People usually evaluate their experiences in light of what they already know to be true. This frequently leads to observations that aren't totally correct. You see what you deem significant, and you assume that other people perceive the same things you do, which is a reassuring thought when in a social situation.

3. Don’t Let the Fear Get to You

The drama surrounding the use of postcards is one of the most fascinating aspects of Single's Inferno. Each day concludes with them writing a postcard to each other, showing the sender's interests, and if the recipient of the postcard is also interested in the sender, they are eligible for a date at a luxury hotel.

While some contestants receive multiple postcards, some receive absolutely none. Yet, they go on about their day in spite of not being ‘validated’ by the opposite sex.

Fear of rejection is a common reason for people to be anxious. [6]

Consider how a rejection will affect you in a week, a month, or a year.

Feeling self-conscious in the presence of others and dreading their rejection might make it difficult to connect with possible acquaintances or romantic partners. However, with the right actions and treatment, you may overcome social anxiety. [7]

*You may also enjoy Lessons We Learnt from Netflix’s Emily in Paris: Managing Stress at Work or Lessons We Learnt from Sex In The City: 5 Work Stress Management Tips


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About Our Writer

Shahana is an avid pop culture enthusiast with a penchant for all things fashion. Living life with a pinch of sass and a generous dollop of flair, she finds herself collecting crystals and playing with tarot cards. Tell her your date of birth and she’d draw your birthchart for you. A young girl with a million dreams and billion hopes, prepping up for a future in this exciting world.


This editorial section solely expresses the opinion of frankie and is not endorsed nor commissioned by any external party. The list is non-exhaustive. At frankie, we believe that your best provider of medical advice is your doctor. Please consult a doctor before undergoing any treatment or procedure.



1. Thompson, T., Zalk, N. V., Marshall, C., Sargeant, M., & Stubbs, B. (2019, April 23). Social Anxiety Increases Visible Anxiety Signs During Social Encounters But Does Not Impair Performance - BMC Psychology. BioMed Central.

2. Blöte, A. W. (2008, November 25). The Relation Between Public Speaking Anxiety And Social Anxiety: A Review. The relation between public speaking anxiety and social anxiety: A review - ScienceDirect.

3. Jefferies, P., & Ungar, M. (2020, September 17). Social Anxiety In Young People: A Prevalence Study In Seven Countries. Social anxiety in young people: A prevalence study in seven countries.

4. Iancu, I. (2015, January 1). Negative And Positive Automatic Thoughts In Social Anxiety Disorder - PubMed. PubMed.

5. Calderaro, R. (n.d.). Reducing Social Anxiety: The Spotlight Effect. Reducing Social Anxiety: The Spotlight Effect.

6. Weerdmeester, J., & Lange, W. (2001, January 1). Social Anxiety And Pro-social Behavior Following Varying Degrees Of Rejection: Piloting a New Experimental Paradigm. Frontiers.

7. Voncken, M. J. (2010). Social Rejection In Social Anxiety Disorder: The Role Of Performance Deficits, Evoked Negative Emotions And Dissimilarity.

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