Absolute Statements? Absolutely Not!
Our brains take in whatever we feed them. So, we need to stay away from "absolutes": never, can't, always, hate, wouldn't, couldn’t. If you say "I can never make any progress" your brain hears this and will eventually believe it. If you say "I always make a fool of myself" your brain hears that and eventually believes it, searching out ways to make your words come true. As those words come true, you fall further down into the anxiety trap.
Let's stay away from absolute talk, and go neutral instead. "Maybe I can make progress", "possibly" I can talk with a group of people in the future without anxiety...who knows? The more you can do this, the closer you will be to eventually going positive. Leave some opening for your brain to search for answers itself. Don't stop your brain before it can start working for you.