Feeling anxious is a normal part of every day life. It doesn't always feel normal and its typically unpleasant or uncomfortable when we feel it. However, feeling anxious serves a purpose from helping us be more alert to keeping us alive in certain situations. Without this emotion we will actually find life more challenging. But, what happens when anxiety becomes something that is effecting how we live our day to day lives and significantly impacts the quality of our lives? The key is to understand it, to understand the cause of your anxiety and then get support from professionals, who will help you regulate the emotion healthily again.
Generalised Anxiety Disorder
For example, worrying about sitting exams is normal but when these thoughts take over and become part of your everyday thinking, it can be a sign of generalised anxiety disorder. This is when you worry about lots of things and feel you cannot control these thoughts. You struggle to make sense of the worries and deal with them in a rational thinking way. Your whole day is overtaken by these thoughts. You struggle to cope with working or just having a conversation with someone because the worries keep popping into your head.
How can I speak to the person I have just sat next too? What will they think of me? Will they find me interesting? Why is that person watching me? Why are they looking at me like that?
These are some of the thoughts that you can have when suffering from social anxiety. You struggle to relax and enjoy a social situation. You spend the whole social event worrying what other people are thinking about me. When in fact, they are just enjoying themselves and not thinking about you or how you behave at all.
You fear being criticised by someone, so you will look at the floor and avoid looking at people. You will get home after the event and worry if you said the right thing to people. You will worry if anyone was offended by anything that you said.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Having difficulty concentrating or sleeping and having flashbacks to a traumatic event/accident can be a sign of PTSD. Reliving the traumatic event/accident is normal but it becomes a problem after a few weeks if the images and thoughts about the event/accident are not disappearing.
Sometimes things can happen that you remind you of the event/accident, a similar location, or noise.
They're other different types of anxiety, but I felt these were the most common. Understanding the reasons underpinning your anxiety coupled with support from professionals can empower you to regulate your experience so that anxiety becomes a useful emotion again, instead of one that is taking you further away from where you want to be. You can also regulate it so it is not overpowering other key emotions that empower personal growth like joy, happiness and wellness.
If you are struggling to deal with anxiety, you can call Hilary on 07850 447585 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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