Updated: Sep 20, 2019
What is Anxiety
You may be someone who has anxiety, or you may know someone who does. If you fall in neither of those two categories I can guarantee you have experienced anxiety at one point or another, even though you may not have been aware of it.
What is anxiety…
Anxiety is a physical response to a stimulus. One of the best examples of a situation where you may experience is… Sitting, harness into a seat waiting for the rollercoaster to take off. Your heart is racing, your palms and armpits might feel sweaty, you may feel like you have a rock in your stomach, possible even nauseous. Depending on how afraid of rollercoaster you are, your chest might feel tight, like it’s hard to breathe, you might even feel like your suffocating.
Now if rollercoasters don’t get your heart rate up maybe getting a needle makes the walls of the treatment room feel like they are closing in on you. How about see those blue and red light in your review mirror and being pulled over by a highway patrol police car. These are the normal situation in which you may feel anxious.
So when does anxiety become a problem…
Anxiety become a problem when you experience anxiety for what may seem like no reason at all, or when you are experiencing the physical effects of anxiety going about your daily life. The smallest of stressor could trigger anxiety. It when anxiety is preventing you from doing normal daily activities, becomes, for example, going to work, go to the supermarket, seeing a particular person, even something as minor as opening mail or answer the phone
What can you do if you are experiencing this type of anxiety…
You could start trying so basic self-help techniques such as:
- Listen to music
- Slow down your breathing. Breath in slowly count to 4, breath out slowly counting to 4.
- Progressive muscle relaxation: Close your eyes and slowly tense and then relax each of your muscle groups, starting for your head to your toes. Hold the tension for 3 seconds and then release.
- Challenge your self-talk. How you think affect how you feel. Anxiety can make you feel like you are about to experience the worse. Take a moment to think why you are feeling anxious? What are you worried about? What are all the possible outcomes, and what is the most likely outcome?
- Journal about how you were feeling, what you were doing when you felt anxious, what situation we're heading into what may have triggered the anxiety and why it may have been the trigger. Get to know your anxiety and try to find the triggers.
After trying all the self-help techniques you find you are still struggling with anxiety or even if you just want to talk to some you can trust, you can see your GP or talk to a counsellor. They will be able to offer you some support and help you with some CBT cognitive behavioural techniques. Talking to a counsellor you can bounce ideas off them and may be able to help you see things from a different perspective or help you to see the alternative outcomes to a situation that you find triggering.
Anxiety can it feel like the world is ending but it does actually have to the end of your life as you know it. There are people out there who are willing to help you deal with this at times debilitating condition. You just need to reach and have the courage to ask for help.