Is Anxiety Running Your Life?
Do you wake up each morning flooded with feelings of worry, stress or fear that you cannot shake throughout the day? Do you often feel on edge, fixated on everything that could go wrong? Perhaps your anxiety is manifesting physically through constriction in the body, an accelerated heart rate, heightened blood pressure, insomnia or shallow breathing. Or maybe looping thoughts and feelings of worry, stress, fear or even panic are making it difficult for you focus on tasks at hand or to stay present with loved ones. Do you sometimes wonder if something is really wrong with you? Do you wish you could relax and breathe, if even just for a moment?
Living with an anxiety disorder can be a frustrating, exhausting and even seemingly helpless experience. You may be experiencing a constant undercurrent of worry, unable to ever fully relax regardless of how hard you try. Or, your anxiety may have become so severe that it causes panic attacks or keeps you from doing things you once enjoyed. Regardless of the severity, anxiety may be impacting your productivity at work or negatively affecting your relationships with the people in your life, especially if they don’t understand or you struggle to communicate what you’re experiencing. You may desperately want anxiety relief, but feel stuck in a looping cycle of fear.
Anxiety Is Extremely Common In Our Culture
If you’re struggling with anxiety, you are not alone. Anxiety disorders are the most commonly diagnosed mental health issues in the U.S., affecting roughly 40 million American adults each year. Given our need-to-succeed culture, it is no big surprise that so many Americans can’t relax. We live in a go-go-go society where many of us rarely have time to stop and breathe. And, the increase in technology capabilities and use demands that we’re everywhere at once, doing many tasks at a time. Many people believe that their anxiety is somehow their fault. It’s not. Rather, it’s a form of your body’s intelligence. If you are feeling anxious, your body is very awake and trying to tell you something.
Anxiety has many causes and its symptoms manifest on a wide spectrum. Some people develop anxiety in childhood and experience anxiety in some form throughout their lives. Anxiety can often be rooted in feeling unsafe as a child or it can be passed down through an anxious caregiver. Other people develop anxiety following a trauma, a loss or during a significant life transition, especially if the change is sudden, unwanted or spinning in uncertainty. And, still others experience anxiety about certain events or things, which manifest through phobias, social anxiety, panic disorders or fears around public speaking.
The good news is that there is help and hope. While anxiety disorders are very common in our culture, with the right techniques and the help of an experienced and understanding anxiety therapist, anxiety can be overcome.