How to Know if You Suffer from Anxiety?
Updated: Oct 25, 2020
Disclaimer: This blog post is proudly sponsored by Panic Away, but all opinions are my own. Panic Away is designed to empower you to deal with panic attacks and reduce feelings of general anxiety. The program is used in over 32 countries worldwide and is proving to be one of the most successful non-pharmaceutical approaches to ending anxiety disorder. As a Panic Away affiliate, we may receive compensation, if you purchase products or services through the links provided, at no extra cost to you. This helps supports the running of the blog.
Anxiety is one of the most common symptoms among people struggling to maintain stable mental health. It affects all areas of the life of those who suffer from it, from difficulties in their personal life; interactions with family, changes to how you socialize with friends, down to anxiety affecting your ability to excel in your professional life, be it academia or at work. Anxiety disrupts concentration, does not allow you to focus on what is important, and becomes a constant internal struggle.
Anxiety in and of itself is not a bad thing. It is how our brains evolved to protect our Homosapien ancestors from danger.
Anxiety, that is the acute, short term kind, has actually been shown to be good for you. improving mental performance, physiological health and warding off stress. It is the chronic, long-term anxiety that is the problem.
The type that lingers for weeks and month, in times when we have uncertainty, as we go through a crisis, or when day-to-day life just overwhelms us, living with continues stress or worries that eats into us and makes us suffer, which can lead to a host of psychological and physiological issues; from a weakened immune system to high blood pressure, chronic fatigue, depression and even heart disease due to the spike of the hormone epinephrine that prolonged anxiety causes, damaging the heart overtime.
What Do You Mean Anxiety?
Anxiety is a fairly broad term. You will notice how I use the words anxiety and stress interchangeably, sometimes fear is used as a synonym, other times its panic. What we mean when using these terms is pathological anxiety; which affects our daily lives, our minds and bodies, and if not dealt with, in the long term can cause heart failure.
How do you know then if you suffer from pathological anxiety, or if you're just stressed?
Here are the most common signs to identify it, as many of us not even realize that anxiety is a regular part of their lives. If these symptoms are part of your day to day, do not hesitate to consult a specialist in this area.
Little Things That Can Help You Deal With Anxiety
There are many natural ways to reduce anxiety that will help you feel better. Try to pay more attention to what you eat, diets rich in vegetables, fruits, high-quality meats, fish, nuts and whole grains can reduce the risk of developing anxiety disorders, and also try to reduce caffeine consumption.
Do outdoor activities. Regular exercise can help reduce the feeling of being locked in, and the spikes of serotonin that exercise creates can lift your mood. You can look into meditation therapy “a method of relaxation and consciousness expansion by focusing on a mantra or a keyword, sound, or image while eliminating outside stimuli from one’s awareness” (Mosby’s Medical Dictionary, 2009) which has been shown to significantly reduce symptoms in people with anxiety disorders.
It’s Ok To Ask For Help
If throughout this article you have identified some symptoms that you had not noticed before, it is important that you know that it is ok. What you can do about it is to start by recognizing where in your life anxiety affects you and those around you. Don't be afraid to discuss it with your family and friends, as this is never a path you should travel alone.
Although there are many small things that you can do during the day to make the fight against anxiety a little lighter, t\things like taking a deep breath when these anxious thoughts take hold, or saying an encouraging statement to yourself, taking a break, or just doing something you enjoy - a favorite song, or snack. Try looking into some of the tips we gave earlier, but if your anxiety gets too difficult to manage, and it is interfering with your ability to function properly, the best option will always be to go to a professional.
Here at Mindsmatter, you will find people with their own stories, on paths similar to yours, by telling your story you will be continuing to strengthen that connection with others in our journey to positive mental health.
This blog post is proudly sponsored by Panic Away, but all opinions are my own. Panic Away is designed to empower you to deal with panic attacks and reduce feelings of general anxiety. The program is used in over 32 countries worldwide and is proving to be one of the most successful non-pharmaceutical approaches to ending anxiety disorder. As a Panic Away affiliate, we may receive compensation, if you purchase products or services through the links provided, at no extra cost to you. This helps supports the running of the blog.