When I think of anxiety I often think of that feeling in the pit of your stomach and that idea in your head that something is going to go wrong and also perhaps that deep on edge feeling of impending doom. Anxiety describes a feeling of worry. Most people will experience some anxiety during their daily lives maybe as they embark on a new job, prep for marriage, get ready for a big test or find themselves in a situation where they are unsure of the outcome or feel they have no control. The truth is some anxiety is natural and can serve to protect us in unsafe situations or maybe even give us that push to work harder. Anxiety can become severe though. How do you know your anxiety has surpassed normal levels and that you may have to seek help?
Anxiety has many symptoms that can include a racing heart, sweating, dry mouth, feelings of being on edge, feeling shaky, or restless. These are just some of the common symptoms of anxiety in the moment. Anxiety can also lead to headaches, stomach issues, difficulty concentrating, fatigue, trouble falling or staying asleep, mood swings, physical pain, and depression. So how do you know when your having these feelings that it may go beyond regular everyday anxiety?
It often comes down to functioning. If the anxiety is so excessive that it affecting school work, home life or work life, if you are avoiding situations or if you are having constant physical symptoms you may want to seek support from a family member, doctor or another support person. It is ok to ask for help and there and many ways to control/manage excessive anxiety. Full disclosure- I myself have been diagnosed with General anxiety disorder. There were times in my life that my anxiety led to me having constant stomach issues, excessive fear, trouble sleeping and concentrating and trouble just functioning. I had to take some sick leave during this time with the support of family members, a good family doctor/therapist and some strong mentors I have learned tools to cope and control the anxiety. I think admitting I needed help was the best thing that ever happened to me. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness. It is actually quite brave and can turn your life around and if you share your story with others you may be surprised at how many people have been through the same type of situation that you are going through now. You are worth it!
Here is some website with useful and more detailed information on anxiety types, treatments and symptoms:
Lisa is a mother, Certified Kids Life Coach and a trained Early Childhood Educator. She sees the potential in others and likes to go beyond labels. She has struggled with Generalized Anxiety Disorder throughout various times in her life. She has discovered mindfulness practice and it has become a great source of relaxation. Lisa would like to share stories, motivate and encourage others to become the best version of themselves with a focus on sharing tools and tips for resilience and healthy living in mind, body, and spirit with children and families. Lisa loves reading, music, Pittsburgh Penguins hockey, family time, nature and people.