Understanding Anxiety

So, this post is a bit different to all my other eating disorder related ones but is one that I think that affects almost everyone at some point.

Ever used the term ‘I feel anxious’ in a situation of worry or nervousness before going into an interview for example or putting yourself in an unfamiliar situation that causes you to have these overwhelming feelings? A survey from the Psychiatric Morbidity says that 3 million people in the UK at present have Anxiety. Those overwhelming feelings of your body being out of your control, your emotions heightened and even the smallest things cause you to feel Anxious. I think it’s something that almost everyone has experienced at some point in some situation and it’s becoming somewhat normal. However, I think understanding it and how to deal with it, is not so normal which is where people get lost. In this post I’m gonna share with you some symptoms of more severe anxiety and how it can affect people in their daily life as well as ways that I’ve found help me and I hope will help someone else. For someone who’s never experienced it before, it can be overwhelming, embarrassing (which it shouldn’t be), and confusing. So, I hope you enjoy and learn something new x

Anxiety is an emotion, but can become a mental illness when it becomes too much. The feeling of fear, worry and unease about a situation or circumstance. However, when this becomes really overwhelming and starts taking over things you do on a daily basis, it can become too much to deal with. Usually when talking about anxiety as a mental illness, a lot of people relate the psychological symptoms with it such as, being tense, worrying about things that will/might happen. These emotions when turning more severe can become entrapping driving someone who’s had anxiety for a long time to think negatively about themselves. Not doing enough, behind everyone else and anxiety is stopping them but not knowing how to get out, the worry that people can see their anxiety which makes them more anxious about it, negative images of the self, fear of failure etc… These work in a cycle. It’s a scary thought and a viscous cycle that can be hard to break.

However, what a lot of people don’t know is how these mental symptoms can become physical ones when it gets too much. Sometimes, worrying about things can be so overpowering that it makes you physically sick and ill. Things like, nausea, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, insomnia and more; and some people go through this on a daily basis. Ever been in an interview for something that was really important and felt like you were gonna be sick because you were so nervous? When that feeling happens to people who have severe anxiety, it can make them really unwell. I’ve had experiences of anxiety relating to my eating disorder and body image when I didn’t and couldn’t leave my house in certain clothes because I was anxious that people outside would look at me negatively and it would make me uncomfortable which has made me physically sick before. This is the severity people underestimate and why people are embarrassed to talk about it; because it’s ‘small things’ that are ‘stupid.’ Nothing that makes you feel good or bad is stupid or embarrassing. Sometimes it can be triggered by a thought, feeling, event, but sometimes, nothing triggers it and that’s okay. This overwhelming confusion can make you push people away and I think a lot of people don’t usually associate distance with Anxiety when it’s so common; it’s hard for some people to leave the house sometimes, or to step out of their comfort zone. Sometimes feeling worried or overwhelmed creates fear which stops you from doing the most you can do, seeing people, and you just want to take yourself out of this situation and be alone. Writing this, I sort of see the link between Anxiety and depression and how it can manifest. I think we speak a lot about anxiety and people know what it is. However, a lot of people don’t know how to deal with it because that’s not as commonly heard when I think it should be. So maybe things that help me, can help you…

How do I deal with it and could it help you?
So I’ve suffered from anxiety which goes up and down in severity for about 9/10 years and I’m gonna be honest, it took me so long to realise what works for me. The first thing I do is try and distinguish whether it was a situation, feeling, that made me feel that way and why it did that. I then try and deal with it, and see how I can perhaps fix that situation to eradicate the anxiety. If there’s times where it feels really bad, I try to distract myself. However, I find that for me this is only temporary and can only last so long. Don’t be afraid to find the root, because it helps understand it which gives you more control of the anxiety and therefore more ability to help it which isn’t easy to do. Another thing that helps me a lot is escape doing things or being with people I love and distract me fully. Going to the gym and running is a good one. Also, talking. Let everything you’re thinking out to someone and they might be able to help you understand yourself better because sometimes the overwhelming worrying thoughts can be hard. It’s important to talk about it if you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s a weight of your shoulders. If speaking is hard, write it down. Some people find it easier to let all their thoughts on written down. Don’t bottle it up, it becomes too much and if it’s new and you don’t understand whats going on or what to do, a lot more people experience anxiety than is assumed so someone you think might not know, actually knows. Someone always always understands.

This was a random post but I hope my tips that have worked for me help someone. Feeling anxiety, especially when it’s bad, can be one of the worst, most difficult feelings to get out of; even if you experience it a lot or have never experienced it before. It’s normal, and it’s okay and there are people who get it and know how to help. (I’ll post some numbers/websites below) I wanna end on a good note and with a quote I always go back to as well as a few other quotes that people have come up with that describe anxiety in their own way to hopefully help people understand.

Keep an eye out for more posts x

“It’s like not realizing you’ve been holding your breath so you have to constantly remind yourself to breathe.”

“It’s like you have no control; it’s feeling constantly uncomfortable in your own skin. It is isolating, lonely, and it’s soul-destroying.”

“In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God”

03001233393 – Mind Contact number
86463 – Mind TEXT service


About mentalstability

Trying out blogging because it's important to know you're not alone - Drama student at University of Exeter
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