Anxiety and Your Day to Day

Anxiety and Your Day to Day
By Negar Khaefi, LMFT

Anxiety can affect many aspects of daily life. Most of us know the common symptoms of anxiety: rapid heart beat, sweating, shaking, dry mouth, difficulty getting a deep breath, too much thinking, insomnia, etc. What most don't know, however, is that anxiety can show itself in ways that we may not suspect. Here are some of the ways that anxiety manifests in everyday life.

Anxiety and Your Day

• Frequent irritability or angry outbursts.
• The need for constant control over your surroundings.
• The desire to always drive your own car on outings with friends.
• Stifled creative process and writer's block.
• Extreme discomfort in a messy environment or the need for perfect order in your house.
• Constant cleaning, vacuuming, or washing.
• The tendency to become aggravated and overly upset when things don't go your way.
• Taking excessive time to make sure your make-up looks perfect.
• Taking excessive time finding the right outfit before leaving the house.
• Abuse of alcohol and drugs/cigarettes.
• Feeling trapped and suffocated in intimate relationships.
• Constantly going out of your way for others.
• The pressing need to always be doing something.
• The pressing need to talk on the phone, text, check email, facebook, or your mailbox.
• Isolating from others and avoiding social events.
• Over preoccupation with romantic relationships.
• Sex addiction, masturbation addiction, or a preoccupation with sex.
• Feeling like you have no sex drive.
• Wearing clothing that hide your figure, or hats that hide your face.
• Frequent visits to the doctor's office for ailments and diseases.
• Over preoccupation with your health.
• Showering several times per day.
• Frequent oversleeping (more than 8-9 hours per night).
• Feeling disconnected from your emotions.
• Feeling disconnected from others.
• Feeling suddenly foggy, hazy or lethargic.
• Constant and extreme preoccupation with work.
• Frequent overeating, especially of carbohydrates and fatty foods.
• Panic Attacks.
• Feeling hypersensitive to, and easily startled by noises.
• Hair twirling, nail biting, leg shaking, sitting cross armed.
• Repetitive actions (engaging in the same behaviors over and over again)

Most of us exhibit some of the tendencies listed above from time to time, and this is normal. If you feel like many of the points mentioned above describe you on a frequent basis, you may want to begin working on your anxiety. Finding reasons why you may be anxious is the first step to relief. What I have found is that usually, the symptoms above are related to how we have developed as a result of the interaction between us and our social surroundings throughout our lives. Consider yourself a vehicle traversing through a valley. The terrain will determine how you are shaped at the end of the journey. Are you nicked and dented? Have you lost some of your paint due to bad weather? Have your tires been flattened by broken glass?

Are you spotlessly clean because of rain? In psychotherapy you can begin to discover what has shaped your anxiety, and together we begin to work on your vehicle, and restore its resilience, learning what roads to take, and which ones to avoid.

Together we can make anxiety and your day a lot more easier to live with.

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