Managing Anxiety

Anxiety is usually a reaction arising from nervousness or worry about potentially stressful situations. Anxiety could arise on the first day of a new job or when starting at a new school, or it could be prior to an exam or a performance review in the workplace. The environment that might create a sense of anxiety is most often one in which we are unfamiliar or where we feel we are about to run into something very challenging that we may not feel we are capable of doing.

Anxiety is usually a short lived experience, but for people who experience anxiety disorders this can be much more frequent and persistent. Anxious thoughts and resulting physical symptoms in these cases can interfere with daily life and can be both very limiting and very upsetting.

 

Symptoms of Anxiety

Some of the physical symptoms of anxiety can include:

  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Shaking and tremors
  • Sweating
  • Restlessness and fidgeting
  • Headaches
  • Nausea

Some of the cognitive symptoms of anxiety can include:

  • Worry across multiple domains (e.g., work/school, relationships) that is hard to control
  • Worry about worry
  • Fear of social evaluation
  • Mind racing
  • Distractibility
  • Concentration problems

Some of the behavioural consequences of anxiety can include:

  • Dissociation
  • Sleep problems
  • Substance misuse

 

Counselling and Therapeutic Approach

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and mindfulness have proven to be very effective methods for treating anxiety. Schema, dialectical, acceptance and commitment therapy, existential and emotion focussed therapies can also be helpful. Incorporating these approaches with techniques that help to change the way we think about a challenge as well as developing tools to relax and return to a calm space can all be effective management strategies. At Eucalyptus Psychology, your psychologist will work with you to determine the best treatment pathway for your individual needs.