What is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a natural response to danger, an automatic alarm that goes off in your body when you feel threatened, under pressure, or are facing a stressful situation.
This is built into our bodies to ensure survival – which means anxiety is actually a good thing. It can help you stay alert and focused, cause you to act, and motivate you to solve problems.
However, constant and overwhelming anxiety is not good – and can take a huge toll on your health. When it is no longer functional and instead interfering with your relationships and daily activities, we have no reached a point where anxiety is unhealthy and damaging.
What are some of the signs of unhealthy anxiety?
Anxiety can manifest in many physical and emotional ways, but here is a short list of the most common symptoms:
- excessive worry
- sleep problems
- irrational fears
- muscle tension
- digestive issues (i.e. indigestion, nausea)
Do any of these sound familiar? If so, don’t fret, you are certainly not alone. Anxiety disorders are actually on the rise in the US.
In fact, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults over the age of 18.
And women are TWICE as likely to have an anxiety disorder as men.
So if you are tired of feeling anxious all of the time, this is the post for you. Remember that the long-term affects of anxiety on the body can be quite severe, so it is important to take the steps towards managing your stress and anxiety right away.
The simple truth is that women today are super stressed – and super anxious. And now, we are getting sick.
But I promise you, as stressed as you may feel, all of this is totally reversible…and in just 2 simple steps:
- Develop an awareness of your anxiety and stress. This is SO important. We have to first build the mind-body connection and communicate with our bodies. We need to learn how to be in tune with our physical selves. This means paying attention to where you feel stress in your body and what it feels like in the moment. It also means being able to identify specific triggers that make you feel anxious, whether it is certain thoughts that you have, people or places. Awareness is healing in itself – the more aware you become, the easier it is to keep your anxiety at bay.
- Practice calming techniques. Once we become more aware of how our anxiety feels, we can then start using different strategies to calm the body, both in the moment and as a regular prevention practice. Things like deep breathing, stretching, and journaling are very powerful ways to switch off the stress and anxiety and feeler calmer and more in control.
If you would like some help developing these skills, then grab a free copy of my Stress Relief Workbook – this will give you the tools you need to learn how to listen to your body, help your body heal, and live a healthy, happy, balanced life.