Anxiety is a feeling of dread and apprehension. It is a state of tension and worry. Anxiety is a pervasive uneasiness which does not seem to stem from any particular threat or danger. Everyone is subject to some anxiety. Certain individuals, however, develop persistent, painful feelings of anxiety which cause much discomfort.
Anxiety can be acute or chronic. Acute anxiety is popularly called an anxiety attack. It may involve symptoms such as pounding of the heart, difficulty in breathing, excessive perspiration, trembling, and dizziness. At the peak of an anxiety attack the person is thrown into a full-scale panic and experiences unbearable tension, feeling of suffocation, and the feeling that he is going to die or that some horrible disaster is going to descend upon him. An anxiety attack generally subsides in a few minutes. It may occur without warning during the day., or on awakening from a sound sleep. Chronic anxiety is a persistent distressing feeling of apprehension. Some of the more common symptoms are: general uneasiness, inability to concentrate, difficulty in making decisions, fear of making mistakes, discouragement, insomnia, and sustained muscle tension.
Some of the causes of anxiety are faulty parental attitudes and disturbing experiences in childhood. The anxious person may have been subjected to excessive criticism or have been given standards so high and rigid that he could not attain them. Often, the anxious person has failed to learn the skills and competencies necessary for coping with the problems of living. Because of such a lack, the individual is likely to feel basically inadequate and insecure in a competitive world for which he is poorly prepared. Strong feelings of aggression and hostility are another cause of anxiety. These feelings may have been repressed for years, causing much inner turmoil which is translated as anxiety. Frequently, these feelings are a result of early experiences that were very painful and never resolved. As anxious persons grow older, they frequently become increasingly introverted and sensitive. They develop more unrealistic standards which cause them feelings of failure and guilt. They overreact to ordinary situations which other people can handle with a minimum of anxiety. Sudden changes in a routine or moving from one area to another are likely to upset them. Difficult decisions and risky situations cause them mild panic.
The psychological pain caused by anxiety is a great cost to happiness and effectiveness. Psychological treatment can help to considerably reduce anxiety. The treatment approach selected usually depends upon the particular personality characteristics and background of the patient. Generally, psychological treatment involves helping these anxious individuals achieve greater knowledge and understanding of themselves and their problems. A more realistic picture of themselves, a satisfying pattern of values, realistic expectations, as well as learning more effective coping behaviors are some of the treatment goals. As anxiety decreases in the treatment process, feelings of well-being, relaxation, and happiness tend to Increase.
After reviewing the aforementioned information, you may be considering a thorough evaluation to determine if psychotherapy, personal growth counseling and/or marriage counseling can help. I recommend you first review the website link, "When to consider psychotherapy?" also review any other link you may think applies to your circumstances.
My name is Oliver (Mike) Siems, MSW, LCSW, ACSW.
My company, Personal Growth, LLC, has been providing counseling services since 1975.
Personal Growth, LLC is located at:
443 N. New Ballas Rd., Ste. 201
St. Louis, MO 63141