Anxiety is a normal mind/body reaction to, among other things, stressful situations, danger, fear of impending difficulties, or unfamiliar/uncertain situations. Symptoms include worry, lack of concentration, irritability, restlessness, fatigue, and insomnia. Like stress, for short periods of time it is potentially useful. It can motivate, create focus, and engender alertness. Experiencing anxiety for extended periods of time, however, is seldom beneficial and can lead to Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). Anxiety in the context of GAD can take on a life of its own. with symptoms arising, often with no obvious reason. Other disorders, PTSD and OCD for example, can also lead to anxiety, again without any obvious trigger. Some individuals are thought to have a predisposition to anxiety arising from family history, childhood trauma, or other reasons that may not be obvious. Extreme anxiety, as with stress, can become debilitating and lead to depression, burnout, addictive behavior, family problems, and in extreme cases suicidal ideation.
Stress and anxiety have many overlapping causes and solutions. They can be two sides of the same coin, can feed each other, but can exist independently of each other. They also share similar treatments such as mindfulness, meditation, yoga, therapy, exercise, hobbies, and workload management.
If you are interested in obtaining more information on ways to beat burnout, stress, and anxiety or you feel that you could possibly benefit from an evaluation, contact us.