What is anxiety?
When we feel anxious, it can often be a very isolating and frightening place to be. Many of us don't understand why we are feeling the way we do. Its confusing, and we often believe there is something really wrong with us. However, you are not alone. Millions of people across the globe suffer with anxiety.
The Oxford Dictionary describes anxiety as;
‘The state of feeling nervous or worried that something bad is going to happen’.
I guess another way to put it, is it’s a feeling of unease, a feeling of dread or fearing the worst.
However, worry plays a part in anxiety, but there is such a fine line between those two words…
We all worry about things, feel nervous or think about bad things in our lives. I’m pretty sure you will have worried about something today! It could be something from your past, something that’s happening now, or something your worrying about in the future.
But what is the difference between worry and anxiety, and why is anxiety so much more crippling than worry?
Well, worry isn’t nice, it can be draining, upsetting and unsettling. Worry is actually a part of anxiety, but, on its own, worry is temporary. We can often come to a solution on how to fix it and how to elevate the concerns we have to solve it. The fact is, we can't control worry when are suffering from anxiety.
But with anxiety, it’s persistent. It won’t go away and follows us around often making it impossible for us to see a solution or a way past it.
So that's the difference between the two. Its the persistence of anxiety. It negatively impacts the way we live our lives and how we view the world around us. It won't just go away, we can't make it disappear or wave a magic wand and its gone.
My hope, is these series of posts about anxiety will allow you to feel comfortable in talking about the uncomfortable. By having more of an insight in to exactly what anxiety is, we can have more of an understanding of what's happening to us and use that knowledge to better cope with it, overcome it, and control it.
Next week, we will cover how anxiety impacts our thoughts, behaviour and physical symptoms.
For more information about 'What is anxiety', check out the below video: