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Click below to watch a video on anxiety

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Anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness,
or unease, typically about an imminent event or
something with an uncertain outcome


It is absolutely normal to be anxious at various points of your life, such as prepping for a public speaking competition, pitching to investors, sitting for an exam or attending an interview for a job. It happens to the best of us, really. For example, my hands would tremble and I’d suffer from severe gastritis right before performing in front of an audience – it feels terrible.

What Sets Normal Anxiety Apart from an Anxiety Disorder?

If you find that you’re perpetually anxious and it is affecting your daily function, then it is a problem. You aren’t just worried about one specific issue, but instead, you overthink almost every aspect of everyday life, including, health, work, finances, and so on. The nervousness leads to worries beyond your control and you’re perpetually in fear that something terrible will happen. You most likely have a condition called Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Panic attacks
  • Hyperventilation or rapid breathing or short of breath
  • Excessive worrying, nervousness, restlessness or being tense
  • Social anxiety
  • Phobia
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Trouble sleeping or insomnia
  • Fear or anxiety caused by a particular life experience or event that has happened in the past, indicative of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Sweating profusely
  • Gastrointestinal problems, like acid secretion in your tummy, gas, constipation or diarrhoea.
  • Trembling or shivering
  • Performing certain behaviours over and over again
  • Trouble focusing or thinking clearly about anything other than the issues you’re worried about
  • Sharp chest pains or tightness


Flight or Fight Response

Anxiety is usually related to the ‘fight or flight’ response. What that really means is how we are naturally built – our by default biological reaction when we feel threatened. Our body releases cortisol and adrenaline when under threat, which helps you prepare to fight or run. These chemicals released make you feel alert so you can act faster and increases your heartbeat rate, to carry blood quickly to where it’s needed most.

Once danger has passed, your body will then release other hormones that will help your muscles relax, which may potentially cause you to shake and tremble. This auto-response is in built in our body, and we have no control over it.

Panic Attacks

A sudden overwhelming fear that envelops you within seconds. If an individuals struggles with anxiety, it is not uncommon for that person to experience occasional panic attacks – and it usually involves experiencing four or more of the symptoms listed below:

  • Dizzy, giddy, feeling faint or light-headedness
  • Feeling detached from reality
  • Heart palpitations
  • Shaking or trembling
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating profusely
  • Sharp chest pains or tightness
  • Choking sensation
  • Fear of losing control or going insane
  • Intense heat or cold
  • Numbness or tingling sensations (Paresthesia)
  • Gastric or nausea
  • Fear of dying

8 Things You Can Do Daily To Beat Anxiety

1) Take deep breaths

Breathe in all the way and count up to 6, and as you breath out, count up to 10. This technique has the effect of lengthening and slowing down your breathing. It also helps you release more carbon dioxide, which slows down your heart rate, calms and restores emotional equilibrium

2) Imagine a happy place
Close your eyes, visualise a place of safety and calm. It could be the beach or in your room snuggled within your sheets. Either way, you will slowly, but surely, begin to feel a sense of calm envelop you.

3) Talk about what you’re anxious about
It may seem daunting at first, but it’s good to talk about your fears. Many times, shedding light onto the issue removes its scariness.

4) Reward yourself
When you’ve accomplished a small feat, treat yourself to an ice-cream, or a massage or watch a movie! Do whatever that makes you happy!

5) Practice mindfulness

Don’t fight your experience by telling yourself you shouldn’t be feeling what you’re feeling, but rather, learn to acknowledge and allow yourself to feel. The moment will likely settle down and pass. You can also learn to shift your attention away from your fuzzy thoughts and transition from a thinking mode into a sensing mode. Breathe.

6) Workout
Many of us don’t realise the power in exercise. Daily workout sessions can drastically reduce anxiety levels, and studies have shown that exercising can tip the scales towards living an anxiety-free life. So go ahead and buy yourself that new pair of sports shoes.

7) Go easy
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Sometimes, it’s okay to experience setbacks in life. Don’t give yourself a hard time for it, rather, switch your perspective and give yourself credit for trying. And if you’re up for it, give it another go.

8) Spend time outdoors
Walk your dog or go for a stroll in the park. Being outdoors and breathing in fresh air has a strangely calming effect and can help you with dealing with anxiety.

Talk to Someone Who Can Help You

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