Inability to relax

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) -


Do you worry excessively or feel tense and anxious all day long? Learn about the signs, symptoms, and treatment of GAD.

What is generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)?

Everyone gets anxious sometimes, but if your worries and fears are so constant that they interfere with your ability to function and relax, you may have generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). GAD is a common anxiety disorder that involves constant and chronic worrying, nervousness, and tension. Unlike a phobia, where your fear is connected to a specific thing or situation, the anxiety of GAD is diffused—a general feeling of dread or unease that colors your whole life. This anxiety is less intense than a panic attack, but much longer lasting, making normal life difficult and relaxation impossible. Generalized anxiety disorder is mentally and physically exhausting. It drains your energy, interferes with sleep, and wears your body out.

If you have GAD you may worry about the same things that other people do, but you take these worries to a new level. A co-worker’s careless comment about the economy becomes a vision of an imminent pink slip; a phone call to a friend that isn’t immediately returned becomes anxiety that the relationship is in trouble. Sometimes just the thought of getting through the day produces anxiety. You go about your activities filled with exaggerated worry and tension, even when there is little or nothing to provoke them.

Whether you realize that your anxiety is more intense than the situation calls for, or believe that your worrying protects you in some way, the end result is the same. You can’t turn off your anxious thoughts. They keep running through your head, on endless repeat. But no matter how overwhelming things seem now, you can break free from chronic worrying, learn to calm your anxious mind, and regain your sense of hope.

The difference between “normal” worry and GAD

Worries, doubts, and fears are a normal part of life. It's natural to be anxious about an upcoming test or to worry about your finances after being hit by unexpected bills. The difference between “normal” worrying and generalized anxiety disorder is that the worrying involved in GAD is:

  • Excessive.
  • Intrusive.
  • Persistent.
  • Disruptive.
“Normal” Worry vs. Generalized Anxiety Disorder
“Normal” Worry:Generalized Anxiety Disorder:
Your worrying doesn't get in the way of your daily activities and responsibilities.Your worrying significantly disrupts your job, activities, or social life.
You're able to control your worrying.Your worrying is uncontrollable.
Your worries, while unpleasant, don't cause significant distress.Your worries are extremely upsetting and stressful.
Your worries are limited to a specific, small number of realistic concerns.You worry about all sorts of things, and tend to expect the worst.
Your bouts of worrying last for only a short time period. You've been worrying almost every day for at least six months.

Not everyone with generalized anxiety disorder has the same symptoms, but most people experience a combination of emotional, behavioral, and physical symptoms that often fluctuate, becoming worse at times of stress.

Emotional Symptoms of GAD include:

  • Constant worries running through your head
  • Feeling like your anxiety is uncontrollable; there is nothing you can do to stop the worrying
  • Intrusive thoughts about things that make you anxious; you try to avoid thinking about them, but you can't
  • An inability to tolerate uncertainty; you need to know what's going to happen in the future
  • A pervasive feeling of apprehension or dread

Behavioral symptoms of GAD include:

  • Inability to relax, enjoy quiet time, or be by yourself
  • Difficulty concentrating or focusing on things
  • Putting things off because you feel overwhelmed
  • Avoiding situations that make you anxious

Physical symptoms of GAD include:

  • Feeling tense; having muscle tightness or body aches
  • Having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep because your mind won't quit
  • Feeling edgy, restless, or jumpy
  • Stomach problems, nausea, diarrhea

GAD symptoms in children

In children, excessive worrying centers on future events, past behaviors, social acceptance, family matters, personal abilities, and school performance. Unlike adults with GAD, children and teens often don't realize that their anxiety is disproportionate to the situation, so adults need to recognize their symptoms. Along with many of the symptoms that appear in adults, some red flags for GAD in children are:

  • “What if” fears about situations far in the future.
  • Perfectionism, excessive self-criticism, and fear of making mistakes.
  • Feeling that they're to blame for any disaster, and their worry will keep tragedy from occurring.
  • The conviction that misfortune is contagious and will happen to them.
  • Need for frequent reassurance and approval.

Affordable private online therapy. Get instant help, on any device, wherever you are in the world. Start feeling better today!


With over 25,000 licensed counselors, BetterHelp has a therapist that fits your needs. Sign up today and get matched.


Get professional online counseling for relationship or marital issues. It’s confidential, convenient, and easy to get started.


Generalized anxiety disorder self-help tip 1: Connect with others

Support from other people is vital to overcoming GAD. Social interaction with someone who cares about you is the most effective way to calm your nervous system and diffuse anxiety, so it's important to find someone you can connect with face to face on a regular basis—your significant other, a family member, or a friend, perhaps. This person should be someone you can talk to for an uninterrupted period of time, someone who will listen to you without judging, criticizing, or continually being distracted by the phone or other people.

Build a strong support system. Human beings are social creatures. We're not meant to live in isolation. But a strong support system doesn't necessarily mean a vast network of friends. Don't underestimate the benefit of a few people you can trust and count on to be there for you.

Talk it out when your worries start spiraling. If you start to feel overwhelmed with anxiety, meet with a trusted family member or friend. Just talking face to face about your worries can make them seem less threatening.

Know who to avoid when you're feeling anxious. Your anxious take on life may be something you learned when you were growing up. If your mother is a chronic worrier, she is not the best person to call when you're feeling anxious—no matter how close you are. When considering who to turn to, ask yourself whether you tend to feel better or worse after talking to that person about a problem.

Be aware that having GAD can get in the way of your ability to connect with others. Anxiety and constant worrying can leave you feeling needy and insecure, causing problems in your relationships. Think about the ways you tend to act when you're feeling anxious, especially anxious about a relationship. Do you test your partner? Withdraw? Make accusations? Become clingy? Once you're aware of any anxiety-driven relationship patterns, you can look for better ways to deal with any fears or insecurities you're feeling.

Tip 2: Learn to calm down quickly

While socially interacting with another person face-to-face is the quickest way to calm your nervous system, it's not always realistic to have a friend close by to lean on. In these situations, you can quickly self-soothe and relieve anxiety symptoms by making use of one or more of your physical senses:

Sight – Look at anything that relaxes you or makes you smile: a beautiful view, family photos, cat pictures on the Internet.

Sound – Listen to soothing music, sing a favorite tune, or play a musical instrument. Or enjoy the relaxing sounds of nature (either live or recorded): ocean waves, wind through the trees, birds singing.

Smell – Light scented candles. Smell the flowers in a garden. Breathe in the clean, fresh air. Spritz on your favorite perfume.

Taste – Slowly eat a favorite treat, savoring each bite. Sip a hot cup of coffee or herbal tea. Chew on a stick of gum. Enjoy a mint or your favorite hard candy.

Touch – Give yourself a hand or neck massage. Cuddle with a pet. Wrap yourself in a soft blanket. Sit outside in the cool breeze.

Movement – Go for a walk, jump up and down, or gently stretch. Dancing, drumming, and running can be especially effective.


Tip 3: Get moving

Exercise is a natural and effective anti-anxiety treatment. It relieves tension, reduces stress hormones, boosts feel-good chemicals such as serotonin and endorphins, and physically changes the brain in ways that make it less anxiety-prone and more resilient.

For maximum relief of GAD, try to get at least 30 minutes of physical activity on most days. Exercise that engages both your arms and legs—such as walking, running, swimming, or dancing—are particularly good choices.

For even greater benefits, try adding mindfulness element to your workouts. Mindfulness is a powerful anxiety fighter—and an easy technique to incorporate into your exercise program. Rather than spacing out or focusing on your thoughts during a workout, focus on how your body feels as you move. Try to notice the sensation of your feet hitting the ground, for example, or the rhythm of your breathing, or the feeling of the wind on your skin. Not only will you get more out of your workout—you'll also interrupt the flow of constant worries running through your head.

Tip 4: Look at your worries in new ways

The core symptom of GAD is chronic worrying. It's important to understand what worrying is, since the beliefs you hold about worrying play a huge role in triggering and maintaining GAD. You may feel like your worries come from the outside—from other people, events that stress you out, or difficult situations you're facing. But, in fact, worrying is self-generated. The trigger comes from the outside, but your internal running dialogue keeps it going.

When you're worrying, you're talking to yourself about things you're afraid of or negative events that might happen. You run over the feared situation in your mind and think about all the ways you might deal with it. In essence, you're trying to solve problems that haven't happened yet, or worse, simply obsessing on worst-case scenarios.

All this worrying may give you the impression that you're protecting yourself by preparing for the worst or avoiding bad situations. But more often than not, worrying is unproductive—sapping your mental and emotional energy without resulting in any concrete problem-solving strategies or actions.

How to distinguish between productive and unproductive worrying

If you're focusing on “what if” scenarios, your worrying is unproductive.

Once you've given up the idea that your worrying somehow helps you, you can start to deal with your worry and anxiety in more productive ways. This may involve challenging irrational worrisome thoughts, learning how to stop worrying, and learning to accept uncertainty in your life.

Tip 5: Practice relaxation techniques for GAD

Anxiety is more than just a feeling. It's the body's physical “fight or flight” reaction to a perceived threat. Your heart pounds, you breathe faster, your muscles tense up, and you feel light-headed. When you're relaxed, the complete opposite happens. Your heart rate slows down, you breathe slower and more deeply, your muscles relax, and your blood pressure stabilizes. Since it's impossible to be anxious and relaxed at the same time, strengthening your body's relaxation response is a powerful anxiety-relieving tactic.

Effective relaxation techniques for relieving anxiety include:

Deep breathing. When you're anxious, you breathe faster. This hyperventilation causes symptoms such as dizziness, breathlessness, lightheadedness, and tingly hands and feet. These physical symptoms are frightening, leading to further anxiety and panic. But by breathing deeply from the diaphragm, you can reverse these symptoms and calm yourself down.

Progressive muscle relaxation can help you release muscle tension and take a “time out” from your worries. The technique involves systematically tensing and then releasing different muscle groups in your body. As your body relaxes, your mind will follow.

Meditation. Research shows that mindfulness meditation can actually change your brain. With regular practice, meditation boosts activity on the left side of the prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain responsible for feelings of serenity and joy. Try the Ride the Wild Horse meditation, part of HelpGuide's free Emotional Intelligence Toolkit.

Tip 6: Adopt anxiety-busting habits

A healthy, balanced lifestyle plays a big role in keeping the symptoms of GAD at bay. In addition to regular exercise and relaxation, try adopting these other lifestyle habits to tackle chronic anxiety and worry:

Get enough sleep. Anxiety and worry can cause insomnia, as anyone whose racing thoughts have kept them up at night can attest. But lack of sleep can also contribute to anxiety. When you're sleep deprived, your ability to handle stress is compromised. When you're well rested, it's much easier to keep your emotional balance, a key factor in coping with anxiety and stopping worry. Improve your sleep at night by changing any daytime habits or bedtime routines that can contribute to sleeplessness.

Limit caffeine. Stop drinking or at least cut back on caffeinated beverages, including soda, coffee, and tea. Caffeine is a stimulant that can trigger all kinds of jittery physiological effects that look and feel a lot like anxiety—from pounding heart and trembling hands to agitation and restlessness. Caffeine can also make GAD symptoms worse, cause insomnia, and even trigger panic attacks.

Avoid alcohol and nicotine. Having a few drinks may temporarily help you feel less anxious, but alcohol actually makes anxiety symptoms worse as it wears off. While it may seem like cigarettes are calming, nicotine is actually a powerful stimulant that leads to higher, not lower, levels of anxiety.

Eat right. Food doesn't cause anxiety, but a healthy diet can help keep you on an even keel. Going too long without eating leads to low blood sugar—which can make you feel anxious and irritable—so start the day right with breakfast and continue with regular meals. Eat plenty of fruits, and vegetables, which stabilize blood sugar and boost serotonin, a neurotransmitter with calming effects. Reduce the amount of refined carbs and sugar you eat, too. Sugary snacks and desserts cause blood sugar to spike and then crash, leaving you feeling emotionally and physically drained.

Treatment for generalized anxiety disorder

If you've given self-help a fair shot, but still can't seem to shake your worries and fears, it may be time to see a mental health professional. But remember that professional treatment doesn't replace self-help. In order to control your GAD symptoms, you'll still want to make lifestyle changes and look at the ways you think about worrying

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is one type of therapy that is particularly helpful in the treatment of GAD. CBT examines distortions in our ways of looking at the world and ourselves. Your therapist will help you identify automatic negative thoughts that contribute to your anxiety. For example, if you catastrophize—always imagining the worst possible outcome in any given situation—you might challenge this tendency through questions such as, “What is the likelihood that this worst-case scenario will actually come true?” and “What are some positive outcomes that are more likely to happen?”.

The five components of CBT for anxiety are:

Education. CBT involves learning about generalized anxiety disorder. It also teaches you how to distinguish between helpful and unhelpful worry. An increased understanding of your anxiety encourages a more accepting and proactive response to it.

Monitoring. You learn to monitor your anxiety, including what triggers it, the specific things you worry about, and the severity and length of a particular episode. This helps you get perspective, as well as track your progress.

Physical control strategies. CBT for GAD trains you in relaxation techniques to help decrease the physical over-arousal of the “fight or flight” response.

Cognitive control strategies teach you to realistically evaluate and alter the thinking patterns that contribute to generalized anxiety disorder. As you challenge these negative thoughts, your fears will begin to subside.

Behavioral strategies. Instead of avoiding situations you fear, CBT teaches you to tackle them head on. You may start by imagining the thing you're most afraid of. By focusing on your fears without trying to avoid or escape them, you will feel more in control and less anxious.

Medication for anxiety

Medication for GAD is generally recommended only as a temporary measure to relieve symptoms at the beginning of the treatment process, with therapy as the key to long-term success.

There are three types of medication prescribed for generalized anxiety disorder:

Buspirone. This anti-anxiety drug, known by the brand name Buspar, is generally considered to be the safest drug for generalized anxiety disorder. Although buspirone will take the edge off, it will not entirely eliminate anxiety.

Benzodiazepines. These anti-anxiety drugs act very quickly (usually within 30 minutes to an hour), but physical and psychological dependence are common after more than a few weeks of use. They are generally recommended only for severe, paralyzing episodes of anxiety.

Antidepressants. The relief antidepressants provide for anxiety is not immediate, and the full effect isn't felt for up to six weeks. Some antidepressants can also exacerbate sleep problems and cause nausea or other side effects.

Authors: Melinda Smith, M.A. and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D.

      • References

        Grupe, D. W., & Nitschke, J. B. (2013). Uncertainty and Anticipation in Anxiety. Nature Reviews. Neuroscience, 14(7), 488–501.

        Baldwin, D. S., Waldman, S., & Allgulander, C. (2011). Evidence-based pharmacological treatment of generalized anxiety disorder. International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology, 14(5), 697–710.

        Locke, A. B., Kirst, N., & Shultz, C. G. (2015). Diagnosis and Management of Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Panic Disorder in Adults. American Family Physician, 91(9), 617–624.

        Craske, M. G., & Stein, M. B. (2016). Anxiety. Lancet (London, England), 388(10063), 3048–3059.

        Borza, L. (2017). Cognitive-behavioral therapy for generalized anxiety. Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience, 19(2), 203–208.

        Efficacy of applied relaxation and cognitive-behavioral therapy in the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder. – PsycNET. (n.d.). APA PsycNET.

        DeMartini, J., Patel, G., & Fancher, T. L. (2019). Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Annals of Internal Medicine, 170(7), ITC49–ITC64.

        Otte, C. (2011). Cognitive behavioral therapy in anxiety disorders: Current state of the evidence. Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience, 13(4), 413–421.

        Tolin, D. F. (2010). Is cognitive–behavioral therapy more effective than other therapies?: A meta-analytic review. Clinical Psychology Review, 30(6), 710–720.

        Hofmann, S. G., Sawyer, A. T., Witt, A. A., & Oh, D. (2010). The Effect of Mindfulness-Based Therapy on Anxiety and Depression: A Meta-Analytic Review. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 78(2), 169–183.

        Aylett, E., Small, N., & Bower, P. (2018). Exercise in the treatment of clinical anxiety in general practice – a systematic review and meta-analysis. BMC Health Services Research, 18(1), 559.

        Kandola, A., Vancampfort, D., Herring, M., Rebar, A., Hallgren, M., Firth, J., & Stubbs, B. (2018). Moving to Beat Anxiety: Epidemiology and Therapeutic Issues with Physical Activity for Anxiety. Current Psychiatry Reports, 20(8), 63.

        Anxiety Disorders. (2013). In Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. American Psychiatric Association.

      Generalized Anxiety Disorder: When Worry Gets Out of Control – (PDF) Symptoms and treatment of GAD. (National Institute for Mental Health)

      Anxiety – Worksheet to help you cope with GAD and worry. (Centre for Clinical Interventions)

      Anxiety and Stress Disorders – Special health report from Harvard Medical School. (Harvard Health Publishing)

      Around the web

      Last updated: October 21, 2022

      Having the Inability to Relax

      Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is commonly mistaken as specific to children, but it also affects adults. ADHD and anxiety often go hand-in-hand. Research indicates that nearly half of adults with ADHD also have an anxiety disorder. A hallmark of both is the inability to relax. If you have ADHD, anxiety, or both, you know that one of the most frustrating things you can hear is “just relax.” Sometimes just thinking about trying to relax produces more tension and stress. Understanding the reasons for your inability to relax can help you access the tools to achieve a relaxed state.

      Rose Hill Center is a residential mental health facility in Holly, MI providing comprehensive treatment and rehabilitation services to adults 18 and over. We help individuals with anxiety and co-occurring disorders like ADHD learn new coping strategies to manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life. Contact us at 866.367.0220 for more information on our anxiety treatment program.

      10 Reasons for Your Inability to Relax

      We live in a society that makes it difficult to relax. For most, the demands of everyday life can feel never-ending. We have become trained to equate success and happiness with achievement, so we constantly strive to do more, accomplish more, and acquire more, putting our bodies and minds under constant pressure.

      Following are ten reasons you may have the inability to relax:

      1. You’re spending too much time on your phone – Social media causes us to compare our lives to others, creating anxiety about our accomplishments. Time spent on the phone keeps us from tending to other responsibilities and interferes with good sleep habits.
      2. Your emotional brain is overactive – You may stay overly busy to distract yourself from anxious thoughts or feelings of hopelessness associated with depression.
      3. You equate your job with your self-worth – You have become a “workaholic” because you do not have a sense of identity without your job.
      4. Your fight-or-flight response is stuck in overdrive – Anxiety associated with chronic stress or trauma leaves your body in a constant state of fear, interfering with the body’s natural relaxation mechanisms.
      5. You are too busy – In the quest to achieve more, you overschedule yourself daily, vowing to relax “later” or “on the weekend.”
      6. Your brain craves a dopamine rush – Individuals with low levels of dopamine, typical with ADHD, seek ways to get a rush, often engaging in risky behaviors or inciting conflict.
      7. You are taking in too much news – With a 24-hour news cycle, you can constantly flood your brain with distressing and disturbing information, inducing stress.
      8. You do not know how to relax – When finding time to relax is just another thing on your “to do” list, it becomes counterproductive.
      9. You have an untreated anxiety disorder – Living with untreated anxiety makes everything more challenging. Constant stress and worry make relaxation impossible.
      10. You have untreated ADHD – Untreated ADHD creates physical and mental hyperactivity that leaves you in constant stress.

      Why Do Anxiety and ADHD Create an Inability to Relax?

      The primary behavioral symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) include:

      • Difficulty focusing or concentrating on things
      • Procrastinating because you feel overwhelmed
      • Avoiding situations that make you feel anxious
      • Inability to relax, be by yourself or enjoy downtime

      The primary behavioral symptoms of adult ADHD include:

      • Restlessness or hyperactivity
      • Inability to control thoughts and emotions
      • Extreme distractibility
      • Disorganization and poor planning skills

      Each disorder clearly has symptoms that contribute to an inability to relax. When combined and the symptoms overlap, it can leave you feeling helpless. The combination of restlessness and overthinking create a perpetual state of stress that overrides the body’s natural relaxation response. When just the thought of trying to relax makes more stress, it is time to seek professional treatment for anxiety and co-occurring disorders.

      Call Rose Hill Center for Anxiety Treatment

      Chronic stress is highly detrimental to your physical and mental health and overall well-being. A common symptom of many mental health disorders, including anxiety and ADHD, is persistent worry and fear. When your innate fight-or-flight response is perpetually “on,” it is nearly impossible to relax.

      At Rose Hill Center, we provide residents with healthy coping strategies to overcome chronic stress related to mental health issues. Through our years of experience as a leader in long-term residential mental health treatment, we have helped countless people learn to manage their symptoms to find ways to relax and enjoy life. Call us at 866.367.0220 to learn how we can help you or your loved one.

      Anxiety Disorder - American Medical Clinic

      Medical Clinic

      St. Petersburg, embankment of the river Moika, 78.

      +7 (812) 740-20-90


      Anxiety disorder is a mental disorder characterized by a state of generalized persistent anxiety. Unlike ordinary short-term stress, which, for example, is associated with public speaking, the disease lasts for a long time - for several months or more.

      Excessive anxiety, tension and fear that patients with anxiety disorders experience can be accompanied by both psychological and physical ailments. In order to avoid dangerous complications such as paranoia, nervousness, etc. it is necessary to recognize the signs of the disease as early as possible and consult a doctor.

      Symptoms of anxiety disorder

      Main symptoms of anxiety disorder:

      1. Psychological:

        • excessive anxiety and tension in connection with current affairs or for no particular reason;
        • unreasonable fear for your life and the lives of loved ones;
        • stress, inability to relax;
        • decreased performance, difficulty concentrating;
        • irritability.
      2. Physical:

        • constant feeling of fatigue and weakness;
        • muscle tension;
        • pain in the head and abdomen;
        • trembling, chills;
        • sleep disorders;
        • increased sweating;
        • shortness of breath up to a feeling of suffocation;
        • nausea and vomiting;
        • stool disorders.

      The degree of manifestation of symptoms or their combinations depends on the form of anxiety disorder and the degree of neglect of the disease.

      Forms of anxiety disorder

      The following forms of anxiety disorder are distinguished:

      • Adaptive Anxiety Disorder Excessive anxiety and other emotional responses are due to difficulties in adapting to a particular stressful situation.
      • Generalized Anxiety Disorder (aka anxiety-depressive disorder) - excessive anxiety persists constantly and is associated with a large number of life circumstances - the patient regularly experiences unreasonable fear for his life, work, family, etc.
      • Anxiety-phobic disorder - causes panic attacks that cause extreme fear and a sense of impending death; fear of people and their large crowds; fear of some serious illness.

      All these obsessive thoughts are unpleasant and alien to patients, often they themselves are not aware of the cause of their occurrence. Seeing a doctor as soon as possible will solve this problem and return the person to a normal life.

      Anxiety treatment

      Treatment of anxiety disorder is carried out in a complex, in several directions. It includes:

      1. Drug therapy - based on the characteristics of the patient's body and the disease, the doctor will prescribe a set of medications to eliminate symptoms:

        • benzodiazepines - help relieve physical stress;
        • buspirone, alprazolam - reduce anxiety;
        • antidepressants - tune in to positive thinking and keep disturbing thoughts under control.

        Remember that drug therapy for anxiety disorders is carried out under the strict supervision of a physician. The above drugs, if used incorrectly, cause changes in the patient's behavior. Among them are suicidal thoughts, etc.

      2. Psychological therapy - with the help of various psychological methods, the doctor helps the patient overcome his anxiety and anxiety:

        • cognitive-behavioral therapy - with the help of rational persuasion, the doctor changes the general way of thinking of the patient in a positive direction;
        • behavioral therapy - the doctor teaches the patient relaxation techniques - muscle relaxation, deep breathing, visualization, etc.

        The degree of application of certain methods of therapy and the duration of treatment depend on the form of the disease and the degree of its neglect. Remember that it is the timely visit to the doctor that guarantees the absence of severe mental complications.

      See also

      • Operations in gynecology
      • Colonoscopy in St. Petersburg under anesthesia

      Indecisiveness, inability to relax and other hidden signs of anxiety and depression | Lifestyle

      Many people experience anxiety and sometimes even depression due to various circumstances. Not everyone can immediately recognize the signs of such a condition, which is fraught with certain problems, such as insomnia and a reduced level of performance. It is important to recognize these signs because constant tension is harmful to health and life. Here are some issues that may indicate that you may need to take a closer look at your schedule.


      Often, when we feel stressed or irritated, we can either blame the situation or the person we think makes us feel that way. In most cases, emotional outbursts on others can actually be a symptom of anxiety.

      Psychologists are sure that anxiety confuses us, which means that minor problems can seem more significant than they really are.

      Jumping to conclusions

      Anxiety and jumping to conclusions often go hand in hand, and this is because the purpose of a restless mind is to identify potential threats. An anxious mind tends to overestimate the likelihood of such threats and jump to conclusions despite evidence to the contrary.

      As a result, you constantly assume the worst, even if you logically know that everything will be fine. It's anxiety interfering with your brain and it's a symptom that can be really overwhelming and difficult to live a normal life.

      Trouble sleeping

      Many people experience anxiety due to their inability to calm their mind and fall asleep normally. They always worry about it, and for the same reason they can wake up in the middle of the night.

      So if you often find it difficult to sleep, it may mean that you are dealing with anxiety if you constantly lie awake at night or wake up in the morning not feeling well rested.


      Anxiety can make you doubt yourself and your qualities, so you may notice that you want to have strong confidence. A person experiencing anxiety may have a fear of making mistakes and therefore may seek reassurance from others as a way to avoid this fear.

      While it's always nice to call a friend for support or call your mom for advice, constantly worrying about being confident can mean you're more worried than you think, and you might want to investigate possible causes.

      Nail biting

      If you have certain persistent bad nervous habits, such as nail biting, anxiety may be the cause. When you catch yourself fiddling or biting your fingers nervously, it may indicate that you are on edge. All this nervous energy comes from impulsive behavior and may be a sign that it's time for stress management treatments, and maybe even to talk to a therapist to learn more helpful ways to deal with anxiety.

      Replaying conversations in our head

      When we experience anxiety, it can sometimes manifest as a repetition of previous conversations where you feel that someone may have misinterpreted your words. While it probably didn't mean anything, you can't stop scrolling through a conversation with a friend or supervisor for fear that you'll get into trouble as a result.

      While it's not worth thinking about some meaningful interactions, such as a job interview, anxiety can make you evaluate every conversation you have, sometimes to the point of being overwhelmed.


      People often think that anxiety is purely a product of the mind, but this is not true. It can also manifest as physical symptoms such as dizziness, abdominal pain, headaches, and muscle tension. So if this is a constant problem for you, take note.

      Historically, the purpose of anxiety has been to alert our nervous system to threats so we can run away and avoid an unpleasant situation. But as we have evolved, so have our perceived threats, which now include everything from work stress to social comparison and so on.

      It can be difficult to avoid these everyday threats, so anxiety can put you on high alert. And when the body is constantly ready to run, it only makes sense that you will eventually start to feel tired and exhausted, and perhaps even get sick.

      Focus on the negative

      While it can be helpful because it's smart to plan ahead for any outcome, focusing only on the potential negative outcomes of a decision or scenario can be a sign that anxiety is behind your thoughts. Anxiety can trick us into thinking that we are preparing and protecting ourselves by imagining worst-case scenarios when in reality we are just afraid of the unknown and don't know how to deal with it.

      This is a habit that is hard to detect, especially if you are so used to doing it. But by staying aware of your thoughts, you can begin to discover this type of useless internal dialogue for what it really is.

      Making a decision

      Because it can be hard to trust your intuition when anxiety clouds your brain, you may find that you can't make decisions without asking friends for their opinion or thinking it over for days or even weeks on end .

      It's true that big, important choices take time, thoughtful consideration, and perhaps even a list of pros and cons. But when small, everyday decisions frustrate you and lead to long periods of unproductive agony over your options, anxiety probably plays a powerful and important role. It can be caused by the fear of making the wrong choice, which is an incredibly common symptom of anxiety among people.

      Inability to relax

      The next time you are about to relax before watching a movie, evaluate how you feel and see how you feel. The inability to be calm and enjoy relaxation is another subtle sign of anxiety. If you cannot be silent, you may experience anxiety.

      You may notice that you have several nervous habits. Move your body a lot, such as biting your nails or biting, shaking your leg, twisting your hair, and so on. All of these can be signs that your body is in a kind of "overload", which in turn may mean that you are more worried than you think.

      Learn more