Anxiety is a feeling of unease, such as worry or fear, that can be mild or severe. Everyone has feelings of anxiety at some point in their life. For example, you may feel worried and anxious about going to a job interview or meeting new people.
Anxiety and stress (and panic attacks) can have many causes, so you need to have the problem checked out by your doctor. If there are no physical causes, hypnotherapy might be able to help you with anxiety or panic attacks by addressing underlying issues which may have contributed to them starting. Your subconscious mind can be helped to override the negative thinking, overthinking or rumination lodged in your conscious mind to divert your attention towards positive thinking and happily getting on with your life.
Hypnotherapy can help some people with anxiety. You can try it yourself. Start by listening to my free relaxation audio recording which may help. It begins with a guided visualisation about a rose to help you relax. Your conscious mind is then invited to hand over to your subconscious mind to help you relax.
Effects of Anxiety
During times like these, feeling anxious can be perfectly normal. But some people find it hard to control their worries. Your feelings of anxiety are more constant and can often affect your daily life. This can affect your personal and professional relationships if you focus on negative aspects and may “overthink” things, or “ruminate” on them. Anxiety might also manifest in worries such as fear of abandonment, or fear of rejection, and affect your ability to trust others.
For more information see Fears and Phobias
Anxiety can cause many different symptoms. It might affect how you feel physically, emotionally, mentally, and how you behave. It’s not always easy to recognise when anxiety is the reason you’re feeling or acting differently. Your family and friends or work colleagues might try to reach out and help you identify anxiety and support you in doing something about it.
You may experience physical symptoms such as
- faster, irregular or more noticeable heartbeat
- feeling lightheaded and dizzy
- chest pains
- loss of appetite
- feeling hot
You might experience anxiety as an emotional or mental response:
- feeling tense or nervous
- being unable to relax
- worrying about the past or future
- feeling tearful
- not being able to sleep
- difficulty concentrating
- fear of the worst happening
- intrusive traumatic memories
- obsessive thoughts
You, or others such as family, friends or work colleagues might notice changes in behaviour, for example:
- not being able to enjoy your leisure time
- difficulty looking after yourself
- struggling to form or maintain relationships
- worried about trying new things
- avoiding places and situations that create anxiety
- compulsive behaviour, such as constantly checking things
When you experience a panic attack it can feel as though the world is crashing down around you. The pressure in your chest makes it hard to breathe as your heart pounds faster than you ever thought possible. You start to sweat as waves of panic wash over you, each one stronger than the last.
If you experience sudden, intense anxiety and fear, it might be the symptoms of a panic attack.
Other symptoms may include:
- a racing heartbeat
- feeling faint, dizzy or light-headed
- feeling that you’re losing control
- sweating, trembling or shaking
- shortness of breath or breathing very quickly
- a tingling in your fingers or lips
- feeling sick (nausea)
A panic attack usually lasts 5 to 30 minutes. They can be very frightening, but they’re not dangerous and should not harm you.
For more information about what you can do to help yourself or others with anxiety or panic attacks, see the MIND website.