Anxiety can be a detriment to your life in several ways. Besides dealing with side effects, which can range from mild to severe, you must also handle the fallout of your anxious thoughts and miss out on opportunities. You may need professional help if you think anxiety is holding you back from living your life to its fullest. Here are a few signs it’s getting in your way. Read on 10 Signs Anxiety Is Standing in Your Way.
10 Signs Anxiety Is Standing in Your Way
1. You Have Difficulty Focusing
One of the telltale signs that anxiety is affecting your life is that you have difficulty focusing on work or hobbies you used to enjoy. Luckily, you can easily bring yourself back to the present by practicing breath work, which can alleviate anxiety symptoms immediately while teaching you grounding techniques to help you in the future. Eventually, you may regain the same level of focus you once had.
2. Your Skin Conditions Flare Up
Anxiety might lead you to pick or scratch. Similarly, it can cause conditions that seem under control, like eczema, to flare up and plague you. You might also notice hives or lesions from scratching too much. Do your best to avoid irritating and picking at the affected areas, and keep them moisturized so you won’t be tempted to itch.
3. You Experience Lapses in Memory
If you’ve had anxiety for years, you may not notice that you experience some memory loss until someone brings it up. People with generalized anxiety disorder may not remember as much of their childhood attachments as those who don’t. You might experience forgetfulness, where big or small things slip your mind. The best way to work through this side effect is to deal with your anxiety at the source and speak to a doctor if you’re concerned.
4. You Fidget a Lot
Anxious thoughts can be uncomfortable to sit with. You might notice yourself fidgeting more often or being restless, a reflection of your brain. It might be a way to get energy out of your body, which can be helpful sometimes. However, you may not always have the opportunity to move around. Take frequent breaks from whatever you’re doing to move a bit, releasing some of your pent-up energy.
5. Your Libido Changes
Anxiety can make you not enjoy things you used to. Psychological factors like anxiety might be to blame for the loss of libido. You shouldn’t blame yourself for any unwanted changes. You can work with your doctor for a solution that benefits you and makes you feel more confident.
6. Your Eating Habits Change
You might notice your eating habits change when you experience general anxiety. You may begin to eat more or avoid entire meals. You might have issues at mealtimes if you don’t have a healthy relationship with food. Dig a little deeper to see if your anxiety is related to food or if generalized anxiety is keeping you down. Make small goals to eat healthy amounts of food until you’re consuming normal portion sizes again.
7. You Get Sick More Often
Understandably, anxiety lowers your immune system. When your body is under constant stress, you may notice that you get sick more often or are more susceptible to colds and similar symptoms. Chronic stress can age your immune system and cause your body to not produce as many white blood cells to attack invading viruses or bacteria.
Take care of yourself and get the nutrients and vitamins you need to stay healthy. You may not always be able to avoid stress, but you can make up for it in your diet.
8. Your Self-Esteem Has Dropped
Anxiety can cause you to evaluate other people’s behaviors toward you, even going so far as to overthink the little interactions in your daily life with strangers. Constantly thinking there’s something wrong with you can take a toll on your self-esteem. Even if others say nobody has negative feelings toward you, it can be hard to believe them.
Though it might take some time, you can rebuild your self-esteem. Affirmations can help you see your value once again. Have others remind you how valuable you are to their lives. Try therapy to constructively rebuild your confidence.
9. You Experience More Frequent Nightmares
Unfortunately, anxiety can also creep into your dreams. You may notice you don’t rest as well. People with higher levels of depression and anxiety often have nightmares, like those who are vitamin D- or calcium-deficient. You may need to eliminate the source of stress or speak with a health care professional about a supplement or ways to aid your sleep naturally.
10. You Lean Into Distractions
Instead of challenging your anxious thoughts, you may want a distraction to relieve them quickly. Getting on your phone and finding something mindless to participate in is so easy. However, if you feel you’ve become addicted to your cellphone, you may need to consider whether anxiety is the root cause.
Distractions come in all forms. You might lose yourself in a sport or video game or throw yourself into a hobby while ignoring the real world. Deal with distractions by examining the root cause and channeling your anxiety into more important things. Challenging those thoughts can rewrite some of the narratives in your brain and help you stay present rather than sinking into distractions.
Aim to Eliminate Your Anxiety
You can’t simply wish your anxiety away, but with the help of a professional, you may be able to lessen the side effects and symptoms. Challenging your anxious thoughts rewrites the story in your brain to help you perceive the world as it is rather than what your mind tells you.
You can ease the side effects until you defeat your anxiety, whether through therapy, medication or another method. After all, you have a life to live and goals to reach.