In general, anxiety is considered to encompass our thoughts, physical changes, emotions and behavior. Worry, on the other hand, is considered to be the ‘thinking’ part of anxiety.
You may already have noticed that, when you are anxious, you think in a very different way from when you are relaxed. Things that might not normally worry you can build to enormous proportions and you could find yourself thinking that everything is about to go wrong and that you won’t be able to cope wit it! Worry tends to make us think in extreme ways, and when we worry we believe that:
– Things are going to go wrong
– When they do they will go horribly wrong!
-Not only that, but when things go horribly wrong, you won’t be
able to cope.
The unfortunate thing about this way of thinking is that it only makes anxiety worse. When people worry in this way they find themselves caught in that vicious cycle. The more they worry, the more anxious you may feel. The more anxious you feel, the more you worry.
The Worst Part Is:
Some people actually end up worrying about worrying. These people tend to believe that worrying is deeply negative. They may worry that their worrying is out of control, thinking, for example that:
– They can’t stop worrying
– Their thoughts are going to take over and control them
– Worrying is harmful
– They will go crazy with all this worrying
– If they keep worrying, they will have a breakdown
– If they keep worrying, they will have a heart attack
The Cycle Of Worrying Continues…
If you experience such thoughts or are afraid that your worrying is out of control then you are almost inevitably going to worry even more, thereby trapping yourself within that vicious circle. The thing to remember is that, like most worries, these thoughts are exaggerated and not based upon reality.
Answer These Questions If You’re Stuck In A Cycle Of Worry And Anxiety:
– Do I often feel anxious or nervous?
– Do I often feel that I cannot cope?
– Do I often feel that my worries are out of control?
– Do I often feel that I may go crazy with my worries?
– Do I often feel that my worries are taking over my life?
– Do I experience some or all of these symptoms:
– Racing heart
– Shortness of breath
– Dizziness or light-headedness
– Churning or tight stomach
– Dry mouth
– Is worrying a problem for me?
– Do my worries only lead to more worry and anxiety?
– Do I worry about everything and anything?
– Do I think that it is not normal to worry?
– Do I avoid doing particular things or putting myself in
particular situations because they make me feel anxious?
– If I start to feel anxious in a particular situation, do I try to
escape from it as fast as possible?
– Do I avoid doing things alone because I feel more comfortable
when somebody else is with me?
– Do I use certain behaviors to diminish or to disguise my
The more questions you believe are true, the more likely it is that you are caught in a cycle of anxiety and worry. Now take a look back and see if you are suffering more from behavioral, emotional, mental or physical symptoms. This will give you a good idea of what direction you need to look to find relief.