10 Things Those Living with Anxiety Wish You Understood

should understand things about anxiety

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For those who are living with anxiety disorder, life can be brutal. Anxiety and anxiety disorders typically involve frequent, irrational or even excessive worry often accompanied by physical symptoms. There are many reasons and causes for anxiety including concern about medical procedures, social anxiety and even performance anxiety just to name a few.


  • Panic Disorder
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder or GAD
  • Social Anxiety Disorder
  • Phobias

Those who have a panic disorder may feel like their life is out of control. They may also feel intense worry about when the next attack will come, or even experience debilitating physical symptoms like a pounding or racing heart, breathing problems, tingly or numb hands, or even dizziness or chest or stomach pain. There is some research that indicates that panic disorders may even be inherited.

People with panic disorder may notice symptoms of terror that come on suddenly or with no warning. Panic disorder can also cause someone to feel as if they are choking and it can even feel like a heart attack. Those with panic disorders may even feel like they are going crazy.

Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) extends beyond merely worrying about everyday things. People with GAD often feel much more anxiety than the situation merits. They may also have a difficult time relaxing, concentrating or even falling asleep at night. Those with GAD may also experience physical symptoms such as muscle tension, trouble swallowing, sweating, nausea, a lightheaded feeling, or even trembling or twitching. GAD develops slowly over time and its symptoms are often worse during stressful periods.

Social Anxiety Disorder occurs when someone feels anxious around other people. They may also feel self-conscious in front of other people or be afraid they are being criticized or judged. They may worry for days or even weeks before an event and have a hard time making friends.

Social anxiety disorder can cause an overwhelming sense of fear or worry causing intense embarrassment.

Phobias can develop over simple things like dogs or spiders or develop over time or from childhood events or experiences. A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder where someone feels an intense fear of an object or thing.

Anxiety disorders affect millions of people every day and they can be very serious. Living with anxiety disorder can affect your entire life, causing a huge impact in your day-to-day life.


  • Intense feeling of panic or uneasiness.
  • Trouble sleeping.
  • Cold hands or feet.
  • Sweaty hands or feet.
  • Nausea or dizziness.
  • Heart palpitations.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Muscle tension.
  • Inability to sit still or remain calm.
  • Shortness of breath.

For those living with anxiety disorder, life can be challenging, to say the least. People that experience chronic or ongoing anxiety can’t actually control when they get anxious, despite what other people may think.

Many people judge those who have anxiety disorders, but until you walk in someone’s shoes, you shouldn’t judge something you don’t understand. Anxiety can affect every area of life from your health, to your ability to hold down a job and it is not something to be taken lightly.

Those who have chronic anxiety are often crippled by that anxiety, and they are unable to simply push through it or make it go away. Those who have anxiety are not lazy or unmotivated either, they are simply anxious.


  1. We can’t will the anxiety away.
  2. We get anxious just thinking about being anxious.
  3. We are not lazy.
  4. We get frustrated too.
  5. Everything is heightened when we are anxious, including sights, sounds and smells.
  6. We don’t know why we are anxious and we don’t know how to control it.
  7. Some days or worse than others.
  8. Some days we simply can’t leave our comfort zone.
  9. It’s not ALL in our mind.
  10. We would like you to understand that it’s something we cannot always control.

For those who live their life with a constant sense of peace and calm, it can be hard to understand that those living with anxiety simply can’t push through it. Anxiety is like an unstoppable force that takes over your whole being. Anxiety is debilitating in every way, and many people live in a constant state of uneasiness thanks to their anxiety.

Sometimes, just thinking about being anxious, can worsen anxiety. The truth is that anxiety rears its ugly head when it is the least convenient. Anxiety can also worsen during those times when someone is trying to be at their best, which makes it even more inconvenient.

Those with anxiety are not lazy or unmotivated either, they are simply anxious. It can be very frustrating always battling with constant anxiety, and no one knows that better than the person suffering from anxiety.

If you are anxious, and you have to go out into the world, every sense becomes magnified. Sounds seem louder and smells are even more potent. Anxiety can also cause someone to overheat or feel an intense desire to be outside in the cool, fresh air.

Those living with anxiety disorders don’t know why they are anxious and they don’t know how to control it and this can be increasingly difficult.

Those with chronic anxiety may even feel hesitant to leave their comfort zone and some days or far worse than others.

For those with anxiety, having anxiety is a life-long battle, and it can make life very difficult to navigate. Anxiety is not something that merely lives in the mind, it is a real, debilitating life-altering issue.

Anxiety is really just like having a disease, except it is a disease that you can’t often see, hear or feel. Having some compassion and understanding for those suffering from severe anxiety can go a long way to helping someone cope.

Sometimes the best thing you can do for those friends who suffer from anxiety, is to simply lend an ear and to have some compassion. Sit down and listen when your friends talk. Ask that what you can do to help. Allow them room to breathe. Have some empathy and try and put yourself in their shoes and you just might find that you understand anxiety a little bit more.

Who in your life struggles with anxiety? Share with us in the comments below.