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Anxiety Is a Powerful Teacher

Anxiety can be detrimental, or it can be our friend

Anxiety. We’ve all had it, dreaded it, tried to avoid it, or tried to learn to cope with it – kind of.

For years I’ve treated people with anxiety disorder, and sometimes I have had to medicate people to help them cope with its symptoms. But many times anxiety is our friend.

Anxiety is telling us that something is wrong in our lives, and if we can identify it, we can sometimes change our lives and alleviate the internal stress.

Stress and anxiety often arise from “eustress”, which can be good at times, and not so good at other times. Eustress can also be detrimental if it is constant. Anxiety raises our adrenaline levels so that we can be ready to perform, and in the extreme case, it activates our “fight or flight” system. This energy in little bits can keep us focused, on task and motivated to barrel through our checklists and remain productive. But in big or chronic doses this stress does the opposite.

Anxiety sometimes can give us very helpful advice and insight. In my years of this work, I try to help people sort through the possible causes of anxiousness and panic, as it can tell us that something is wrong in our life. If we can get help for our anxiety, maybe we can make some changes to make our life and stress better. Ignoring anxiety’s warning signs doesn’t do us any favors. While we may not have to listen to all of its extremes, we can slow down to evaluate what may need to be changed in our lives a bit, to avoid stress saturation and further problems.

Anxiety is a powerful teacher

Anxiety can help us grow. Anxiety is a powerful teacher, often stretching us beyond the borders of our thinking. It reminds us of our strength and tenacity, and that we’re resilient and capable of bouncing back even when “everything” seems to be stacked against us. When we work through difficulties, we become better adept at coping with upcoming challenges. This can help us be happier and more peaceful in the long run.

Because anxiety and panic often are a result of a longer term problem, we may need help sorting it all out. But anxiety isn’t always our enemy, it may even be able to be our friend!

If your anxiety is getting the best of you, let me know! I’m always available to you. – Susanne, xo

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