Chronic anxiety or generalised anxiety disorder is the health condition when people tend to have a surge of worry about things, strong enough to affect their daily activities. Symptoms of stress, panic attacks and restlessness are commonly seen in people suffering with chronic anxiety. However, they also feel guilty about a lot of things in their day-to-day lives, which are visibly normal for others. “Living with chronic anxiety can make moments of stillness, peace, calm, or even boredom feel uncomfortable, or like something is wrong,” wrote Therapist Carrie Howard as she noted down the things that can feel unsafe for people with chronic anxiety.
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Leisure or rest: Chronic anxiety makes us feel that we need to get through the day somehow. This creates the sense of rush within us. Rest and spending leisure time doing nothing can feel very foreign to us in these cases. Hence, the body interprets rest and leisure as something threatening.
Moment of calm: People with chronic anxiety are always in the state of constant chaos. That’s why, when things slow down or feel calm for even some time, they feel threatened.
Feeling bored: Boredom is a negative feeling for someone with chronic anxiety. We are constantly living by the edge and staying busy – the rush makes us feel comfortable. That’s why when we feel bored, we feel unsafe in that environment.
Peace in the relationship: We are used to having chaos, conflicts and disagreements in the relationship – so much so that we have started sensing that, that is normal in the relationship. Hence, we feel peace in the relationship, we sense that something is not right.
How do we move from this? Here are some tips:
Affirmations: We need to speak to ourselves and affirm ourselves that even though we feel unsafe in environments that are calm and peaceful, we should not feel agitated.
Mindfulness: “Build your tolerance for these moments by allowing yourself to be fully present. By staying present, you’re giving your brain valuable experience that you are not in actual danger just because things quiet down,” wrote Carrie Howard.
Resist creating new drama to be anxious about: We should resist the urge to create a situation of chaos which we can feel anxious about.