Anxiety: What It Is and How to Manage It

Anxiety is characterized by worry, nervousness, or fear, often accompanied by physical symptoms such as a racing heart, sweating, or shaking. While anxiety is a normal emotion everyone experiences at times, some suffer from an anxiety disorder, a more chronic and debilitating condition.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is a common anxiety disorder involving excessive worrying about everyday events. People with GAD often feel on edge or tense all day, even though they may not have anything specific to worry about. As a result, they may avoid certain situations or activities and struggle to lead a well-balanced, happy life.

Other types of anxiety disorders include social anxiety disorder (SAD), panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and phobias. Each type has unique symptoms, but all involve some degree of fear or apprehension about certain situations.

Tips for Managing Stress and Anxiety

There are several things you can do to help manage stress and anxiety levels:

  • engage in regular exercise
  • practice relaxation techniques such as deep breathing exercises
  • maintain a healthy, low-sugar, and limited-caffeine diet
  • get adequate sleep
  • practice mindfulness activities such meditation
  • develop healthy coping skills such as talking to friends/family members
  • take breaks throughout the day between tasks
  • create positive self-talk statements to remind yourself that you are capable of handling a difficult situation
  • try journaling your thoughts/feelings to process them more effectively.

If these strategies do not seem to be helping with your stress levels or if you believe you may have an anxiety issue or disorder, it's important to reach out for professional help from a mental health provider who can provide an accurate diagnosis based on your individual needs. A therapist can advise how best to manage your symptoms so that you can live a more balanced life free from overwhelming negative emotions associated with anxiety.

Diane K. Schmidt Counseling Services | 8575 W. 110th Street, Suite 304 Overland Park, KS 66210 | Phone: 913.730.6778 | Email: