What does anxiety feel like?
These are the real faces of anxiety.
Anxiety feels like I need to run away to safety, but the only thing I can run from is myself.
Physically, I get headaches, dizziness, pins and needles, I struggle to catch my breath, my chest is tight, and I’m exhausted.Jo, 37, Gold Coast Australia
For me anxiety was an uncontrollable feeling of panic and isolation leading to a lonely dark place that only I resided in.
I also had a burning desire to ask for help knowing that I was going to possibly be frowned upon as having a mental disorder. This made me more anxious and concerned about peoples perceptions of me especially as those closest responded with “pull yourself together” ignorant of the underlying issues I was experiencing. Then there’s the realisation that people cannot identify with you unless they have been in a similar situation.Andy, 41, Oxfordshire UK
It feels like my whole body is filled with an intense surge of nervous energy.
My breathing becomes short and rapid while my heart starts to pound. I’m not able to sleep even though my body and mind are both physically and emotionally drained.Kae, 33, Vancouver British Columbia
One of the most frightening feelings for me was one of disconnection from the ‘outside world’ everything happening around me , and the feeling of panic as I tried to get that connection back. Physically, I experienced pins and needles in my face and left arm, heaviness in my chest, sweating the fear of dying.. of loosing control, oh it was so awful.Linda, 50, Ruthin North Wales
It feels like I have taken a deep breath in anticipation of ducking under a wave in the ocean.
Is the wave too big? (I’ve seen bigger), is there a shark? (no, ridiculous), will I ever come out the other side?(yes, almost certainly). My mind tries to control all the outcomes. I duck under. I survive. The wave is gone. I don’t exhale. I anticipate the next wave.
My chest is tight.
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