“Don’t Expect Your Friends And Family To ‘Get’ Your Struggles Right Away If They’ve Never Experienced Something Similar Themselves.”
Anxiety disorders are one of the most common psychological disorders in not just the USA, but all over the world. However, it still can be quite difficult for anxiety sufferers to make others understand what they are going through.
Below are some tips that can help anxiety sufferers in explaining their anxiety to others in a way that they might understand (Followed by an important video from The Anxiety Guy YouTube Channel):
Compare your anxiety to situations that others can relate to: Most people think that anxiety is somewhat similar to sensations of fear and apprehension that one may feel before a big test, before going on a first date, or before making a presentation, etc.
It’s important for people with anxiety to help others differentiate between temporary anxiousness when taking a risk and perennial nerve-wracking anxiety that can sometimes be so debilitating that it can hamper everyday routines.
This can be done by comparing your anxiety to certain events or situations that evoke a sense of continued dread in most of us. Anxiety sufferers may compare their anxiety to the helplessness that we may experience when we get lost in a city in a foreign land where no one speaks English, or to the irrational dread that we experience when driving along a deserted road in the night, or the unknown fear that grips us when in a dark, allegedly spooky house.
Let others know that anxiety is more than just plain ‘worrying’: Anxiety is usually associated with constant worrying about different things in life. Anxiety sufferers should help eliminate this incorrect notion and make others realize the chasm of difference between uncontrollable and complicated anxiety, and practical impulsive worrying about certain events.
It has to be made clear that anxiety is not a choice and hence cannot be alleviated by simply ‘calming down.’ It is a disorder that trips off certain areas in the brain and prevents all access to all forms of relief. This is where a friend of family member can benefit greatly by starting the RIC certification course in order to help you towards desensitization (any questions on the course, contact me here).
Let others know how anxiety affects even minor aspects of daily life: Most of us generally do not understand how minor things of daily life, like throwing a party for a small group of friends, can get complicated by anxiety. One of the ways you can go deeper into explaining your anxiety to others is by telling them every detail of that specific event, like throwing a small party.
When explaining your anxiety to others you must be specific, broadness won’t help you or them.
You may explain how you begin by listing out the invitee names, then scratching out a few, then including them again, then worrying about having too many people, then leaving out a few, then thinking about the food to be ordered or cooked, then thinking about what food needs to be cooked/ordered, and so on and so forth.
It can be very illuminating for others when they hear a step by step account of how anxiety can complicate even the smallest things in daily life. Let others know that you may not always know what may trigger anxiety in you. Helping them learn more about your impulsive anxious nature currently will be beneficial for both the anxiety sufferer (expression) and others.