How to Spot Signs of High Functioning Anxiety in Your Daily Life
Do you feel that you are constantly busy juggling several projects at once and have a to-do list that seems never-ending? Are you constantly obsessing about what happened in the past and worrying about how things might go in the future? If you answered yes, it's possible that you could be suffering from an anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders of varying degrees affect around 40 million adults in the United States.
High functioning anxiety creates a situation where sufferers take on various pursuits in order to hide their anxiety traits from the world around them. While high functioning anxiety is not an official diagnosis recognized by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, it’s a problem that must be taken seriously to keep you in good health. How can you tell if you have high functioning anxiety? Here are a few ways to spot signs of high functioning anxiety in your daily life.
Many people who have high functioning anxiety present themselves to the world as highly successful people with a stable career. They arrive early and stay late, exceed expectations, and meet every deadline. All of this is done out of fear that they will make a mistake and lose their jobs rather than simply trying to excel in their careers. They are completely unsatisfied with their performance, even when given positive feedback. It can even show up as avoiding certain activities so you don’t disappoint others if you should fail. People with this level of anxiety have trouble saying no and might lie awake at night obsessing over what they didn’t do right that day and worrying about the future. The constant need to stay busy becomes like a drug to keep your mind from thinking and feeling. Constantly chasing something else becomes a distraction from facing and dealing with your anxiety. You can’t sit still and must constantly be doing something.
People suffering from this disorder spend an enormous amount of time hiding their anxiety while at work. As a result, their mind can become overwhelmed and exhausted, leading the person to spew out their toxic emotions uncontrollably after they get home. This shows up as mood swings, irritability, sudden fits of rage, and depression. Family and friends are bewildered as to why the person can seem so put together at work yet go haywire at a moment’s notice in their personal life. This symptom typically shows up as behaving like everything is “fine” when the exact opposite is true. You feel like no one can truly understand how you feel so you bottle up everything inside and hope your problems go away on their own. You’re typically seen as being stoic, cold, or unemotional. You have a hard time expressing your true feelings and feel you have to deal with everything on your own.
Nervous And Controlling Habits
Those with this disorder often display or engage in soothing behaviors such as nail-biting, scratching, leg twitching, knuckle cracking, or hair-pulling to relieve stress. There also may be an overwhelming desire to do repetitive things like rocking back and forth or counting stairs. If something disrupts your repetitive ritual, you can get highly agitated.
Many people with high functioning anxiety have a hard time falling asleep at night and staying awake during the day. They may wake up too early in the morning and find it hard to go back to sleep. Anxiety buildup over the course of a day can lead to sleep disturbances that can affect your overall health and wellbeing. You wind up feeling mentally and physically exhausted from not getting enough rest.
If you’ve experienced these four signs over 15 days each month for the last six months, you should find a therapist or psychologist for treatment. It can make a huge difference between just merely surviving each day and truly thriving. Untreated anxiety can lead to even more dangerous medical conditions such as a heart attack, stroke, ulcers, and respiratory issues. Take control of your anxiety and seek out professional counseling services today.