HOW ANXIETY AFFECTS THE BODY
What is anxiety?
Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress; it alerts us to dangers and reminds us to stay attentive. However, anxiety that differs from normal feelings of nervousness can affect our job performance, schoolwork and personal relationships. According to the Barlow, D. H. (2002), anxiety is an uncontrollable, unpleasant
and persistent state of negative affect characterized by apprehensive anticipation of unpredictable and unavoidable future danger. This negative affect is often accompanied with symptoms of tension.
How does anxiety affect our bodies?
Anxiety can manifest in our body in a number of ways. According to Patriquin and Mathew (2017) symptoms of anxiety include the following:
How to cope with anxiety?
The next time you are feeling anxious, try of these self-management strategies found to promote personal recovery and symptoms reduction (Villagi, et. al, 2015).
Anxiety can often feel like a roadblock that prevents us from leading normal lives. By understanding our symptoms and finding coping strategies to use when feeling overwhelmed, we can manage our anxiety and reduce our stress.
Barlow, D. H. (2002). Anxiety and its disorders: The nature and treatment of anxiety and panic (2nd ed.). New York: Guilford Press.
Patriquin MA, Mathew SJ. (2017). The Neurobiological Mechanisms of Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Chronic Stress. Chronic Stress. doi:10.1177/2470547017703993
Villaggi B, Provencher H, Coulombe S, et al. (2015). Self-Management Strategies in Recovery From Mood and Anxiety Disorders. Global Qualitative Nursing
Student Counselor at Sul Ross State University. Ariana enjoys working with adults and teens for a variety of reasons. Please check her out on our clinicians page.
How Burnout Affects Mental Health
Burnout is more than work-related stress, it can make us feel helpless, detached,
unmotivated, and unsatisfied. The constant demands of work take a toll, leaving us overwhelmed and emotionally drained. Burning out is a serious phenomenon that affects our mental and physical health. Suffice it to say that one's level of burnout will have a direct impact on their quality of life. Because of this, it is important to understand how to prevent and overcome burnout.
While burnout leads to a general sense of exhaustion and excessive fatigue, many also experience mental health issues in addition to their physical ailments. Sufferers from burnout may display signs of anxiety, depression, or other mental disorders. And you’re probably not alone in feeling stressed at work, according to the APA’S 2021 Work and Well-being survey, 71% of workers reported work-related stress within the past month.
According to Hadley, C. (2022), there are three signs of burnout.
Here are a few ways to cope with burnout:
Taking time to prioritize self-care, reducing stressors, and finding meaningful connections are the best ways to combat the negative psychological effects of burnout. At times, burnout can feel unsurmountable. By better understanding the symptoms and causes of burnout, you can implement these strategies to prevent feeling overwhelmed. While our experiences may be exhausting during the process, they can serve as a learning experience to help you lead sustainable career and a happier life.
American Psychological Association. (n.d.). Work and well-being 2021 survey report. American
Psychological Association. Retrieved January 18, 2023, from
Hadley, C. N. (2022, April 14). Work burnout signs: What to look for and what to do about it.
Boston University. Retrieved January 18, 2023, from
Valcour, M. (2021, August 27). 4 steps to beating Burnout. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved
January 18, 2023, from https://hbr.org/2016/11/beating-burnout
Author - Ariana Hernandez
Ariana is a student counselor under the supervision of Aimee Rhodes, LPC-S. Ariana enjoys working wth individuals in person and via telehealth. She is a student at Sul Ross State University. We are glad to have her on our team.
Elizabeth Oldham is an LPC-S and co-founder of Transform & Renew, PLLC. She specializes in co-dependency, anxiety and OCD, depression and mood disorders.