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Is Anxiety a Friend Or Foe?

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Anxiety presents itself in different forms.
  There is the anxiety you feel before a job interview, making a presentation or having a difficult conversation.
  You might even welcome or accommodate it, believing that it is helpful in energizing and focusing you.
  However, anxiety might become so overwhelming that it is interferes with your normal ability to function on a daily basis.
  Even simple tasks like getting out of bed, preparing food,  or caring for your children seems insurmountable.
  When this happens, you might feel useless, anxious and fearful that you may never overcome your difficulties.
  Self-esteem plummets and you become caught in a cycle of self-deprecation and negativity.
  This can happen to anyone - one day you are functioning effectively, e.
g.
holding down a senior position and directing others and, following a major life change like redundancy or death in the family, you are unable to even get out of bed.
What can you do?  Firstly, recognize that becoming caught in the grip of anxiety following stressful life events can immobilize anyone.
  There is no need to pathologise yourself, believing that you must be mentally ill, weak or deficient.
  Having a supportive partner, family member or friend can be one of the most important factors in enabling you to navigate the difficult feelings that accompany anxiety.
  Your anxiety might be so severe that you experience what is known as a Panic Attack - a crippling sense of emotional and physical fear, accompanied by a sense of losing complete control.
  Ironically, a panic attack, despite the experience of losing control, is a way of 'getting back in control'.
  It will pass - what follows, however, is the fear that it will happen again - maybe in a public place or in-front of people you would prefer never to see you like this.
Anxiety, if not treated, can become chronic - so debilitating that even the simplest of daily activities like maintaining personal hygiene, eating or conversing are interfered with over a long time.
  Thus, if you experience a level of anxiety that is regular, immobilizing and prolonged - without any reasonable external reason - then seeking a skilled psychologist can be invaluable.
A psychologist can help you examine the underlying causes of your distress and encourage you to look even further to understand the nature of your anxiety.
  Everyday anxiety might point to a deeper sense of dis-ease which is existential in nature about who you are and the choices you face in living a rich and meaningful life.
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