Anxiety in the suburbs is rampant and I see firsthand how it is affecting the marriages of Australia. It’s putting strain and stress on marriages and not creating room for pleasure and desire. Is anxiety destroying your marriage? Understanding it and healing it will make for a much happier empowered marriage.
Do I have anxiety? 2 Questions to ask yourself
- Is my reaction over the top for what’s presenting?
- Are you finding it difficult to do things that you use to find easy? E.g. Groceries, riding in an elevator or being in a crowd.
If you answered yes to either of these questions perhaps anxiety is visiting which will be affecting the quality of your marriage?
Anxiety itself is not a medical condition but a natural emotion that is vital for survival when an individual find themselves facing danger.
An anxiety disorder develops when this reaction becomes exaggerated or out-of-proportion to the trigger that causes it.
- Restlessness, and a feeling of being “on-edge”
- Hypervigilant, always on guard
- Uncontrollable feelings of worry
- Increased irritability
- Concentration difficulties
- Sleep difficulties, such as problems in falling or staying asleep
- Persistent or extreme levels
Possible causes include:
- Environmental stressors, such as difficulties at work, relationship problems, or family issues
- Genetics, as people who have family members with an anxiety disorder, are more likely to experience one themselves
- Medical factors, such as the symptoms of a different disease, the effects of a medication, or the stress of an intensive surgery or prolonged recovery
- Brain chemistry, as psychologists define many anxiety disorders as misalignments of hormones and electrical signals in the brain
- withdrawal from an illicit substance, the effects of which might intensify the impact of other possible causes
You got here due to a stressful event, you got here due to trauma. For example, at five years old, your dog died, and trauma locked in the body. The fight, flight, freeze response and your body has never come back down from that. Your body does not know that that event is over. Your unconscious is keeping you safe and doing a fantastic job.
You then continue in life and you have more stressful and traumatic events and again, the body goes into the fight, flight, freeze response. For some people including myself, I’ve been in the survival way of living most of my life.
The psychological changes in your body when you are in fight, flight or freeze are meant to last for a short period, just till you face the danger and whether you fight, flight or freeze.
We can remain in a state of persistent arousal with limited opportunities to release the built-up tension and we repeatedly react in this way over and over and over again over decades.
When you’re in fight, flight, freeze you feel unsafe. The unconscious is doing a great job of keeping you safe.
For some of you, you may need more expert help, particularly if it’s deep childhood trauma, which for some of us it is. Working with a therapist who uses psychotherapy is the most effective way to move anxiety.
- Stress management: Learning to manage stress can help limit potential triggers. Organize any upcoming pressures and deadlines, compile lists to make daunting tasks more manageable, and commit to taking time off from study or work.
- Relaxation techniques: Simple activities can help soothe the mental and physical signs of anxiety. These techniques include meditation, deep breathing exercises, long baths, resting in the dark, and yoga.
- Exercises to replace negative thoughts with positive ones: Make a list of the negative thoughts that might be cycling as a result of anxiety and write down another list next to it containing positive, believable thoughts to replace them.
- Support network: Talk with familiar people who are supportive, such as a family member or friend. Support groups in your local area and online.
- Exercise: Physical exertion can improve self-image and release chemicals in the brain that trigger positive feelings.
If you are experiencing anxiety and you are married or in a relationship, this will be affecting the quality of your relationship. Is anxiety destroying your marriage? Perhaps its time to do something about it?
Tune into to my Empowered Marriage Podcast to learn more. This week’s podcast is available now and discusses this topic in more depth. Is Anxiety destroying your marriage? – https://www.powerofchange.com.au/empowered-marriage-podcast/