We all get worried, stressed, or freaked out sometimes over our lives and the events in them. We all get anxious sometimes during the day/week/month/year. When anxiety lingers around longer than it should it could be a sign of something more serious. Anxiety disorders are one of, if not the most common mental health disorders prevalent in our society today.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, about 19.1% of U.S. adults (18+) had any kind of anxiety disorder in the past year. Interestingly, women experience anxiety disorders more often than men (23.4% of U.S. women; 14.3% of U.S. men). Of the U.S. adult population, 31.1% of women and men will have an anxiety disorder at some point in their lives.
What does all this mean?
This means of the entire American population (about 327 million people) that around 102,002,130 people will experience any kind of anxiety disorder. Millions of people!
Are you curious if you have an anxiety disorder? Do you know others with anxiety disorders? Scroll below to read the signs and symptoms of different anxiety disorders.
Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders
Before reaching the journal prompts and mental health journal guide, check out the signs and symptoms of a few different anxiety disorders. A good portion of the journal prompts is meant to help you understand your symptoms, disorder, or mental health. Remember... self-awareness is a process but it's always worth it!
Generalized Anxiety Disorder
Restlessness or feeling wound-up or on edge
Being easily fatigued
Difficulty concentrating or having their minds go blank
Difficulty controlling the worry
Sleep problems (difficulty falling or staying asleep or restless, unsatisfying sleep)
Sudden and repeated attacks of intense fear
Feelings of being out of control during a panic attack
Intense worries about when the next attack will happen
Fear or avoidance of places where panic attacks have occurred in the past
Social Anxiety Disorder
Feeling highly anxious about being with other people and having a hard time talking to them
Feeling very self-conscious in front of other people and worried about feeling humiliated, embarrassed, or rejected, or fearful of offending others
Being very afraid that other people will judge them
Worrying for days or weeks before an event where other people will be
Staying away from places where there are other people
Having a hard time making friends and keeping friends
Blushing, sweating, or trembling around other people
Feeling nauseous or sick to your stomach when other people are around
Sometimes considered a phobia-related disorder
Worrying irrationally or excessively about a feared object or situation
Taking intentional steps to avoid the feared object or situation
Experiencing intense, immediate anxiety upon facing the object or situation
Enduring unavoidable feared objects and situations with immense anxiety
Separation Anxiety Disorder
Affects adults and children
Fearing being separated from those with whom they are attached
Worrying some kind of harm will happen to their attached figure(s) while separated
Avoiding separation from the attached figure(s)
Avoiding being alone
Having nightmares about separation from the attached figure(s)
Experiencing physical symptoms of anxiety when thinking about or actual separation occurs
Anxiety develops from a complex set of risk factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, personality, and life events. Symptoms that fade quickly may not be signs of an actual disorder. Symptoms that negatively impact your life, school, work, social interactions, etc. may be signs of an anxiety disorder. Although anxiety is highly treatable, only 36.9% of people with chronic anxiety receive treatment. Always speak with a professional if you have questions about your mental health!
Information provided by the National Institute of Mental Health
Now on Rose-Minded, you'll find mental health journal guides for specific mental health disorders. Guided journals lead to self-discovery and take the confusion out of starting to journal (like not knowing where to start). The journal prompts cover topics like symptoms and self-care to guide you through your mental health journey, with special emphasis on reducing stress and anxiety disorder symptoms.
The mental health prompts are divided to cover different areas for those who still struggle with understanding their anxiety and understanding themselves. Writing regularly in a journal is one of the best ways to learn more about yourself, especially when you reflect on previous entries. Try to go back every couple of weeks or months to read old entries and see how you've progressed since then. Maybe you've gotten better... maybe you've gotten worse, but you'll be able to start noticing patterns to help you navigate your mental health disorder(s) and well-being.
When you feel stressed, how do you notice your stress (thoughts, physical symptoms, behaviors)?
Think of the last time you let negative thoughts spiral out of control. What were some of those thoughts?
Why do you think negative thoughts spiral out of control so quickly?
Emotion Awareness & Reflection
What emotions do you feel when you begin to get stressed or overwhelmed? How do you cope with these emotions?
What emotions do you feel after a spiral, anxiety or panic attack?
Do certain emotions affect your anxiety? How do you feel emotions impact your mental state?
Signs & Symptoms
Which symptom of anxiety do you feel is most toxic in your life and why?
Do you notice signs of anxiety, stress, or worries in others? How? (If not, try observing!)
What activities make you calm? Make the longest list you can.
What makes you stressed? How can you find practical ways to avoid or adapt to some of those stressors?
The Mental Health Journal Guide for Anxiety has 52 weeks' worth (a whole year!) of journal prompts designed to help you improve your emotion regulation, self-care practices, anxiety symptoms, and meta-cognition. It also includes a prompt schedule/calendar at the end of the journal guide laying out your whole year of prompts!
A journal guide is an important factor in the process of discovering your own strengths and weaknesses, which is also the first step to building on strengths and working on weaknesses! Reflect each week on previous weeks' journal entries, and you'll learn more and more about yourself and your mental health as you progress through the guide over the entire year.
Before you can transform yourself, or even just find self-peace and mindful awareness, you must know how to recognize, approach, and reverse a downward spiral of negative thoughts and emotions, how to become aware of the emotions you feel and what they mean, how to recognize and approach your anxious signs and symptoms, and also how to take care of yourself! This combination of healthy expression is proven to lead to a long-term and strong feeling of improvement from anxiety and related-symptoms!
"As of today, I've been journaling for 12 days and I haven't missed a day! I'm so proud of myself. I've noticed that I feel better. I've been managing stress a lot better than I did in the past without journaling and I've been keeping track of my emotions as well." - Andrea Vargas
Note: This journal guide shouldn't replace professional treatment! It should be used as a helpful aid in the improvement of anxiety symptoms and recovery.
Read more about the journal guide for anxiety, here.
How Online Therapy Can Ease Your Anxiety
Psychotherapy has been around for over 150 years and much progress has been made. Freud began seeing patients for talk therapy by having them divulge all of their conscious and unconscious feelings and thoughts while lying on his couch, which is still common practice for many therapists today. But thankfully, technology has enabled us to communicate with our therapists with more ease and simplicity than ever before through online therapy.
Online therapy is an extremely effective way to work with a therapist for anyone who is looking to improve his or her mental wellness. With online therapy, you can text your therapist throughout the week with different updates, talk to them on the phone when you need it the most, and even see your therapist through video chat when you want that face-to-face interaction. Your therapeutic plan is not just how to treat your diagnosis, but how you can build a relationship with your therapist in whichever way works best for you. This method of therapy is a practical way to treat the most common symptoms of anxiety.