Anxiety can be a debilitating mental illness, and people with a high level of anxiety may need significant support from others. Many people confuse stress with anxiety, but there is a clear distinction between the two.
Stress can be helpful when you experience the normal reaction to needing to fulfill several work duties. Good stress, called eustress, gives us the drive to complete our daily tasks. When the stress accumulates and a person cannot handle it successfully, it may inhibit the person from performing at their peak.
Anxiety takes over when this happens, so a person’s functioning is affected. The pressure the person feels from their anxious feelings can affect them, and they may need help navigating through it all. So, if you notice that someone is not coping well with their anxiety, you may help them by doing the following:
Be Understanding Of Their Situation
Someone with anxiety usually feels alone and cut off from the world around them, even if this is not always the case. When someone is looking from the outside in, it may be easy to see the solutions the person needs.
Although you shouldn’t give them advice like ‘this is so easy to do’ or ‘you overlooked the problem/solution,’ understand that their anxiety blinds them. The person sees the situation differently from others from outside their circumstances.
To answer the question ‘What is anxiety,’ we would have to research and speak to professionals for advice if we don’t have enough information to assist our loved ones who suffer from it. A therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist would have good suggestions about what to do in each situation that the person may face.
Offer Your Support To Them
Giving someone the gift of your time would mean more than anything else you could give them. When a person with anxiety knows that someone in their corner is willing to help them, it makes their circumstances easier for them to handle.
Having someone to turn to for support gives them an avenue to channel their emotions and possibly find the outcomes they are looking for in the situation. They need to know that there will be someone there for them, even though it may seem like there is nowhere else to turn.
Another offer of support that people can give is suggesting they seek help from a professional. There are different options for therapy for anxiety, and helping them find the right one could be the best way to support them.
Have Patience And Listen To Their Concerns
Anxiety may sometimes cause irrational thinking in those who have it. No matter how absurd the ideas or rationale they may have, don’t be judgmental and listen instead. Many times, an open ear is all a person needs.
Most likely, the person with anxiety would be scared, frustrated, emotional, and sad all at the same time. Be patient with them as they go through their feelings and let them give an outlet to these safely.
Ensure that you take their suggestions on what they need, like if they ask for some alone time. Being respectful of their wishes would affirm to them the power they have inside of themselves to overcome this trying time.
Take Care Of Your Own Needs
This statement may sound selfish when a person we love is struggling, but remember that one person can only help another when they are safe and secure in themselves. Having too much to handle alone would leave little room to help others, so boosting one’s mental health is essential.
Take the needed time to digest and assess the situation. Provide the person with as much support as needed without spreading yourself too thin.
Keep Communication Lines Open
As much as the person with anxiety needs to know that there will be someone to support them, there would need to be boundaries. The only way to keep the relationship between two people healthy is if the lines of communication are open both ways.
Don’t feel guilty when you notify the person with the anxiety that you will not be available throughout the day. As long as the communication is open and honest, everyone will feel respected, valued, and loved.
Anxiety may be crippling for some, and having a supportive friend or family member usually means the world to the person who is struggling. Thus, ensure that everyone respects the process so the support system can be mutually beneficial.
Anxiety may be difficult to understand at first. However, with enough research and understanding gained from professionals, it would be possible to stand by someone suffering from it without feeling overwhelmed.