AnxietyAnxiety is the body's way of responding to being in danger.
When we feel anxious a chain of automatic events occur in our bodies, which prepares us for action. This reaction is often termed the 'fight' or 'flight' response and can be traced back into our evolutionary past.
The reaction itself consists of the brain sending a message to pump adrenalin into the bloodstream. The heart beats faster and because we are working harder, it needs more fuel so takes in more oxygen. To cool down the body sweat and blood capillaries come to the surface.
When this chain of events occurs in a normal situation, for example if we are pushing the trolley around the supermarket or in a business meeting it can be very frightening.
There are three parts to feeling anxious:
- Bodily Sensations: These have already been mentioned, they include irregular breathing, churning stomach, sweating, trembling, racing heart and the need to visit the toilet.
- Behaviour: This is what you do when faced with the fearful situation.
- Thinking: This includes your ideas and beliefs about what might happen to you in the situation that you fear.